Add PowerGlobalSearch to a Dashboard in Dynamics CRM

PowerGlobalSearch is a universal productivity tool that is beneficial to any Microsoft Dynamics CRM user trying to find records in CRM. This add-on gives users the ability to quickly search across any entity in CRM . Whether it is an out of the box entity, custom entity or activity and pulling their search results into one grid or negating the need to conduct multiple searches from different areas in CRM, PowerGlobalSearch is the go to records tool!

If you are anything like me, your dashboard is constantly open throughout the workday.  I know having the ability to search across any entity right from the dashboard, and see my results without having to take additional steps would be a life-saver. Add in the benefit of not having to open individual sections and records to get the information I need, and my day just a much more efficient.

Interested in adding PowerGlobalSearch to your dashboard? Check out the steps below and learn how you can increase your productivity right from your dashboard!

  1. First navigate to the dashboard section of your CRM system and either select to Edit or Create New. In this example we will be editing my current PowerPack Dashboard.
  2. Once you have your dashboard created/chosen to edit, select which pane you would like to add PowerGlobalSearch to and select Web Resource Icon.

     

Add PowerGlobalSearch to a Dashboard in Dynamics CRM

3. This will open a dialog box. Here you will need to select the pogs_/Search.html web resource, give it a field name and label, and then select the Display label on the Dashboard and Visible by default checkboxes on the form.

Add PowerGlobalSearch to a Dashboard in Dynamics CRM

4. Once you have configured this page select OK. This will bring you back to your editable dashboard. If you would like you can adjust the web resource height and width. You can do so by clicking on the PowerGlobalSearch pane and then navigating to the ellipsis and choosing to increase or decrease width and height. Once you are happy with how it is being displayed, select Save and Close.

Add PowerGlobalSearch to a Dashboard in Dynamics CRM

5. Once you close the editable view of the dashboard, your dashboard with PowerGlobalSearch will render like shown below.

Add PowerGlobalSearch to a Dashboard in Dynamics CRM

PowerGlobalSearch is now installed. At this point you can search across all entities right from your dashboard to your heart's desire. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the PowerPack Team at powerpackpro@powerobjects.com or visit our blog for any other troubleshooting you might need!

Happy CRM'ing!

Configuring Dashboards for Business Process Flows

Business process flows help to guide users through a defined set of stages and related steps required to complete a business process. Utilizing process flows can result in improvements in user adoption and provide greater visibility into the sales pipeline. This topic describes how to build process-centric dashboards in Dynamics 365 using out of the box entities.

Each business process flow configured in the Dynamics 365 corresponds with a related process entity that includes information such as active stage, status and start date. As a system customizer, you can edit the sitemap to display these process entities, manage permissions for each process via security roles and build custom views including process data as well as attributes from supporting entities. The custom views can also be used to create visualizations such as charts, sub grids and list views of records.

In this example, the organization is utilizing two types of sales processes that are relevant to opportunity entity. Each of these process entities have been added to the sitemap under the Business Processes section to support a process-centric view for a sales user.

business process flow

The user can select a specific business process from the sitemap and double-click a process record from views to continue progressing the opportunity further.

business process flow

We can configure a Sales Process Dashboard in CRM, leveraging system capabilities together to reduce the number of clicks and improve user experience.

Follow these steps:

1. Create a system dashboard called Sales Process Dashboard from the customizations area.

business process flow

2. Insert a chart component into the dashboard by selecting a business process flow entity, a related view and chart visualization based on the stages of the process.

business process flow

3. Insert a list component into the dashboard by selecting the same business process flow entity and a related custom view that combines information from the process and its supporting entity.

business process flow

4. Save and publish the Sales Process dashboard.

Here is a sample Sales Process Dashboard configured to display information for two sales processes for an organization. As a result, sales users can view process-driven information in a user-friendly manner and identify opportunities that require attention.

business process flow

 

If you're looking for more Dynamics 365 tips and tricks - subscribe to our blog!

Happy Dynamics 365'ing!

Visualizing Data in Dynamics 365

In the fast-moving digital world that we live in, communication is a crucial skill. It is incredibly important that information can be conveyed efficiently and be guaranteed to stick with the recipient. The real question is, how do we convey our information and data in exciting and intuitive ways?

Studies by The Social Sciences Research Network show that around 65% of the population are visual based learners. This means that a considerable percentage of your users won't get the most out of your solution if you're presenting them with statistics and spreadsheets. Thankfully Dynamics 365 has features to help you visualize your information, whether built in or provided by PowerObjects through our PowerPack add-ons.

Let's walk through a few different ways that you can visualize your data and explain how they can benefit you.

Dashboards and Charts

For many organizations, dashboards are what many of your end users will be seeing and interacting with on a daily basis. Dashboards are a customizable and shareable collection of key charts, views, iframes, and graphics to show key performance indicators to make accessing and understanding your data easier.

data in dynamics 365

Above is an example of a typical dashboard, containing a mix of charts and the relationship assistant feature. At a glance, end users can quickly get a feel for the information that is important to them. Specific dashboards can be assigned and shared with users or a team with relevant roles, such as salespeople or service agents.

data in dynamics 365

Individual components, such as charts, can be drilled down into to further explore and analyze the data, revealing the records behind the component. This is also known as inline visualization and can be accessed using the button highlighted above. By utilizing dashboards your end users can move from a high level overview of information relevant to them that are displayed using charts and other visualisations, into specific records to understand their data at a deeper level.

If you would like a more in depth look at dashboards and their components then follow this link to PowerObjects' The CRM Book.

Power BI

Power BI is a suite of business analytics tools that allow deeper insights into your data throughout your organization. Power BI can be used to produce graphics and charts for use in dashboards and reports, which can be viewed on multiple platforms. Much like charts and views, Power BI tiles can also be embedded into Dynamics 365 dashboards. This means that users no longer need to navigate to Power BI to utilize its analytical tools and can use them from within Dynamics 365. After being embedded into a dashboard, Power BI tiles can be interacted with and drilled down into in a similar fashion to Dynamics 365 dashboard components.

Note that to utilize Power BI you must have a Power BI Office 365 subscription and need to enable Power BI embedding within your Dynamics 365 System Settings.

Below is an example of a Power BI dashboard, and the same tiles embedded into a Dynamics 365 dashboard.

data in dynamics 365

If you would like to know more about connecting your Dynamics 365 data with Power BI then follow this link to our PowerObjects Blog.

PowerMap

PowerMap is an add-on developed by PowerObjects; you can find further details and installation instructions for PowerMap here. PowerMap allows you to choose an entity, choose a view for that entity, and to plot all the records of that entity onto a map in Dynamics 365. This add-on can be useful to any organization that needs to display the geographical locations of records and their location relative to one another, such as contractors or facilities. PowerMap even has a built in heat map feature to allow you to see set radiuses around records or concentrations of records in an area.

Let's have a quick overview of some of the features of PowerMap and how they help to visualise your data. Keep in mind that in order for records to be mapped they must have a valid address - if they do not then they can't be mapped!

1. Visual mapping and differentiation of records

The basic functionality of PowerMap allows users to map records from any entity as long as they have a valid address, and to differentiate between records from different entities. Records can be differentiated by assigning them with pins of different colors and types, as well as using other graphics that are specific to the type of record, such as contacts or leads. PowerMap allows users at a glance to see the geographical spread of their records, and what type of record they are.

Below we can see an example of PowerMap mapping various records (left) and the various types of pins and graphics available. In this example, accounts are mapped with a red pin, contacts with a yellow pin, and leads with a blue pin.

data in dynamics 365data in dynamics 365

2. Heat Maps

PowerMap includes a built in heat map feature, to allow you to create a heat map for any mapped entities. The heat map allows you to see concentrations of mapped records in an area, and can also be used to show an operational radius or area around a record. The colour gradient, intensity, and radius of the heat map can be customized, and several heat maps can be applied at the same time.

Below is an example of what a heat map may look like, in this case when applied to Account records (left). Also displayed is the color gradient options available, and the intensity and radius (miles), all of which can be modified (middle and right).

data in dynamics 365

3. Directions

By utilizing Bing Maps, PowerMap can also provide users with detailed directions, from one address to another. This can be accessed by users within your system on multiple platforms, and can be especially useful for field agents.

Below is an example of what PowerMap directions may look like.

data in dynamics 365

If you would like to know more about PowerMap, or any of our other PowerPack add-ons then follow this link.

Hopefully this blog has provided you with a few ideas on how to better connect with your users and present your information in a more visual way. Be sure to subscribe to our blog so you have immediate updates to all of the new tips and tricks for Microsoft Dynamics 365, and if you would like more in-depth information on any CRM topic check out our CRM Book!

Happy Dynamics 365'ing!

Tweet Tweet: Display Your Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Does your company have a Twitter account? While Twitter is a great way to connect with your customers and partners, it can also be a great way for your employees to see what your company is presenting to the outside world. Since Dynamics 365 is one of the first places many employees start their day, displaying a Twitter feed on a Dynamics 365 dashboard can be a great way to keep up-to-date with the latest company news. In today's blog, we'll be adding our PowerObjects Twitter account, @joecrm, to a dashboard!

First, you need to create a widget while logged in to a Twitter account at https://twitter.com/settings/widgets. Note that this does not need to be the same Twitter account you are creating the widget for.

Click Create New to get started making your widget. A drop-down box will appear, allowing you to select what type of widget you would like. In this example, we'll be creating a profile widget, but you can always display a widget of likes, a list, a collection, or a search if this suits your needs.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Twitter will now ask you what you would like to embed. This is inputted in the form of a Twitter URL for the feed you want. Simply click in the input box or press the down arrow and Twitter will give you guidelines on the type of URL to use.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

In this case, we are creating a widget for the PowerObjects Twitter account (@joecrm), so we would enter https://twitter.com/joecrm.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

You will now be presented with two display options – Embedded Timeline or Twitter Buttons. In this circumstance, use the Embedded Timeline option.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

At this stage, you can set customization options like the widget's height, width and language if you want to. Otherwise, you are all ready to start embedding your Twitter feed into a dashboard. Twitter will give you a piece of code that we will be using in a web resource in Dynamics 365. You can press Copy Code to keep the code on your clipboard, or you may want to temporarily paste it into a Notepad file or keep the tab open.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Now let's head over to Dynamics 365. Navigate to Settings > Customizations and select Customize the System.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

In the new window that opens, select Dashboards on the left pane.

Twitter Feed on Dynamics a 365 Dashboard

You can select New > Dashboard to create a new dashboard or add the widget to an existing dashboard if you prefer. In this example, we're going to create a new dashboard.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Select the layout you prefer. In this example, we're going to select the 2-Column Regular Dashboard. Once your layout is selected, click Create.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

We're going to name our dashboard Twitter, but you may call it anything you like. Decide which box you'd like to place the Twitter feed in, then select the Insert Web Resource button, which is the globe symbol on the bottom right of available buttons.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

In the window that pops up, press the lookup icon next to Web resource, scroll down and select Look Up More Records.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

In the Look Up More Records box that appears, press New at the bottom.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

In this example, we're going to name our web resource new_twitterfeed with the display name Twitter. We will select the Type as Webpage (HTML) and the language as English.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Once these fields are complete, click the Text Editor button. This is where we will insert the code that we copied earlier. Click the Source tab and paste the code between the body tags. Your code should look like this:

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Press OK which will close the window. Now, in the Web Resource window, press Save and then Publish. You can now close this window. You will now see your new Twitter web resource selected in the Look Up More Records window. Press Add at the bottom.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Now you can complete other options for Add Web Resource such as name, label, and visibility. In this example we just set the Name and Label to Twitter. Press OK when done.

You have now added your Twitter widget onto your dashboard! You may want to change the size, such as the height, by pressing the ellipses on the top bar and selecting the buttons to modify the size. Here is our example with our Twitter feed alongside a chart and list:

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

Press Save and Close after you have formatted the size as you like, and add any other dashboard components you want. To make the changes active, you will need to publish your dashboard by selecting it and using the Publish button in the Dashboards customization screen.

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

That's it! Let's navigate over to Sales > Dashboards and select Twitter from the drop-down menu of Dashboards. A beautiful and scrollable Twitter feed right there on the dashboard! Amazing!

Twitter Feed on a Dynamics 365 Dashboard

And if you love Twitter, be sure to follow me @joecrm!

Happy Social Dynamics 365'ing!