Customer relationship management (CRM) solutions such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 are crucial for businesses. A customer with Dynamics 365 CRM recently asked Amaxra to investigate why some of their critical workflows and other functions "just stopped working." The cause was traced back to an intern who was working on the organization's Dynamics CRM for the semester then went back to school. The intern left the organization, IT disabled the intern's account, and promptly broke all the business-critical Dynamics CRM workflows the intern had created!
As frustrating as the situation was for those using the CRM, the fix was simple: reactivate the intern's account and reassign the workflows to a new owner.
For most entrepreneurs with investments in Dynamics 365 CRM, this story should be the start of a conversation about planning for the "what if?" The
intern leaving that organization meant there was no malice behind the broken workflows, but what if a disgruntled employee left on bad terms and sabotages
the CRM? What if the hours lost because of the intern's disabled account could have been avoided with some planning?
Here are a few simple policies you can put into place today to ensure account ownership issues never affect your Dynamics 365 CRM's workflows:
Transfer transient workers' work
If your company leverages transient workers (e.g. external consultants, temporary contractors, and student interns) to access your Dynamics CRM, then you should institute a company policy for those workers to transfer their ownership of any workflows to a full-time employee (FTE) prior to leaving. The issue with Dynamics CRM workflows breaking because the intern left could have been avoided with this policy. Make sure that if any transient employee is working on somebody's behalf inside Dynamics CRM that prior to their end date the transient employee must change ownership of all their work – such as workflows, et cetera – to an FTE. This ensures that if a consultant works on your CRM and that consultant's account is disabled, then your critical workflows or other functions are intact because the FTE is given control.
This is a core policy of Amaxra for any client Dynamics 365 CRM solutions we work on. We do this because our goal is to never create a dependency on Amaxra for our customers. Amaxra consultants aim to help our customers to be self-sufficient.
Plan for full-time employee attrition
Of course, there are no guarantees that FTEs stay at a company forever. If a long-time employee assigned to administer your company's Dynamics CRM workflows and other critical functions leave, then it's likely you could have the same "just stopped working" problems you sought to avoid with transient workers. When assigning Dynamics CRM permissions for your FTEs, think through the scenarios of who will receive that FTE's permissions if they leave your organization. Note that in this case, the term "account ownership" in Dynamics 365 CRM goes beyond your sales or marketing employees' Accounts, Contacts, and Leads. Smaller organizations often have one FTE who is both a Dynamics CRM administrator and a sales/marketing professional. If this is the case for your organization, then it's recommended you either split these duties between two separate FTEs or have a plan for mitigating this single point of failure.
Weigh the cost of specialized Dynamics accounts
Some organizations create specialized accounts in Dynamics 365 that can be assigned to exclusively handle creating and administering CRM workflows. These specialized accounts can be assigned as needed to transient workers and remove the need to have FTEs take ownership of those workers' accounts when they leave. However, there is a cost associated with creating these types of accounts. Microsoft charges access to the cloud-based Dynamics 365 CRM and creating a specialized account could cost up to $115 per month. Organizations must weigh the monetary cost of licensing a new CRM account from Microsoft for convenience versus the one-time cost of creating a repeatable employee policy for the orderly transfer of Dynamics account ownership.
The Amaxra Solutions Team helps companies to optimize their Dynamics 365 workflows and processes for long term success. Contact email@example.com to have one of our Dynamics experts evaluate your organization's specific CRM needs and come up with a plan to meet your business goals.
Contact me at Rosalyn.firstname.lastname@example.org or call 425 749 7471 if you have any questions or comments on this blog.