Importance of Integrating SharePoint and Dynamics 365 in an SMB

Most often small and mid-sized business (SMB) customers who are implementing (or planning to implement) Dynamics 365, enquire about a platform to store their files, documents, etc.  And another request that comes along with it (obviously) is the integration of that document management system with the CRM system.

Now, although Dynamics CRM provides a way to store some files etc. (out-of-the-box, that is) the Notes and attachments feature. It usually does not serve the exact purpose of the client (unless they have a very limited need for files/documents storage). Especially for an SMB, a CRM with unlimited storage is of prime importance to keep all the prospect/lead data, customer information, and so on.

To accomplish this requirement, there are a few solutions available. The major one that stands out usually, is from the Microsoft vault. Can you guess what am I talking about? It is the SharePoint and Dynamics 365 integration!

SharePoint has been around for a long time now, and it is a platform of choice for many companies, be it the large conglomerates or the small and midsize businesses, for their document management needs. So, many of the SMB clients we work with already have it in place. In which case they prefer it to be integrated with Dynamics 365 so that they can save without switching over to a different platform.

And looking at the integration point of view, it is the easiest one we can integrate with Dynamics 365. Both the products are from Microsoft, and a few years ago, Microsoft provided seamless out-of-the-box integration between the two.

Based on the online or on-premise aspects, there are 4 different integrations possible:

  • SharePoint Online + Dynamics CRM Online
  • SharePoint Online + Dynamics On-Prem
  • SharePoint On-Prem + Dynamics CRM Online
  • SharePoint On-Prem + Dynamics CRM On-Prem

In this blog, we would like to look at most of the aspects of SharePoint Online integration with Dynamics 365 – Server-based SharePoint Integration.

If you haven’t enabled it yet, you will see this alert on top of your CRM homepage, to enable the server-based SharePoint integration.

What you can do from within Dynamics:

  • You can create, update, delete, upload documents to SharePoint from within Dynamics.
  • Check-ins, check-outs
  • Update document properties
  • Anything that you could do from within SharePoint.

Setup:

You can go to Settings -> Document Management and go through the wizard to configure it. (You would need your SharePoint portal URL – this is where the folders would be created automatically once the integration is configured)

Make sure that the SharePoint portal is in the same Office 365 tenant as your Dynamics 365. The above configuration will only make sure that SharePoint is enabled for the Dynamics instance. However, we would need to configure separately, whatever entities we want to be enabled for Document management, through the Settings -> Document Management -> Document management settings.

An interesting and fun part of the Server-based SharePoint integration is that it uses the Entity Display name (e.g., Account, contact, etc.) to build the SharePoint library. And any documents related to an Account record would be under the Accounts Folder and further under the record ID folder.

Once you are done configuring an entity for Document management, you should be able to see the “Documents” as a related link in the Related entities section of the entity record.

Bonus Tip:

once you enable the server-based SharePoint integration, you are good to integrate OneDrive and OneNote with Dynamics as well.

Permissions required:

  • SharePoint:

The primary thing to notice here is that this integration provides a window to your SharePoint portal from within D365, so you will have to have appropriate permissions to the SharePoint portal to access it anyways.

  • D365:

Known Issues/Errors- If Dynamics CRM receives an Unauthorized response from SharePoint, it could be because the device that is being used to access SharePoint is blocked using the Share point’s access restriction method. Make sure the Full Access is enabled for Unmanaged devices using the SharePoint Administration settings.

It is a known fact that Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Microsoft SharePoint are widely popular and contemporary solutions with strong features and functionalities. Many organizations around the world have deployed these solutions to meet business objectives, streamline operations and promote growth.

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM SharePoint integration provides a lot of advantages for all business sizes. It helps end-users view, share and manage documents with ease, enhances employee productivity, and makes collaboration among sales, marketing, and customer service support teams more seamless. Saving on additional licensing costs is another benefit of developing an app using SharePoint and integrating it with Dynamics CRM, as you can store your documents and data in Dynamics CRM and view it using the SharePoint platform.

Now as an SMB entrepreneur who is looking to fit with ease in the world of organizational development in today’s times understand that every aspect of a company needs to be run by qualified individuals. And, when an SMB is faced with mission-critical challenges, we at AhaApps help create the best CRM solutions so that the client doesn’t have to spend sleepless nights anymore.

For any support, Contact us

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