What do I mean by Naked CRM?

When I talk about naked CRM I am referring to a CRM system that is configured for the business user with the Customer in mind. Its all about keeping it simple and focusing on the needs and insights required by users to make it worthwhile to enter the data in, in the first place and then use it in their day to day work.
 
If you undress CRM to the bare essentials what are you left with?
  1. The ability to manage relationships between your employees and the Customer
  2. The ability to capture activity that you have had with a Customer
  3. The ability to manage Lead Generation
  4. The ability to track and record the outcome of opportunities with your customers
  5. The ability to visually review the data that is captured and compare and contrast to other Customers or Business Users

So when you are thinking of CRM and implementing CRM focus on the bare essentials first and dress later.

Emailing options in Microsoft CRM

The link below is very informative regarding options for mass emailing your data in CRM.
 
 
In addition to the options outlined your emails can contain html addressable content via following the process outlined in the following article: HTML content can be added to all email methods by the following the article steps.
 
 
One point to note is that Microsoft CRM does not support mult-part emails so if you need to send both text or HTML then you will need to capture this on the contact record and use some intelligence in selection or workflow to work out which template to use either the HTML one or the plain text one.

Enriching CRM data using a csv file and out of the box data import

So how is this done you say … and was this not a feature that was turned off pre version 4 launch??
 
The secret feature revealed ….
 
Step 1
 
Build an Advanced Find view of the records that you wish to enrich and the columns that you wish to update
 
Step 2
 
Export the view to Dynamic Excel
 
 
  
Step 3
 
Select all coumns and right click and unhide columns
 
 
 
Step 4
 
Move the last column with GUID to the first column and change the name of the column to the entity name in this case Contact
 
 
Step 5
 
Save the file as a csv file
 
Step 6
 
Import the csv file via the import menu
 
 
 
Step 7
 
Choose the csv file 
 
 
Step 8
 
Select Next and you will now see a new option at top of screen “Enrich data …”. Leave this clicked and the data map should have defaulted to automatic.
 
 
Step 9
 
Select Next and ensure Import Duplicates is checked
 
 
 
Step 10
 
Complete the import wizard and wait for import to complete
 
Step 11
 
Review data exported and review the updated records. That Simple!!!
 
  
UPDATE: Change to process after Rollup 9
Please not that after installing rollup 9 you are no longer requried to insert column A and copy the last column to it (Step 4). This column is already populated with the GUID of the record type. Just leave it as is and change the values in the other columns to enrich the data.

CRM5 Preview from the CRM UK Blog

This is a great blog on the new features of CRM5.
 

Creating Desktop Shortcuts

 
 
Scenario

Ability to quickly record a phone call activity with one click
Solution
From the web client create a new blank phone call activity
Hit F11 to see URL
Copy URL
On Desktop right click and create new shortcut from new menu
Paste URL into the location field
Update name to New Phone Call Activity
Save
You can now double click and create a new activity
You can change the icon from the default CRM icon via normal shortcut properties

Workflow Basics Overview

This is a great link to an overview of workflow basics and what each action means.
 

Enabling OnDemand Workflows to be run by specific users

Business Problem
 
Only certain processes can be run by specific users. I.e. a finance person can only run the payment process on demand workflow to update a record status to Paid.
 
Solution
 
The workflow scope refers to the security role privelege of workflow. If a user has organisation view of workflows then they will be able to see all on demand workflows, if the user has business unit view then they will be able to see all ondemand workflows that have been created by users within their business unit. If the user has User view then they will only see ondemand workflows that have been created by them or that they have been shared to.
 
So to enable certain people to see ondemand workflows and some people to not requires playing around with the user privelges and the workflow scope.
 
One way of doing this is giving the majority of roles only user read access to workflows and then setting all ondemand workflows to user scope. Then for each on demand workflow that needs to be assigned to users to run they are shared either directly to the user or by using teams. Using teams will enable you to add and remove users without updating the sharing rights of each and every workflow.
 
Alternatively if you are using business unit structure then you could use a business unit level read access and workflow scope and then only people in that business unit will see the specific ondemand workflows.