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    Environment Settings

    RapidStartCRM – Environment Settings

    To install RapidStartCRM, you will have created an “Environment” in the Common Data Service. There are several Environment-level settings that can enabled/disabled to make your app even more useful and tailored to your needs. In this section we will review those settings, and make suggestions for the best experience with RapidStartCRM. There is both a new Power Platform Admin experience,  and the “Classic” experience. Since Microsoft is phasing out the “Classic” experience, we will focus on the new Power Platform experience.

    Note: You will need System Administrator role to perform these tasks. There are quite a few settings in this area that could cause your system to stop functioning properly, we will show you the safe ones that we use with RapidStartCRM.

    Start by logging in to https://admin.powerplatform.microsoft.com/

    Select your environment that you installed RapidStartCRM on from the list.

    There are several items on the landing page to explore.

    You can change the name and URL of your instance here.
    We recommend enabling the most recent release features.
    Click “Settings”.

    There are several categories of Settings, you can access them under the Chevron for each category. The next few images will be our standard RapidStartCRM configurations, you can safely make your screens look like the ones below.

    Clicking on “Behavior”, under the “Product” category will show this screen. Make yours look like the above.


    Clicking on “Features”, under the “Product” category will show this screen. Make yours look like the above.

    Clicking on “Privacy + Security”, under the “Product” category will show this screen. Make yours look like the above.

    Clicking on “Email Settings”, under the “Email” category will show this screen. Make yours look like the above.

    Clicking on “Email tracking”, under the “Email” category will show this screen. Make yours look like the above.

    You can obviously make any other changes you like, but as we said at the top, you do so at your own risk.


    RapidStartCRM – Customizations

    RapidStartCRM is built to be further customized. Depending on your knowledge of Power Apps, you may be capable of doing this yourself. Otherwise, your partner may be able to help, or we also offer services for customers who want our help to customize RapidStartCRM.

    The steps to customize RapidStartCRM are the same as those for Dynamics 365 first-party applications. You will create an unmanaged solution in your environment, then add the RapidStartCRM components to it that you want to customize, and then perform your customizations.

    There are two places where you can perform this work, the new “Maker” experience, or the “Classic” experience. Microsoft is phasing out the “Classic” experience, so we will show you the modern “Maker” approach.

    Two common requests from RapidStartCRM customers are to add columns (fields) to forms, and customize views. For our first scenario, we will add a field to the RapidStartCRM Opportunity Form. In our second scenario below, we will customize a view.

    Adding a Field to a Form

    Log in to https://make.powerapps.com

    Confirm you are in the correct environment.
    Select “Solutions”.
    Then click “+ New solution”.

    Give your solution a name.
    Select “CDS Default Publisher”.
    Click “Create”.

    You will see your new solution in the list.
    Click the ellipses.
    Click “edit”.

    In the window that opens you will see your new solution is empty.
    Select “+ Add existing”.
    Click “Table” (Formerly Entity).

    We want to add the “Opportunity” table by checking it.
    Then click “Next”.

    If we plan to make a lot changes, we may want to
    “Include all components”.
    and the “Metadata” .
    For this exercise, we will just click the “Select Components” link.

    We are looking for the main form so will will limit our view by selecting “Forms”
    then selecting the Main “Opportunity” form
    and click “Add” to add the form to our solution.

    We can now see the Main Opportunity form in our solution. Click the ellipses.
    Select “Edit”.

    In the form designer select “+New Column”.

    In the new column creation form, give your column a name.
    Select the type of data you want to capture.
    Provide an optional description.
    and click “Done”.

    We can now see our new column in the columns list.

    Drag the new column from the columns list onto the form where you want it to appear.
    Click “Save”.
    then “Publish” your changes.

    Returning to the RapidStartCRM App, we can now see our new column on the Opportunity form.

    Customizing Views

    For this exercise, we will customize a view of our Opportunities to display the column we created above. We will assume you already followed steps above.

    If you are not still in the maker portal,  log in to https://make.powerapps.com

    Confirm you are working on the correct environment.
    Select “Solutions”.
    you will see your solution.
    Click the ellipses.
    then click “Edit”.

    Filter the components by clicking “Views”.
    You will see that you have not added any Views to this solution.
    Click “+ Add subcomponents”.

    In the subcomponent selector, click “Views”.
    Select the view(s) you want to add.
    then click “Add” to add to your solution.

    Back in your solution, select “Views” and you will see the view in your solution,
    to edit select the view’s name.

    You can see the previously created custom column in the column list.
    You can change the name of the view.
    as well as the view sorting
    and filtering.

    To add your column, click “+ Add column”.
    then select your column to add it to the view.

    You can see your column has been added.
    You can drag it to the position you want.
    You can also edit other properties like width etc. by clicking the chevron.
    When you are done click “Save”.
    then “Publish” your changes .

    Returning to the RapidStartCRM App, we can now see our new column on the Opportunity view.

    Outlook App

    RapidStartCRM – Outlook App

    RapidStartCRM works with Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 App for Outlook. Not only can certain activities be performed from within Outlook, certain activities can also be synchronized between Outlook and RapidStartCRM.

    What is the Outlook App?

    Click here to open the User Guide from Microsoft

    Activating the Outlook App for RapidStartCRM

    Note: The following steps are performed in the advanced settings area. Be careful while you are in this area, if you make changes other than what are described below, or to other items, you could cause your system to stop functioning.

    To activate the Outlook capabilities for RapidStartCRM, a System Administrator role is necessary to perform the following three steps.

    1. Approve, Test and Enable User Mailboxes
    2. Add the App to Users
    3. Add the Security Role to Users

    To get started, from anywhere in RapidStartCRM, click the Gear Icon (1), and select “Advanced Settings”(2). If you do not see Advanced Settings, you do not have the System Administrator role.

    Advanced Settings

    The above screen may change in the future, this is what it looks like as of this writing. Select “Settings” to open the options panel

    Step 1 – Approve and Enable Mailboxes

    Select “Email Configuration”, then “Mailboxes” from the screen that opens

    Perform the following Steps:

    1. Switch to the “Active Mailboxes” View.
    2. Select one or more users.
    3. Select “Approve Email”, then re-select users (2)
    4. Select “Test and Enable Mailbox”. Be aware that your users will receive an email letting them know that their mailbox is now connected to Dynamics 365.
    5. After a few minutes click the refresh link.
    6. You are looking for a “Success” message for the three items shown, for each user. You may have to refresh (5) a few times.

    Step 2 – Enable Outlook App

    Go back to “Settings” and select “Dynamics 365 App for Outlook”

    Here you will enable the Outlook App for Users

    1. Unless you only want certain uses to have the app, select the box to automatically add Dynamics 365 App for Outlook. After doing this you would not need to come back here in the future, you can just Approve and Enable Mailboxes above.
    2. You can refresh this view, but the installation takes some time. If users do not see the app appearing, you can come back here and look for issues.
    3. A list of Users app statuses

    Step 3 – Add Security Role

    Go back to “Settings” and click “Security”, then “Users” in the pane that opens.

    Add Role

    1. Switch to “Enabled Users” view
    2. Select one or more Users
    3. Select “Manage Roles”

    1. Scroll to and select the “Dynamics 365 App for Outlook User” role.
    2. Click “OK”

    That’s it, you are done!


    User Positions

    RapidStartCRM – User Positions

    RapidStartCRM provides the optional ability to create and assign Positions to users. You may find this handy as it will show the Position in the User’s record, but for some of our Addons, like RapidStartSERVICE, Positions are needed for app functionality. This is spelled out in the particular app’s documentation.

    To Create a Position and Add Users to it, first open the RapidStart Settings App. This app is only visible to RapidStart Power Users and System Administrators.

    To get to the RapidStart Settings App, from whatever app you are in, click the app name in the header to open the app selector.

    The App Selector shows all apps you have access to. Open the RapidStart Settings app by clicking on it.

    If you don’t land on the Positions list when the RapidStart Settings app opens

    Select Positions from the sidebar.
    Then select + New.

    Give your Position a name.
    Provide an optional description.
    Save the record.

    Once saved and refreshed you will see the Members list, add existing users to this Position here. Note: Users can only have one Position.

    To remove users from a Position

    Select a user(s).
    Click Remove.

    User Teams

    RapidStartCRM – User Teams

    RapidStartCRM provides the optional ability to group users into Teams, like a Sales Team,  and have records owned by those Teams, instead of individual Users.

    Note: this is a feature of the application and is not “Microsoft Teams”.

    There are three steps: Create a Team, add Users to it and optionally give the Team a security role(s), assign records to the Team.

    To Create a Team and Add Users to it, first open the RapidStart Settings App. This app is only visible to RapidStart Power Users and System Administrators.

    To get to the RapidStart Settings App, from whatever app you are in, click the app name in the header to open the app selector.

    The App Selector shows all apps you have access to. Open the RapidStart Settings app by clicking on it.

    Step 1 -Create a Team

    If you don’t land on the Teams list when the RapidStart Settings app opens, select Teams from the sidebar.
    Do not remove the default Team, this team is the default for all users and removing it will prevent user access to the system.
    Select + New.

    Give your new Team a name.
    Select your Business Unit (there should only be one, RapidStart does not support multiple Business Units).
    Add a Team Admin.
    Provide an optional description.
    Save the record.

    Step 2 – Add Members and Roles to Teams

    Once saved (you may have to refresh) you will see the Members list and Security Roles panes are now active.

    To add users, select “Add Existing User”. Note: users can be on more than one Team.
    Optionally, you can add a security role to the team that all users will inherit. Be aware that this will be in addition to any direct Security roles the user may have. This requires some thought, for example if you gave a Team the “RapidStart Power User” role, and then added a user to the Team who has the “RapidStart Limited Role”, that user will now have Power User Privileges.

    Remove Members

    Select the User(s)
    Click Remove.

    Step 3 – Assign Records to Teams

    To assign records to Teams, go back to the RapidStartCRM App and open any record.

    Click the Assign button.
    Select “User or Team”.
    Pick the Team name who will now own this record.

    You can also assign records in bulk from a view.

    Select one or more records.
    Click Assign to be presented with the same dialog above.

    User Roles

    RapidStartCRM – User Roles

    RapidStartCRM includes several User Roles that a “RapidStart Power User” can assign to users from within the application including:

    RapidStart Limited User

    This role is for basic users, that you do not want to see certain records of other users. This user can only see their own records; either records they created, or records that were assigned to them by others. In addition, this user cannot delete any records including their own. This role is quite restrictive, and it is more common to give basic users the RapidStart Basic User Role below.

    RapidStart Basic User

    While still limited in scope, this role is for an open organization, where all users can see all records. However this user cannot delete any records, nor can they assign records to others.

    RapidStart Manager User

    This user can see all records of course, but can also delete and assign records.

    RapidStart Power User

    This is the highest level RapidStart role, the only role with more privileges is the System Administrator role for Power Apps. In addition to everything a Manager can do this role adds things like access to the RapidStart Settings area, etc.

    RapidStart How2 User

    If you opt to create your own training using the How2 Solution, you must assign this role to any users you want to be able to see the How2 assets.

    RapidStart How2 Administrator

    This role is for users who are creating the How2 training assets, and allows the user to assign video libraries to apps.

    RapidStart Hashtags Administrator

    This role gives a user access to the Hashtags Administration Dashboard and the ability to delete and merge tags.

    Cascading Privileges

    If you give a user more than one role, they will have the privileges from the highest role for any item. For example, if you give a user the RapidStart Limited User role as well as the RapidStart Power User Role, they will have all of the privileges of the power user. Typically users will have one main role, and then optionally the RapidStart How2 User role, if they are to access How2 assets. They may also have the RapidStart How2 Administrator and/or RapidStart Hashtags Administrator roles if they are responsible for managing those items.

    To Assign Roles

    To assign roles to users, first open the RapidStart Settings App. This app is only visible to RapidStart Power Users and System Administrators.

    To get to the RapidStart Settings App, from whatever app you are in, click the app name in the header to open the app selector.

    The App Selector shows all apps you have access to. Open the RapidStart Settings app by clicking on it.

    Option 1 – Bulk Add Roles

    If you don’t land on the user list when the RapidStart Settings app opens, select it from the sidebar.
    Select a user or users.
    Click “Bulk Add Roles”.

    This dialog will open.

    Select the role(s) you want to apply to the user(s).
    Click OK.

    Option 2 – Individual Add and Remove Roles

    To add roles to individual users, or to remove roles from a user, open a user record by clicking on the User’s Name, then check, or uncheck the roles


    RapidStartCRM – Hashtags

    Unique to RapidStartCRM is our own RapidStart Hashtags system. It works the same way you identify and classify items on Twitter, for example “#interesting”

    How to use RapidStart Hashtags

    The get the most value from Hashtagging, first you should understand the difference in categorization methods. The below example is a Company record opened to the Details tab.

    Many records have fields for structured categorization, like the optionset fields above.
    These would be used for specific filtering of data by specific structure. Note that these “fixed” options can also be customized.


    There is a Hashtags section on the Summary Tab of most records. This record for example,  was previously Hashtagged with “#bigco”, and “#connected”
    You can add more Hashtags by typing here.
    Hashtags are an “Unstructured” way to categorize your data. Once you start Hashtagging records, it creates some interesting information that you can access on the Hashtags Dashboard.

    Hashtags Dashboard

    To get the the Hashtags dashboard, select Hashtags in the sidebar.
    You can switch to other Dashboards.
    This is a complete list of every record that has been Hashtagged, which can can grow quite large over time (You can open any record by clicking on the blue links).
    We have created some common filtered views like Contacts and Companies.
    Using the search box, you can filter down to only records that have been Hashtagged with what you are looking for.
    We have also provided some Hashtag Metrics

    Hashtag Administration

    Over time you may accumulate quite a few Hashtags. When typing in a new Hashtag, you are shown a list of existing Hashtags, but you may still need to perform some occasional maintenance, like merging, deleting or renaming. A user with the Hashtags Administrator role can access the Hashtags Admin Dashboard.

    To get to the Hashtags Admin Dashboard select Hashtags in the sidebar
    Select the the Hashtags Admin Dashboard (If you do not see it, you probably do not have the Hashtags Admin role)
    This lists all of the Hashtags in use in your system.
    From this column you can select one of more Hashtags.
    With the selected Hashtags you have operations you can perform, like Merging or Deleting, etc.
    When you select to merge Hashtags, you will be given the option to choose the surviving Hashtag.

    Process Flows

    RapidStartCRM – Process Flows

    RapidStartCRM includes the following Process Flows:

    • Prospect Process Flow
    • Opportunity Process Flow
    • Case Process Flow

    Process Flows are completely optional, and can be customized or hidden if desired. While they are not required to utilize RapidStartCRM, Process Flows are a great way to create checklists of things that should be done on a particular record, at a certain point in time, in order to advance the record forward. It is also a great way to instill your own “Best Practices” procedures within your Company, or replicate a successful Process. While Process Flows may have different Stages and Steps from one another, they all work the same way. Here we will look at a simple Process Flow for Cases as an example.

    Case Process Flow

    A Process Flow, for applicable records, sits near the top of the record as shown  below.

    Each Process Flow has an indicator of how many total days the record has been Active.
    Process Flows are made up up Stages and Steps, the Target Symbol indicates which stage the record is in.
    Most Process Flows have multiple, logical Stages.

    Process Stages and Steps

    Process Stages contain Steps, including information requested to be addressed before advancing to the next Stage.

    The Target Symbol indicates the currently active Stage, in the case above it is in the “Identify” Stage.
    Clicking on the Target opens the “Steps” pane.
    Within the Stage are Steps to address at that Stage.
    Once the Steps have been addressed, the user can move the Process Flow to the Next Stage.
    There is also an indicator of how long this stage has been active.
    For Stages with many Steps, this will open the Process Flow as a sticky sidebar.


    RapidStartCRM – Prospects

    As you go about your business you will be continually meeting new people, or they will be finding you, either way, at this stage they are not someone you do business with… yet. Some solutions complicate this need; in RapidStartCRM we wanted to make it simpler. A “Prospect” in RapidStartCRM is really just a Contact, at a different stage of engagement with you and there are some unique differences.

    Prospects List View

    The List View of Active Prospects will open, which looks similar to a spreadsheet.
    To get to Prospects, in the Sidebar, click on the icon.
    There are a few different view filters available with RapidStartCRM, and you can select between them. In addition you can set one as your default.
    The Ribbon, contains various Actions that you can take with regard to Prospects from the list view, like adding new ones for example. If you select one or more Prospects, by placing a checkmark in the first column, the available Actions will change to those to be performed on the selected Prospects.
    To open a particular Prospect’s record, you can click on the Prospect name.
    To create a new prospect record, click + New Contact.

    Prospect Record Form

    The Prospect Record form, looks a little different than the Main Contact Record form, for one thing, it contains a Prospect Process Flow.
    In the Ribbon, you will see actions you can take on this record, like assigning it to someone else, or converting the Prospect to an Active Contact, for example.
    The Prospect record includes a Prospect Process Flow, to guide your users through the steps of advancing this Prospect, to hopefully become an Active Contact at some point.
    Most records in RapidStartCRM have “Tabs” to move between other areas of the particular record. On the Prospect record there are tabs for Summary, Addresses,  Details and Timeline History. When you Convert a Prospect to an Active Contact, all of this information remains.
    In addition to Contact information, in the center there is also a Company Information panel, unlike the Active Contact, here it is not linked to an existing Account record… yet.
    >Unique to RapidStartCRM is our “Hashtags” feature, for “free-form” record tagging. Check out the Hashtags Topic.