Microsoft addressed an audience of 9000 IT professionals in Atlanta at its Convergence 2011 conference to offer up its vision of how its customers can migrate to the cloud using the company’s Dynamics enterprise resource planning platform. The next release of the solution, Microsoft said, will run on the Windows Azure platform in the cloud.

In the opening keynote of the conference, Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer addressed how the cloud factors across all the company’s offerings.                                                                                                         

“Every one of our products will be engineered to take advantage of the full benefits of the cloud. Our mission is to transform complexity into simplicity and give you agile solutions so you can be dynamic. A key part of delivering this commitment is to deliver our solutions in the cloud. I think the fact we launched the latest version of our online CRM product before the on-premise version should show our commitment to the cloud.

As part of its commitment, Microsoft released a Dynamics Cloud Partner Profitability Guide aimed at helping IT professionals evaluate the economic sense of moving applications like ERP to the cloud.

Worldwide businesses spent about $21 billion on ERP software in 2010, according to Gartner, and that figure is expected to increase 5 percent per year.