Back in November 2011, Activity Feeds became an important addition to Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and CRM Online via a service update. Modeled after the Facebook wall, Twitter feed, and LinkedIn updates, Activity Feeds provide users with an event-driven view of changes and collaborations in your Dynamics CRM organization. However, Activity Feeds are not social CRM, meaning they have nothing to do with social media. With Update Rollup 12 though, that’s about to change.
Microsoft is now integrating the enterprise social network Yammer into Dynamics CRM 2011 and CRM Online. In fact, this latest update is merely the first phase of integrating Yammer as a social layer. As of January 2013, users will be able to post messages from Dynamics CRM to Yammer and vice versa. These messages can relate to records, events, and documents.
The idea is to make collaboration not only easier, but much more effective. As you follow a lead that you are responsible for or are interested in, you can use Yammer to collaborate with colleagues inside your organization or with customers, partners, and stakeholders. These social conversations can take place directly within Dynamics CRM, through the Yammer web and desktop applications, as well as apps running on Microsoft (Windows Phone), Apple (iOS) and Google (Android) mobile devices.
Microsoft is further extending this social media experience with the introduction of embedded Skype support. This provides users with additional flexibility in embedded communications on top of the currently supported Microsoft Lync integration. Users will be able to initiate calls to phones and other Skype accounts directly from an open Dynamics CRM form. Before you can take advantage of this capability, you will need to install Skype onto your PC.
With the exponential growth of social media, this integration of Yammer and Skype with Dynamics CRM will no doubt be a powerful tool. We look forward to providing you with relevant tutorials soon here at this blog, as well as at the Success Portal.