Intro to Customizing Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement (CRM)

 introduction intro Customize microsoft dynamics crm 2015 2016 magnifez IT services provider training
Intro to Customizing Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016. Magnifez IT Solutions

The last webinar conducted by Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) Developers Group – Hyderabad was focused on Customizing Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016.  In the 1 hour 15 minutes got an opportunity to talk about out-of-the-box customization on the Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016 application such as customizing User Interface, Entities, Business Rules and Dashboards.

Agenda of the session is given below.

  • Introduction To Customizing Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016
  • Customizing Customer Engagement (CRM) User Interface
  • Customizing Entities and Fields
  • Managing Relationships
  • Customizing Forms
  • Business Rules
  • Customizing Views
  • Customizing Charts and Dashboards

Introduction to Customization

Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) provides a flexible platform using which we can extend the functionality of Customer Engagement (CRM) as per business requirements.

Out-of-the-Box(OOB) Customization:

  • Entity Customization – GUI based Customization
  • Processes ( Workflows and Dialogs)

Code based Customization

  • Plugins
  • Custom workflow activities.
  • Web Services

Privileges required for customization

System Administrator and System Customizer security roles give you the permissions you need to customize your Customer Engagement (CRM) deployment.

What is Metadata?

Metadata means “data about data” and it defines the structure of the data stored in the system.
When you customize Microsoft Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) using the customization tools in the application, you’re adding or updating the metadata or data used by features that depend on the metadata.

So you can add new features to Customer Engagement (CRM) without breaking your system. Should be able to apply an update rollup or upgrade to the latest version and enjoy the best new features.

Supported Vs Unsupported Customization:

Supported Customization:

  • APIs and Best code practices mentioned in Customer Engagement (CRM) SDK.
  • Codes which won’t break during upgrading Customer Engagement (CRM) system.

Ex: Customization using Customer Engagement (CRM) GUI Customizations tools : Customizing forms, Views, Charts etc.

Un-supported Customization:

  • Un-supported customization might when you do code base customization on Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM).
  • Unsupported by Microsoft support Team
  • It may break while upgrading Customer Engagement (CRM) system

Ex: Interacting with the web application DOM elements using JavaScript, Retrieving/updating data directly from database tables, Changing the database tables, stored procedures, or views.

Customize Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016 User Interface

  • You can enhance Customer Engagement (CRM) User Interface using themes.
  • The theme colours are applied globally throughout the application.

You can enhance the following visual elements in the UI:

  • Change product logos and navigation colours to create product branding
  • Adjust accent colours, such as hover or selection colours
  • Provide entity-specific colouring

To customize your theme you need to navigate to Settings – > Customizations -> Themes

Customize Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016 User Interface

What can you change in Customer Engagement (CRM) themes?

  • Logo | Logo tooltip | Navigation bar color | Navigation bar shelf color | Header color | Global link color | Selected link effect Hover link effect | Process control color | Default entity color | Default custom entity color | Control shade | Control border

Create And Edit Entities

Entities define the types of records that business users can use in a Microsoft Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) organization.

In the Customer Engagement (CRM) web application, you can edit existing System entities and also create, and delete custom entities.

To customize an entity navigate to Settings -> Customizations-> Customize the system -> Entity_Name

Required Fields of an Entity

Display Name
This is the singular name for the entity that will be shown in Customer Engagement (CRM).

Plural Name
This is the plural name for the entity that will be shown in Customer Engagement (CRM).

This field is pre-populated based on the display name you enter. It includes the solution publisher customization prefix.

You can choose either user or team-owned or organization owned.

Edit An Existing Entity

Create A Custom Entity

  • In additional the existing system entities users with required privileges can create new entities in Customer Engagement (CRM) System.
  • User with System Admin and system customizer roles can create custom entities.
  • Before going to create a new entity developer should make sure that any of the existing entities can support the particular business logic.

New Entity Form


Demo : Create And Edit An Entity

Book entity. Define a book entity in the system. The entity should have the following attributes:

Book title | ISBN | Publish year | Check in / check out status | Check-out date | Check-out contact | Planned check-in date | Cover price | Book category: Drop down of the following (literature, art, science, text book, engineering)

Create An Activity Entity in Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016

To create an activity entity, select Define as an activity entity before you save the entity.
Under Areas that display this entity, select areas available in the navigation bar you want this entity to be available from

Primary Field: Each custom entity has a primary field. This is defined in the Primary Field tab. You must locate this field in the entity fields.

Understanding Entity Views

A view is a saved query which shows the subset of records of an entity as per pre-specified conditions.
Each entity in Customer Engagement (CRM) comes with a set of System Views by default.
Customer Engagement (CRM) users can create more custom views in the system.
Only users with System admin or customizer role can create/edit organization views.

Example: My Active Account View


Types of Views

There are 3 main types of views: public, system, and personal.
Public Views. Comes with the application. Custom views created at the organization level are also public views. One of these public views can be defined as a default view.
System Views. Similar to Public views and are created by Customer Engagement (CRM) on installation. System Views include Associated View, Advanced Find View, Lookup View and Quick Find View.
Personal Views. Users can create their own views using the Advanced Find tool and save them as personal views.

Customize Views

We can customize the View Name, columns names, add or remove columns, update filtering criteria etc.
To create or updated Public and System Views:
Go to Settings -> Customizations -> Entity_Name -> Views
Personal views can be created from the Command Bar itself.
New personal views can be created for your business requirement and the ownership will be at the organization level. Existing views can be edited too.

Customize Views


Create a Custom View


Enter Details:

  • View Name
  • Description
  • Create a Custom Viewcreate-new-view-add-columns-customize-dynamics-crm-2013-2015-2016-online-training-magnifez

Configure an Entity view

  • Edit filtering Criteria
  • Add Columns
  • Configure Sorting
  • Change Properties
  • Remove


Create a Personal View

Very similar to how we create Public Views



  • Give a name and description
  • Edit Filtering Criteria
  • Add/Edit Columns

Create a Personal View


Edit Filter Criteria
Add Criteria Clauses
Use Group AND, Group OR to combine Clauses

Add Columns
Add New Columns
Edit Existing Columns
Edit Columns properties


Basics of Entity Charts

A chart is a graphic representation of data from multiple records of an entity.
Charts are integrated with grids in the web application. They are built from the query on the data.
When a view is updated for the data, the associated charts also get updated automatically.
Settings -> Customizations -> Entity_Name-> Charts

Example: Leads by Rating

‘Leads by Rating’ chart displays the graphical representation of leads View based on Rating.


Types of Charts

There are 2 types of charts: system and personal.

System Charts. System charts can only be created by users with System Administrator or System Customizer roles. These charts are by default visible to all users.
These charts can be customized by going on to the settings area and customizing the system.

User Charts. Personal charts can only be seen by the users that create them or the ones to whom these charts are shared with. These charts can only be shared if the owner has sharing privileges.

Customize Charts

You can edit exists charts or create new ones.
To customize: Settings – > Customizations ->Default Solution -> Entity_name -> Charts.
Charts can be imported and exported as well as be transferred from one deployment to another.
Charts can be created via Customer Engagement (CRM) views or through coding.

Create A New Chart


Edit A Chart

You can customize the existing charts:

  • Display Name
  • Legend (Y -axis ) values
  • Category ( X-axis) Values
  • Chart type
  • Update Aggregate functions


Understanding Business Rules

  • Business rules are a good alternative to build validations on forms with UI.
  • Using business rules system administrators or power users can create validations without coding skills.
  • JScript cant is replaced by business rules.
  • Understanding Business Rules

There are four ways you can view, create, or edit business rules:

  1. Solution – > Entity
  2. Solution -> Entity-> Field
  3. Form Editor -> Business Rules
  4. Form Editor -> Field

The scope of Business rules

Uses of Business Rules

  • Make a field ‘Business Required’ when the value in another field is changed
  • Set the value of a field based on various criteria
  • Calculate the value in a field based on the value(s) of another field (s)
  • Show an error message when an invalid value is entered
  • Show/hide or enable/disable a field depending on the value entered in another field

Create New Business Rules

Can create from Forms as well as Form Fields.
Mention the following:

The scope of Business Rule


IF..ELSE. ELSE IF loops for Conditions.
Actions – What actions need to be done

Practice: Set Discount as per Purchase Timeframe


Practice: Set Exchange Rate field as Required
If Status = active
Then ExchangeRate as business Required.
Eles IF Currency doesn’t contain Value
Then show Error Message.


Customizing Dashboards in Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) 2016

Understanding Dashboards

Dashboards in Microsoft Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) provide an overview of business data ‒ actionable information that’s displayed across the organization.  Use a dashboard to see the performance at a glance.

Components of a Dashboard:

  • Views
  • Charts
  • iFrames
  • Web Resources – HTML, Silverlight content.

Types of Dashboards

User dashboards:

  • A user dashboard can be created by any user in the user’s work area.
  • A user dashboard doesn’t have to be published to be visible, but it’s only visible to the person who created it, unless shared with others

System dashboards :

  • Is created by a system administrator or customizer in the Settings area.
  • A system dashboard must be published to be visible.
  • After it’s published, it’s visible to everyone in the organization, unless hidden by the admin or customizer.

Sales Dashboard

Chart: Leads by Rating
Chart: Lead Conversion Rate
Chart: Sales Pipeline
Chart: Activities By Owner


Out-of-the-box and Custom Dashboards

Dynamics Customer Engagement (CRM) is shipped with out of the box Dashboards which span across sales, marketing and service modules.
In addition to this you can also create custom dashboards.

Some of the Out-of-the-box views

  • Sales performance Dashboards
  • Sales Activity Dashboard
  • Marketing Dashboard
  • Customer Service Manager Dashboard

Work with Dashboards

You can do following operations on dashboards:

  • You can set frequently used dashboards as default Dashboard.
  • You create new Dashboards, modify existing components.
  • You deactivate existing Dashboards.
  • Create and share your personal dashboards with other users.

Create a Dashboard

Steps involved in creating a dashboard:

  • Choose a dashboard layout
  • Provide a descriptive name
  • Add a chart, view or Iframe.

Choose a Dashboard Layout

Add a Chart to the Dashboard

  1. Select the record type for the chart.
  2. Select a view that the data in the chart will be based on.
  3. Choose the actual chart.
  4. Select Add.

Share Your dashboard with Others


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