Outlook Integration With Microsoft CRM 4.0

Microsoft Outlook CRM TasksOne of Microsoft’s strongest selling points of Microsoft CRM 3.0 was its integration with Outlook. Microsoft correctly deduced that many Users were used to managing their day to day activities through Outlook. This not only included email activities but contacts, appointments and other tasks as well. Many Users had become dependent on Microsoft Outlook’s calendar as their primary visual tool for managing their appointments and tasks. In Microsoft CRM 3.0 emails and appointments could be synchronized in CRM but not other activities (the biggest complaint was the lack of synching of phone calls). But my experience in teaching CRM 3.0 Applications to end users has been User frustration about not being able to fully use Outlook to manage all of their day to day tasks. They did not like having to go in and out of Microsoft CRM to schedule common tasks such as phone calls. They had grown used to scheduling phone calls as tasks in their Outlook Calendars and getting convenient pop-up reminders.

Well Microsoft has addressed this in CRM 4.0 with the ability to synch not only emails, but phone calls, faxes, letters and tasks. Users can now function primarily through their familiar Outlook interface using the Outlook Calendar to schedule tasks in CRM. They also get the benefit of being able to schedule useful pop-up reminders that Users have grown use to (or in some cases dependent upon) to remind them to do daily tasks. When a task is scheduled, the “Track in CRM” box gives the User a Drop Down option to select which type of task to be tracked in CRM. CRM tasks are viewed in the Outlook Calendar as all other tasks in Outlook. When tasks are scheduled within CRM they are automatically pushed out to the User’s Outlook Calendar. There is only one drawback to scheduling tasks directly in CRM and that is inability to schedule a pop-up reminder within Outlook. An Outlook pop-up reminder will still occur for those tasks directly scheduled in CRM but it will be for whatever the Outlook default pop-up reminder setting is set for. This new feature should make Outlook Users much happier and more comfortable using CRM.

KE
Microsoft CRM Consultant
Unitek Microsoft CRM Services

7 replies
  1. Mark
    Mark says:

    Why is it that when a service activity is setup in the service schedule that item does not appear in the outlook calendar. We use Exchange with Windows Mobile phones and want our techs to be able to see their appointments on the fly.

    Thanks in advance

  2. Unitek CRM Team
    Unitek CRM Team says:

    Hi Mark,

    Unfortunately, that is the design of CRM 4.0. Microsoft was kind enough to add Phone Calls and other important Tasks into our Outlook calendars in version 4, but the Service Activities remains exclusive of the CRM application.

  3. Derek Darling
    Derek Darling says:

    I want to set our Outlook calendars to automatically track all calendar activities in CRM. I am just implementing the CRM (3) system, and I want to start everyone out at least sharing their appointements so we know where people should be. any further development will have to wait until we can get people entering their appointements.

    Any thoughts? Any settings or policies to automatically track all calendar events in CRM?

    Derek

  4. Sebastian
    Sebastian says:

    Hi,

    I have just one simple question – do I need any add-on to MS CRM 4 or Outlook (2007) to integrate this two things? I just want to integrate CRM with Outlook to achieve activities transfer between this two platforms. Maybe it’s simple, maybe I overlooked something… Well, I’m not a developer or programmist, I just have to do this and it will be better for me If I really do this 🙂 Thanks for any response and sorry if it’s doubled or just stupid question.

  5. Alfred
    Alfred says:

    I need some help about some phone calls taks, when i change the direction of the call a lose the user and if i try to find that user i can’t see it. Only for 2 have de problem, Please i need support.
    Thanks all
    Alf

  6. Alex
    Alex says:

    At works with outlook files usually i use this tool-pst repair download,utility is free,it extract data from corrupted files with *.pst or *.ost extension,will be prompted to choose a file to be repaired, it may be files in *.ost or *.pst format,tool will decrypt the input file and attempt to extract all data, that is located inside,extract data safely, even if your *.ost file is infected, however, antivirus software should be installed on your PC,save recovered data, first of all, you can convert it to a *.pst file, that can be opened by any email client, compatible with Microsoft Outlook,also extract a great number of files in *.eml,*.vcf and *.txt formats,may help us to improve these Microsoft Outlook pst repair tools.

  7. Jerry Mollis
    Jerry Mollis says:

    I’m new to CRM and have been given the job of exploring its capabilities. Is there a way to incorporate a calendar that contains the appointments of all of the salespeople for a sales director? He wants to be able to look at a central calendar and know what everyone has scheduled in CRM for any given date and time. Does this sound like something that CRM can do?

    Thanks,

    Jerry

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