Microsoft Dynamics CRM Software


 

This customer relationship management (CRM) solution best services mid-market and enterprise organizations. It offers industry-specific solutions that meet the needs of various industries, including government, financial services, manufacturing, health care, retail and education, to name a few. The latest 2013 version is a global solution offered in 41 different languages and is suitable for organizations that are committed to the Microsoft stack.

Microsoft Dynamics CRM online’s capabilities in sales force automation, customer data management, marketing automation, customer service and analytics can be compared to similar leading products. Notable improvements with the latest release include an improved user interface (UI) and custom dashboards. The new UI requires fewer clicks and has better visualizations. It also provides role-based views to personalize the user experience. Pre-packaged dashboards are available, but users can also create custom ones for monitoring business and personal performance. With the release of the new digital marketplace, users have access to hundreds of applications that can be integrated to increase functionality and enhance their solution.

These systems are delivered directly through Microsoft or a hosting partner. Both utilize the same UI, though pricing, value-add features and restrictions may vary. It's important to ask about these differences during your Microsoft Dynamics CRM demo. Users can also migrate data from spreadsheets or retired programs. Be sure you discuss such data migration and workflow customization needs before setting up your Microsoft Dynamics CRM trial.

This system has a true multi-tenant architecture and is offered in both on-demand and on-premise deployments. It operates on the .NET framework, allowing developers to integrate other applications using web services technologies. The 2011 release offers native integration with Microsoft Dynamics NAV and SharePoint. The Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace provides a single location for developers to create and publish their products developed on the .NET platform, all of which can be integrated to enhance the solution.

Users can access their CRM tools from any device, including Windows Phone 7, iPad, iPhone, Android and Blackberry, and it is compatibile with Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari or Chrome. The company also in recent years enabled social activity feeds. Similar to Facebook, users can like or unlike activities in a coworker or customer feed. Managers can also filter status updates by record, topic or customer. This feature helps management monitor the most relevant information.

 

Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Manager dashboard
 
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Manager dashboard
    Manager dashboard
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Account entry screen
    Account entry screen
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Campaigns and newsletters
    Campaigns and newsletters
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Account report
    Account report
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM - Account at a glance
    Account at a glance
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM - SharePoint integration
    SharePoint integration
Supported Operating System(s):
Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 2000

104 Reviews of Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Showing 1-20 of 104

 

from Precept Ministries International
Specialty: Non-Profit
Size of portfolio: 101 or more users Portfolio size: 101 or more users

Old School CRM

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Likes Best

The best thing about Dynamics CRM is that is a Microsoft product. As such, there are multiple prebuilt integration points with other Microsoft software applications.

Likes Least

I don't find Dynamics CRM to be very flexible. Comparing it with SalesForce, changes and customizations require much more effort. I found that I needed to get a developer involved sooner when using Dynamics CRM.

Recommendations

Be sure to check out the other players in this vertical. I recommend testing both free/paid and proprietary/open source applications. The differences should really stand out.

 

from Redkite
Specialty: Other
Size of portfolio: Single user Portfolio size: Single user

Seemed very basic and outdated.

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It didn't seem like it would fit the needs I had at the time.

Likes Least

It was very difficult to navigate through the UI and it was very bland.

Recommendations

At the time of working with this it seemed very difficult to customize and seemed like it was very basic functionality.

 

from Rollins
Specialty: Education
Size of portfolio: Single user Portfolio size: Single user

Intuitive, evolutionary, get's the job done

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Likes Best

New navigation concept in 2013 is a big improvement, at least from my perspective.
I personally like the modularity aspects (I think it is officially called "grids", or something close to that) which allow me to combine information and quickly find what I am looking for, somewhat like with tableau.

Likes Least

I personally feel that the information forms are cluttered with information and hard to read. Microsoft seems to be either over- or undershooting with the design of the forms. Looking forward to the next version.

Recommendations

I strongly recommend to develop a set of business cases before testing this (or really any) software, especially when you compare it to other systems. It makes it easier to quickly see differences and allows you to stay somewhat objective.

 

from GroupOne
Specialty: Accounting
Size of portfolio: 2 to 5 users Portfolio size: 2 to 5 users

Microsoft CRM

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Likes Best

the ability to navigate and get to the right spot so quickly.

Likes Least

there is a lot to know if you want to know everything but the basics will work to know too.

Recommendations

talk with others using the same software and see what all it is capable of.

 

from CentricsIT
Specialty: Software / IT
Size of portfolio: 21 to 50 users Portfolio size: 21 to 50 users

Microsoft CRM review - good

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Likes Best

It's intuitive to use, better manageability, better layout. The functionality seems cleaner to me, which probably helped with ease of use

Likes Least

We only use it for one platform, so we can only integrate it into that one. It's not so much the vendor side, but our limited exposure/use to it.

Recommendations

Easier navigation once you figure it out. Once you take the time to learn the platform, it becomes easier and you can start figuring out better ways to customize and integrate into your existing platform.

 

from Venture Engineering & Construction, Inc.
Specialty: Engineering
Size of portfolio: 2 to 5 users Portfolio size: 2 to 5 users

CRM dynamic review

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N/A

Likes Best

The organization factor. Keeping all contacts organized and divided by industry, and market segment/sub-segments has been critical in our firm's success. Our sales and marketing staff utilize CRM on a daily basis and are able to easily stay organized and track contacts and all important information (i.e.- date of last contact, notes, best next steps, etc.)

Likes Least

The changes that come with updates cause disruption, and lag due to re-learning the software functionality. Also, the product is not tailored to each organizations exact needs (understanding that doing this would make CRM unrealistically expensive for most). My point here, is simply CRM is not really a great fit for our company. In some cases our own CRM tracking in MS Office has been more efficient. We are a small firm, so this definitely factors in.

Recommendations

Take the software for a "test drive" or trial run for a few weeks and see if it is applicable to your individual business. It may seem great at first, but many smaller firms do not need all the "bells and whistles." Often, simplicity and functionality is more important.

 

from DBZ/Diamond
Specialty: Retail
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

Clark Schreck review of Microsoft Dynamics

Ease-of-use

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Likes Best

I rely on Microsoft office programs heavily. I especially use Microsoft Excel so the best thing about Microsoft Dynamics is that there is an import directly to excel function. The data does not get lost or formatted differently when I need to carry it over to another microsoft program. I also like the user interface because it has the same "Microsoft" look and feel like any other microsoft program.

Likes Least

It does not have all of the newer features that are found in many CRM software such as social media channels and mobile applications.

Recommendations

Consider what would be most useful to your needs and then maybe do some free trials of all of the available programs before commiting.

 

from DBZ Diamond
Specialty: Retail
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

Easy Solution for sales needs

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Likes Best

It is relatively easy to jump into Microsoft Dynamics. The capability to add custom fields is appreciated as we have very specific information we need to record for clients.

Likes Least

Dynamics goes through a lot of updates. The frequent updates are problematic because it requires the user to learn a lot in order to stay up to date.

Recommendations

While the customized cells have helped align the software to our organizations needs, I would not recommend doing too much tinkering with it. Try to stick with the "Out of the Box" settings provided.

 

from Crestwood Associates
Specialty: Consulting
Size of portfolio: 51 to 100 users Portfolio size: 51 to 100 users

Dynamics CRM Product Review

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Likes Best

Microsoft continues to invest heavily in Dynamics CRM, and its best feature is that it is fully integrated into Outlook.

Likes Least

I need to be able to upload multiple files at one time. Contact record has fields for 'Assistant' and 'Manager' that are text fields, but should actually be other contact records that you look-up. I need to be able to create an address record once and then have that apply to multiple contacts. This will enable you to update one address record and have it roll down to all of the contacts that it applies too.

Recommendations

Dynamics CRM gives you the power of choice in regards to where the system is deployed -- in the cloud or on-premise. Dynamics CRM also provides a very compelling value proposition vs. SFDC since it is approximately half the cost.

 

from Crestwood Associates
Specialty: Software / IT
Size of portfolio: 21 to 50 users Portfolio size: 21 to 50 users

Dynamics CRM Review

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Likes Best

Microsoft Dynamics CRM is pretty user-friendly for most operations. Microsoft has a wide reach, which allows for a large community of users which helps when questions and issues arise to ask the community for assistance.

Likes Least

Microsoft Dynamics CRM requires Internet Explorer, which is my least preferred Internet browser. If you need assistance from Microsoft on licensing or assistance questions with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, it is like pulling teeth to actually receive a good answer or being switched between five different departments to receive an answer.

Recommendations

Try several different types of CRM - on-premise, online, etc. and see if the product fits with your culture and your Dynamics CRM goals. Also, make sure to pick a partner that you can trust for both licensing and support. That makes the biggest difference on your CRM project implementation and company usage.

 

from Crestwood Associates
Specialty: Software / IT
Size of portfolio: 21 to 50 users Portfolio size: 21 to 50 users

Years of experience with CRM - I've watched it evolve over time

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Likes Best

I like the integration, flexibility, and ease of use. CRM has everything an organization needs to track interactions with prospects, customer, vendors, and competitors. The reports you get out of the system are amazing. By analyzing patterns and trends, it gives you the insight to grow your business.

Likes Least

It can be too complicated for some people to begin with. Start with small steps when implementing.

Recommendations

It's a great tool. Have a good partner and plan out implementation along with training. Users are the heart and soul of the system, so they need to have adequate training and support.

 

from LDS Church
Specialty: Software / IT
Size of portfolio: 6 to 10 users Portfolio size: 6 to 10 users

Microsoft Dynamics CRM is great once you get used to it

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Likes Best

Like many Microsoft products, it can do much more than I will ever need or even use. It can do everything that I need it to do and more. It integrates with many of the other Microsoft products as well.

Likes Least

Since it is so vast in its abilities, it can take a long time to get used to, and to get familiar with it, and to fully utilize its abilities.

Recommendations

You may want to read some training material or blogs that can explain how to use everything available. Get ready to put some time in getting used to it.

 

from Crestwood Associates
Specialty: Software / IT
Size of portfolio: 21 to 50 users Portfolio size: 21 to 50 users

Daily user of Dynamics CRM.

Ease-of-use

Functionality

Product Quality

Customer Support

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Likes Best

The product flexibility and adaptability offers an excellent user experience.

Likes Least

The latest release introduced some significant changes that caught us all by surprise.

Recommendations

To fully appreciate, be sure to integrate the product with Outlook, SharePoint and the other Microsoft solutions.

 

from KMS Enterprises
Specialty: Other services
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

Microsoft CRM

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N/A

Likes Best

The product is fairly intuitive, although I like CRM 2010 much better than 2013.

Likes Least

The changes to CRM 2013 are enough so that navigation is difficult.

Recommendations

Start fresh, don't think of other CRM systems. Think more of the end result instead of focusing on the navigation.

 

from Squire & Company
Specialty: Accounting
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

Comparatively affordable and highly versatile

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Likes Best

We use the locally installed version. There aren't many CRMs available that allow you to install it locally on your server. This helps reduce cost for us and allows us to control the security of the CRM. It is also a versatile product in that nearly every aspect of the CRM is customizable. This allows us to specialize the software to our specific needs.

Likes Least

Because it is so customizable, it requires a lot of up-front work to get the software working the way we want it to. Also, the screens on the new version were definitely built for touch screens and can feel cumbersome for someone operating the CRM with a mouse.

Recommendations

Understand your processes. Understand how you do business and how customers flow from prospects to closed sales. Understand what data you want to track and how. Mapping this out before building your customization will speed up implementation time.

 

from GT LLP
Specialty: Accounting
Size of portfolio: 2 to 5 users Portfolio size: 2 to 5 users

Dynamics CRM from a Consultant's Point of View

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Likes Best

The best thing about CRM for most organizations I've worked with is integration with the pre-existing Microsoft infrastructure. CRM integrates seamless with Active Directory, making logical access management a breeze. The product also enjoys a strong support community online and is well documented.

There are also an array of add-ons to the software that I have helped implement which offer additional functionality to allow Dynamics CRM to integrate with e-commerce solutions, inventory/asset management solutions and much more.

Likes Least

Dynamics CRM was designed to be a locally hosted application. The current trend is pushing CRM solutions into the Software as a Service model. Microsoft allows for Dynamics CRM to be ran in the cloud on their Azure platform, but the software still doesn't seem to have the SAAS model that many organizations are looking for perfected yet.

Dynamics CRM is also slower to evolve with the industry and arguably, has a much steeper learning curve than some of its biggest competitors like SalesForce.com

Recommendations

Thoroughly research the amount of prep and expertise it will take to effectively run and manage CRM. Dynamics CRM offers much more extensive customization than many of it's SAAS competitors but is also far more sophisticated to implement.

When evaluating CRM, I recommend visiting YouTube and watching short training and product evaluation videos on various offerings to get a true feel of what it takes to implement them and also to determine if the product will meet your needs.

 

from Century Martial Art Supply
Specialty: Manufacturing
Size of portfolio: 51 to 100 users Portfolio size: 51 to 100 users

I've used Salesforce as well. I still prefer MSCRM.

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Likes Best

Microsoft Dynamics improved customer service and internal efficiency. It's very easy to customize without the need for much IT help, and the workflow functionality is incredible. The integration to other MS platforms (Excel, Outlook) also makes this a big winner.

Likes Least

It would be nice to have native integration of a bulk email tool (we installed a third-party tool to use). Also, calculated metrics within reports are not as simple as I would like; that part requires IT involvement.

Recommendations

It's important that you have colleagues invested in the needs analysis, customization and deployment. Not just technical employees but stakeholders from sales, service, and marketing. Any system is only as powerful as the stakeholders can visualize collectively. You need to gather a team of Subject Matter Experts who have a fair amount of technical aptitude and can devote ample time and attention both up front and early on to make sure that you maximize the ability to use this long term. Learn from your consultants during needs analysis and implementation.

 

from Crestwood Associates LLC
Specialty: Consulting
Size of portfolio: 51 to 100 users Portfolio size: 51 to 100 users

Great Contact Management, Marketing, and Sales Tracking System

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N/A

Likes Best

I love the ease of use, rich functionality and simple customization process. Microsoft is a huge player in the market and therefore investd a lot into research and development, and have recently committed to a 6-month update rhythm, meaning you get more features, more quickly than ever. Plus, it sits inside MS Outlook, and allows you to track all your emails, appointments, calls, and more to individual clients with the click of a button.

Likes Least

The latest release that we have, CRM 2013, is a bit bland looking with lots of white space. It could be designed with a little more flair to be appealing and easy to read. They changed a lot in this version and not all of the changes are good. They eliminating one function on the sales side that I used all the time and I am not sure I like it. When converting a lead, you used to have the option of checking off boxes to create the Customer, Contact and Opportunity and you could also check "Open these records up conversion" so you all of them popped up in separate windows so you could finish adding details to each of them. Now, there is no window for that, and it just creates the Customer Record and Contact record in the background for you, but you have to go out and open it yourself. A lot of our salespeople forget to do this and just edit the Opportunity Form that opens with you convert the Lead. Microsoft does this sometimes, thinks that they are improving something but fail to actually ask those who use it. I wish they'd do more to include current customers in the design process.

Recommendations

Think about what your dream system would do, and what information you want to be able to get out of it. Strongly consider the cloud option. And if you are looking at CRMOnline, save yourself a ton of time and get Office 365 if you don't already have it. They integrate and work really well together.

 

from MarketSource
Specialty: Other
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

Price may be an issue

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N/A

Likes Best

We liked the ability to custom create features that would be specific to our needs.

Likes Least

Apparently, the price was an issue for our company. We had originally established the price-per-user and were willing to continue with that, but they raised the price-per-user only after a year of using it.

Recommendations

Find a CRM system that does not cost much to develop and impliment. This way, if you decide to back out, it won't end up costing a lot of money.

 

from Navitus Health Solutions
Specialty: Healthcare / Medicine
Size of portfolio: 101 or more users Portfolio size: 101 or more users

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

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Likes Best

It is easily customizable, easy to pickup for administrators and can be managed by super users.

Likes Least

Marketing could be enhanced as could the ability to use it for a customer call center environment natively.

Recommendations

Get in and get your hands dirty. Try to customize the application through a POC environment so that you can truly see what is necessary to manage the application. You will be doing customizations frequently. Find a vendor that has completed the implementation for a business similar to yours so they are familiar with the general business practices.

 
 
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