Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013: A first look

By - August 6, 2013

Microsoft recently hosted a webinar to introduce us to Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013, originally called Orion.  The presentation and product demos were very impressive.  Clearly, Dynamics CRM is an application where Microsoft is listening to its user base and really beefing up functionality.

The first things I noticed in the presentation was the focus on ‘emotional’ words rather than ‘system’ words.  Things like ‘love’ and ‘relationship’ rather than ‘functionality’ and ‘processes.’  While functionality has been expanded (and it REALLY has),  a focus on the new release is around allowing users of the system to have a personal touch and feel to his or her client through the system.  I truly feel the shift of Customer Relationship Management has shifted from the ‘Customer’ (data) to ‘Relationship’.

I do consider myself a technical guy, so there were a number of technical features that were shown.  There is a general feel of the system to be reworked for the better.  Here is a list of the new features I found interesting:

  1. Mobility – You may say Microsoft Dynamics CRM has had mobility since version 4, but in 2013 is enhanced and adds native clients.  It looks like the functionality is finally going to be there.
  2. New User Experience – Just as we saw in 2011, Rollup 12, there is a move to one form and no popups.  This is an overall revamp to make things more coherent.
  3. Quick add – This will allow a user to quickly insert a record from another entity and provide basic information.
  4. Business Rule – Allow simple coding through a User Interface (UI) to do things we have had to use JavaScript to do prior.  Things like making fields read only when another field contains a certain value.
  5. Removal of the ribbon to a more integrated paradigm.
  6. Dashboarding in each entity – There is a main page in sales, for instance, that can contain its own dashboard.
  7. Bing Maps – Introduction of Bing maps to accounts and contacts.
  8. Team access to records – Give other users in your organization access to records without the need for ownership.
  9. Data structure – the base and extension base tables have been merged.
  10. Synchronous workflows – workflows can fire immediately with the results being posted back to the form.

Over the next several months, the Dynamics CRM team at McGladrey will be blogging more specifically about these and other features of Microsoft Dynamics CRM.  We look forward to passing on what we have learned.

If you have questions about any of the information posted, please contact our professionals at

Read more articles on the new release of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013.

By:  Bob Kanzler – New Jersey Microsoft Dynamics CRM consultants

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