As I prepare for my MB2-716 exam I’m producing a series of blog posts that collectively should help others revising for the MB2-716 Certification. (Microsoft Dynamics 365 customization and Configuration.) This time I will look at Data Management settings.
Data management options allow you to define duplicate detection rules, import data, manage bulk deletion jobs etc. In the following notes I will provide a summary of each of these features.
- Duplicate Detections Settings, Duplicate Detection Rules and Duplicate Detection Jobs
- Data Maps
- Templates for Data Import
- Add Ready-to-Use Business Processes
- Export Field Translations and Import Field Translations
- Bulk Record Deletion
- Sample Data
- Data Encryption
Duplicate Detections Settings, Duplicate Detection Rules and Duplicate Detection Jobs
These three duplicate detection options let you define rules that are run as records are created in the Dynamics 365 database. These help you spot and resolve duplicates at source. Duplicate detection jobs are an option that uses these rules to review the current data to help identify potential duplicates in the existing data.
We first define the duplicate detect settings. These are global settings to decide when to enable detection. Options include;
- When a record is created or updated
- When Dynamics 365 for Outlook goes from offline to online
- During data imports
By default all of these options are enabled.
Duplicate detection rules allow us to define what constitutes a duplicate. Several rules will exist out of the box and you can create more or amend these as required. You can see a simple example below that will be triggered if two accounts have the same name.
Tip: Each rule will require publishing to make it take effect.
Notice that rules can exclude inactive records as required. And also be case-sensitive.
Once the detect rule has been created, if a user creates a potential duplicate a warning message will be given. Clicking save would continue with the creation of the duplicate, or clicking cancel will allow them to make any required changes.
We can also configure and run duplicate detection jobs to create a list of possible duplicates. Firstly you create a new duplicate detection job and define the records to be checked. Below you can see I have selected all accounts. (In the real work we may, for example, want to run a weekly job check that details for all accounts created in the last week. Etc.)
Having selected the records for our duplicate detection job we can define how it will run. It may be a one off job or we can use the “run this job after every” option to define a frequency. Plus trigger sending an email when the job completes.
Once the duplicate detection job has completed we can use its “view duplicates” option to review any potential issues. Selecting each of the duplicate records we can see a list of potential duplicates. And then take required action. Such as deleting, deactivating or merging the duplicate.
When we import data the details can be stored as a data map. This is a useful option if the import needs to be repeated multiple times, as any mapping of columns can be saved and re-used.
Templates for Data Import
The templates for data import option creates an easy way to generate an Excel template for collecting / importing data. You might, for example, want to create a template for capture of lead data.
Add Ready-to-Use Business Processes
Another option “add ready-to-use business processes” allows the expansion of the number of business processes that are available out of the box. It might be that you create all of your processes from scratch or it might be this option is used to give templates or starting points for business processes with the system. Running this option on my trial Dynamics 365 online environment created the following business processes. Notice that they have all been added in a draft status and would need to be activated before being used.
Export Field Translations and Import Field Translations
These options can be used to export and import localized language translations for field and entity names in Dynamics 365. To use these options you will need to have installed appropriate language packs first.
Note: You can also export / import translations for your product names and properties.
Bulk Record Deletion
Bulk record deletion is an option I use very often in Dynamics 365! Using the web interface you can delete individual records or all those selected in a view. As a view can only contain a maximum of 250 rows then bulk deletion is useful when you need to remove larger data volumes. It is also possible to schedule deletion jobs.
You first define a selection criteria. Below you can see an example, in which I am looking for all emails more than 2 years old. (24 months)
Once you have selected the criteria you can opt to run the job immediately, schedule it and also define a frequency in terms of “n” days.
A key feature of CRM is the ability to import data from other systems. The import option lest you see the status of current imports and to review an audit of past imports. The data maps option allows you to create data maps to make importing data easier. Or you can use the “Templates for Data Import” option to create a blank template to make the process of create spreadsheets ready to import CRM entities easier.
One useful option in data management is the option to enable and disable sample data. It is really handy when testing or demonstrating a CRM solution to be able to use this option to quickly create a sample dataset to work with.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 uses standard Microsoft SQL Server cell level encryption for a set of default entity attributes that contain sensitive information, such as user names and email passwords. This feature can help organizations meet FIPS 140-2 compliance.
For Microsoft Dynamics 365 (online) and Dynamics 365 (on-premises), all new and upgraded organizations use data encryption by default. Data encryption can’t be turned off.
I have covered quite a few features in this post, all at a high level! You learning and prep for MB2-716 will be greatly aided by experimenting with these features. Enjoy.