In October 2018 there will be another big release for Dynamics 365, including Marketing, Sales, Service, Social Engagement, Finance and Operations, Talent, Retail, Business Central (Nav), PowerApps, Microsoft Flows and Power BI (Business Intelligence), Data Integration and Mixed Reality business apps.
These were the news published just yesterday at the Microsoft Business Applications Summit 2018 celebrated in Seattle.
The release notes (Download the October ’18 Release Notes PDF) include more than 100 changes across all those technologies, so get a coffee and start reading 🙂
If there was a particular area that I had to highlight, that would probably be PowerApps and Microsoft Flow. See below my favorite features.
Dynamics 365 entity forms with embedded canvas apps
PowerApps within PowerApps! That’s basically it. So we will have the ability to put the powerful and flexible Canvas apps within our Model-Driven apps, like custom controls.
Canvas apps with Solutions
To improve our ALM process, we will be able to pack our Canvas apps within Solutions, allowing us to deploy them easily between environments (e.g. dev=>test=>…=>prod).
This utility within the platform will help us to identify potential design and performance issues in our apps.
Custom controls in Business Process Flows
Previously, business process flows only permitted the available XRM attribute types (such as text, optionset, lookup, number, and so on) to be surfaced as control steps inside business process flow stages. Now, custom controls, which offer rich interaction mechanisms both in Unified Interface and the Web Client, are supported. They power
controls such as sliders, radial knobs, timelines, and even the LinkedIn controls.
Flow management connector, SDK, and APIs
Microsoft Flow is becoming the core processing solution in the Dynamics ecosystem. More documentation will be provided around its SDK and APIs to improve deployments, automation and governance.
Location as a connector
The feature allows users to create a location range that will trigger a flow when a mobile device enters or leaves it. Cool, isn’t it?!
Flows in Visio
We will be able to design our flows in Microsoft Visio, so you won’t have a excuse for “no documentation” now 🙂
This year I’ll be presenting at the CRMUG Summit EMEA 2017 celebrated in Amsterdam. The idea started last year when I was speaking with my Microsoft AX MVP colleague Antonio @_Gilabert_ at the MVP Summit.
With Dynamics 365, CRM and AX are closer than ever, so we thought that it would be great to have a presentation together and share our experience and view with the community.
We would like to do a functional and practical session where we will show how both platforms can be integrated, in the new Dynamics 365 world, to deliver a real business scenario. Our challenge is to use the new Microsoft Flow and Common Data Service for the integration. At the moment, they are still very new and many capabilities are very limited.
Although we are still working in the demo, we are also preparing a PowerApp to improve the user experience and present how they can be useful alongside Dynamics 365 for Sales and Operations.
I would also like to say thank you to Hugo de Jesús, who is helping us a lot to prepare the presentation.
You can find more information about the schedule in this link.
We hope you enjoy the event, and of course, our session! 🙂
Creating scheduled workflows has always been a challenge in Dynamics
CRM 365. The community and ISVs have offered several original options, but there is not yet an official out-of-the-box option. This article brings another alternative to the table using Microsoft Flows.
A scheduled workflow is the one that runs at a certain arranged time and it may recur to run again after a period of time. If you want to understand more about this challenge and how our CRM community has resolved it so far, have a look at the following articles:
Microsoft Flow offers the option to create Recurrence jobs. This can be used to schedule and trigger actions in Dynamics 365, like retrieve, create or update records (see available actions). So, using this functionality you already have a good alternative to create your own scheduled workflows without development effort. You can see some examples in the following article as well as in these Dynamics 365 Flow templates.
The other alternative would be a mix solution where a recurrence Microsoft flow creates a custom Dynamics 365 “Scheduled Job” record and this triggers the corresponding Dynamics 365 workflow. The “Scheduled Job” entity would have attributes like “Process Name”, “Run as” (e.g. system user name), “Query scope” (e.g. FetchXML or view name), …, to specify what and how to run the workflow. This option would require additional development, either a plugin or a custom workflow activity to call on demand the given process, but it would also allow you to reuse the logic and capabilities you already have within Dynamics 365.
Hope you find this article useful. Looking forward to hearing your feedback.