Event Invitation tracking in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

We have recently been working with a number of our eCampaign customers to develop a complete solution for Event Invitation Tracking in CRM. So what is Event Invitation tracking, in some circumstances your organisation many want to send customers an invitation to attend a webinar or an event that is being held, and track the responses in CRM to create a list of contacts that wish to attend, We have done this in the following way by adding new entities to CRM for Event and Event responses PIC EV 1   On the creation of an event in CRM, two URL’s are created for the Accept and Decline process and these can be used in eCampaign to send a bulk email with event invitations. When a recipiant recieves the email they will have two options, below is an example of an email for an event in eCampaign PIC EV 2     When a recipient selects the Accept button from the email they will be taken to your event page which details the event and will display a message saying they have opted to attend PIC EV 3   Likewise if the recipient Declines a similar page is displayed with a message saying they are not attending. PIC EV 4    For more information on eEvent and Invitation tracking please contact sales@mycrmgroup.com or register with http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/ Thanks Alisatir     

Creating Images Galleries and Selected Images in Microsoft CRM2011

What we need is an Image Gallery!! Having had the opportunity to work on a number of projects and see a whole range of requirements and needs for CRM, I thought I would share this one as this forms part of our new solution ePicture.I was recently working with a customer, who had a catalogue of images for products that they sold, these happened to be images of Telephone handsets and switches.  There was a requirement and a need to include these images into CRM so they could be used with Quotes, Orders and web site integration.  It was also made quite clear that there was no apparent budget or desire to introduce a SharePoint instance or integration into the organisation. As an organisation they wanted to keep everything in one please, one system and one over all solution with one technology, usually a difficult ask, but this is what we delivered to meet the need ePicture (Images Galleries for CRM 2011) First we thought about having an area in settings, which can enable the creation of image galleries so that we could easily add images to any record type or entity with in CRM This way the ePicture solution can be used through simple configuration, any entity in CRM can have an associated picture gallery and the example I use is Contacts and Products.  Let me explain Why Online Selling and Online shops is growing at a pace and the old adage “A Picture Paints 1000 Words” rings true, as when you shop online or request a quote you are always more interested when you have a picture of the product your thinking of buying.  With ePicture you can enhance the product library in CRM2011 and send your customers compelling graphical quotes, which are generated through the standard reporting in CRM 2011.The other use for ePicture here is the use of a solution like this to capture pictures of contacts on your CRM system. Why you might ask Well this is great when your organisation is inviting people to an event and you want to issue an ID card you can simple take a web cam and record at registration point the person’s photo for the event purpose, this said you can also use the same feature for leisure or club membership where it is important to capture an image of the individual.  ePicture comes with an additional resource so that you can add a primary picture to the top level record while you may capture more than one picture for the individual in the image library. ePicture will be release toward the end of May 2012 via the MyCRM download Site, Register here http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/ Thanks Alistair    

Making User management easy in Microsoft CRM 2011

A number of our larger hosted and on-premise customers all seem to report the same problem in that they are not able to manage CRM user information effectively.   In many cases the CRM administrator from the organisation has had to remote into end users laptops or desktop to change personal settings and this increases the work load of many System administrators. We took the suggestions made and created a wish list with the intention of creating a better user administration experience in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Our goal was to enable System administrator to have extended user settings for CRM and expose additional features that have been excluded from the standard Microsoft CRM admin area.   Introducing eUser – Extended User Settings eUser from MyCRM Extended is an extended solution for User Management and administration of end system users which becomes a valuable add-on post a hand full of CRM users. There are two main features sets with the new functionality and these are extended end-user settings and bulk end user settings First we take a look at some of the end user extended record settings.   As you can see from the screen shot below we have exposed a number of the options that end users can select for themselves so that an administrator can set these when adding a user account The General tab shows how to set among other things dates and currency for the end user      If we now take a look at the extended activities tab you can see that extra setting have been created to allow an administrator to day and times      On the final extended user tab you can see a number of exposed features under formats, Email and Privacy       These final settings will enable administrators to set language, tracking and error responses. We now go on to look at the new bulk setting features of the new user setting solution. Introducing eUser – Extended Bulk Settings In this part of the solution we show the new features for bulk setting user permission in CRM 2011  Here an administrator can bulk set how many records a user sees by default, the advanced find mode, the default tab and default pane for selected users.   On the email tab as before the administrator can see options around email setting for the selected users.   The advanced find has also been configured to easily add selected users across the enterprise, so that an administrator can change setting on bulk          The new eUser module will be released via the download centre in March 2012 and will have a full 14 day trial. To find out more about MyCRM Products and services please visit http://www.mycrmgroup.com To register for a free download account please visit http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com   With kind regards   Alistair  

New Hosted CRM 2011 services launched – Professional CRM



• Full CRM License for access to Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011
• Unlimited telephone and email support
• 5GB storage per CRM user
• Data Backups – Nightly
• Data Backup retention for 7 Days
• Monthly Backup Download on request
• 95.95% Network Uptime Guarantee
• 16 hours service time free for setup and configuration
• Fully Integrated Email Marketing with unlimited emails
• Integrated Document Creation with ePDF
• Integrated Number and form auto population with eNumber
• Integrated Tax calculation for key entities including product line override
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Right I have created my Quote in CRM now as a Sales person where is the button to email it to the Customer

So even with the launch and subsequent rollup’s from Microsoft there is no easy way to send a quote or order confirmation out from Microsoft CRM 2011 with the click of a button.  I thought I’d take the time to document the process and then suggest some of the benefits of the ePDF solution from the end user. The functionality to do this is in CRM but if you want to go from creating the Quote record to getting an email to send with the quote or order attached this would be the process Create E-mail and Attach Quote PDF or Order PDF The CRM 2011 Way 1. Click Run Report Dropdown 2. Select the report to run 3. Click „Export‟ button 4. Select Acrobat (PDF) file 5. Select where to save report 6. Close Report Screen 7. Click on the „Add‟ tab 8. Click on E-mail 9. Click on Save 10. Click on Attach File 11. Click Browse 12. Find where you saved PDF and click Open 13. Click Attach  As you can see from the 13 steps not exactly time efficient or best use of a Sales Persons time.  I then looked for another approach, and this would be to use the CRM mail merge functionality which when I did, I ended up with about 18 different steps to get a word doc attached to my email and to be honest found this quite confusing.   In projects gone by and that sounds really bad but I have seen a range of solutions offered most involving the purchase of more licences for another 3rd party tools that would integrate in CRM, which from an end user point view is not ideal as you then working in several different interfaces.So after much investigation and not being able to find a solution I set about working with the team here at MyCRM to see if something could be done, not only for our customers but for me, as I use CRM 2011 all day long. The Solution Building on what we had learnt with CRM 4.0 we successfully, after a few updates released a solution called ePDF        The ePDF solution is an addition or extension to the way CRM works and extends the following record types in Microsoft CRM 2011.The ePDF solution allows the creation of a PDF attached files on an email to be created through a very simple process and extends the following record types. 1. Quote 2. Order 3. Invoice 4. Account 5. Contact 6. Service Activity 7. Contract 8. Lead Working with the team I wanted to help make the process as easy and as straight forward as possible and to be honest anything that reduced the 13 steps above had to improve my working environment, so this is what we got the process down to The ePDF way 1. Click Create PDF Report button on the entity tool bar2. Select the report to run from the pop up screen3. Click Create E-mail and Attach PDF from the pop up screen4. Email window opens with PDF attachment of related quote or report generated. So in a nutshell that was the reason behind ePDF and you can find more from the link below and download a trial for 14 days if you, like me, need to send quotes quickly. http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/ePDF.aspx Alistair (mycrm)