Dynamics CRM and the iPad – a Great Combination!

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A common goal of any CRM project is to make the solution easy to use and easily accessible wherever its users are (in the office, working at home, flying on a plane, at a client site, etc.).  This is even more prevalent for sales teams, because they need to focus on their clients, not on their systems.  One of the common solutions to overcome this challenge is to mobilize your CRM either on a phone device or offline access on laptops.  We’ve had several customers wanting to mobilize their CRM that we created a quick start implementation program, just to get these people up and running fast.

These solutions work great in certain business circumstances but they do have limitations of screen size on phones and portability/usability on laptops.  CWR Mobility has recently released an application that integrates iPad devices with Dynamics CRM On-premise and Online to enhance CRM accessibility.   The iPad is of course a great device for emailing, taking meeting notes, reading news articles, watching movies or reading eBooks and of course getting some stress relief by slinging Angry Birds!   However many organizations and individuals can’t fully justify the device for business productivity.   This CWR application may finally be the answer to fully justify the iPad in the workplace!

Here are a few key features of the tool and common uses that I find extremely useful:

  • Access to CRM data while out of the office – allowing both online and offline use.
  • A very user friendly interface that does not require much training because it is a full native iPad application.
  • It is very easy to setup custom views/screens with only configuration.
  • You only need to configure the application once to work on all mobile device types (iPad, iPhone, Windows Mobile and Blackberry).
  • Just some of the many business productivity uses…
    • Record CRM activities quickly when at a client site or in the parking lot after the sales call.
    • Put together sales account plans while on plane or sitting in the airport.
    • While at the customer site review open orders, invoices, service activities, etc.
    • Create a sales quote right at the customer site for the sales manager to review in CRM.
    • Enter service cases quickly to get those customer issues escalated to the correct group quickly.

You can download the application for free from the iTunes app store today to give it a try.  It comes with a sample database you can test out.  If you would like to synchronize information with your CRM to fully try out the application you can contact us to help setup a 30-day trial license for you.

Now you can justify your iPad purchase even more than ever!

by Ledgeview Partners, Wisconsin Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner

9 thoughts on “Dynamics CRM and the iPad – a Great Combination!”

  1. You can easily configure/customize CWR Navigation/Fields/Views however you cannot have custom dynamic code run on the iPad directly today. As I understand it is a limitation Apple has placed on applications. If you want to have full custom logic you are correct, plugins are the way to go for both on-premise and online. The CRM plugins will execute when the synchronization happens. So if you have a plugin on Create of the Account to generate an ID, this ID will be generated when the record is synchronized(either manual or automatically every x minutes) with CRM and then populate back into CWR.

    Here is a link to a short video that walks through some basics of CWR configuration that may be of interest: http://www.cwrmobility.com/Media/Default/Site/cwr-mobile-crm-demo-it-admin.mp4

  2. Is this IApp for Ipad customizable?
    How would this work on a onpremises deployement? Suppose you have a plugin that created an ID everytime you create a new Account, how could this work offline?

  3. How secure is this app? I have concerns of security of any application that works offline as well as online. This would mean Data is loaded on your local machine. If this machine is lost the data then can be compromised. Is there some sort of login required through the app to access both the offline and online information?

    1. If you are looking to fully secure your iPad that contains confidential business data I would highly recommend reading this document from Apple(see chapter 7): http://www.apple.com/iphone/business/docs/How_To_Setup_Guide.pdf

      You can configure your iPad with a secure password and also after 10 failed attempts delete all local data from the device. CWR does not have a password control but does have a similar ability to send a wipe data request the next time a person attempts to synchronize; however if a synchronization is not requested the data will still reside on the device. So the most secure way is to follow the Apple instructions to secure your iPad.

  4. Feedback - I think you could do a better job of explaining what this is. So it's a free app. But it requires a component that needs to be installed on the server? And if so, how much is it? It's one thing not to list prices for an ERP system. But for this type of thing I don't want to have to guess and contact the company. State was is required clearly, and list the licensing fees. You'll also eliminate a lot of wasted time on your end from people finding the app in the app store and not being clear.

    1. Hi David, thanks for the feedback. You are right that there is a licensed web/server component that needs to be installed on-premise, hosted by a partner or hosted by CWR. License costs are based on the number of users/devices connecting to CWR. Once that is established, the app is free to use on your iPad, along with your other mobile devices.

    2. Agree - It's a jungle aout there, and more precise information in regards to requirements, licenses types, pricing etc. would be very helpful. Otherwise a good article!!

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