Dynamics 365 in 2017 – What’s New?
As of the December 2016 update for Dynamics 365 (online and on-premises), Dynamics CRM functionality is now included as a part of Dynamics 365, a suite of intelligent business applications. Now included are the new Dynamics apps for Sales, Customer Service, Field Service, and Project Service Automation
1. Suite of Business Apps
You can now pick from the following role-based apps to do your daily work with Dynamics 365 in 2017:
These apps come with simplified navigation in Dynamics 365 CRM.
For example, in the Customer Service app site map, you’ll only see service entities. The apps you see are based on your organization’s licensing options and your security role. The administrator or customizer can also design custom business apps to create a simplified work experience tailored just to the tasks you need to do.
2. Mobile App Enhancements
Dynamics 365 in 2017 made the following enhancements to the mobile app:
- Meet the mobile workspace: The all-new mobile workspace is a personalized action hub in the mobile app to help you get to common tasks more quickly. A pane that appears when the app is launched, the workspace includes a list of suggested priorities (“action cards”) in the left column that could include upcoming meetings, info relevant to that day’s activities, and other things that need your attention.
- New colors and layouts: The mobile app has new colors and a new look and feel. Layouts are more compact to give essential info at a glance with minimal scrolling. The dashboard now stacks related elements, exposing more info at once. Forms are organized so you can see more at once, and get the info you need faster. The process bar is now more prominent in forms that use it, so it’s clear where you are in any given process.
- Enhanced notes: Now you can create a note in-line when you’re in a form, so you can view relevant details while writing your note. Notes now also include a preview of attached images so you can see them at a glance without opening them individually.
- Device integration: You can now access your device’s camera and other functions from within the app. Open a new or existing note, and tap the icons under the text box to add multimedia content.
Mobile offline: The mobile app will now synchronize data when it’s operating in the background, so you can get updated data even while you do other things on your device
3. Dynamics 365 App for Outlook Enhancements
Microsoft improved Dynamics 365 App for Outlook in many ways. With the latest enhancements, Dynamics 365 App for Outlook paired with server-side sync is the preferred way to integrate Outlook email with Dynamics 365.
When you start Dynamics 365 App for Outlook, the app is pinned to the right side of screen. The information displayed in the app shows the recipient list and related info for the selected email message.
With the updated Dynamics 365 App for Outlook, you can:
See info about all email recipients (including distribution lists). Email recipients are automatically mapped to Dynamics 365 contacts, leads, or users, so you can see the recipient’s picture (if available), name, job title, company name, business phone, and mobile phone. If a recipient is unknown, you can quickly add the recipient as a contact or lead. You can also set the regarding record with a single click, call the recipient, or add an activity (appointment, phone call, or task).
4. Custom Learning Path Content
In Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online 2016 Update 1, Learning Path was introduced, which provided contextually rich training, walkthroughs, videos, and articles right in the app at just the right time. With the December 2016 update for Microsoft Dynamics 365 (online), you can now create your own Learning Path experience for your Dynamics 365 (online) users. For example, create a custom Learning Path experience to train your sales team. Learning Path allows you to deliver custom content specific to the security role assigned to a user. This means, for example, that salespeople see Learning Path sidebars and guided tasks specific to their role, and service reps see a different set of content. You can also display different content for the same security role in different organizations.
You can even localize your content in different languages for different users and organizations. Learning Path provides a great way to help people discover new features and become familiar with new forms or business processes at their own pace right from the app. This can help reduce training time and costs and enable team members to quickly become productive using Dynamics 365 (online).
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Field Service Enhancements
- Connected field service: Connected field service, new in this release, helps service organizations move from a costly break-fix model to a proactive and predictive service model by combining monitoring and predictive maintenance with Internet of Things (IoT) and machine learning
- Key benefits include:
- Reduce downtime with proactive alerts from connected devices.
- Address issues faster by remotely monitoring devices and keeping customers in the loop.
- Reduce maintenance costs by dispatching a technician with the right expertise, availability, and location to do the job.
- Resource scheduling optimization: With resource scheduling optimization, you can set up the system to automatically schedule multiple items on a recurring basis to minimize overall travel time and make efficient use of all schedulable resources.
- Common Scheduling Solution: With the new Common Scheduling Solution, you can schedule anything. You can enable it for any entity, including custom entities. For example, you can turn it on to schedule marketing visits for an opportunity.
6. Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation
Add-in for Microsoft Project: With the new project service add-in you’ll be able to do all of your project planning in Microsoft Project, and then publish the project plan into Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation. You can also bring a project that you started in Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation into Microsoft Project to finish planning work, and then publish it back to Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation. Relevance Search enhancements With new facet and filter support, you can drill into and explore search results without having to repeatedly refine the search terms.
Four global facets for Relevance Search are shown by default on the left side of the Relevance Search results page. They represent Record type, Owner, Modified On, and Created On fields that are common to most Dynamics 365 entities, as shown below:
If you select a specific entity in the Record type face, you will see a list of entity-specific facets that you can choose from. For example, if you select the Account entity, you may see additional information about the account’s annual revenue, the industry they are in, and the primary contact information. The facet list is configured by an administrator. If you want to see different information, you can ask your administrator to provide that for you.
Other new capabilities:
- You can now search in documents attached to emails and appointments, as well as documents attached to a note.
- The Option Set and Lookup fields are searchable fields in this release.
- We also added support for showing results for records that are shared with you.
More information: Use Relevance Search for faster comprehensive search results
Introducing editable grids
With the new editable grids provide many versatile capabilities, such as inline editing, grouping, filtering, and sorting on columns. Editable grids are available at the entity level, in sub-grids inside a form, or in a dashboard. Editable grids are supported on forms in the Dynamics 365 Web client, Dynamics 365 for tablets, and Dynamics 365 for phones. For dashboards, editable grids are available in Dynamics 365 for tablets and Dynamics 365 for phones.
Editable grid capabilities include:
- Edit a row with most Dynamics 365 field types.
- Group and filter on any column in the current view.
- Sort on any column in the grid
- Paginate and move or adjust columns in the grid.
- Show Lookup values based on the value of the field of the related entity.
- Show Calculated and Rollup fields as read-only with the associated last updated date.
- Enable and disable fields based on security role
You can also:
- Export editable grids to Excel.
- Integrate with the chart panel.
- Toggle between a read-only grid and an editable grid.
- Save the user state (filters, sorting, adjusted columns) within the session.
- Use business rules and complex grid logic based on events, such as saving or updating a record.
- Use command bar actions and buttons
Lots of new and existing features have been added to Dynamics 365 in 2017 to help manufacturing business improve their business processes and increase profitability. If you are looking for a team of Dynamics 365 CRM experts, we are here to help! Get in touch