Microsoft Dynamics® CRM Training
Phone Number Formatting
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Hi, and welcome to the Success Portal by xRM.com.
The integration between Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Outlook is a powerful feature. Any Contact entered into Microsoft Dynamics CRM appears in Outlook as a contact for the record’s owner. This allows Users with smartphones that can connect to their company’s exchange server to view CRM Contacts as contacts in their phone.
A great benefit of this feature is the ability to call Contacts from your cell phone with ease. However, phone number formatting directly impacts your ability to take advantage of this feature. If you are experiencing errors when trying to call Contacts from your cell, it might not be a systematical error, but a formatting error.
Often times, a Contact’s business phone number will contain an extension. How this is entered into the record affects your cell’s ability to dial the number. If a phone number is entered like this: “215-555-5555, ext 123”, or “215-555-5555, x123”, your cell may error when dialing. This doesn’t mean you can’t use the feature, you just have to find a formatting solution that works for your phone.
One suggestion would be to create a custom field and label it something like “Extension”. Separating the extension from the phone number would likely solve the issue, but you would have to remember the extension.
If you go this route, Users could access the extension information from the Mobile form on their mobile browser, assuming you add the field to the form. But this defeats the purpose since it’s not as convenient as simply dialing from your list of contacts on your cell.
Another, and possibly better alternative, is to insert a space followed by a comma, and then the extension after the phone number. Like this: “215-555-5555 , 123”.
This pause gives the system time to answer before the keystrokes for the extension are entered. This is not a foolproof solution because various smartphones function differently. Therefore, you may have to experiment with the format until it works properly. But if you are having problems dialing numbers with extensions, understanding that it could be a formatting error is half the battle. Once you get it right, you’ll be able to easily call Contacts your mobile phone with a push of the button.
For more tips, tricks, and tutorials, please refer to the Success Portal and blog.xrm.com.