CRM MVP Question and Answer – Salim Adamon

As I slowly run out of CRM MVP’s we are off to Canada today and Salim Adamon who became a CRM MVP after using CRM for four years, speedy work sir.


if you want to read any of the previous CRM MVP questions click the link


Big thanks to Salim for answering my questions


Name, current job title and social media links please

Salim Adamon

Senior Consultant, CRM Solution Architect


What does an average day at work look like

I usually start by spending a few minutes with my hot chocolate checking out the tech industry and CRM world news.


What different roles/Job titles have you had whilst using CRM

I’ve had a lot of different roles as a CRM Consultant. I am a developer at heart, but I also love the client facing activities. I’sve worked as a developer, a business analyst, and these days I am mostly playing the role of solution architect. Love being a hybrid J


What job did you did before you starting using CRM

I was a Software Developer, working on an email and data archiving platform. We used mostly Microsoft development tools and started to implement CRM internally.


What was the first version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM you worked with and how long have you been using Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Started with 4.0 back in 2008. The company I was working for at the time used it internally and was trying to sell it.


How do you stay up to date with the CRM

Being an MVP helps, simply because you get access to a lot of material about the upcoming releases. There are a few blogs that I follow, and twitter is always a great resource using some of the CRM hashtags (#MSDYNCRM, #CRM2013)


How do you find time to contribute to the CRM community whilst doing your job

I blog a lot because I love to share solutions and tricks based on my experience in the field with the product. I also spend a lot of time thinking about and testing technologies so when it’s related to CRM, it usually ends up on my blog.


What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a successful career in Microsoft Dynamics CRM?

I think it’s extremely important to know the product well and to understand your clients’ needs. That’s key to be able to best see the gap between the requirements and the product and present all the options possible to build a solution.


What where your first impressions of CRM 2013 and what do you think now.

I was feeling conflicted because I couldn’t see the left navigation pane! As I started playing around, I felt like CRM 2013 came in with a good set of new features to close the gap with some of the competition. It also brought some very innovative design and concepts which you always want to have.


What one feature would you add to CRM 2013

Business process flows and updated forms! We get a LOT of great feedback about those from our clients. What I love the most about it is that it makes end users look at the application as more than just a tool to capture data. When build properly, a record’s form provides a full 360 view of where things are and how they got there.


Most annoying feature of CRM 2013

I don’t like the new navigation. Oh wait, I didn’t just say that J.


You favourite 2 CRM blogs (I have filled the first one in for you)


Hosks Dynamic CRM blog



What year will Microsoft Dynamics CRM have more customers than Sales force

Not going there J


Are you doing more CRM projects with CRM online?  Do you think it will all be online in the future

It will never be all CRM online just because some businesses have too many rules and restrictions to go in the cloud. That being said, we are seeing a lot of enterprises moving to the cloud as they start to recognize the advantages in terms of infrastructure maintenance cost and risks limitation.


What is the best tool/solution you have used recently

I started using a tool called “CRM Solution Manager” ( a while ago. It’s a very nice utility and I find is a big time and productivity booster for developers. Directly from within Visual studio, you get the ability to register plugins and plugin steps, create, edit and update web resources, you get JavaScript intellisense and more! Great value for the price until Microsoft gives us a tool with similar capabilities.


What CRM certifications do you have, do you try and keep up to date with CRM certifications

CRM 4.0 Customizations and Configuration

CRM 2011 Customizations and Configuration

CRM 2011 Applications

CRM 2013 Deployment


I am personally not a huge fan of certifications. However the nature of our jobs forces us to stay up to date with them. I am planning to complete all the CRM 2013 exams in the coming months.


How important is it to have good business analytical skills working with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

I think it really depends on your role in a project. If you are a business analyst, I think it’s important to have the ability to really understand the business of your clients in order to propose innovative solutions that best use the features of Dynamics CRM.


How useful is it to have programming knowledge to become a good Microsoft Dynamics CRM Professional?

I don’t think it’s critical. If you have a good business acumen and can understand technical concepts (relation databases, web services etc), you will do just fine. In fact, having a programming background sometimes can make your thinking too technical when it should always start with the business aspect of things.


What knowledge/experience do you have with software/systems which integrate with Microsoft Dynamics CRM e.g. (SharePoint, SQL Server, Scribe, Etc)

I’ve worked with CWR Mobility for a client that has strong mobile requirements. We actually had to have the company build a custom version for us which was a good experience. Like a lot of CRM people, I’ve done the classic SharePoint document management integration. I also just rolled off of a project where we have a fairly heavy use of SSIS & Kingways Software for data integration. I can name a few others like ADXStudio, Assistance PSA and AgileXRM.


How often do you travel as a Microsoft Dynamics CRM Professional?

Not that much, most of the business that we get is local. When I have to travel, it’s usually between Montreal and Ottawa which is a two-hour drive.


Can you see yourself not using CRM in your career in the future

Maybe in a few years I’ll try some Dynamics AX! I usually get bored when doing the same thing for a long period of time. But the nature of consulting is such that it’s OK to stick to one technology for a long time for a couple of reasons:

You always get to see different type of projects

The platform evolves so you are always learning

So we’ll see, I may find myself doing something completely different a few years from now, but I like it very much for now!


What is favourite part of being a CRM MVP

I’m a very new MVP so I haven’t been exposed to all the activities just yet. What I love is all the smart and talented people we are instantly connected to (MVPs, MS product group) and information we get access to.


What are your hobbies outside of CRM

I play basketball, watch a lot of sports. I also love to travel, my partner and I like to go on city discovery weekends when time allows, we get to see many places that are not very far from home and often offer a rich history and/or culture.


 What was the last book you read and what was the last film you watched

Book: Drive: The Surprising Truth about What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink. Interesting read!

Film: I think it was American Hustle… Yes, I watch some of the blockbusters. Don’t judge me, it’s entertaining!


Has CRM ever got you in trouble with your partner/family.

I am very grateful to have an understanding and supporting partner. In order to avoid troubles, I make sure I keep some dedicated time for her.


Have you friends ever told you to stop talking/tweeting/blogging about CRM? What does your partner/family member(s) think of CRM

My partner is probably almost a CRM expert at this point. As for my family and friends, I try not to talk about my work around them. I like to take a mental break from what I do in my professional life when in a social setting.


Tell me something interesting/unusual about yourself

I used to be a musician and DJ in another life! I kind of missed that!


Who is the first CRM MVP you remember reading/seeing

Probably my good friend and former colleague Gonzalo Ruiz!


Tips for someone who wants to become a CRM MVP

It’s all about your contributions to the CRM communities online, in user groups etc. The key is you have to like being involved and engaged in the communities. Everything else comes naturally IMO.



Quickfire questions (choose one option and no explanation)


Steve Jobs or Bill Gates

Bill Gates


Javascript or .NET



Internet Explorer/Chrome/Firefox/Safari



Wine/Beer/Soft Drink


Certifications or Use CRM



twerking or tweeting


books or ebooks



save or autosave



OnLine or On Premise

On Premise


Windows 7/Windows 8/Linux/Mac/Other

Windows 8


Work from home or work from office



Miley Cyrus or Billy Ray Cyrus

I’ll pass on both



Subscribe – Zune-Music-Pass


Zero Inbox/Overflowing Inbox

Overflowing Inbox


Early Bird/Night Owl

Night Owl


Do Today/Do Tomorrow

Do today


CRM Developer/CRM Consultant

CRM Consultant


Hot Weather/Cold Weather

VERY Hot Weather


Half Full/Half Empty

Half full

CRM 2011 – Solution not importing – Timeout errors

We had an annoying error, we tried to import a solution with a new field on the case table.  The case table already had 300 plus fields on it so it was a bit a mammoth table.

Whilst trying to find the problem we split the various enhancements into separate solutions in an attempt to make each separate solution smaller and increase the chances of smaller solutions importing rather than one big one.

The reason we split up the solution was because we thought the problem was a timeout issue.

Interestingly the solutions with workflows and plugins imported.  The solutions with other entities included also imported and we were left with a solution with just the case entity in which was still refusing to import.

The changes in the solution were minimal, we were basically adding one new field to the case entity but I guess this is adding a new field and value to all the case records which already exist in CRM database.


I remembered I previously had problems importing a large solution, so I searched my blog and found this

CRM 2011 – A time-out occurs when you import a solution in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

In the blog I also refer to this KB article about a timeout when importing solutions


We were pretty sure the import was timing out because it was taking too long to import, so we increased the OLEDBTimeout and the ExtendedTimeout and this allowed the import process more time to import the solution and finally it worked.

A good reason to write blogs is you might run into the problem again later and if you have blogged about it you can easily find the solution to your problem even when you have forgotten the solution yourself.

I imagine this solution and the two registry keys would probably still be used in CRM 2013 although I haven’t tried this out yet.