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If you are looking for a CRM / SharePoint integration and the CRM you have is Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement, we have good news for you.
Microsoft provides a native SharePoint integration in Dynamics 365. Many companies go ahead with it because getting it to work is pretty straightforward, and there are plenty of benefits.
First of all, you get a productivity benefit because SharePoint is an excellent document management and team collaboration tool. Moreover, SharePoint offers much more storage space than Dynamics 365. No more worrying about your D365 instance running out of storage, and no more increasing costs because you need to expand your storage limits!
Please note that if you have model-driven apps in D365 and SharePoint Online, you need to make sure the site is on the same Office 365 tenant and your Dynamics 365.
Are you ready to have a go at the step-by step procedure to integrate D365 with SharePoint? Let’s get started!
Dynamics 365 integration with SharePoint step-by-step
1 – Go to Settings (a cog wheel icon on the top right), then Advanced Settings. If you can’t find this, please check if you are logged in as a user with Admin rights.
2 – Open Settings and choose System – Document Management
3 – Choose the option Configure Server-Based SharePoint Integration
4 – On the wizard that will open, indicate if your SharePoint is Online or On-Premises. The SharePoint integration can connect to both. It can even connect to multiple SharePoint sites, but they all have to be either online or On-Premises.
5 – Assuming you chose Online on the previous step, now you one need to enter the URL of the SharePoint site you want to use.
You can simply copy the URL from when you are on the SharePoint site main page and the wizard will validate it when you click Next.
6 – Assuming the validation succeeds, the final step to enable your Server-Based SharePoint Integration is clicking the Finish button.
You can now go back to your Document Management screen and select which entities should be enabled for SharePoint folders.
Click on Document Management Settings.
In the pop-up window you check the entities which you anticipate storing documents against and click Next.
You can then define the folder structure. Here are your options:
- Not check the Based on entity checkbox – Folders will not be automatically created
- Check the Based on entity checkbox and choose Account – the structure will have account as the primary folder, and sub-folders based on the actual account names will be created under it
- Check the Based on entity checkbox and choose Contact – the structure will start with the contact primary folder, and sub-folders based on the actual contact names will be created under it
Make your selection and click Next. We might have to wait a little at this point as the document libraries will be created. Once you’ve done that, you can click Finish.
The integration is now live! On the Dynamics 365 side you will now see a document option under the entities you enabled. On the screenshot below you can see the document that we created for an Account. Notice that its storage is on SharePoint.
Still, from the D365 side you can access it normally. It is as simple as clicking a link.
On the SharePoint side you can see the Account folder, then a folder for this specific account and then the documents for it are all stored inside.
Not to forget after you enable the Dynamics 365 integration with SharePoint
At this point you might think you have finished, but there are still two aspects you need to consider:
1 – Permissions – If you leave things as they are, everyone will be able to see all documents on the SharePoint side. This integration ignores what privileges you have set on the Dynamics side, so it can be dangerous. Fortunately, you can fix it by using a third-party app CB Dynamics 365 to SharePoint Permissions Replicator. This app replicates all Dynamics privileges automatically to SharePoint. As this always running in the background, the permissions always correct, even if privileges change, if you add or remove team members from groups, etc.
2 – Folder structure – If you don’t fancy the structure you got for the folders, which normally is one folder per account or contact, you can also use an add-on to fix it. The add-on will work if you have the permissions third-party app mentioned above. The add-on is called SharePoint Structure Creator and it has another big plus: it enables you to avoid reaching the unique permissions limit set by Microsoft.
You can give a tremendous boost to your business productivity by enabling the Dynamics SharePoint integration. Users will no longer need to go around looking for the files they need. Instead, everything will be linked, and your entire team will have effortless access.
The integration is easy to enable and using adequate third-party tools from Connecting Software you can fix the permissions and structure problem the out-of-the-box integration of Dynamics and SharePoint by Microsoft has.
Get in touch with Connecting Software’s experts if you want to see how all this can work together. They will be more than happy to provide you with a free demo or answer any questions you might have. You can also click on Ask the Author below, and I will help you out.
By Ana Neto, Connecting Software, creator of integration and synchronization software. Connecting Software is a 15-year-old company, with 40 employees spread in 4 different countries.