Microsoft Dynamics CRM refers to business solution software that is significantly helpful in developing business leads, developing contacts, tracking sales and keeping the problems of the customers at bay. At its core, Microsoft Dynamics CRM is purposefully developed to meet flexibility, familiarity and functionality so that more productive relationship would be formed on the existing platform.
This software is fundamentally designed for fulfilling three basic needs:
- Finding and developing customer relationships
- Nurturing these relationships to increase profitability
- Keeping customers satisfied all the time
With the help of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, companies become able to manage their prospects and customer account information, which is centralized and can be accessed from any location. It is potent tool to capture and consolidate all interactions and customer activities.
The Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2017 release incorporates a lot of new and exciting features along with enhancements. These new additions from Microsoft have been designed for both cloud based and on-premises deployments. Furthermore the new features have been added in the backdrop of development of partnership of Microsoft and SalesForce – a cloud based service.
Thus the following new features are conspicuous and worth mentioning here:
- Outlook Client
The up gradation of Dynamics CRM to Dynamics 365 seamlessly integrates Outlook Client as well. The efficiency has been significantly boosted now and therefore the user can work more efficiently. While using it, there is no need for the users to leave the inbox, tracking emails, appointment and tasks. The new feature also supports Outlook for Windows, Macs, and Outlook Web Applications for iPhones.
- Interactive Service Hub
The Interactive Service Hub (ISH) is a new interface that is used for accessing Microsoft Dynamics CRM. It incorporates redesigned forms and dashboards earlier developed for service teams. The redesigned forms in ISH include the components that allow customer service representatives to efficiently and quickly handle all the important data from a single location. The ISH is available for both Cloud Online and On-Premise editions.
The forms available in ISH are:
- Scroll up and down for navigation
- General information about contact and case
- Toggle between service case tabs
- The options in the Command bar include routing cases and resolving items. For more items, the users have to click on ellipses icon.
- More screen detailing on Timeline Panel.
- Integrated knowledge management is a new feature being added to ISH
Due to the above important functions, the Interactive Service Hub has become a critical skill for developers. Apart from these forms, the new dashboards that are available in ISH are – Single Screen Dashboard and Multi-Screen dashboard.
- Relationship Insights
Relationship Insights is one the most exciting new features of Dynamics CRM that integrates users’ tasks and workflows into a single system that automatically tracks all the related activities. The application works by gathering all the data from the interactions of the users, guiding through daily work, suggesting follow up tasks, managing emails and identifying actionable messages. Also the analysis of communication and interactions done by the application results into the development customized information, links and control for the users.
The Action Cards feature of Relationship Insight perform the following functions
- Gives reminders for the upcoming activities
- Gives suggestions for establishing communications to the inactive contacts.
- Email alerts
- Identification of opportunities that are ready to close
- One Click Document Generation
The new feature allows the users to create documents such as Invoices, Orders and Contacts through pre-defined Word and Excel Templates. This feature is the improvement on the existing “Print Quote for Customer”, which used to take longer process for producing documents. The users can download Word or Excel Templates from Templates area with CRM settings. By associating the templates with the entity which the documents are created for, user can structure the document and map all relevant fields across XML mapping pane. It can be accessed through Developers tab.
- CRM Mobile
Microsoft Dynamics CRM for phones express allows the users to stay connected wherever they are. Staying up to date with the customers information makes them more productive. It helps in preparing all the appointments, updating notes, tasks, contacts, accounts, leads and opportunities based on the fresh details.
Apart from that, the CRM Mobile feature allows the users to utilize the offline service feature. They can still use CRM Online when they are offline by automatically getting synced to the cloud. Microsoft has also allowed SharePoint to integrate with CRM. Though it is not new but it can be accessed through mobile apps.
6. New Knowledge Management in Microsoft Dynamics CRM
The enhanced WYSIWYG editor increases the knowledge management capability by allowing embedding of videos and images. It will be easy for the users to schedule articles for publishing on a future date. Also the articles can be easily shared with external users or an internal analysis can be done on them in order to better understand how information is being used.
Thus Knowledge Management offering in CRM has the following features:
- Rich content authoring
- Embedded videos and images
- Knowledge Management dashboards
- Schedule publish/expiry
- Knowledge Management Context search
- AI / Artificial Intelligence / Azure Machine Learning
Artificial Intelligence (AI)/Azure Machine Learning (ML) is the new feature added in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. It is Microsoft’s attempt to develop next generation of intelligent business management applications. From sales to customer service, from operations to financials, this new feature arms the users to handle field service, project service automation, marketing and customer insights.
The Dynamics CRM also includes Next Best Action (NBA) feature, which is basically customer-centric technology capable to analyze actions based on CRM customer interactions. This analysis allows it to recommend next best action to be taken. Thus with the help of this feature, users will remain more engaged with customers.
We understood as to how Microsoft Dynamics CRM is continuously getting improved with the inclusion of more potent and useful features. It is one of the powerful cloud-based offering from Microsoft as the given features combine Dynamics CRM and Dynamics AX. These new integrated features as well as tools for sales, marketing and operations are only going to make users more productive.
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