Thursday, November 26, 2015

Dashboards for Interactive Service Hub

Interactive Service Hub dashboards

The new CRM 2016 is introducing the interactive service hub. It is based around dashboards.
Eventhough they are called dashboards, their technology and capabilities are different from the existing CRM dashboards.
You should know that:
  • CRM dashboards cannot be used in the Interactive Service Hub (ISH)
  • CRM Dashboards and ISH Dashboards are not compatible
  • You cannot convert one type to another
  • One CRM dashboard can be set as default and one ISH dashboard can be set as default
  • When you create or modify the ISH dashboard, the end user must download the new version. It does not appear automatically

Creating ISH dashboard

You can create two types of ISH dashboards: Single-stream and Multi-stream

Stream is a new type of component on dashboard. It shows one of the views of the entity that you select.

Each stream can have one view. The view cannot be modified in ISH.

At the moment the stream component in our preview CRM 2016 does not refresh automatically. We have to hit refresh button to see the changes.

The single-stream dashboard can contain only one stream - so it can stream information about one entity only.

The multi-stream can contain more streams on one screen. Therefore you can stream more entities on dashboard.

What are other differences?

In the Single-stream dashboard you can add Tiles - tiles show the count of records in the selected view. Tiles can show information from various entities.
Tiles cannot be added to Multi-stream dashboard.
To both type a Chart component can be added. It is the same as in the CRM Dashboards.

As you know, the CRM dashboards as we know now can also include a List component, a Webresource component and iFrame component. None of these can be used in the ISH dasboards.

I hope that this introduction to Interactive service hub dashboards was helpful to you.

Happy CRM day ;-)

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Interactive service hub - where is the link?

In case you don't see the link in your CRM 2016 - you can generate it manually:


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Microsoft CRM 2016 - UX (current user experience)

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2016 Preview

As Microsoft is working hard on the new version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, which will be called 2016, I would like to share the current user experience with it.
The new version of CRM is supposed to be released in Q4 2015, but the official timing has not been published yet. The release date will be published here:

Currently, the most awaited feature is the Interactive Service Hub (or Engagement Hub as it used to be called). This is a completely new feature. It should help the people at the service centers with their work through increasing productivity.
There are predefined dashboards for users to see the overview of cases. Admin can create new dashboards or modify the existing ones. I will talk about this in some of the later articles.
At the moment, the Interactive Service Hub does not take the theme from the CRM and the navigation (buttons, menus) is also different from the CRM. Interesting thing is that the UI looks better in Chrome than in Internet Explorer :-). I hope MS will fix this, because the current version brings completely different user experience and I'm afraid, that the productivity of the service agents will not increase.

What is really surprising is that the current version of the CRM preview still has quite a number of screens in the old CRM 2011 design. So again, the user experience from the application is going to be "mixed".

The Office 365 Groups Setting screen is currently not working as expected.

Happy CRM day,

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Spellchecker

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Spellchecker

In the past implementations, we had actually have a requirements from our customers to implement a spellchecking feature in their CRM system.

The CRM does not contain a spellchecking and it will now be introduced in the new version CRM 2016 either, so we must rely on some workarounds and add-ons.

In case the CRM users use the same internet browser and operating system, you can install the browser add-on, there are plenty out there, some are even free. Just search based on your browser preferences...

In case the users are no so "unified", you can do spellchecking in the CRM app. There are several solutions - like eSpell by MyCRMGroup or Spell checker by MTC. You can try them out. Also, there should be some solution on Pinpoint. For these solution you need to be aware if you are using CRM On Premise or Online. They might not work with both.

But why am I writing this article? With Windows 8.1 and later, you have one more option how to implement spell checking.

Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 include build-in system spell-checker. It works in all the native Microsoft applications such as Mail, Calendar, Internet Explorer or Edge.

So here in the settings you can enable the spell-checking:
Windows Spellchecker
Be aware, by default, this feature is ON. It is a global setting, so it does not affect on Microsoft Dynamics CRM, but other apps as well.

Happy CRM Day!


Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Sandbox Instances with CRM Online 2015 Update 1

Sandbox Instances with CRM Online 2015 Update 1

Microsoft published some new information about the sandbox instances usage after Update 1. They are worth to mention.

In case you do not know - What is a Sandbox instance?

This term is used in Microsoft CRM Online. A Sandbox instance is any non-production instance of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online. Isolated from production, a Sandbox instance is the CRM instance which is used to safely develop and test application changes with low risk.

Many companies need to use the Sandbox instances when they want to test new functionality, such as a product update, a new add-on solution, changes to a form, or just any customization.

Sandbox instances can be scheduled to be updated prior to the production update, allowing you to test first.
With CRM Online 2015 Update 1 we have some more options now:

Switching an instance
 - enables administrators to easily change the CRM Online instance type - switch production to sandbox or sandbox to production

Delete a Sandbox instance
 - remove the instance which is not needed and to recover sandbox licenses and storage
Production instance cannot be deleted, so you need to switch to Sandbox first.

Reset a Sandbox instance
- while reseting, user is now able to change the instance base language and currency during the reset.

These features continue to complement existing capabilities, such as copy an instance (which provides the ability to take data and application information and copy it into a Sandbox instance) and reset an instance (which you can use to delete and redeploy a Sandbox instance).

Happy CRM day!