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Assigning Records to Inactive Users in Dynamics CRM

Post Author: Joe D365 |

Good day, CRM users!

Assigning records in Dynamics CRM has always been fairly straightforward. You have a record owned by your own user, and you want someone else to own it. So you assign it, and you're done. This could be done via the Dynamics CRM user interface or programmatically using .NET code, SSIS, Scribe or other tools that connect to the Dynamics CRM web service.

Assigning Records to Inactive Users

There are considerations to keep in mind regarding this, however. One primary consideration is that you cannot assign a record to a user that has been marked as inactive or disabled in the system. This makes sense on the face of it, but it can get you into problems in certain situations.

Consider a scenario where you are migrating data from a source database to Dynamics CRM. The source database has a set of users that own data in the legacy system, but are no longer with the company.

Obviously you would not want to create users for these former employees as you would have to pay for additional unnecessary licenses. However, you would probably like to maintain the historical data about the records these former employees owned. In the past, you had to either assign the record to a default user and have some sort of reference field to indicate the former owner, or do away with the historical data.

Well, no longer!

Assigning Records to Inactive Users in Dynamics CRM

A small, quiet, but rather important change took place sometime ago on the way the CRM database handles assigning records to inactive users that many may not be aware of. So long as the inactive user still maintains a security role, even though it is inactive, you can programmatically or via the UI assign records to that inactive user. This means that you can maintain the historical data of who owns a particular record even though they may no longer be with the company, and save yourself some extraneous licenses as well.

Pretty cool! Happy CRMing!

By Joe D365
Joe D365 is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 superhero who runs on pure Dynamics adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe D365’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics 365 and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.

7 comments on “Assigning Records to Inactive Users in Dynamics CRM”

  1. If this works out, you have answered my prayers! No one else out there seemed to know about this. Thanks a million, and I mean that literally -- I have millions of phone & email records from 10 years of history to migrate for hundreds of users, and I've been setting up the 'former employee' user trick because no one I've contacted could tell me this. This is great news (if it works!!)

      1. It does indeed work as Joe says. The trick is to put the old users into a security group as soon as you create them, then you can immediately disable them and still let them own history records. I had been creating these users without a security group since I didn't think I needed them to have any real access.

        Thanks again, Joe!

  2. Hi. It Is possible to create accounts for the former employees of the company in CRM Dynamics, and deactivate them without paying licences, or this works only if the account existed in CRM, the employee left, the company and the account is deactivated.Thanks

    1. Hi EP - if you are using crm online you do need the licenses temporarily to create the user, assign the role, then de-activate. If you are on prem you are ok, but online you do need the licenses temporarily.

  3. Hi there! I cannot reproduce what you explain here - I have an inactive user with a security role, but he does not appear in the user list on the assign window. Is there an additional setting which allows disabled users to appear here?

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