I just attended a session on the new features in CRM and on its integraiton with Share Point. I will post the link for that session here so that readers could get to know a little more detail that was covered in this session. Until i share that link here is the review of hyped up integration between sharepoint and CRM . Firstly to start with just want everyone to know that security propogation is still not there with the integration so if you are looking for that feature with new integration then i am sorry to disappoint you. Anyways it is still a smooth integration and allows for document collaboraiton in relation to any entity in the CRM. Integration with Sharepoint can be two way which means that one can add a document entity to CRM that would enable all sharepoint related features like checking in documents, checkout, versioning and search features with in CRM. On the other hand one could also enable the integration so that entities from CRM start showing up on the Sharepoint. I will cover the Sharepoint to CRM integration first.
Document Management in CRM: CRM can be integrated with sharepoint easily with this new tool called as CRM list component. This tool needs to be downloaded seperated and installed to the Sharepoint foundation site and enabled. Once that is done CRM can be configured using the Setting menu to enable the entities for the sharepoing collaboration. In addition one needs to specify the Url for the site that is configured for integraiton (where the component was installed). Once this is done the integration is complete and on addition of documents in CRM a new library is created in Sharepoint. Existing libraries can also be added to the entities. Each entity with documents would have a library associaiton with the address in format “siteaddress/Acocunts/Account Name/Entity Name/ account/”. This is pretty much it as far as this integration is concerned. Integration is pretty neat however there are a few minor glitches that are still there and i will cover them in the next article in which i would also gove step by step approach of CRM 2011 integraiton with Share Point 2010.
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CRM Entities in Sharepoint: Business connectivity service allows showing up the CRM data in Sharepoint. This is a simple but powerful service that allows for all the modifications with the Sharepoint. However as you would imagine one would have to create custom web pages to show the data in Sharepoint. An important thing to note is the CRM is based on .NET 4.0 and Sharepoint 2010 on .NET 3.5 so one would be better of exposing end points and then using the data from there. The best thing about this integraiton is that one can use it as internet facing CRM without having to buy the licenses.
Some of the drawbacks for the the whole integration are that in CRM with document mgmt the documents associated with leads would not transfer to acocunt and opportunities. In case the opportunity is revised a new library would be created each time. The documents are added but the regarding field is empty because it is created by concatenating certain fields which are not necessarily mandatory. Anyways apart from these small issues:) it looks great. It was a very nice session by Kuba Skalbania that enabled me to share this information with you. I will be doing this later this week to give you some more insight into that. Till then please let me know if you have some questions so that i could explore those once i try this out.