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Planning for your Dynamics CRM 2013 upgrade

If you’re an existing user of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, you are most likely aware that your CRM online environment will be upgraded to the new version of Dynamics CRM (2013) from October onwards. You will also have no doubt received – or are about to receive – an email from Microsoft detailing the date when your organisation will be upgraded to 2013.

This upgrade will require proactive management and involves a number of changes for your users. Below I’ve anticipated some of the questions you might have and have outlined some of the changes you can expect to see in the new release. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions, and remember that Intergen can support you in this process.


What is Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013?

In short, CRM 2013 is the next release of Dynamics CRM. Dynamics CRM 2011 was released in 2010 and, in line with Microsoft’s other products, has had a facelift to enable it to continue to be a market leader. With the range of new laptops, tablets and phones available to users, the Dynamics CRM user interface had to be re-imagined to support these devices more natively.

Here are the key feature changes that you will experience with the new release. Keep an eye out for new posts about the upcoming release here: http://rc.crm.dynamics.com/rc/2011/en-us/Dynamics-CRM-Upcoming-Release-Information.aspx and also right here on Intergen’s blog.


The ribbon goes – say hello to the command bar and new sitemap navigation bar.

The command and navigation bar is a replica of the navigation pane that you are used to and the ribbon buttons are replaced with simply-worded command bar options. The reason for this change is to speed up the UI, simplify the visuals and make it easy to touch.


Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Command bar


Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Command bar


Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Command bar


No left hand navigation – expand the navigation bar

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Command bar


Process enabled forms: you can create processes to support users navigating through the system.

A record type can have many different processes that can be started. A process drives a user through the information and related entities to complete the process. A user can change the process during a process if required. Example processes include Simple Opportunity Process, Complex Opportunity process, New Member, Renew Member etc.


Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Process enabled forms


Mobile for free – the new release includes an always online with cached offline mode for Windows 8 and iPad devices.

The mobile user interface is dynamically created based on the same forms non-mobile users utilise. This will provide a great tool for the mobile workforce to engage in CRM wherever they are.


Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Mobile


 Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Mobile

What if my organisation isn’t ready? Can we delay this upgrade?

Yes. You can delay this upgrade by rescheduling the upgrade date. Click here for the instructions on how to do this. Please note the process for doing this is slightly different if you have not yet migrated to the Office 365 platform and are still using Windows Live IDs. All details to reschedule are quite clear in the associated link. You will need to be an administrator to be able to reschedule the upgrade.


Is there a final date by which I must upgrade my CRM online environment?

Yes. You can only postpone your upgrade to February 6 2014. Your environment will be upgraded within this time frame.


What steps does my organisation need to take to be ready for this upgrade?

1. Review this link to ensure that your user environment is compliant with the latest release.

2. Review any third party add-ons that you might have installed and check with vendor that they are supported on CRM 2013, if they will not be at time of upgrade then you best option may be to request a different upgrade date.

3. Work with Intergen to ensure you are ready and your users are ready to “love” the new user experience.

4. Document a plan of action to enable you to manage this transition smoothly.


Intergen is at hand to assist you with this process

Intergen is committed to making this transition as smooth as it can be for our CRM users, and can offer the following services to assist you with this transition. If you are under a support agreement with Intergen then we may be able to utilise your agreement to assist you with some of these items. If this applies to you, please speak to your Customer Support manager for more details.


CRM 2013 Transition offerings:

System Health Check. We will review the code in your environment to ensure that it meets the CRM 2013 standards to support a fully automated upgrade. The review will also identify opportunities to simplify code utilising some of the new features of CRM 2013 including synchronous workflows and entity business rules, which we believe will offer opportunities to remove customisation from the system.

Key User Training. We can provide training to your key users on how the new user interface works and how users can navigate easily around the user interface. The intention is that the key users will on train all end users.

End User Training – we can work with you to provide end user training updates on the new user interface and new navigation.

Form Re-design – post the upgrade your CRM 2011 forms will continue to work within the new refreshed user interface as scrollable forms. With the redesign comes an opportunity to take advantage of the new layout options and re-layout your forms more intuitively focusing on primary and secondary information needs. Intergen can assist you with this process.

Guided Business Processes Enablement – a great new feature of CRM 2013 is the introduction of business process flows. Business process flows can be created via the process configuration area of Dynamics CRM. Intergen can provide assistance and guidance on the best way to utilise this new feature to increase user adoption, drive consistency and reduce on-going training costs.

It is exciting times for CRM ahead but these changes will have an impact on the user experience and potentially on your configuration as well. At Intergen we want to ensure your transition is seamless as possible, so please don’t hesitate to talk to me or to speak directly with your Intergen Account Manager or Customer Support Manager to make sure you have a plan in place to manage this change.


Posted by: Steven Foster, Client Director | 26 August 2013

Tags: CRM, Business Intelligence, BI

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