This blog is going to take a closer look at the Out of the Box (OOTB) codeless customization functionality of both Dynamics CRM and Salesforce.com. Why OOTB? Well of course in every implementation of software there is going to be some necessary customization because every business is different; but what happens when the developers leave? What can you do in each system without spending any more money? What happens when a new position is created, a policy or process changes, or if a department is reorganized? A business is a living and breathing thing. Your software should be able to support that. The reality is that businesses evolve and so do their needs. This post will look at how each system’s OOTB functionality supports that reality without needing to call the IT department or write another check.
There are several business cases for wanting to customize your system. A very common type of customization is a change made to a record such as adding a new field or creating a view within the record to surface relevant data. Both Dynamics CRM and Salesforce.com facilitate basic record customization, and while the Dynamics approach in regards to this feature is clean, intuitive, and simple, the SalesForce.com approach is disjointed, cumbersome, and complex.
Let’s compare the two different systems in regards to these 3 simple and basic customization functions:
- Customizing record forms: fields
- Customizing record forms: Surfacing related records and data
- Saving/Publishing your customizations
First things first, let’s review the overall UI for record customizations:
In Dynamics CRM you can go to the record you want to customize and it’s one click on the customizations tab, and one click on the customize form button. You are then brought to a single screen that facilitates all 3 of the mentioned customizations as well as a few others.
SalesForce offers similar functionality (you can customize directly from the record) however each customization link brings you to a different screen. There is no one screen that allows the user to visually see the record AND all of the customization options in one place. The UI is disjointed and confusing.
Screen for Account customizations
Screen for customizing Account form