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You may be wondering, how are creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013 different from creating a dialog in Dynamics CRM 2011? The short answer: it really isn’t very different; the basic functionality is the same – however, CRM 2013’s freshly redesigned UI modifies the navigation process.


Dialogs are a feature introduced in Dynamics CRM 2011. They provide a great way to standardize processes and ensure specific information is routinely captured.

Here is an example:

A sales lead’s contact information is out of date. We will create a simple dialog that will prompt a CRM user to update the lead’s Business Phone, Mobile Phone, Email and Preferred Contact Method. The CRM database will be a standard install with only the out-of-the box features displayed.


1. From the navigation menu, select Microsoft Dynamics CRM > Settings > Processes.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

2. Once the default My Processes view is displayed, click the New button from the menu.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

Creating the Dialog

  1. Provide a unique Process Name for the new dialog.
  2. Select Lead as the Entity.
  3. Select Dialog as the Category.
  4. Leave New Blank Process as the selected Type.
  5. Click OK.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

The Create Process window closes and a new Information window appears with the General tab selected.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

[NOTE: In this example, we will leave the As an on-demand process box checked. It is possible to build complex dialogs that are initiated programmatically. It is also possible to relate dialogs to each other, but both of these functions are outside the scope of this tutorial.]

Creating the Prompts

Dialogs operate as a series of pages, much like a common setup wizard. Each page should contain specific functions that flow to subsequent pages.

1. Click Add Step.

2. Select Page.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

3. Choose a unique name for the page (Page 1).

4. Select the row beneath the Page description and click Add Step.

5. Choose Prompt and Response from the drop down list.

6. In the new available field, provide a description for the Step.

7. Click Set Properties.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

8. Provide the Prompt Text in the text area. This will be the text displayed to the CRM user.

Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013

9. Provide a Tip Text in the text area. Tip Text provides additional information for the selected prompt.

Prompts 9

10. In the Response Details section, choose Single Line as the Response Type for the prompt. The Response Type correlates to the type of information being captured. A phone number is a single line of text, so Single Line is the appropriate choice.

Prompts 10

11. Choose Text as the Data Type for the prompt. While business phone is a number, it is not considered a numeric value (you wouldn’t perform arithmetic on it), so it is stored as text.

Prompts 11

12. Leave Log Response checked as Yes.

13. Leave Default Value blank.

Prompts 13

14. Click Save and Close.

Prompts 14

15. Repeat steps 11-21 for Mobile Phone and Email.

Prompts 15

Now that we’ve captured some data, let’s create a prompt for the lead’s preferences.

16. Create a new preferences prompt with Prompt Text.

17. In the Response Details choose Option Set from the Response Type list

18. In Data Type select Integer.

19. Leave Log Response checked as Yes.

20. Leave Default Value blank.

Creating Prompt Responses

Now we need to set up the preference options. Since this is an actual field within CRM the response options will need to relate to the CRM options. Here are the available CRM preference fields:

Responses intro

In our example, we do not want the CRM user to choose the Any option, so we will omit that as an option. It is important to remember that the values in the prompt must match the CRM values.

  1. Click on the prompt button icon to add a new response value.
  2. In the Value field, enter 2 as the value.
  3. Enter Email as the Label value.

Responses 3

4. Repeat steps 28-30 for Phone, Fax and Mail incrementing the value by 1 each time.

Responses 4

5. Click Save and Close.

Responses 5

Update the Lead Record

At this point, we have created the prompts for the CRM user. Next we need to create a step to update the lead record.

  1.  Click on the Page and select Add Step
  2. Choose Update Record.
  3. Provide a description for the update step.
  4. Click Set Properties.

Prompts 1

Prompts 1-2
The Update Lead page is displayed, showing the lead entity properties. Here we will map the CRM user responses to the lead record fields.

5. Click in the Business Phone field.

6. In the Form Assistant select Look For > What is your Business Phone Number.

7. Click Add.

8. Click OK.

Lead Record 8

Lead Record 8-2

9. Repeat steps 37-40 for Mobile and Email.

Lead Record 9

10. Under Contact Method click on Preferences.

11. In the Form Assistant select Look For > How would you prefer us to contact you.

Lead Record 11

12. Click Add.

13. Click OK.

Lead Record 13

14. Click Save and Close.

Lead Record 14

Activate and Run Dialog

Once a dialog is finished, it will need to be activated. A dialog cannot be run until it has been active.

  1. From the navigation menu at the top choose activate button and confirm the activation process at the prompt.
  2. Navigate to the Leads entity.
  3. Click on the ellipsis.
  4. Choose Start Dialog.

Activate 4

5. Select the dialog that was just created.

6. Click Add.

Activate 6

Activate 7

That’s it! Creating dialogs in Dynamics CRM 2013 is simple if you follow these steps. If you thought this was cool, try your hand at creating workflows.

Keeping checking our blog for more helpful guides, tips, and tricks!

Happy CRM’ing!


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