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Dynamics CRM 2011 Beta Day

We’ve all been waiting, most of us impatiently waiting.  Today is Beta day. 

We, xrmvirtual, had our biggest meeting this week when we were given a sneak peak and whirlwind tour of CRM 2011.  The meeting had almost 500 in attendance (I don’t mind sharing it was 485).  The video (below) has been viewed over 300 times today alone!  The video is almost 2 hours long, but it flies.  Seriously, Eric Boocock went fast, but you could still keep up.  If you want the quick all you need to know to get excited/started about CRM 2011, this video is where you should start.

Linked below is also the download links for the on-premise bits.  Make sure you get the ReadMe too (the key is in there).

The list of new things is way more than a simple blog post, it’s like a year’s worth of blog posts.  Here’s a start.

Julie’s list of what’s cool, in no particular order…

  • It looks so much better.  No, not just because it LOOKS better but with the shift in color intensity, that’s less eye fatigue, people can look at it longer and not get their eyes as tired.
  • Ribbon.  Not only Ribbon, but customizable ribbon, make it your own.
  • Auditing.  I cannot tell you how many requests I’ve had for this in prior versions, there was always a way, but now it’s automatic.
  • Dashboards for the common person (read this to mean no code required).  The dashboard designer really is THAT simple and gets you access to loads of cool things to put on the dashboards.
  • Dialogs (in a former life they were call scripts).  This gives you if this then this steps.  If caller has a parking ticket, then transfer to this line.  If caller is reporting code violation, then what type of violation, then transfer.  I have so many uses for this in my brain, I will be busy for a while building them.
  • Drag and drop form designer.  HOLY COW, about time folks.  Add to that the ability to add new fields (attributes) on the fly as you build the form, and woohoo.  What a time saver.
  • Solutions.  This allows vendors (like me maybe) to package up our offerings, lock them (manage) and plop them on top of your CRM deployment.  This protects our (and your) intellectual property.  It also can offer easy ways to layer sets of customizations within a single organization, even if not locked down, but as a way to manage deployments.
  • Customize from the form.  You no longer have to go thru Settings->Customizations->Customize Entities->Entity to change that form, add a field, etc.  If you have the security permissions, just click the customize part of the Ribbon and customize away.
  • Multiple forms per entity.  How many of you wanted this one, raise your hand.  Yup, all of us.  Just as soon as you had more than one solid user, you wanted another form.
  • Field level security, another woohoo.
  • Role based forms/field views.  This one is a game changer in my head.  I can now setup a form for User A,a salesperson. They get a bunch of fields on their form, sales-y fields.  Then we have User B, an accountant.  They need many of the same fields as the sales person, but they also need more and less.  Before creating this was not easy and not supported.  Not once you set it up, tadah.  The reason it’s a game changer… all users, regardless of customization needs, can now easily co-exist in the same organization and never see the customizations that don’t apply to them.


User group recording

Download details: Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Beta


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