Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 includes some 500 new features, functions, and technologies in addition to better open access across multiple devices, the cloud, and tight integration to Microsoft’s powerful and popular Office productivity suite and SharePoint document management and enterprise data repository solution.
Segment customer lists into distinct benefit groups and then market to one or more of the identified segments using a workflow-driven model. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, your marketing professionals can leverage tools for:
- Customer segmentation.
- Campaign planning and execution.
- Data extraction and cleansing.
- Analytics and reporting.
- Marketing/sales collaboration tools.
- Information sharing portals.
Access a complete view of customer data online or offline, and leverage tools that enable your sales professionals to get real-time access to leads, identify cross-sell and up-sell opportunities, and close more deals, faster. Microsoft Dynamics CRM provides:
- Lead and opportunity management.
- Account and contact management.
- Territory management.
- Forecasting and sales analytics.
- Offline and mobile device access.
- Quick access to products, pricing, and quotes.
- Account and contact management.
- Case and interaction management.
- Product and contract management.
- Knowledge-base management.
- Service scheduling.
- Workflow across teams and groups.
- Service reporting and analytics.
With a familiar user interface, wizard-based tools, and close integration with Microsoft Office system productivity applications, Microsoft Dynamics CRM helps you achieve the best fit for your people.
- Get started quickly in a familiar Microsoft Office Outlook environment designed to support fast user adoption and high utilization of your CRM solution without a typical Alt-Tab between Office Outlook and CRM.
- Empower users to work with familiar tools, such as Microsoft Office Word and Microsoft Office Excel spreadsheet software, to create their own dashboards and personal workflows with wizard-based tools without reliance on outside support.
- Provide role-tailored access to information and data both online and offline, giving people access to only the information they want and need—delivered in the way they want it.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM provides choice and flexibility in how you implement and customize your CRM application so you can achieve the best fit for your business.
- Automate business processes to unify line-of-business systems with flexible, easy-to-use tools built on the Microsoft Windows Workflow Foundation platform.(WWF).
- Design your solution utilizing easy to use point and click customization to quickly modify and extend CRM to work the way your business works to uniquely fit the needs of each business group.
- Align IT and business goals through a CRM system that meets both IT requirements and the business requirements enabling fast deployments, low-effort iterative changes and empowered business users.
Built on reliable, industry-standard technology, Microsoft Dynamics CRM is an adaptable and affordable CRM system that fits within your existing technology environment.
- Realize fast return with industry-standard technology built on a performance-enhanced architecture that gives you fewer elements to deploy and maintain.
- Protect IT investments using flexible technology that does not lock you into a specific deployment method, and is easy to upgrade, move, and extend into new business groups, geographies, and lines of business.
- Connect to other technologies with built-in integration between internal and external systems, helping to reduce operational costs and provide fast access to functionality.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 is at the leading edge of cloud computing which uses groups of servers and scalable resources, generally a platform as a service and software as a service, over the Internet. Now it’s very easy for Developers to develop and deploy custom code for Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online using powerful tools, such as Visual Studio through Microsoft® Windows® Azure™ platform, They can also incorporate Microsoft Silverlight™, Windows Communication Foundation, and .NET Language Integrated Query (LINQ) into their cloud solutions Using the Microsoft .NET Framework 4.0. Cloud development for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 is a powerful tool for customizing your Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online solution for optimal performance and business results.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 has a new way called Solutions to save customizations and share them with other users. You can create a solution or import a solution created by a developer outside your organization. Sharing a solution with other users is very easy in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011. A managed solution can be edited only by specific users. But, an unmanaged solution can be edited by any user with an appropriate user role. A solution can have version numbering, relationships with entities and other components, and security features based on user roles.
Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace is your online solutions catalog which helps you to accelerate and extend your Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online implementation.
With this you can quickly discover and apply industry-specific applications and extensions from Microsoft and its partners. Then, Marketplace distributes your solution directly to you.
Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace is fully integrated with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011. You can find your solution directly from Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online.
For more Information CLick Here
Now the “WORKFLOWS”
will be referred as “PROCESSES”
as it will apparently be official nomenclature in CRM 2011
For example, if you click Settings, then Processes, then New, you’ll see the New Process
dialog, in which you specify whether your new process is a workflow
or a dialog
In Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011
and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online
, a process
enables you to create and manage your automated and interactive business processes. While the name has been changed to process, the entity that is used to implement a process is still called workflow
The good news is the new dialog concept is a good one. Basically, it addresses a limitation of the workflow model in CRM 4, that a workflow can’t have a user experience component to it. CRM 4 workflows cannot prompt a user for input.
If you’re familiar with CRM 4 workflows
, you won’t be surprised to find that the Response values
are available as Local Values, which means you can design processes to react to the values entered in the dialog
Dashboards are a powerful feature in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011
.They made it so flexible that dashboard
can be easily integrated directly into your views or your data entry forms. You can use a dashboard to see at a glance all the important information you need to make key business decisions every day. Assemble and present information from several places in Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online
in a quickly-read format. They are easy to create. And, easy to revise according to your changing business needs which require you to have different information at your fingertips
For creating Dashboards Click Here...
Business users often need to keep a real-time pulse on their customer data. This includes knowing what data changed, when it changed, and whether there are hotspots that need further investigation. With Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Dashboards, putting your finger on the pulse just got a lot easier!
A sales manager wants to know when the various sales-related items his team works on were modified, and what state they are currently in. The entities that manager and his team are most interested in are: Accounts, Contacts, Leads, Opportunities, Orders, and Quotes.
With the powerful charting and dashboard capabilities in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, it is very easy for business users to create such dashboards.
Step 1- Identify the business problem you are trying to solve
The user will use this dashboard to answer simple business questions such as:
- When entities I am interested in were modified?
- What does my lead and opportunity pipeline look like?
- Are there any accounts that have been deactivated?
- How many leads were disqualified recently?
- Have we lost any opportunities?
- How many orders are in the pipeline? Have any orders been cancelled?
- How many quotes are we working on? Have any been cancelled?
These are the kind of questions that regularly help users to drive the business forward. The availability of a dashboard that gives them a single page summary of this information will help in quickly getting a pulse of their business. More importantly, they will also be able to identify hotspots and alarming trends using such a dashboard.
Step 2- Check whether there are any OOB charts and dashboards that can help you solve the problem
Before proceeding to create your own charts and dashboards it is always a good idea to check whether any of the Out of Box charts and dashboards can help you solve your problem. There are around 50 out of box charts that can be used to answer a good range of business questions. There are 7 out of box dashboards that cover the typical scenarios in sales, marketing and service.
It is likely that some of the Out of Box charts and dashboards in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 may meet your needs. All charts in Microsoft Dynamics CRM can be accessed by clicking the collapsed chart pane on the right side of any grid. All dashboards can be accessed by navigating to the Dashboard node in sitemap.
Step 3- Identify the Entities, Views and Charts that you would like to track using your dashboard
As stated earlier the sales manager, would like to track entities such as Accounts, Leads, Contacts, Opportunities, Orders and Quotes.
In this case he would like to track the records that have been modified in the current month. To see these entities on a chart that shows the records grouped by 2 criteria; date of modification and current status.
The following table summarizes the information that he would like to track using the dashboard
Step 4- Create the Charts needed to solve the problem
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 comes with an easy to use chart designer that can be used to create the most commonly used business charts. The following different charts types are supported: bar, column, pie, line, scatter, and funnel. The Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 charts designer supports one level of grouping.
Create your dashboard
As now views and charts have been created, a dashboard can be created. Here are the steps –
- Go to the dashboard node within solutions
- Click on create new dashboard
- From the template gallery that is shown, select the first template that has 3 components on each of its two rows
- This opens the dashboard designer canvas
- Click on the charts icon in each of the placeholder cells, and add the 6 charts to this dashboard.
- Give a name for this dashboard.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 gives you the ability to define key performance and business health indicators. This way you can track and measure results against your organization's goals or metrics. Easily and quickly define goals for a campaign or fiscal period. Combine smaller goals, such as for specific teams or territories, into the overall goals for your organization. Create a rollup of all the goals into the actual that show how you are tracking.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 expands its workflow capability by adding interactive dialogs. Dialogs present a consistent message to your customers. Also, dialogs collect and process information using step-by-step scripts to direct users through every process. At one level, you can use dialogs to guide customer interactions and internal processes. At another level, you can increase dialog performance and versatility by incorporating workflow logic. This logic invokes automated tasks using the responses a customer or user makes during the dialog script.
This is by all means the feature with the most bang for the buck for CRM developers. It completely unlocks the client side extensibility capabilities of the CRM framework. Instead of forcing developers to learn new languages Web Resources allow them to use familiar technologies such as: HTML pages, rich Silverlight applications, images, style sheets, xml and more. You can extend Forms, Dashboards, and Ribbons; create your own stand-alone pages, libraries, etc. while the framework takes care of storage, rendering and caching of the resources. Web Resources work On-Premises, Online and they also work in Outlook, both online AND offline. If you add on top of that our new RESTFUL endpoint you have a killer combination: rich UI + rich server side interaction.
The graphs with real time insight and drilldown capabilities are killer features for CRM 2011. A lot of competitors do dashboards and charts, they are not really new to business applications but the way CRM 2011 delivers them is unique, they allow you to navigate your system while drilling into data. You can also extend dashboards with your own controls using Web Resources.
Yes, I’m talking about a whole new client completely revamped for CRM 2011. With many familiar feature but with lots of new goodies that seamlessly blend CRM and Outlook. You can now take advantage of native outlook grids, reading pane, categories, filters, support for multiple organizations, streamlined installation and updates and much much more. Any custom solution automatically flow into the outlook client without having to write a single line of C++ code; all your form customizations, web resources (yes, Silverlight too), ribbon modifications, dashboards, charts, they all work in the outlook client too. This is a close as it gets to the holy grail of “code once, use everywhere”
list them together because it was the same feature team (not me btw) who made them happen. The new Form Editor speaks for itself: drag and drop, rich controls, navigation editing; now it is just plain fun to edit forms. The Customize Tab has an interesting story behind; now everybody loves it because right from almost any object you just click “Customize” on the Ribbon and make whatever changes you want. Literally one day the Tab just showed up and everybody realized that it has to be finished; now is one of the most demoed enhancements on CRM 2011; customization at your fingertips.
This particular feature was always something that intrigued us for CRM “5
″. Previously referred to as “UI Scripts”, they are basically a way to manage complex processes within the CRM user interface
Dialogs are interactive workflows that run synchronously as a result of the user explicitly executing them. The dialog page pops up, can be used for guiding the CRM user to step through a sequence of data entry tasks. The dialog process can be altered on the fly by evaluating data already entered and presenting different dialog pages as the process moves further using query conditions.
Based on the demo video available on the CRM 2011 Beta site, the default method of triggering a process for a record seemed unintuitive. A common customization item could therefore be to link the process start action behind more obvious and informative Ribbon toolbar buttons, by calling the dialog URL with DialogID and EntityObjectID dynamically inserted. Another obvious need would be to have the process window pop up automatically when a create form is opened for a new record, thus providing a structured way to guide the user through filling the fields while displaying relevant instructions.
Indeed, You can now declaratively filter lookups based on relationships by just configuring them on the form editor or, for more advanced users, you can create brand new views on the fly using the client side API. Want to filter based on dynamics values on a form?
That’s right, now lookups remember the items you frequently select; the next time you type something the UI will automatically show you recent items to pick from without having to launch the full lookup dialog.
Totally based in .Net 4 and WCF the newly revamped endpoint makes it a snap to interact with CRM back and forth.I’m personally a fan of the oData (REST) endpoint instead but hard core .Net developers will love the new WCF endpoint.
Some love it, some hate it, but here it is anyway! In an application like CRM where the actions one can perform on a record tend to keep on growing over time as more and more customizations and integrations are applied to the system, the context sensitive ribbon with it’s graphical icons is much more important than in traditional Office apps. While not everyone is happy that CRM 2011 has lost form its tabs after the entity form was changed into one long page with sections, the tabs have in fact found a new home on the ribbon. With this UI shift in mind, it’s easy to see why having two alternative levels of tabs was not really an option from usability perspective. In this new fluid ‘n flat world of CRM 2011 the custom tabs on the ribbon will offer a great customization point to insert shortcuts and custom actions that will help the user navigate inside the application.
There are already many nice shortcuts included in the default UI to reduce the number of clicks, which has previously been a common complaint from Dynamics CRM users. One convenient new feature is the “Recently Visited “button on the CRM main window, which shows a list of previously opened items and lets you pin down the favorite links that are most frequently accessed.
now comes with an auditing module included. You can enable and disable auditing for every entity. If auditing is enabled on an entity, all its fields become audited as well. You can then go through each field in this entity and disable auditing for it if required.
The Audit feature in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 beta is managed from the interface. Found under the settings area, you begin by starting the audit in the Global Audit Setting. You can choose to audit Common Entities (Account, Contact, Goal, Goal Metric, Lead, Marketing List, Product, Quick Campaign, Rollup Query, and Sales Literature), or just specify the audit for a certain discipline. Click Here to know more about AUDITING
For a more advanced control over audit, you can set each individual entity and field to be audited. Looking at the list of entities in the Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 beta, you can see which entities are being audited in the Audit Status column.
.NET 4, Visual Studio 2010, SQL 2008 R2, SharePoint 2010 all wrapped up in a pre-integrated application framework is the simple way to describe CRM 2011. Sure it’s good at the CRM (Customer Relationship Management) stuff but the real story from my perspective in CRM 2011 is the continued expansion of the capabilities of using CRM 2011 as the application framework for a much broader set of line of business applications. Is it right for every application? No. But should it be considered? Yes.
CRM 2011 introduces out of the box integration with SharePoint for document management. It’s my hope that is the first of more integration between the two products. Separately, neither is the dream application framework story yet, but together they would be unstoppable. all the raw components at the lowest level. I always call this “some assembly required” because it’s up to you to integrate all the parts. This low level would be used by developers building things like Stock Trading applications with high volume, or real time mission critical systems like running a space shuttle. SharePoint and CRM would be combined together out of the box as a single product. Taking the collaboration and document management from SharePoint and related data and declarative development from CRM
Solution Packaging Expanded
Prior to CRM 2011 exporting and importing used to be limited to customizations. CRM 2011 introduces the concept of solutions. Solutions can contain the customizations plus things like the code for a plug-in, workflow and Silverlight. Solutions can be exported for distribution and then imported (installed) in the target system. They will be a key part of Microsoft’s CRM App Store. Solutions can be locked down to limit what others can customize if needed. More importantly, solutions can be layered and updated in place. This allows applications to be built from building blocks of solutions. Some provided internally, some provided by 3rd party ISVs. Together these solutions represent a complete application.
This provides the ability to integrate SharePoint site with CRM. By using this feature you can store the documents related to CRM in SharePoint and to manage this documents from within CRM itself. It also provides ability to create folder automatically but it needs SharePoint Server 2010 site and base site collection, this site hosted must have the Microsoft Dynamics CRM List component installed
now you can create new type of activity: ‘message’ like shown in below screen shot.
In Dynamics CRM, you have a lot of different activity types to choose from (phone calls, emails, tasks, appointments, campaign responses, letters, etc). Now in CRM 2011, you can create your own custom activity types. One example of a custom activity type might be an SMS message – so you can track text messages. Another might be a social media interaction. Yet another could be a lead qualification activity. Because activities can link to records in so many ways and can also be visible as Outlook tasks, custom activities will be powerful tools you can use to improve business processes and the visibility of customer interactions across your organization.
As the name suggests, it is a Marketing List which holds the members that can be added or removed dynamically. For this MS provides an ability to associate user query with the marketing list and the members are identified based on the query results.
For a Dynamic marketing list, you can specify a query that is evaluated to populate the updated list of members each time you open the marketing list.
Under Static, the members in the marketing list will change only when you manually add or remove members from the marketing list.
To relieve us of the trouble of manual deletion of records, The ability to delete multiple records using Bulk deletion wizard. The feature was earlier provided in CRM 4.0 live but not in on-premise version. Now it is included in CRM 2011 on-premise as well. Here you need to specify the criteria for an entity. The records found in specified criteria will be deleted from system. Also CRM provides ability to schedule this Job so it periodically runs and deletes the records automatically.
Now you can create appointment which will be scheduled recursively as in MS outlook.
Example: Creating appointments for services in calendar on a periodic interval (recurrence)
You can specify the recurrence duration. The recurring appointments are created in the system immediately. If you edit a recurrence the existing appointments already created for this schedule is altered accordingly.
In Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0, there are very few (and complicated) options for field-level security in CRM. Here is the white paper in the “Nuts and Bolts” Series from Microsoft. Other un-supported option include disabling /hiding a field depending on the security role of the user by making a web service call to get the currently logged-on user’s security role.
In the beta of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, seeing the field-level security included in the out of the box features. In the example below, create a new field with the field-level security property turned on and make changes to the Access level of a user on the particular field. Firstly, create the field with “Field-level security” property turned on.
One of the new UI capabilities in CRM 2011 is the Sub-Grid. This powerful feature gives users with proper security the ability to view, create, and modify records for a related entity directly within a form. As shown in the picture below, the contact entity has been embedded as a sub-grid in the Company form, and when that sub-grid is selected the application ribbon dynamically changes to reflect the options available for that entity.Click here to know how to create Sub Grids in CRM-2011
Ok, let’s be real. When you think about the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Outlook Client, “Track in CRM” is usually the first thing that comes to mind. The reason so many of you use Microsoft Dynamics CRM is because of Microsoft Outlook integration, and when you think about Outlook integration, you think about Track in CRM.
Email and Appointments is in a whole new level in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011.
Track in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. See to Create Subgrids in forms
So you start your day, you read some emails, and you Track a few of them. But in the new Microsoft Dynamics CRM Outlook Client, you are given contextual CRM information about that email you just tracked! For all the contacts on the email, right from your Reading Pane, you see the related record links in CRM. These links are nicely organized by record type for easy reading, and you can click on these links to open up the CRM forms and if one of the recipients isn’t in CRM? They show up in red fonts showing that they are unresolved. You’re one click away from creating them right from your inbox:
There have been considerable improvements in the functionality being offered in the Sales Area in CRM 2011.
Changes have been incorporated in the area of Opportunities, Orders and Invoices
CRM 4.0 Opportunities did not support adding of Write-In Products or Price Override. These attributes were present in the Opportunity entity in CRM 4.0 but not included on the forms. Even if you added them manually on the form, the functionality didn’t work. Here is a screenshot of the Opportunity Product in CRM 4.0.
A major drawback was you could not create opportunities for write-in products.
But in the CRM 2011 the functionality of both Price Override and Product Override (Write-in Product) has been included.
Another change brought about in CRM 2011 is ability to enter negative quantity or amounts to create Negative Quotes/Orders/Invoices. This was sorely missed in CRM 4.0 when it came to being able to record Sales returns or Credit Memos.
In the below screenshot we added two products against the quote and it’s allow us to save it. One with write-in product with a negative Price Per Unit and another one is existing product which has negative Quantity assigned.
This information flows down from Opportunity --> Quote --> Order --> Invoice as well.
As shown in below screen shot the totals are also updated on Quote header with amounts fields.
Note: You can’t set both the Price and Quantity to negative values when creating the line item otherwise it will display the following error to the user. You can set either the Quantity or Price per Unit to negative value but not both.
With the inclusion of Negative orders and Invoices, Microsoft has tried to include a bit of accounting functionality to support recording of returns and credits. Payments is still something that has not been included in Sales Area. Yes it is CRM and not ERP but if it could go ahead and support Negative Sales, it would help if custom entity for Payments was included as well.