The CRM Field Guide – How to CRM like an MVP

http://www.crmfieldguide.com/

The CRM Field Guide is an essential guide to Microsoft Dynamics CRM that everyone should have on their bookshelf.  This book offers you details not only on CRM fundamentals and extensibility points but also the tried and true best practices and strategies of the combined experience of some of the most recognizable global experts in the CRM industry.  The field guide contains insights from many CRM MVP contributors and is intended to be a book you pick up over and over again as you use CRM.

Having the CRM Field Guide by your side is like having the “hotline” to the industry experts.  When you hear the term Field Guide you likely think of nature; identifying key plants or animals in a new and exciting place.  Obviously this book is not that type of a guide.  This book is what you pick up when it’s Friday night and you are stuck with one last CRM problem between you and the weekend.

The CRM Field Guide is not a reference repeating all the contents of the CRM documentation, but it is designed to complement what Microsoft provides offering insights from real world deployments of Microsoft Dynamics CRM.   There’s so much content in the CRM Field Guide, one of the MVPs joked it could probably have enough weight to hold down your desk if a tornado passes through your office!

In the CRM Field Guide you will find details that can help administrators, customizers and developers; not to mention power business users wanting to know all the details the admin never tells them.  If you run CRM in the cloud or sitting in a server room at your office the information is useful.

 

19 Dynamics CRM MVP authors tells you a lot and nearing 1000 pages it is packed full of goodness.

Authors

  1. Joel Lindstrom
  2. Richard Knudson
  3. Donna Edwards
  4. Julie Yack
  5. Pablo Peralta
  6. Rhett Clinton
  7. Jakub Skalbania
  8. Feridun Kadir
  9. Shan McArthur
  10. David Berry
  11. Larry Lentz
  12. Leon Tribe
  13. Scott Sewell
  14. Alex Fagundes
  15. David Yack
  16. Neil Benson
  17. Mitch Milam
  18. Jerry Weinstock
  19. Giorgio Garcia-Agreda

 

Chapter Overview

Chapter 1 - Building the Foundation – This chapter lays the groundwork for understanding the various terms and parts of a CRM Organization. It includes helpful tips not covered elsewhere in the book.

Chapter 2 - CRM Server Installation & Configuration – Learn the requirements, the planning steps, and the process for installing and configuring your CRM server.

Chapter 3 – CRM Outlook Client Installation & Configuration – addresses the different choices and troubleshooting techniques for installation and configuration of Dynamics CRM Outlook Client.

Chapter 4 - CRM 4 Upgrade to CRM 2011 – In this chapter you’ll learn the software and hardware requirements, develop an upgrade plan, prepare your database, upgrade customizations, perform and test the upgrade and train your users.

Chapter 5 – E-mail Router Installation & Troubleshooting – covers the necessity of the e-mail router, the deployment wizard, the configuration manager, hardware and software requirements, installation and configuration and user settings for the e-mail router.

Chapter 6 - Security Best Practices – covers the why and the how of security in Dynamics CRM, including the security tools already built in to CRM as well as a look at special case handling.

Chapter 7 - Sales Management Best Practices – examines critical success factors for sales management, activity and lead management, customer, opportunity and pipeline management, and workflows and sales processes.

Chapter 8 - Service Management Best Practices  -explains the optimal use of cases, contracts, articles, service scheduling and the service calendar.

Chapter 9 – Marketing Management Best Practices – is a detailed look at the benefits of CRM’s marketing tools, including marketing lists and campaigns, as well as campaign reporting.

Chapter 10 – The Power of CRM & Outlook  – explores the benefits of integrating and synchronizing CRM and Outlook and explains how to make it happen and make the most use of the combined tools.

Chapter 11 – Dynamics CRM Goal Management – is an in-depth look at the foundations of goal management, ranging from Sales to Marketing to Service and beyond.

Chapter 12 – Processes –  delves into the power and scope of Workflows and Dialogs, how they work and how you can use them for maximum benefit.

Chapter 13 – Aligning Reports to the Audience  – helps the reader understand and meet the needs of different users and stakeholders by exploring the varying needs and expectations of users and using the array of out-of-the-box tools. (Note: My personal favorite chapter)

Chapter 14 – Report Development – shows how to create the best (read: most useful) reports by utilizing SQL, FetchXML and other tools to build custom reports in CRM.

Chapter 15 – SharePoint & CRM: Better Together – discusses the benefits of SharePoint collaboration tools being integrated with CRM in order to provide the 360° view of the customer, including how to set up integration and how to access CRM from SharePoint.

Chapter 16 – CRM Outlook Optimization & Troubleshooting – examines what you can do to optimize the performance of the Outlook client and how to troubleshoot CRM for Outlook.

Chapter 17 – CRM Server Optimization, Maintenance & Monitoring – covers CRM server, IIS, and SQL server optimization, as well as maintenance and monitoring of the servers.

Chapter 18 – Data Management Best Practices – explores using the Data Import Wizard, duplicate detection, and bulk deletion, plus best practices for ensuring high-quality data in your CRM system.

Chapter 19 – User Adoption – shares key concepts and strategies for encouraging and improving user adoption within you organization.

Chapter 20 – Customization Strategies – discusses a variety of strategies that can be used to customize CRM to fit your business needs and reviews the solution architecture and management.

Chapter 21 – Introduction to Solutions – gives details on custom solutions and components, managed vs. unmanaged solutions, the importing and exporting of solutions, deleting solutions and managed properties.

Chapter 22 – Solution Management and Troubleshooting – is a more in-depth look at solutions, covering import behavior, managed properties, layering strategies and tips and tricks to get the most out of your CRM solutions.

Chapter 23 – Dynamics Connector – From Zero to Hero, in this chapter, you will learn what some of the considerations are when combining CRM with other members of the Dynamics family, what options are available, how to choose and implement the best option or combination of options, and some helpful resources for reference.

Chapter 24 – Rapid Development Best Practices – is an overview of the strategies of preparation, planning, execution and delivery of customizations in an efficient and effective way that meets the needs of the client without reinventing the wheel.

Chapter 25 – Community Resources – is a plethora, a veritable cornucopia, of resources from the global community of user groups, users, MVPs, Microsofties, social media masters and blogs that can help you maximize your CRM skills and guide you to the answers you seek.

 

As you can see, its a lot of information for one book. We hope you enjoy! http://www.crmfieldguide.com/

 

 

eXtremeCRM 2012 Berlin

eXtremeCRM is the premier event focused exclusively on Microsoft Dynamics CRM and dedicated to advancing best practices and strategies for Microsoft Dynamics CRM organizations. There are two separate eXtremeCRM events held each year, one in Europe and the other in the United States.

After the successful eXtreme Prague in 2011 the next venue is Berlin coming up in February 2012. The event is held over a number of days and covers a wide range of subjects all related to CRM. There are 4 tracks including Sell. Deploy, Extend and the highly anticipated eXtreme Practice Leader Summit. There is something for everyone at eXtreme, if you’re a customer or partner, user or developer, sales or management, check out the agenda and see what best suits you.

There are some great speakers presenting in Berlin at eXtreme including 2 of my colleagues Ramon Tebar and Wael Hamze. These guys know their stuff and if you look at the speakers list you will see just how much experience is going to be there including Microsofties, MVP’s and other industry experts, the Ask the Experts session should be awesome!

The next eXtreme after Berlin is in Las Vegas during September-October 2012, if you can’t get there for that, then you should get to Berlin in Feb, learn something new and network with an exciting bunch of people.

Berlin ist Wunderbar!

CRM 2011 Tools by Tanguy Touzard CRM MVP

Nobody has produced more CRM 2011 tools than fellow CRM MVP Tanguy Touzard. There are a number of CRM 4 tools Tanguy has created as well which you can find on his blog and codeplex.

You can find his blog here http://mscrmtools.blogspot.com

The list of CRM 2011 tools that can be found on codeplex so far include

SiteMap Editor for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

Ribbon Browser for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

JavaScript Web Resource Manager for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

View Layout Replicator for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

Searchable Property Updater for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

Let’s thank Tanguy for his hard work and for sharing these great tools with the CRM community.

You can also find these tools along with more development resources for Dynamics CRM on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM TechNet Wiki here http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/microsoft-dynamics-crm-2011-development-resources.aspx

Microsoft Dynamics CRM TechNet Wiki

Microsoft Dynamics TechNet Wiki

The purpose of this wiki is to provide a comprehensive guide for IT professionals to learn about then implement, configure, customize, maintain and support Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

Just like the CRM SDK, CRM Forums, books and CRM Blogs, this repository of CRM knowledge based articles and general Dynamics CRM information is a great place to learn and expand your CRM knowledge. The CRM MVP’s and various others have been working hard to build up a knowledge base to help the community find useful information with topics covering a wide array of Dynamics CRM and related technologies.

Check it out and learn something new…

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Administration Bible

Fellow MVP Matt Wittemann and Greoff Ables have produced the perfect guide to CRM 2011 for newcomers and MS CRM seasoned professionals. I highly recommend this book for people new to CRM 2011 but I also think  those already working with CRM 2011 should check it out. I’ve been reading through it this past week and have been finding things that I didn’t even know… and wish I had. It shows the knowledge and understanding Matt and Greoff have of Microsoft’s latest incarnation of CRM which seems second to none.

This book is more than just for admins, it covers a wide area of topics including a great introduction on CRM and the planning involved when choosing to implement it. So much is covered in this book from installation, customisation, extending,  integration, reporting and also how to use CRM 2011. If you’re about to start a CRM 2011 project or currently implementing one, or you just want to learn CRM 2011, this book is a great place to start and also build up your knowledge on this excellent product.

Oh my god, I’m now a Microsoft CRM MVP

This is totally awesome and a massive thanks goes out to everyone for there support especially the Microsoft CRM Team for creating a product that is so amazing and enjoyable to work with.

I’m  looking  forward to another exciting year in the Dynamics CRM world and I hope to see you all there….

Cheers,

Rhett Clinton MVP