The Spring Wave for Microsoft Dynamics CRM has finally arrived! We have been spending a lot of time with the new features here at PowerObjects. In fact, we have a page dedicated specifically to updates and education surrounding the Wave.
We will be discussing many of the new features in depth over the next few days and weeks but we wanted to appease your appetite and give you our list of the Top 10 Features in the Spring Wave!
#10 – Case Merging
Ever have a situation where two contacts from the same company each submit a ticket for the same issue? Now, with the Case Merge feature, we can easily merge these two separate cases together and only handle one case moving forward! This was difficult before the Spring Wave as cases did not possess the Merge feature.
#9 – Parent/Child Cases
How can a service department keep track of the number of customers reporting a particular software bug? In the past the department would have to create a new case for each time this issue was reported. There was no (easy) way of associating one root cause (the software bug) issues tied to several customers. Parent/Child Cases now allow us to create one parent case for the root cause and associate all the customers reporting the issue to it.
#8 – Queue Enhancements
Queues are often an overlooked feature of Microsoft Dynamics CRM. There are now a number of new features are available from within the queue area that will be an asset for all CRM users. These features include:
- Private Queues.
- Adding members to a private queue.
- Ability to add a group of users as members of queue in one go
- More information on case/activities to work on
- KPIs for Queue performance/service rate
- Pointers for load balancing needs
#7 – Solution Export
Exported solutions can now be ‘targeted’ for specific versions of CRM. It works like this: suppose I am exporting a solution from a version 6.1 (Spring Wave) organization. If I choose to target the export for version 6.0 (Fall Update), no features from version 6.1 will be included in the solution. This is especially useful when moving solutions around different servers and allows more flexibility in terms of where solutions can be moved to.
#6 – Holiday Scheduling
Have a holiday coming up and want to make sure your SLA times are not in effect during the holiday period? The Service Management area now features the ability to set a holiday schedule in advance!
#5 – Entitlements
Entitlements are used in the service area of CRM and allows organizations to define the amount and type of support available to various groups of customers. Entitlements can be defined based on a particular number of service hours or by the number of cases. Entitlements are similar to the existing Service Contract entity. We will discuss these differences in a blog next week!
#4 – SharePoint Online Server Side Sync
Server Side Sync for SharePoint Online has been made available as a part of the Spring Wave. Server Side Sync for SharePoint online can replace the existing “client-side sync” for SharePoint that has been available since CRM 2011. There are a couple drawbacks to the client side sync, chief among them, the need for a user to be logged into CRM AND SharePoint. Now, with Server Side Sync, there is no need for user to be logged in to SharePoint in order to view documents. This is a huge improvement!
#3 – Tablet App Changes
The tablet apps available for Microsoft Dynamics CRM show a lot of potential and there have been a number of updates included in the Spring Wave for the tablet apps. These updates improve what is already a very exciting tool. Some of the updates included for Mobility…
- Android Compatibility
- Targeted Windows 8.1 app
- Ability to ‘reconfigure’
- Sign Out/Sign In as different user
- Chart Drilldown
- Improved Scrolling
#2 – Case Timer
We’ve previously blogged about how to Set Ticket Aging in CRM. SLAs have been made available in the Service area of CRM in the latest update. SLAs will allow support professionals to ensure they are meeting service levels when providing support. First Response Time and Resolution Time are indicators that will be tracked for every case. This information is surfaced on the Case form and the user providing support will have a ‘countdown’ timer on the case, giving them a clear idea of when a case needs to be resolved by to hit the SLA target.
And the NUMBER ONE feature in the Spring Wave…
#1 – Automatic Case Creation: Email Channel
Have you ever wanted to automatically create a case if an email is received in a particular email inbox? My favorite feature in the Spring Wave is the capability to do what is described above! Have important customers that need to have their issues resolved in a short time period? With the automatic case creation rules you can configure rules that will automatically create the case for this particular customer, assign a Follow Up By time to it, Route it to the support employee and then send an acknowledgement email back to the customer, all AUTOMATICALLY within CRM without custom code! Amazing!
There we have it! The top ten Spring ’14 Wave updates according to Joe CRM. We hope this has helped you navigate the changes a bit better and as always, if there are any other questions head over to our blog for the latest news and educational materials. Happy CRM’ing!