Microsoft Dynamics® CRM Training
Introduction to CRM 2015
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This is a relatively brief video designed to provide you with an introductory overview of Microsoft Dynamics CRM. It's the first video that we recommend in a series of six videos that we have provided to round out your understanding of this customer relationship management system. Some of the very high-level topics covered here are covered in much more detail in subsequent videos, such as the Sales, Marketing and Service Module videos. This video is design to introduce you to fundamental concepts in less than 20 minutes. First, Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a web-based platform, build on a robust relational database, and it is designed to track and present in a pleasing and easy to understand way just about any set of data that you care about. That is a deliberately broad statement - mainly because the system is indeed flexible enough to track anything you can imagine. The system is accessed in three major ways: 1. Through a web-browser, as you see here. Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Safari are supported. 2. Through Microsoft Outlook, where a downloaded piece of software is installed, and then provides a tight integration, where not only can the entire application be rendered inside of OUtlook, but objects in Outlook such as Tasks, Emails, Appointments, and Contacts have matching equivalents in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. The Outlook integration features the ability to syncrhonize between those matching equivalent records. So, appointments in Outlook can be viewed in CRM. 3. Finally, the third major way to work with CRM data iss through a native mobile application for your chosen device. For most tablets and phones, you simply visit the app store and look for the "Microsoft Dynamics CRM" application provided by Microsoft at no charge, install it, and you will see screens like this to surface and work with the information you store in CRM. The first thing to understand is that the application is modular in nature. At the highest level, which is represented by hovering over the "Microsoft Dynamics CRM" icon at the top of the page, reveals three major modules of interest - Sales, Marketing and Service. These modules should be thought of as "lenses" by which we access our CRM data. What I mean by that is that the Microsoft design is to include in each module a list of what we call "entities" that speak to the person interested in that particular module. Thus, you will find in the Sales module "Leads, Opportunities, Accounts and Contacts", among other things that salespeople are generally interested in, such as Competitors, Products and Sales Literature. In Marketing, you will find some of the same things you find in Sales, such as Leads, Contacts and Account, but some items that are specific to Marketing, such as Campaigns, Marketing Lists and Quick Campaigns. And in the Service module, which is designed for users who work on a daily basis to service existing customers, you find "Cases", also knows as Service Requests, and things like Queues, KB Articles, and Contracts. A quick point to make is that whenever you see entities in two places - you may have noticed, for instance, that Contacts And Accounts appear in all modules - that's the same data. Thus, Accounts and Contacts in Sales are the same Accounts and Contacts in Marketing. This re-inforces the concept that these modules are simply lenses by which we work with our data. And by the way, that part is completely cusomizable. It's possible to rearrange entirely this navigational structure, and add or subtract any set of tiles. Before we drill down into the application and look at an individual record, we need to briefly cover sytax. It's important to understand what these entities mean. I will quickly cover them now, so you have these terms before we go further. Accounts and Contacts are first. An "Account" is, simply, an organization of any kind. The Account entity is primarily designed to store information about your Customers at the organization level,but it can also represent a vendor, a partner, or any type of organization you need to track at any level. A "contact" is, simply, a person. And it can be any type of person. Again, the entity is designed to store primarily information about your customers, but it can also be any other type of person you need to track, such as vendors, people who refer you business, or any other type of contact. Leads represent potential business. This is an entity that is special in that it can contain information about BOTH organiations and people, and can then be converted into those entities. Opportunities are essentially about the money - they may contain specific line-item products that may lead to a quote or an order if you do business that way, or they main contain estimated revenue. Opportunities drive the pipeline charts you see when you log into CRM for the first time. If you win an opportunity it can easily be converted to a Quote or an Order. In the Service Module, the main entity is the Case. This represents your effort to service yor customers on an indicent level. In the Marketing Module we have what you would expect, such as Marketing Lists and Campaigns. Those are the major entities -- there are many more, most of which are self-explanatory, such as Quotes, Orders, Invoices. Please refer to the more detailed videos about each module to learn more about them. To understand how this application is constructed, it's useful to walk through the navigation of a single type of record, becuase the navigational concepts apply to all records in CRM. For instance, if I am interested in working with Contacts, I would visit any of the modules, then Contacts. When I click on the tile that represents the "Contact" entity, I am presented with a List of Contacts. This list is called a "view." As you can see, there are many views in the system - some built by Microsoft by default, some built my me as a system administrator, and some buiult by end-users. Views, as you can see, feature any number and order of columns. Once I have the view that I wish to use, I can click on an individual record. So right now I am looking at one record of a "Contact". This page, and this is true no matter what I click on in CRM - whether it be an Account, a Lead, an Opportunity - -anything - is designed to show me, all on one page, everything I could ever want to know about that record. And by the way, anything RELATED to that record. For instance, here you see on the left, basic information about this person, such as their name, email address, phone number, and address. In the middle, I see any activities that may have occured around this person, and this is a key concept in CRM. Activity tracking at the record level. That is to say, its very easy and quick to create recors of your activities and they will be automatically related to the contact or record in question. Also, using the Outlook integration, tasks, emails, appointments in Outlook can be set "regarding" a particular contact and they will show up here in CRM in this list of activities. This task, for instance, came from Ouutlook. Now over here on the right, I see any connections they may have with other records stored in the system. As an example, we see that Dr. Goldstein has important connections with other doctors. Here we can show clearly those relationships. And that is the heart and soul of what CRM is about - showing the relationship between you and your prospects and customers, but also the relationships with others as well. You can probably see the value in that. Something I need to point out is the flexbility of this application. Without programming, and with the proper permissions (you would probably limite this to a chosen few in your organization) you can modify this form. And any number of forms can be created. As you can see, with no programming whatsoever, I can create a field and move existing fields around the page. That's just one level of customization - many more are possible. So, what I have shown you with the Contact applies to all records in CRM. In fact, the interface is pretty consistent throughout. Let's go through a few more records. .... Finally, I want to close with the concept of dashboards. Now that you undertand the modular nature of the application I think you will better appreciate what a Dashboard can do. On a dashbaord, you can surface up to six different types of CRM entities to provide a single screen with a LOT of information on it. Dashboards are inherently interactive, and you can drill down to view the underlying records in just about any way you wish to present it. So that's the overview that we promised in less than 20 minutes. As I'm sure you have gathered, there is a great deal more to learn about this product if you wish to, but I hope this has helped your fundamental understanding of what this application is about. Thanks for watching.