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Dianna Davis - Dynamics Objects

Microsoft Dynamics CRM- the Bigger Picture

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You purchased Dynamics CRM. You made some forms customizations and designed new workflows to streamline the way you work. Well, is that the end of it or is it the start of something more powerful?

Microsoft CRM is a platform that can host other solutions from one or more vendors (ISV), and they all integrate seamlessly with CRM and they all have the same user experience. We, at Dynamics Objects, encourage our customers to look at the bigger picture and find ways to integrate CRM internally, externally, and with employees, as explained in this post.

ERP (internal) Integration

Whether an organization provides goods or services, there is always a process in place to manage the different stages from the time a customer places an order to delivery. These various steps can be integrated within Dynamics CRM. One or more CRM entities can manage the process and constantly be updated from accounting or ERP software, or directly from SQL or Access databases.

If required, a desktop application can be designed to sync between applications and Dynamics CRM using web services. In many cases, suppliers provide an updated status of an order, via web services or standard email notifications, and our program can read the email content and update records in CRM (of any CRM entity) based on the content in the body of the email. Email2Entity is an out-of-the-box plugin that performs such functionality and can be downloaded from our website.

Programs like QuickBooks-Sync and RMM-Sync, synchronize between records (companies, invoices, and payments) in QuickBooks accounting software and Dynamics CRM  or between monitoring software and devices in CRM (read more: www.qos-it.com), similar application can be written to sync between any program and Dynamics CRM if the software vendor provides SDK, API, or direct access to the database records of the software.

 

Customers Portal (external) Integration

Many articles have been published about the benefits for an organization having customer self-service portal, a website through which customers can submit cases (incidents)or view CRM case status and invoices, download documents, and read knowledgebase articles from Dynamics CRM. DNN2CRM are off-the-shelf modules that perform such functionality and can be downloaded and tried from www.DNNintegration.com website. What I would like to discuss today is a more complex and more interesting project in which we integrate online service booking with Dynamics CRM. This is not an off-the-shelf solution and it is tailored to meet customers’ specifications.

Let your customer book for services at the times convenient for them and have this synchronized with the employees' service calendar in CRM.  Microsoft CRM has two very powerful features: service calendar and Services. A service has duration and selection rules for the resources (users, facilities, and equipment) required to perform the service. A service can be scheduled in CRM calendar if the selection rules are met; e.g.: the required users, facilities, and equipment are available for the time you book for service. Think about an organization providing engineering or consulting services. Rather than have the customer calling a receptionist to book for a service, the CRM service calendar with available users and times is displayed on the web site. Customers can book for new service or reschedule the appointment.  This can be further automated. We can allow customers to select a service from a range of available services, offer payment methods via the web, or offer credit terms based on information stored in the Contact or Account records in CRM.

Employees BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)

Allow employees and business partners secure access to Dynamics CRM using any mobile device with Internet connection and a browser (no need to download Apps). In line with the customer portal explained before, DNN provides device detection and redirection to web pages optimized for mobile devices and smart phones.  Here are some of the common applications used by small mobile devices:

Incident- Allow customers to submit and view case status on their mobile device. A mobile device might be the only access to Internet that the customer has when internet is not connected to the business.

My Activities – Whether you are a sales person or CSR (Customer Service Representative), the daily / weekly CRM activities are available on your mobile phone. No need to sync between CRM and the device. Once the activity is completed you report work details and start and end of meeting which updates the activity in CRM and saves it as Completed.  From the manager’s perspective, it translates to real time update when and where meeting starts and ends.

 Sign Off Signature – Allow customers to sign on deliveries or add sign off signature to a completed activity using mobile phone. The signature is uploaded to CRM and attached to the corresponding activity as a Note.

Traveling Expenses - Update the Trip Expenses entity in CRM with odometer readings and petrol cost while in the petrol filling station.

 

Take advantage of our extensive and in-depth knowledge of CRM integration internally, externally, and with employees, call us now: www.DynamicsObjects.com

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One Response to “Microsoft Dynamics CRM- the Bigger Picture”

  1. There is definately a lot to learn about this topic.
    I really like all the points you made.

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