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Neil Parkhurst, Author at 365 Community

Omnichannel for Customer Service – “internal” chat

I recently had a requirement for internal users to chat with agents in the contact center. Maybe (for example) sales app users would want to speak to agents staffing the helpdesk. Dynamics 365 does include Teams integrations which may be useful for this scenario! But what-if you wanted to apply the same routing logic for these internal users as your external customers. Then it might be useful… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Rejecting or missing notifications

When a conversation starts in Microsoft Omnichannel for Customer Service app the agent typically sees a notification including the ability to reject the call. Or if they miss the notification a wait timer will eventually hide the notification. That is great but what happens after the conversation is missed or rejected?? When a conversation is missed or the agent rejects the work item, it will… Continue Reading Neil...

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Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Birmingham – 25th Jan 2023
Jan03

Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Birmingham – 25th Jan 2023

Christmas is done the New Year has started and so our attention is turning to our next free Dynamics 365 event in Birmingham! A key focus of which will be a timely presentation on developing your Power Platform and Dynamics 365 career. For details read on … All of us that work with Microsoft products already know how quickly the technology evolves. January is always a good time to consider… Continue Reading Neil...

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Unified Routing – Effort Base Routing
Dec20

Unified Routing – Effort Base Routing

Within Dynamics 365 we can now use effort-based routing to assign conversations or records to users. Meaning from Omnichannel for Customer Service we could route case records, web chat conversations and more to agents based on effort estimate models. I will describe this new feature in this post. Before I start, I guess I should suggest why this might be required! Often complex queries can… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Callbacks
Nov15

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Callbacks

The new direct callback feature found in Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service gives customers the ability to request a callback as soon as an agent becomes available. I will explore this new feature in this blog post. The concept of a callback is simple enough! If a customer is going to be in a queue for longer than a specified duration, then instead of them holding we will offer the… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voicemail
Nov08

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voicemail

A great new feature in Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service app relates to allowing customers to leave voicemails. In this blog post I will explore this new feature. Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service has included the voice channel for some time now! But the recently deployed 2022 Wave 2 release (aka October 2022) included a new feature to allow customers to leave voicemails… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Overflow (v2)
Oct28

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Overflow (v2)

I have previously blogged about the overflow capabilities in Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service. But the recent 2022 Wave 2 release has given us some additional capabilities. So, in this blog post I will approach this subject again! You can read my previous blog post here. But that post is now largely replaced by the information I will provide here!! I am sure every contact centre… Continue Reading Neil...

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Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Birmingham Event – 24th Nov
Oct20

Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Birmingham Event – 24th Nov

We are really excited to announce our next Birmingham based face to face event. This time we’ll meet on 24th November. This will be our last Dynamics 365 and Power Platform event of 2022, so don’t miss out. Hopefully you know that Power Pages has been launched as the 5th product making up the Power Platform. We intend to celebrate this by making Power Pages the focus of our event. And as if… Continue Reading Neil...

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Field Service – Inspection Reporting
Oct14

Field Service – Inspection Reporting

In previous posts I have explained how we can create inspections; in this post I will focus on how we gain access to the inspection data. (To support reporting). You can review my earlier post which gave an overview of inspections here. You may want to create dashboards (both standard Dynamics 365 dashboards and Power BI dashboards) to show inspection activity. Maybe you want to report on the… Continue Reading Neil...

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Two Timelines on One Dynamics 365 Form
Oct12

Two Timelines on One Dynamics 365 Form

I noticed almost in passing a new feature in the October “Wave 2” release of Dynamics 365. This is the ability to add more than one timeline per form. In this post I will explore this feature and try and explain why I think this is cool! And along the way I will mention a few other timeline enhancements. You can see above that we have several maker enhancements which allow greater… Continue Reading Neil...

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Field Service – Inspections Overview
Oct12

Field Service – Inspections Overview

The Dynamics 365 Field Service app gives us a cool feature to manage inspections. In this post I will give an overview of this feature. What are Field Service Inspections? The Field Service app of Dynamics 365 is aimed at engineers completing work onsite. A common requirement for field engineers is to complete inspections. Maybe this will be part of a preventative maintenance contract when… Continue Reading Neil...

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Delete Dynamics 365 Data – Based on an import “Hack”!
Oct11

Delete Dynamics 365 Data – Based on an import “Hack”!

I recently saw a “trick” with Dynamics 365 that I thought was quite cool. So, I decided to document it in a blog post. This must be a reasonably common scenario! Our sales team want to purge the system of some old contacts. They were given a spreadsheet listing all the existing data. And people marked the ones that needed to be deleted. Great! But how do I easily remove these contacts from our… Continue Reading Neil...

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Unified Routing – Preferred Agent Routing
Sep03

Unified Routing – Preferred Agent Routing

A new feature is coming to the Unified Routing feature found in Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 Customer Service app …. It will allow us to route work items to agents based on a contact having one or more preferred resources. I will describe this new feature in this post. The use case for this feature is that you may have one or more agents that frequently look after a particular agent. Meaning of… Continue Reading Neil...

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D365PPUG Birmingham – September 2022
Aug19

D365PPUG Birmingham – September 2022

At the Birmingham HQ of the Dynamics 365 and Power Platform user group (D365PPUG) we are busy planning our next face to face event. If you haven’t registered yet I suggest you do so soon. You can register on meetup here … https://www.meetup.com/d365ppug/events/287568717/ Our next event will be on 8th September 2022, kicking off at 6:30pm. Not convinced yet! Maybe you have questions like… Continue Reading Neil...

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Customer Service Workspace – Enhanced Interface
Aug18

Customer Service Workspace – Enhanced Interface

Microsoft’s Customer Service Workspace provides a user interface for Dynamics 365 tailored to scenarios often found in contract centres. Meaning agents can jump from conversation to conversation in sessions and use the productivity panel to quickly resolve customer queries. It is already a great interface! But Microsoft plan to enhance it with the 2022 Wave 2 release of Dynamics 365. In this… Continue Reading Neil...

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Unified Routing – Sentiment Predictions
Aug11

Unified Routing – Sentiment Predictions

Within Microsoft’s Unified Routing for Dynamics 365 we can route work items using AI based sentiment predictions. Say you detect that a customer is really unhappy when starting a conversation in Omnichannel for Customer Service … with this feature you could route the customer to a specific queue possibly staffed by agents who are the most able to handle difficult conversations! I believe… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Search – Canvas App for Custom Search
Jul11

Omnichannel for Customer Search – Canvas App for Custom Search

Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service gives us many of the contact centre features we require out of the box. But in all projects “extra” requirements will surface that need a custom approach. In this blog post and video, I will discuss how we can customize the customer service workspace interface using canvas apps. In my projects I have often seen two requirements which need thought… Continue Reading...

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Customer Service Workspace – Presence Issue
Jun15

Customer Service Workspace – Presence Issue

Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service is fantastic … but if like me you have had a problem with the agent presence in the Customer Service Workspace app just spinning and spinning you might have a problem to resolve! When we load the customer service workspace app the first thing that happens is the agent’s presence is set. Whilst this happens, we see spinning timer. But occasionally… Continue Reading Neil...

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D365PPUG Birmingham – Speaker Announcement June 22nd
Jun15

D365PPUG Birmingham – Speaker Announcement June 22nd

Have you registered for our Dynamics 365 and Power Platform user group event on 22nd June in Birmingham? If not, I suggest you register ASAP. Our next Birmingham Dynamics 365 & Power Platform User Group meeting will be on Wednesday 26th Feb 2020 from 6:30 pm until 9:00 pm. Save this date in your diary! The Wesleyan has once again kindly agreed to host our event at Colmore Circus, Queensway,… Continue Reading Neil...

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D365PPUG Birmingham – Announcements
Jun11

D365PPUG Birmingham – Announcements

At the Birmingham division of “Dynamics 365 and Power Platform User Group” (D365PPUG) we are busy planning our first to face to face event since before COVID changed everything. Plus, we have several changes to our user group and also things are evolving at a national level. Read on for details … Our next meeting will be on June 22nd. Like our previous meetings we are lucky to be able to… Continue Reading Neil...

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Unified Routing – Custom Assignment Rules
Jun10

Unified Routing – Custom Assignment Rules

Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service makes use of Unified Routing to allocate (assign) work items to agents. Typically, once a conversation or record is routed to a queue, we use either “Highest capacity” or “Round Robin” logic to assign work items to the next available agent. But we can also create custom assignment methods to handle more complex scenarios, in this post I will explain…...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Emergency Situations
May20

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Emergency Situations

I have recently been helping a company in Texas implement Microsoft’s new Omnichannel voice channel. They presented me with an “interesting” requirement … as call centers in Texas may be located in tornado alley! Meaning they might need to suddenly leave as a twister is due. This got me thinking as to be able to quickly alert customers that you have closed due to an emergency might be a… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – IVR BOT Skills Based Routing
May19

Omnichannel for Customer Service – IVR BOT Skills Based Routing

In this blog post I hope to describe how you can setup an IVR BOT for Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service voice channel. And how the BOT can question the customer on their needs then trigger skills-based routing to ensure the best agent answers the query. I may also mention a few “tricks / tips” I have applied in my IVR BOT setup. There are several parts to this process … IVR BOT… Continue Reading Neil...

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D365PPUG Birmingham Meeting – June 22nd 2022
May16

D365PPUG Birmingham Meeting – June 22nd 2022

AT LAST … we are back with a Dynamics 365 and Power Platform face to face event in Birmingham.Our next Birmingham Dynamics 365 & Power Platform User Group meeting will be on Wednesday 26th Feb 2020 from 6:30 pm until 9:00 pm. Save this date in your diary! The Wesleyan has once again kindly agreed to host our event at Colmore Circus, Queensway, Birmingham, B4 6AR. This is next to Snow Hill… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Interruptible IVR BOTs
May14

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Interruptible IVR BOTs

Within Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service app with the voice channel we can use a Power Virtual Agent as an IVR BOT. These are powerful, but I have found that as the BOT makes statements or asks questions customer can skip ahead. This can be useful but sometimes we want to ensure the customer hears certain messages in full. In this post I will explain how we can control when a BOT… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Conversation Categories
May12

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Conversation Categories

With Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service I recently had a requirement to create one or more categories for each conversation. The idea being that agents could categorize conversations to support various reporting requirements later down the line. In some scenarios the case table is used extensively. If so, I normally turn to that to understand what type of queries were logged from… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voice channel overflow
Apr27

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voice channel overflow

Microsoft’s Omnichannel voice channel for Dynamics 365 gives us great capabilities for contact centres. In this post I will consider what might happen if we have large numbers of customers waiting in a queue. I am sure every contact centre manager will tell you that at times they may suffer from “excessive” calls. Meaning at some point we will want “overflow” logic to kick in to govern how to…...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voice IVR BOTS
Apr08

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voice IVR BOTS

I have been experimenting with using a Power Virtual Agent as an IVR within Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service. In this post I will explain my findings so far. Prerequisites Obviously, you will need Omnichannel for Customer service installed and your voice channel configured! But beyond that there are some extensions that need to be installed before you can make use of the full… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Outbound Voice Calling
Apr05

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Outbound Voice Calling

I recently gave a demo of the new voice channel within Dynamics 365’s Omnichannel for Customer Service app. In that post I covered the basics of inbound calling. This time I will explain how to setup and make outbound calls. Many contact centres will require outbound calling. Often the requirement will simply involve an agent manually starting a call to a customer. I guess it is this simple… Continue Reading Neil...

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Power Automate Cloud Flows – Format Choices and more
Mar12

Power Automate Cloud Flows – Format Choices and more

Recently I needed to show the text of a choices field in a post created by a Cloud Flow. Meaning I needed to return the actual text of the choice field rather than the value. In this video I demonstrate how I achieved this. Continue Reading Neil Parkhurst’s Article on their blog Power Automate Cloud Flows – Format Choices and more Recently I needed to show the text of a choices field in a post created by a Cloud Flow....

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Dynamics 365 Real-time Marketing – My first look
Mar01

Dynamics 365 Real-time Marketing – My first look

I have recently been asked to review the new real-time marketing feature. I have therefore been busy testing its capabilities and comparing real-time marketing and outbound marketing. This post will include my initial findings and thoughts. And at the end of this post, I will try and give a summary of the pros / cons of real-time marketing compared to the features we already have in Dynamics… Continue Reading Neil...

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D365PPUG Birmingham – Feb Event Video
Feb21

D365PPUG Birmingham – Feb Event Video

During Feb’s Birmingham user group event Mike Chappell gave an informative presentation around Synapse Link. Warning: Mike did suffer some demo gremlins. Afterwards he found out he was just not being patient enough. Goes to prove all good things come to those who wait! Anyway, Mike gave a great demo that many people have asked to be able to watch again. So please enjoy this video … Continue Reading Neil Parkhurst’s Article...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voice Channel
Feb09

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Voice Channel

I am so excited to have recently started to use the new 1st party voice channel Microsoft have made available for the Omnichannel for Customer Service app. We can now enable voice calls for inbound and outbound scenarios directly in Dynamics 365. When we couple this with the agent productivity and AI features baked into Omnichannel for Customer Service I think Microsoft really do have a unique… Continue Reading Neil...

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Customer Service Workspace – Macro to open an email based on template
Feb09

Customer Service Workspace – Macro to open an email based on template

Recently a customer of mine needed to have an agent script in their customer service workspace that opens an email using a template. I will explain how I achieved this in this blog post. Hopefully you know we can have agent scripts in the customer service workspace within Dynamics 365. And also I hope you know we can call a macro from an agent script. As in this post I will focus on the steps… Continue Reading Neil...

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App Profile Manager – Known issue when importing custom app profiles
Feb05

App Profile Manager – Known issue when importing custom app profiles

Have you been having problems in Dynamics 365 moving app profiles for your customer service workspace (CSW) from instances to instances using solution??? If so then this blog post might be for you! I have migrated a simple app profile from my sandbox to my production instance. The solution imported fine. But when I try and open the newly imported app profile, I get an error message that… Continue Reading Neil Parkhurst’s...

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Customer Service Workspace – Marco to create, save and link a case
Jan31

Customer Service Workspace – Marco to create, save and link a case

In Microsoft’s Customer Service Workspace App we can use a combination of agent scripts and macros to create automations that can aid agent productivity. In this post I will explain one example of how these might be used to create a case. Note: This information is aimed at Microsoft’s multisession experiences within Dynamics 365. Specifically meaning their Omnichannel for Customer Service App… Continue Reading Neil...

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Dynamics 365 User Group Event – February 2022
Jan24

Dynamics 365 User Group Event – February 2022

We are current busy planning our next Dynamics 365 user group event. Why not join us in February? Our next exciting Dynamics 365 Birmingham User Group meeting will be taking place on Wednesday16th Feb at 5:30pm (GMT), and we would love to have you along! We hope to see our local friends. But being a virtual event, EVERYONE will be very welcome …. Register now! To register on meetup.com …… Continue Reading Neil Parkhurst’s...

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How many “ticks” until your opportunity closes?
Jan13

How many “ticks” until your opportunity closes?

I recently had a requirement to show the number of days before an opportunity was due to close, this turned out to be slightly more complex than it first sounded. So, I thought I’d create a quick blog post to explain how I achieved this requirement. The challenge was to work out the number of days from “now” until the estimated close date. (Obviously a moving target!) I initially thought I… Continue Reading...

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Teams Chats inside Dynamics 365
Dec10

Teams Chats inside Dynamics 365

Dynamics 365 now includes several Teams collaboration options, one being the ability to enable chats directly inside Dynamics 365. In this video I demo how to use and setup this new feature. Currently Teams chats inside Dynamics 365 is a preview feature, so we may expect a few rough edges which will be ironed out before Microsoft complete the general release. But in my tests, I have found most… Continue Reading Neil...

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Dynamics 365 Customer Service SLAs and Cloud Flows
Nov11

Dynamics 365 Customer Service SLAs and Cloud Flows

Within Dynamics 365 we can use SLAs in the customer service app. Each SLA item can trigger a Power Automate Cloud Flow to complete any actions we wish to implement when a warning, failure, or success status is reached. This is great but I’ve found maintaining the Flows can become cumbersome. In this post I will explain an alternative approach. The Problem Each SLA can have multiple SLA items…. Continue Reading Neil...

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Dynamics 365 & Power Platform User Group – “Birmingham” Event
Nov04

Dynamics 365 & Power Platform User Group – “Birmingham” Event

Register now …. D365PPUG Birmingham – Wednesday 17th November 2021 5:30pm | Meetup It feels like ages since our last Birmingham user group event. Sorry about that summer break seems to have run into Autumn! Anyway, we are back with a free evening of exciting Dynamics 365 / Power Platform content on 17th November 2021. At 5:30pm. (GMT) This event is hosted by the Birmingham team, but it is a… Continue Reading Neil...

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View Records shared with an “Access Team”
Oct31

View Records shared with an “Access Team”

I had a really simple requirement the other day but it took me time to work out the solution! So I thought I would describe my challenge and the solution …. in an attempt to help others. In this post I will explain how to create a view of records shared with from an access team. Before I show creating a view to see all opportunities shared with me from access teams …. I thought I should… Continue Reading Neil Parkhurst’s...

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JavaScript and Business Rules
Oct19

JavaScript and Business Rules

I haven’t blogged about JavaScript or code changes for some time! Probably because in Microsoft Dynamics 365 I mainly use a low code approach these days. But today I had a small challenge with some code and thought the solution I found might be useful to others ….. my challenge was that my business rules weren’t being triggered after a field had been changed using JavaScript. I guess this… Continue Reading Neil...

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Unified Routing without Omnichannel!
Oct15

Unified Routing without Omnichannel!

I have recently written a few blog posts which describe some of the features of Unified Routing with Dynamics 365. In the main those posts have focused on scenarios connected with Omnichannel for Customer Service but in this post I will explore using Unified Routing with “just” Dynamics 365 Customer Service. As we should be mindful that Unified Routing is a “stand alone” feature that can be… Continue...

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MB-230: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service – Omnichannel Record Routing
Oct02

MB-230: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service – Omnichannel Record Routing

I am currently revising for the MB-230 exam. This exam is for Microsoft Dynamics 365 and covers all aspects of customer service. As I revise I plan to publish blog posts that collectively will become a complete revision guide for anyone embarking on the same journey as me. In this post I will describe the record routing options of Omnichannel for Customer Service. You can see an extract from… Continue Reading Neil...

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MB-230: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service – Omnichannel Agent Experience
Sep27

MB-230: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service – Omnichannel Agent Experience

I am currently revising for the MB-230 exam. This exam is for Microsoft Dynamics 365 and covers all aspects of customer service. As I revise I plan to publish blog posts that collectively will become a complete revision guide for anyone embarking on the same journey as me. In this post I will describe the agent experience within Omnichannel for Customer Service. You can see an extract from the… Continue Reading Neil...

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MB210: Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales – Playbooks
Sep16

MB210: Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales – Playbooks

I am currently preparing for my renewal of the MB 210 exam. I noticed that Playbooks have been included in the skills measured and I haven’t previously created a revision guide for them. Hence this post! Below you can see an extract from the current skills measured statement for the MB 210 exam. We can see that playbooks are mentioned in the configure processes section. What are Playbooks?<br… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Use Machine Learning to Route Cases
Sep11

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Use Machine Learning to Route Cases

Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service can make use of the Unified Routing option to intelligently route items to agents. In this post I will show how I configured the ability to route cases to agents using machine learning. Commonly organising will want to ensure they offer the best possible customer service in an efficient and timely manner. This often involves ensuring any cases are… Continue Reading Neil...

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Omnichannel for Customer Service – Pass pre-chat survey details to Virtual Agent
Aug20

Omnichannel for Customer Service – Pass pre-chat survey details to Virtual Agent

We can integrate Microsoft’s Omnichannel for Customer Service with Power Virtual Agents. This is a great but what if you want the “BOT” to respond to the customer in context? Say by commenting on data entered in a pre-chat survey. In this post I will explain how to pass context values to the Power Virtual Agent. In my Live chat workstream I have already configured a pre-conversation survey… Continue Reading...

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MB-230: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service – Omnichannel Overview
Aug04

MB-230: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service – Omnichannel Overview

I am currently revising for the MB-230 exam. This exam is for Microsoft Dynamics 365 and covers all aspects of customer service. As I revise I plan to publish blog posts that collectively will become a complete revision guide for anyone embarking on the same journey as me. In this post I will begin to discuss Omnichannel for Customer Service. You can see an extract from the current skills… Continue Reading Neil Parkhurst’s...

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