Browsing articles in "Blog"

Dynamics CRM 2013: Diving into the sales pipeline – Part 1

No matter how orthodox and customisation-free you want your Dynamics CRM implementation to be, there is always one aspect of Dynamics CRM that must be customised: The Sales Pipeline. Such customisation is required if you want the default sales pipeline to work properly, as well the sales pipeline report.

The issue at hand is, how can we set-up a functional sales pipeline with charts and reports, yet keeping Dynamics CRM as close as possible to its out-of-the-box functionality?

In this series of posts, we will be covering the implementation of a sales pipeline based on the requirements of a fictional organisation, called ACME. Dynamics CRM 2013 provides new tools and functionality that enable us to create a streamlined business processes, including a sales pipeline.

Because there’s so much to discuss here, I’m going to break this up into multiple parts. And in this first part of the series, I’d like to address the fundamental concepts of the sales pipeline and introduce some key points on how to conduct a requirement assessment.

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Opportunity entity changes in Dynamics CRM 2013

Last week I wrote a post about the changes in the Lead entity introduced by Dynamics CRM 2013. Following the course of the traditional Dynamics CRM sales process, the next entity to tackle is the opportunity entity.

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From Windows Server 2012 to 2012 R2: A storage pool nightmare

Earlier this year, I decided to give me ageing HP MediaSmart EX470 some extra life by installing Windows Server 2012 Essentials in it — a process that I documented in this post of WeGotServed.com.

Now that Microsoft release windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials, I decided to do the upgrade, thinking that it would be a simple and streamlined process. Boy, was I wrong. Besides some issues with the setup of the new OS, I had to crack my head with a storage pool that was refusing to play ball, while Windows was returning little to no information to help me troubleshoot the problem. I was about to wipe the disks until I decided to have another go and I fixed the problem. I hope this post will help those out there with the same or similar issue. Read more >>

Lead entity changes in Dynamics CRM 2013

In Dynamics CRM, no entity tends to cause more confusion to like the Lead entity. I do get that newcomers to CRM might be confused, and after many training sessions and constructive feedback I reckon I came up with a nice approach to explain the importance of this entity. Most people get it, but some companies still decide not to use the lead entity. Sometimes they genuinely don’t need to use it; but quite often then don’t use it because they don’t understand the true potential of leads.

For Dynamics CRM 2013, Microsoft has performed some significant changes in the Lead entity with the intuit to address those issues, which I will be covering in this post.

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Sérgio Vieira de Mello: 10 Years

Ten years ago today, the world lost Sérgio Vieira de Mello; a unique and wonderful human being who dedicated all of his adult life for the well-being of others.

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Cloud storage – The good, the bad and the ugly

During the release of Windows 8.1 public preview last month, Microsoft announced that SkyDrive will be even more pervasive in Windows 8.1, not only being the default save location for users’ documents and pictures, but also storing system settings and user profile.

More recently, Forbes reported on a story that Dropbox is moving beyond the typical cloud storage business model of file sync, to a broader data store API that will allow people to sync contact lists, settings game sales and all other sorts of data.

While I welcome innovation, I will stay away from public cloud storage as much as possible. And here is why. Read more >>

Dynamics CRM: Almost xRM

I’ve been getting some emails from readers praising some of the tutorials I wrote round Dynamics CRM customisation and wondering if I have any further tutorials planned. As a matter of fact I do – or perhaps I did. Upon examining some of the topics I was hoping to write about, I came to a poignant realisation: The vast majority of subjects I was hoping to write are about how to circumvent limitations of the Dynamics CRM platform.

As I investigated these limitations on forums, blogs and other sources about Dynamics CRM I can only conclude that Microsoft is doing little to nothing to address most of these concerns. I’ve been working with Dynamics CRM for years and I’m starting to feel as if Microsoft might be in denial about some of the feature requests they receive on Microsoft Connect website.

With all that in mind I feel that before I write any further articles about Dynamics CRM, I should write one article about the Dynamics CRM limitations I find intolerable. In case you’re wondering, I agree that this post has a “ranting” connotation. However I’d like readers to see beyond my frustration and consider the points I am raising as a way to encourage further enhancements on the xRM framework. I truly believe that if Microsoft follow-up on these issues, it will greatly increase the competitive advantage of Dynamics CRM to the point it will become the de-facto market leader. Read more >>

The entertainment industry’s war on consumers II

A year ago I wrote a post in this blog about my concerns around digital rights management and how companies like Microsoft and Sony are looking into ways of blocking users from buying and playing used games. This is a move that, in my view, is paving the way for the entertainment industry to transform consumers in a money-making battery farm through the introduction of such limitations in their upcoming consoles.

There’s been a lot of uproar in the comments section of technology news and information websites about this issue recently, and some people saw with optimism the statements by some Sony executives that PS4 will not block used games. Well, I don’t share such optimism. Read more >>

Intelligent docking stations: The future of hybrid devices?

Early this week I watched Ubuntu’s teaser on what they have prepared for hybrid phone/tablets/desktops and I said to myself (and I am sure that many others did as well) “this is exactly what I have been looking for, but so far no one managed to deliver”. Read more >>

Dynamics CRM 2011: Diving into the sales pipeline – Polaris Addendum

With the release of Dynamics CRM 2011 Update Rollup 12 (UR12, also known as Polaris), Microsoft introduced a lot of new features such as cross-browser support and new forms based on the modern interface (formally known as Metro).

One particular new feature has been driving a lot of traffic to this site, and people emailing me asking for advice: the sales pipeline editor. This new feature allow system customisers to specify the stages within the sales process the steps within through the use of an online editor. Unfortunately, this editor lacks the flexibility and features required to customise a sales process like I have I have discussed in my Diving into the sales pipeline series for Dynamics CRM 2011. The purpose of this post is to serve as an addendum for the series when considering the Polaris update.

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