What is the Dynamic Presidents club and Inner Circle Award and who’s in it for 2013

The CRM Dynamic industry seems to me quite a small but if you are looking for the top CRM companies to work for there are a couple of lists which may give you a bit of insight.  Most of the big CRM companies have successful CRM blogs/youtube videos etc and you will have probably heard of them (often by the MVP’s that have working for them)

The Presidents Club and the Inner Circle.  When I read the names of these it sounded like something out of a Sherlock Holmes book and perhaps a group of anarchists.   Here is how Microsoft defines the two groups, which you can read here

The 2013 Partner Recognition Program for Microsoft Dynamics recognizes our top Microsoft Dynamics partners for their exceptional FY13 performance.

To achieve 2013 President’s Club for Microsoft Dynamics, partners must demonstrate a strong combination of revenue or customer adds, plus license growth.

A small number of strategic partners from across the globe will be invited to be part of the 2013 Inner Circlefor Microsoft Dynamics based on their stellar sales performance in FY13. Partners will qualify to be considered for Inner Circle based on performance and those who have demonstrated consistent business leadership and strategic impact on the growth and success of the Dynamics business.

 

My definition of this is basically these contain the companies which have sold/generated the most money in Dynamics CRM.  This is a useful list if you want to know the biggest CRM companies, it is also updated every year

A list of the 2013 Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle award winners can be found here.

A list of the 2013 Microsoft Dynamics President’s Club award winners can be found here.

 

Dynamic Connector works with CRM 2011 and NAV 2013

Good news the Dynamic Connector or the Connector for Microsoft Dynamics team are keeping up the good work and development on the Dynamic Connector and already have it working with NAV 2013.

I will first add I think the Connector team need to use a better name than Connector for Microsoft Dynamics because that name makes it very difficult to search for help and we need all the help we can get when using the Dynamic Connector.

The way I search for things is type the name of the software and then the question but the name they are using makes it impossible and extremely difficult to find any help.

on a positive note I think the Dynamic Connector (I’m sticking with that name now) have put a lot more effort and development this year.

  • they have written more useful blog posts
  • put videos on the blog showing how to upgrade
  • improved the functionality (filtering)
  • fixed a load of bugs in the connector

but you still have some way to go because I upgraded the connector the other week and it totally fell apart and couldn’t read half of the maps and I still haven’t installed the connector without problems.

Is coding popular with the young?

I was asked (repeatedly) if I wanted to feature the graphic featuring below on my blog and I would commend the person for their persistence and polite manners, not forgetting promoting coding and learning coding is certainly a good thing to encourage.

I thought I would help promote the online college with their recruitment drive.  They are currently promoting an online coding course and coding would be an ideal thing to learn online (although if you wanted to all the content is free)

You can read more about it here

http://www.onlinecollege.org/Program-or-Be-Programmed

It raises the question of how many graduates are going into computer related jobs, even that sentence doesn’t sound right.  Before when you went into computers you were signing up to be a programmer, database person.  I remember my early CV’s stating I had Excel, Word skills.

Today all office jobs use a computer and the software is a lot easier to use.

In terms of are people moving into IT jobs, I had the feeling that the numbers were dropping and probably some of that is IT teachers in my experience have been rubbish and the stuff they were teaching was at least 5 years out of date.

I found this article from 2009

http://www.computing.co.uk/ctg/news/1832769/number-graduates-it-falling

and these in 2011 from the bbc saying coding is gathering enthusiasm.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-15916677

Of course both seem not to be the most scientific and not really that useful.

I think coding would be a useful tool to learn with regards to getting a job in this tricky climate

Thanks to OnlineCollege.org for creating this graphicProgramming Infographic

Hotmail to be replaced with Outlook.com

Microsoft seems to have taken the first step in retiring hotmail and offering new outlook.com email addresses.

I’m sure a lot of you will read this and think, I don’t want a new email address, I’m happy with my current email address.

The reason why I think you might want to change is if you act quickly you can get a decent email address, which used to be a big problem with hotmail addresses.

Also this might have some use with windows 8 and tablets.

It looks like hotmail could be replaced by outlook.com so you can’t avoid it.

If you have an existing hotmail account it can be incorporated into your new hotmail address, either by just having the emails in the main inbox or creating a new folder for you.

here is how to do it

http://www.pocket-lint.com/news/46739/outlookcom-setup-explained-new-address

and here are a couple of articles on the subject

Microsoft kills Hotmail and introduces Outlook.com: A look at the new features

http://blogs.independent.co.uk/2012/08/01/microsoft-kills-hotmail-and-introduces-outlook-com/

Hotmail to be replaced by Outlook.com in Microsoft switch

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19067634

CRM 2011 – how to update read only fields with Javascript

I have had an annoying problem which had me pulling out my hair in frustration when I was testing some javascript.

I had created a field called arranged by and it was a user lookup which was read only because I didn’t want people to set it, I wanted to set it when someone booked in a date and then fill in the field.

What was happening was I was setting the field, which you can read about here but then it saved but on the reload the field was blank, AGHGHGHGG.

I then read this forum question – read only field isn’t updated after javascript save

So it turns out that read only fields are not submitted to the database to be saved.  Which in one way is good because it means less traffic going up the pipe to the database but very annoying for me who is trying to set the read only value.

So if you want to save a read only field you need to set the SubmitMode to be always, which ensures the value is sent to the database.

Xrm.Page.getAttribute("fieldName").setSubmitMode("always");

Dynamic Connector – Excellent Dynamic Connector blog

This is a quick blog post with two aims regarding the Dynamic Connector.

The fist aim is to point you to an excellent resource for the connector.  The blog written by Konstantin is one of the best blogs on the Dynamic Connector (CRM/NAV connector as I still sometimes call it)

http://www.nav-connector.com/

He has some great blog posts

The Most useful tool for troubleshooting the connector

How to include in integration custom NAV tables – Step by Step instruction

How to update Production Dynamics Connector from Development environment

Talking about good Connector resources, I should also mention the Microsoft Dynamic Connector blog, which has recently had some good blog posts and videos.

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/dynamicsconnector/

Konstantin also left a comment on one of my connector blog posts which explained something I had wondered about.  When you tick/untick the Synchronise Connector tickbox in NAV (in Marketing Setup)

Codeunit 5150 has property “Single Instance”=Yes, which mean if you run it, it will sit in memory until you close Client.
That is why “Re-activate” Connector function not working from first time properly. Every time, after you modify this particular Codeunit, you need to reopen Client to apply modifications in YOUR client (WebServices should pickup modifications immediately).

Dynamic Connector – Stop, Step back and start again logically

I had a very frustrating last few hours, I was having a date format error with the connector.

I was mapping Job to Contract and Job Planning Line to Contract Line.

The Job to contract was working perfectly and the dates coming across without any problems, unless I had forgotten to a put a date in.

Then when I was doing the planning line to Contract line I was getting odd date format errors.  I couldn’t understand why the dates were not always working.

I thought it might be the fact that CRM was in a US date format and NAV was in UK.

I then tried to hard code the date but even this was working, now I was really stumped.

I remember reading about a development team who had a card board cut out called Alan.  When they were having problems and were stuck or extremely frustrated they would get Alan the cardboard cut out and then talk and walk him through the problem they were having.  This action of explaining the problem to someone would often help the developer to understand the problem and find out they were doing something stupid.

unfortunately or perhaps fortunately I had a colleague working with me who said add that contract line in CRM.

When I tried to do this I then found out that CRM complained about the date, hmmm maybe this isn’t a date format problem.

I then realised that I had been putting in developer date e.g.  a load of random key presses to get rough values into boxes.

What I was basically trying to do was put in a start and end date outside of the Contract start and end dates.

So the problem was nothing to do with the connector and down to me putting in random dates.

It can be tricky to think problems are always because of the connector but when you have data which isn’t syncing then you should check you can put the date in CRM or NAV to see that it’s actually valid.

CRM 2011 – Great list of resources

The excellently named blog Mad Computerist has a really good collection of links and resources.

They are split up into sections such as installing, plugins, Javascript, reports, tips, tools, etc.

it also has links to the rollups

The link below will take you to the full list of goodness and it’s worth bookmarking

http://madcomputerist.blogspot.com/2011/06/new-features-in-microsoft-dynamics-crm.html

a taster below of a couple of the topics I thought were really useful.

Installation and Configuration
Connector for Microsoft Dynamics installation guides
Installing Active Directory On Windows Server 2008
Installation of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Standalone Sandbox Using VirtualBox Part 1
Installation of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Standalone Sandbox Using VirtualBox Part 2
Rename a Windows Server 2008 domain
Using Windows Server 2008 as a Workstation

Others
Resources
Common CRM interview questions
Developer Training Videos
Excellent video resources CRM 2011
100+ videos dedicated to Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Server 2011
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 for Microsoft Office Outlook
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 List Component for Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Report Authoring Extension
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Implementation Guide
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Software Development Kit (SDK)
Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Developer Training Kit

JavaScipt

Accessing the Parent Form from a Child Form
Calling External Webservice with Javascript Asynchronously
Close MS CRM 2011 Form without Prompt
Dynamically Show Different Form onLoad
Enable Disable Notes Control
Events in onSave method (List of event.Mode)
Excessive Sub-Gridding for more than 4
Filtered Lookup for “Add Existing…” Button of a CRM N:N View
Get Current User ID and Name
Get Selected Record Guid from a Subgrid
Link two subgrids on a form together (parent-child-grids)
Pass Microsoft Dynamics CRM Data From a Page as a Parameter to Ribbon Actions
Populate Lookup Field with String Value (without GUID) using Automatic Resolution
Showing Custom Form Alerts
Update records of a Sub-grid using OData JSON JQuery

CRM MVP’s and blog links

if you want to subscribe to some of the best blogs on Microsoft Dynamics CRM then I would recommend subscribing to the blogs written by the CRM MVP’s (and mine of course)

The CRM MVP’s all make fantastic contributions to CRM community and their articles, tools, forum posts and books have helped me loads over the past few years I have been working with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

If you want to see the list of CRM MVP’s then you can see them all here, it has a quick one line summary and then you can click on the link to get a more details about the MVP.

There are 51 CRM MVP’s at the moment, I’m not sure if they keep a certain number or how many they add a year.

Although you can access the detailed description of the MVP and a link to their blog, I saw a link on Mitch Milam’s blog which lists a lot of CRM MVP’s blogs.  If you are not subscribed or haven’t read any of these blogs then I recommend you go and have a look at them.  They are really useful for learning CRM.

CRM MVPs Blogs

What is Google Big Service and should you be interested

Google has recently released the BigQuery service, what is this I hear you ask

I shall quote Google themselves, you can read more about it here

What is Google BigQuery Service?

Google BigQuery Service is a service for running SQL-like queries against very large datasets, with potentially billions of rows. This can be your own data, or data that someone else has given you access to.

Data is imported as tabular data from a CSV file. Supported data types are string, integer, IEEE floating point number, and boolean. Only SELECT queries are supported; you cannot run UPDATE, APPEND, or DELETE statements as queries.

BigQuery works best for interactive analysis of very large datasets, typically using a small number of very large, append-only tables. For more traditional relational database scenarios, you might consider using Google Cloud SQL instead.

You can use BigQuery through a graphical browser-based query page, a command-line tool, or by making direct calls to the REST API. Learn more.

Currently BigQuery is available by invitation only. If you are interested in signing up for BigQuery, please fill out this form.

I originally read about this in this article which gives a good overview of what it is.

it seems to give the ability to run select statements against the internet! This could prove to be a very powerful and useful tool.

At the same time I also notice something called Google Cloud SQL, which is basically SQL databases on the internet. this makes sense really because does it really matter where the database is?  You really just want to store stuff on it, so if it’s in a server room in the building or in a building somewhere in the world it doesn’t really matter as long as you can get at the data quick.  This page will tell you a bit more about Google Cloud SQL

Why am I mentioning this?

Google is a powerful entity and can slowly and quietly bring in new services which soon dominate.  I remember when Google maps was launched, it was quite clever but not really that impressive when you first had a look at it but now it’s the first map service anyone uses on the internet, if I need to work out how to get somewhere I get directions from Google maps.  Before Google maps came about there were and still are lots of other map supplying sites but Google has trampled all over them.

The same thing happened with Gmail, before it hotmail was the main online email account.

There are of course many times when Google has tried new things and failed, like buzz and who knows if Google + will catch on, I’m not convinced it is much better than  Facebook to go to the effort of transferring information across, although I do think I am suffering from social interaction fatigue (I don’t want to hear all these pointless status updates)

Still it’s worth knowing about because Google can sometimes offer some excellent products which can over a few years seem the norm.