How to Organize Dynamics CRM Documents in SharePoint
Not many companies are aware of the capability of Dynamics CRM and SharePoint integration, and the benefits for their business. Microsoft Dynamics CRM and SharePoint Integration helps users to view and share stored documents easily, and increase productivity and strengthen the collaboration between the different business units and teams in the organization.
Although SharePoint is included in Office 365 plan, not many organizations are utilizing this service and integrate it with Dynamics 365. In an article published recently (Read Here), we point out the limitations inherent from CRM out-of-box integration with SharePoint:
Documents are stored in complex folders and sub folders structure.
Folder names are the content of the Name field of records:
No metadata is saved in SharePoint columns. Relevant metadata is crucial for classifying documents in SharePoint:
This blog post suggests an organized way to store documents from CRM in SharePoint using these folders and metadata:
Which folder structure suits better for storing documents in SharePoint.
Consider an organization that provides services, quoted by sales people. When quote is won, the client signs Service Contract. During the contract period, the organization raises invoices and client payments are recorded in Payment Receipts entity. The above process is a collaboration between two teams, one is using CRM the other is using SharePoint.
All the above four document types are related to the company that purchases the service. For the purpose of this blog, we will be using Adventure Works as the Account name.
Entity folder structure – all documents from an entity are stored in a folder that bears the entity name. Documents uploaded from the Quote entity will be stored in SharePoint Quote folder. The assumption is that documents are mostly related to their entity and less to other entities or related entities.
Parent entity folder structure – all documents from all entities relating to a parent entity are stored in a folder that bears the parent entity name. Documents uploaded from the Quote, Invoice, Service Contract, and Payment Receipts entities will all be stored in one folder in SharePoint, Adventure Works folder. The idea is storing together all documents from different entities, which are all related to one “central” parent entity.
Combined: Entity folder with parent entity folder structure – when selecting these two folder structures, the Quote, Invoice, Service Contract and Payment Receipt documents will be saved in Adventure Works folder, together with documents from the Adventure Works entity. Combining all documents related to the parent and the child entities in one folder that bears the parent entity name, is useful when documents from the parent and the child are closely related to each other.
Parent / Child folder structure – documents uploaded from an entity are stored in a folder that bears the entity name, which is a SharePoint sub folder to a folder that bears the parent entity name. In the above example, the parent folder is Adventure Works and it has four subfolders for documents uploaded from Quote, Invoice, Service Contract and Payment Receipt entities. The first document uploaded, also creates the parent / child folder and sub folder structure in SharePoint.
Dynamics SPO users that are already using Dynamics CRM OOB integration with SharePoint, can also select the option to maintain the OOB folder structure in SharePoint, for those entities already using this methodology.
Using metadata fields in SharePoint columns.
When documents are uploaded from CRM to SharePoint, the content of selected attributes / fields from the CRM record are saved with the document in columns. Here are the benefits of using metadata:
If you are interested in better integration between Dynamics CRM and SharePoint download FREE trial of Dynamics SharePoint organizer (SPO):
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