CRM Online UI Frustrations

3 Sep 2013 2-minute read Al Eardley
Dynamics 365

This only applies to the 2011 interface, the CRM 2013 interface is COMPLETELY different.

I am new to customising CRM online and have come to it since the December 2012 Service Update that included the ‘Updated Forms’. The interface that the ‘Updated Forms’ provide is much more in keeping with the 2013 generation of SharePoint and Office 365 products and would therefore be my first choice for a general CRM UI style.

With this in mind, I started some simple configuration of fields and forms without issue. When I started implementing some slightly more sophisticated changes that require JavaScript a change took place in the interface. At first the it was not apparent as changing between the ‘Updated Forms’ and the ‘Classic Forms’ is a regular occurrence in CRM Online. The regular change in UI is not an experience that I find pleasurable and I consider it to be a sign of a rushed release of functionality that is probably putting more people off the idea of CRM Online than it is encouraging them to use it.

As it turns out the ‘Updated Forms’ are in fact classified as ‘Read-Only’ forms with controls on the page to allow the in-place editing of specific data. This type of form is not the same as an ‘Editing’ form which is what the ‘Classic Forms’ are. There are significant restrictions imposed on the ‘Read-Only’ forms because of the use of the in-place controls for editing:

They do not support the use of JavaScript events OnLoad, OnChange and OnSave.

As a result of this restriction, when any of the three JavaScript events are used in an ‘Updated Form’ CRM Online will revert to displaying the ‘Classic Form’.

This adds to the confusion in the interface and in addition prevents the usage of one of the key features that the ‘Updated Forms’ enable, namely the ‘Sales Process’.

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