Microsoft Dynamics CRM with their 2016 version. CRM 2016 will be released in Q4 this year and has some exciting new features and capabilities.
Next generation CRM app for Outlook
Using Dynamics CRM from Microsoft Outlook enables people to track emails, add contacts from within an email or even create new opportunities or cases from tracked emails. This email management aspect of Dynamics CRM is one of features users like the most as it allows other people to see those emails and by storing them against the relevant opportunity, account, contact, case etc. it means that you can delete them from your inbox knowing you have them if you need them.
Trouble is most that serious users of Dynamics CRM choose to use it in the browser for the simple fact that it’s so much quicker. They were inconvenienced however because you couldn’t track emails from the browser and so they had to return to full Outlook. Similarly, when using their mobile or table you couldn’t do this key function but had to leave the email and wait till you got back to your PC. If you had an Apple Mac then tough, it only worked with full Outlook on a PC.
With Dynamics CRM 2016 you can now track emails through their browser which means it can also be done on a Mac. Even better the CRM App for Outlook also means that can now be done on mobile devices, where these days as much email if dealt with a laptop or desktop.
With email tracking a fundamental process within CRM, you can now conveniently maintain the full timeline of communication for whatever device you choose when you choose.
Mobile Offline Capability:
In Dynamics CRM 2016, the phone and tablet apps have full offline mobile capabilities and will still be able to provide some functions when unable to connect. This provides the ability to get your work done even when there is interruption in connectivity. Users will be able to create, change and delete records while offline and automatic playback of offline actions helps synchronize local changes with CRM Online.
Many customers still ask for this feature even in the age of almost universal coverage. It takes away the uncertainty that the information will remain at your fingertips even if you in the back of beyond or buried in a concrete office with no chance of a signal. Even if you don’t need it often it’s great to know it there on that odd occasion you do and at no extra cost.
Enhanced Excel Experience
Within Dynamics CRM, Microsoft have now including a new Microsoft Excel templates feature to automate many core information presentation tasks. This helps our customers across the board, but particularly in sales, as it allows them to do things like calculate commissions or manage a sales forecast. It enables analysis and insights directly in their sales processes, without the need to export or switch or more importantly do lots of time-consuming work, improving the accuracy and consistency and eliminating the complexity.
Dynamics CRM has always had the ability to export to Excel, however, templates makes the results more useful when they are seamlessly embedded via templates into CRM. This is useful for consolidated reporting of KPIs for Board Reports, Account Overviews to take to customers and further analysis that goes beyond what the standard dashboards are capable of providing.
Interactive Service Hub.
This new online user experience design provides a modern and intuitive end user experience for customer service roles. While since the Dynamics CRM 2011 Dashboards have been a great way of checking progress and managing your daily workload this gives new single view experience of multiple streams of information which mean less clicks and scrolling for Customer Service Agents to review progress and see what needs to be done.
How long do Dynamics CRM users spend searching for content to send when responding to and opportunity or case? Dynamics CRM 2016 has an improved Knowledge articles that are easier to find and which that can be used across CRM. They can now include picture and video information bring them into the modern world we live in.
Knowledge Base is now Knowledge Management! This is a long awaited and overdue refresh of a very underutilised area of Dynamics CRM. Finally, we have a solution that copes with the varied forms information in held which will make it massively more useful for technical articles about products and collateral for pre-sales though to how-to videos that the helpdesk can forward as just a few examples.
More information is emerging over the coming weeks as we approach the release of CRM 2016 and I will share more as it becomes available. Thanks to Dave Harris for briefing me so effectively.