Microsoft Dynamics CRM: Using the + Sign in Sub-Grids

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Microsoft Dynamics CRM sure has come a long way. Why, I remember when we didn’t have sub-grids, and navigation was in a pane on the left hand side of the screen (call me Grandpa CRM). What would we do without these modern conveniences now?

As cool as they are, it’s easy to end up scratching your head after creating a new entity and inserting a sub-grid for it onto a form and testing it. Why on earth does CRM ask me to look up an existing record when I click on the handy-dandy "+" sign instead of letting me create an entirely new record? How often do we select existing records to add as opposed to creating new ones? Yes, the ways of CRM can be strange, my son, but it’s really easy to guarantee the result you want.

There’s a "right" way and a "wrong" way

Let’s say we’ve created a new entity to add to an existing one and the new one is going to allow us to talk to key customers to gather info on what they might purchase from us this year and next year by Product Class. We can analyze those records across all the prospects and hopefully improve our forecasting.

So we’ve added the sub-grid to the existing form but we see this when we click on the "+":

Unexpected Results When Using the ‘+’ Sign in Sub-Grids 1

Well, that’s not what we want. We wanted to see either a "Quick Create" form or a standard CRM form appear.

It’s all about Relationships

CRM is truly all about relationships – relationships between the various record types and relationships that exist in the real world between you and those you deal with. In the case of sub-grids, the behavior of the "+" control is determined by a property of the relationship that exists between the primary entity and the related entity.

But I Can’t Relate!

Sure you can – if you see the "Add an existing record" lookup when you select "+", then you know the ‘Field Requirement’ on the relationship between the primary entity and the related (sub-grid) entity is not set to "Business Required".

Unexpected Results When Using the ‘+’ Sign in Sub-Grids 2

That’s Too Easy

Yep, I couldn’t believe it myself. Just change the "Field Requirement" to "Business Required" and CRM will always respond to your request by launching either the "Quick Create" form or a standard form, based on how you have the primary entity configured:

Unexpected Results When Using the ‘+’ Sign in Sub-Grids 3

Congratulations! You are now much smarter than when you started reading this post.

By John Clifton, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Consultant with xRM³, a Microsoft partner specializing in Dynamics CRM consulting, implementation, integration and Microsoft Dynamics CRM administrative services. Based in San Diego County Southern California.

by xRM3

1 thought on “Microsoft Dynamics CRM: Using the + Sign in Sub-Grids”

  1. Good Morning,

    I have a problem with the "add" button in subgrids that I connot manage and I cannot see anywhere how to resolve it.

    I have an N:N relationship with Marketing List and Campaign. And I also have an N:N relationship between Marketing list and a custom entity "Email".

    When I am on the Campaign form, and I click on the + button of the Marketing List subgrid it opens a window to select Marketing List records.

    When I am on the Email form, and I click on the + button of the Marketing list subgrid, it show a lookup line on the subrid to select Marketing records.

    I cannot not see why they behave differently. As it is an N:N relationship, I cannot set the "parent" as Required or Optional, and in the subgrid properties, both have the option "Only Related Record".

    I cannot find where the diffrence between these two entities that makes this change...

    Thanks a lot for reading my question and I wish a wonderful day.

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