30 Ocak 2008 Çarşamba

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 E-Mail Tracking

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If you deploy Microsoft CRM and you use Exchange Server 2000 or 2003 for your corporate e-mail, you have the option of installing the Microsoft CRM-Exchange E-mail Router (also called the Router), which you can configure to provide the following benefits:

Users can create and send e-mail messages by using the Web client interface.

You can automatically create copies of all incoming messages (to Microsoft CRM users) in the Microsoft CRM database.

Microsoft CRM can automatically track e-mail conversations and threads by using a tracking code appended to the message subject line.

You can manually track individual e-mail messages in the Microsoft CRM database on an ad hoc basis in the Microsoft CRM client for Outlook.

You receive the Router software with the purchase of Microsoft CRM, so there's no additional cost. When you install the Router, Microsoft CRM also installs the Rule Deployment Wizard, which you can use to help administer and manage e-mail tracking configuration. If you're using Exchange Server at your organization, you should absolutely plan on using the Router with your Microsoft CRM deployment.

Note You do not need Exchange Server to use Microsoft CRM. If you don't want to use Exchange Server,you can still send e-mail messages through the Web client with any Simple Mail Transfer Protocol(SMTP) mail server. However, without Exchange Server and the Router, you won't be able to track inbound and outbound messages automatically.

If you want to use the e-mail tracking features, you must confirm that the e-mail tracking option is activated for your deployment. You can verify this by browsing to the Settings area, clicking Organization Settings, clickingSystem Settings, and then clicking E-mail Tracking.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 Queues

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Imagine that a sample organization, Adventure Works Cycle, has created the e-mail address bikesupport@adventure-works.com to handle all incoming customer support requests. The goal of this support alias is to allow the Adventure Works customer service representatives to monitor incoming support requests in a single location to make sure that everything gets resolved in a timely manner. Microsoft CRM uses the Queue feature to track and hold pending work items until they are assigned to a user. Adventure Works Cycle could create a queue called Bicycle Cases; then every e-mail sent to bikesupport@adventure-works.com would create a queue item in the Bicycle Cases queue. In addition to activities such as E-mails and Tasks, you can also assign Cases to a queue. Users can access the queues for your organization by browsing to the Queues subarea of the Workplace area.

Microsoft CRM removes items from a queue when they're assigned to a user, or when a user accepts an item currently in the queue. If you assign a queue item to a user, the item will move to the Assigned folder until the user accepts it. When a user accepts an item, it moves to the user's In Progress folder until he or she completes the item. Microsoft CRM automatically removes Cases and Activities from the In Progress folder when you complete them, except for completed E-mail activities. To remove a completed E-mail item from your In Progress folder, you must delete it. This does not delete the item, it just removes the item from your In Progress folder.


You can set up and manage your queues by browsing to the Settings area, clicking Business Unit Settings, and then clicking Queues. You don't have to use an e-mail address for each queue, but you can configure this functionality by following the detailed instructions included the Microsoft CRM Implementation Guide.

The following are additional important points to consider regarding queues:

You can use queues for any type of business activity that uses activities, including incoming sales requests and marketing tasks. You should not consider queues as strictly a customer service tool.
Queues do not own records, so assigning an item to a queue will not change its ownership (or trigger the workflow assign event), but it will add the item to the queue.

Although assigning an item to a queue will not change ownership, assigning a queue item to a user will change the ownership of the item.

Items listed in the queue respect the Microsoft CRM security settings regarding which records each user can read, write, delete, and so on. However, all users can view all the queues and all the items in the queue (even though Microsoft CRM won't allow them to open a record for which they don't have access).

You can configure multiple queues to suit various business needs.

If you set up an e-mail alias to automatically create queue items, Microsoft CRM will not automatically create Cases for each e-mail message sent to the alias. You must do this manually or with custom programming code.
17 Ocak 2008 Perşembe

CRM 3.0 Editions

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You can obtain Microsoft CRM 3.0 in one of two editions:

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 Small Business Edition
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 Professional

As the names of the editions imply, the Small Business Edition targets smaller companies, and Professional ismore appropriate for medium and large companies.

Some of the key differences between the two editions include:

You must deploy the Small Business Edition on a Microsoft Windows Small Business Server, but you caninstall Professional on various Microsoft Windows Server operating systems.

You can accommodate a maximum of 75 users in the Small Business Edition, but Professional allows youto deploy as many users as necessary. After you factor in performance considerations, a recommendedmaximum number of users for the Small Business Edition might range from 40 to 50 users, depending ontheir usage and the system hardware.

The Small Business Edition includes all of the functionality that Professional includes, in addition to
features unique to Small Business Edition such as CRM integration with the Small Business ServerShared Fax Service.
The Small Business Edition provides less flexibility in regard to custom third-party system integration andexternal user access because you cannot purchase and deploy an External Connector license with thisedition. We explain the External Connector license in the next section of this chapter.
Note Small Business Server is a specialized operating system version that bundles Windows Server2003, Exchange Server 2003 technology, and Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services so they canbe deployed on a single piece of hardware. Small Business Server 2003 Premium Edition alsoincludes Microsoft SQL Server 2000 and ISA Server 2004 in the bundled software. You must deployMicrosoft CRM with Small Business Server 2003 Premium Edition, because Microsoft CRM requiresa SQL Server database.
Although deploying Microsoft CRM with Small Business Server includes several great benefits, it does includesome notable restrictions:

Small Business Server 2003 supports only two physical CPUs and up to four virtual CPUs.

Each domain can contain only one installation of Small Business Server 2003.

Small Business Server 2003 does not support trusts between domains, and you must install the server atthe root of the Active Directory forest.

A Small Business Server 2003 domain cannot have any child domains.

You cannot run Terminal Services in Application Server mode on Small Business Server 2003.

Microsoft CRM Small Business Edition software licenses cost less than Microsoft CRM Professional licenses,but you can see that some constraints exist in regard to configuration of the underlying network.You
can obtain Microsoft CRM 3.0 in one of two editions:

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 Small Business Edition
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 Professional

As the names of the editions imply, the Small Business Edition targets smaller companies, and Professional ismore appropriate for medium and large companies.
Some of the key differences between the two editions include:

You must deploy the Small Business Edition on a Microsoft Windows Small Business Server, but you caninstall Professional on various Microsoft Windows Server operating systems.

You can accommodate a maximum of 75 users in the Small Business Edition, but Professional allows youto deploy as many users as necessary. After you factor in performance considerations, a recommendedmaximum number of users for the Small Business Edition might range from 40 to 50 users, depending ontheir usage and the system hardware.

The Small Business Edition includes all of the functionality that Professional includes, in addition to
features unique to Small Business Edition such as CRM integration with the Small Business ServerShared Fax Service.

The Small Business Edition provides less flexibility in regard to custom third-party system integration andexternal user access because you cannot purchase and deploy an External Connector license with thisedition. We explain the External Connector license in the next section of this chapter.

Note Small Business Server is a specialized operating system version that bundles Windows Server2003, Exchange Server 2003 technology, and Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services so they canbe deployed on a single piece of hardware. Small Business Server 2003 Premium Edition alsoincludes Microsoft SQL Server 2000 and ISA Server 2004 in the bundled software. You must deployMicrosoft CRM with Small Business Server 2003 Premium Edition, because Microsoft CRM requiresa SQL Server database.

Although deploying Microsoft CRM with Small Business Server includes several great benefits, it does includesome notable restrictions:

Small Business Server 2003 supports only two physical CPUs and up to four virtual CPUs.

Each domain can contain only one installation of Small Business Server 2003.

Small Business Server 2003 does not support trusts between domains, and you must install the server atthe root of the Active Directory forest.

A Small Business Server 2003 domain cannot have any child domains.

You cannot run Terminal Services in Application Server mode on Small Business Server 2003.

Microsoft CRM Small Business Edition software licenses cost less than Microsoft CRM Professional licenses,but you can see that some constraints exist in regard to configuration of the underlying network.

CRM 3.0 Software Design Goals

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Microsoft CRM is designed to resolve the common issues that historically caused problems during CRMimplementations. Some of the issues we've already reviewed include: offsite workers needing remote accessto data, multi-channel customer communications, and rigid software design. To solve these problems,Microsoft CRM targeted three software design themes:

Works the way you do

Works the way your business does

Works the way Information Technology (IT) expects it to


Works the Way You Do

Earlier CRM systems forced users to track information in multiple systems because the CRM software didn'tinclude all of the functionality, such as e-mail, calendaring, task management, and spreadsheets, needed forusers to complete their jobs. People performed their work with productivity tools such as Microsoft OfficeOutlook, Microsoft Office Excel, and Microsoft Office Word, but then they had to copy customer data into theirCRM system! This extra step caused negative user feedback because it slowed users down, createdadditional work, and forced them to learn an entirely new tool.

To address this problem, Microsoft CRM works directly within Office and Outlook so that users can performtheir normal job functions and track data in Microsoft CRM at the same time. Microsoft CRM is a server-basedproduct that you install and run on a Web server, and users can install the Microsoft CRM client for Outlooksoftware to work directly within Outlook. You can see that Microsoft CRM adds atoolbar to Outlook and adds Microsoft CRM folders to the Outlook folder list.

If your users know how to use Outlook, they already know how to use the key customer management tools in Microsoft CRM such as contacts, tasks, appointments, and e-mail. Microsoft CRM toolbar that allows a user to compose an e-mail message in Outlook and then simply click the Track In CRMbutton to save a copy of the message to the Microsoft CRM database.

This tracking concept applies not only to e-mail messages, but also to calendar items, contacts, and tasks. Byoffering this native Outlook experience to users, Microsoft CRM lets users work with their normal tools andeasily track and manage CRM data.

Real World

Believe it or not, many companies still require their employees to copy information fromtheir Outlook e-mail messages and paste it into their CRM systems. It sounds crazy, butwe've seen this process implemented at many companies, both big and small. The nativeOutlook integration of Microsoft CRM eliminates the need for this extra work.

Even if your company doesn't use Outlook, or if you use Microsoft Office Outlook Web Access, Microsoft CRMprovides you with additional user interface options:

Microsoft Internet Explorer Web browser

Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) using Microsoft mobile technology

Microsoft CRM also integrates directly with additional business productivity tools such as:

Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Word
Microsoft Exchange Server
Microsoft SharePoint Products and Technologies

By providing a tight integration with tools that your users already know, Microsoft CRM provides an extremelyrapid learning curve to ensure maximum user adoption. More important, it's designed to work the way yourusers work.



Works the Way Your Business Does

So you've seen how Microsoft CRM works hard to make life easier for the people who use the system on aday-to-day basis. Microsoft CRM also offers several benefits designed to accommodate the way businesseswork. In particular, these benefits include:

Web-based customization tools Because your business processes change rapidly, you can quickly andeasily customize Microsoft CRM by using Web-based customization tools. In addition to customizingforms and adding fields, you can create entirely new types of data to track and manage in CRM withoutwriting a single line of code.

Robust security model Microsoft CRM uses a role-based security model to provide you with incrediblydetailed and flexible security configuration options. You can structure the system so that users accessand edit only the information they need for their jobs. Yet, the security model remains agile enough toallow users to create ad hoc teams for collaborative work on projects and customer accounts.

Open programming interfaces Because businesses use more than one system for their operations,Microsoft CRM offers you an open programming interface that enables you to connect Microsoft CRM withalmost any type of external application, such as your company Web site, a financial system, or a companyintranet. The Microsoft CRM programming interface uses Web services, so you can use almost anyintegration technology or platform that meets your needs.

Business process automation Microsoft CRM offers you a Workflow feature to automate business
processes and repetitive tasks such as automatically creating follow-up tasks for new leads or escalatingoverdue customer service issues to a manager. You set up these business workflows by using a graphicaluser interface, so you can easily customize and revise them without programming code when yourbusiness needs to shift quickly.

Multiple deployment options You can choose how you want to deploy the Microsoft CRM software foryour business. You can purchase the software and install it onsite in your local network, or you can rentthe software on a monthly basis from a Microsoft partner who will manage all of the hardware, software,network, and security issues on your behalf. You can also switch from one deployment model to another ifyour business needs to change over time. Regardless of the deployment option you select, you canalways configure the security settings so that your remote and offsite workers can log on and access thesystem with no problems.

More Info Part II, "Customization," and Part III, "Extending Microsoft CRM," explain how you cancustomize Microsoft CRM to match your business process and procedures.


Works the Way IT Expects It To


If you're in the Information Technology (IT) department, we're sure you've worked with some difficult systems.Maybe the software used some proprietary database format that only three people in the world understand, ormaybe the software was so fragile that you didn't want to upgrade it for fear of breaking it!

Microsoft CRM isdesigned to work with the existing tools, applications, and infrastructure that IT professionals use every day.Some of the Microsoft CRM benefits specific to IT include:

Industry standard technologies Microsoft CRM uses industry standard network managementtechnologies for its foundation. It uses Microsoft Active Directory directory service and IntegratedWindows authentication for user and password management. Microsoft CRM stores all of its data inMicrosoft SQL Server for easy backups, restores, and failovers. It also uses the SQL Server ReportingServices platform as its main reporting engine, and it works directly with Exchange Server for sending andtracking e-mail.

Wizard-driven deployment When you install Microsoft CRM, the software checks for all of the systemprerequisites and tells you which adjustments you might need to make. Depending on your networkenvironment, it's possible to install the Microsoft CRM software with 10 clicks or fewer!

Failover and disaster recovery Microsoft CRM supports clustering for Web, database, and e-mail serverenvironments, so you can feel confident about the safety of your mission-critical data.

Zero-footprint clients Users can access Microsoft CRM by using Internet Explorer and still use thesoftware's rich functionality. In addition, you can deploy the Microsoft CRM desktop client for Outlook sothat you can use the software if your organization uses thin-client technology for your users.

Automation support You can install Microsoft CRM from a command line or via Terminal Services.

In light of these benefits (and many more that we didn't list), you'll find that Microsoft CRM works the way ITwould expect it to.

Introducing Microsoft CRM 3.0

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Microsoft saw the need for a better CRM software platform and created a solution called Microsoft DynamicsCRM ("Microsoft CRM"). They designed this software for companies of all sizes to use as their technologyplatform for implementing CRM strategies. Microsoft first released Microsoft CRM (version 1.0) in late 2002and has continued to update the software over the past few years with new releases and feature packs. Thisbook covers the latest release of the software, Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0. This chapter will give you a briefoverview of the Microsoft CRM 3.0 software to explain how it helps companies implement CRM strategies.We'll discuss the following overview topics:

Software design goals

Front office vs. back office

Editions

Licensing

Requirements

After we cover Microsoft CRM from a high-level perspective, the subsequent chapters will explain how you canconfigure, customize, and extend the software to meet your company's unique business needs

CRM 3.0 Overview

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We know you're eager to get into the details of how Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 works and learn more aboutits great customization capabilities. Before we can jump into those details, we need to cover a littlebackground information about Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 and introduce some of the core concepts andterminology you'll use throughout this book.

Life Without CRM

Think back to a particularly bad customer service experience. Maybe you called a customer service phonenumber and were transferred to five different people, and every single person asked you the same questions,so you had to keep repeating the same answers over and over again. Or perhaps a salesperson pulledtogether a proposal for you but forgot to include your preferred-customer pricing in the quote. Or maybe acredit card company mailed you an application for a new account, even though you've had an account withthat company for 10 years. You probably thought to yourself, "Why doesn't this company know who I am?"Does this sound familiar?As its name implies, the goal of customer relationship management (CRM) is to enable businesses to manageeach and every customer experience better. More importantly, CRM strategy recognizes that customerexperiences span over time and that a typical customer might interact with your business 50 to 100 times inthe course of your relationship. Ideally, your company could provide each customer a personalized experiencebased on the customer's unique history of interactions with you. For example, you wouldn't ask long-standingcustomers if they would like to open an account; when customers call your customer service department, youwouldn't have to ask them to answer the same questions over and over again; and your most valuablecustomers would always receive preferred pricing.Important The purpose of CRM is to enable businesses to track and manage all of their customerinteractions over the lifetime of the customer relationship. CRM is a business strategy, andcompanies typically use a CRM software system as a technology platform to help implementtheir CRM strategy, processes, and procedures.In today's competitive business environment, mistreated customers can easily find other vendors or suppliersthat are eager to replace you. However, if you give your customers a personalized experience, they're morelikely to value their relationship with you and continue to patronize your business. The CRM philosophy makesso much sense, so why do so many companies force good customers to suffer through bad experiences everyday?As you probably know, it's very difficult for companies to embrace a CRM strategy and create consistentlygreat customer experiences. Some of the factors that make a CRM strategy difficult to implement include:
Multiple customer management systems Almost every company uses more than one system (such assales tracking, warehouse management, or financial accounting) to run its business. Most of thesesystems can't easily communicate with each other to seamlessly share data. Therefore, you can imaginehow salespeople using a sales tracking system might not know that a customer just opened an urgentcustomer service issue in your customer service system.
Remote workers Even if your company is lucky enough to use a single system to track all of yourcustomer interactions, remote and offsite workers might not have the ability to access data in thecustomer management system. Rapidly changing business processes You might recognize the saying, "The only thing constant in lifeis change," by French author François de la Rochefoucauld. This expression really hits home regardingthe business processes of our Internet-enabled world. No sooner does a company finalize a customermanagement process than it must reconsider how that methodology will change in the next month,quarter, or year. Rapidly changing business processes challenge employees to adjust quickly, but mostCRM systems can't react and adjust as quickly as the business needs it to.Multi-channel customer interactions Customers expect to be able to work with your company using anycommunication channel that they prefer. With the proliferation of different technologies, these customercommunication channels might include Web sites, phone, fax, e-mail, mail, and instant messaging. If acompany wants to track all of a customer's interactions, its customer management system must work witheach of these technologies.
Difficult and rigid systems Adopting a CRM strategy usually requires a company to select a technologysystem as its customer management platform. Earlier CRM systems earned the reputation of beingdifficult to use and complex to install. Even worse, companies could customize their CRM systems to theirbusiness needs only if they invested large sums of money and time in consultants who would customizethe software for them.
CRM isn't a particularly new concept and it's earned something of a bad reputation among businesses. Theseare just some of the reasons responsible for its less-than-stellar track record over the years.So what would happen if a company could successfully implement a CRM strategy and software? What typesof benefits might the company receive?
CRM could track customer interests and purchase history over time and then proactively generate newmarketing initiatives for customers based on their unique histories.CRM could log a history of a customer's service requests so that a service technician could easily view allof those requests when the customer called with a new issue. Reviewing a customer's service historymight help the technician resolve a customer's new issue much more quickly.A manager could view all of the interactions with a customer across various functional areas such assales, marketing, and customer service. People typically refer to this cross-functional history as a 360-degree view of the customer.
Marketing managers could analyze and report on the effectiveness of their marketing lists and campaignsto determine how they should re-allocate future marketing investments.
An analyst could use business intelligence tools to segment customers and prospects to identify trendsand create predictive models for sales and customer service planning.
This list doesn't include all of the benefits of CRM, but it's clear that a successful CRM implementation canprovide many short-term and long-term benefits for any business.