Thursday, May 2, 2013

Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Maps are a great complement to CRM systems, and can help you visualize data in exciting new ways.  Over the years, InfoStrat has integrated Microsoft Dynamics CRM with GIS including ArcGIS (ESRI) and Bing Maps (Microsoft).

One of our first GIS integrations was to show cases from constituent management on a map using "pushpins."  This solution allows users to see a map of open cases and filter by search criteria.

Field inspection is a great scenario for mapping.    Inspections use maps to navigate to inspection sites, and can present inspection results in maps.

Mashups of data from multiple sources, including CRM, can be useful.   This visualizations can include business graphs integrated with maps.

Interactive video conferencing often uses maps to communicate critical information.   The virtual meeting experience can be enhanced with Microsoft Kinect as a 3D controller.

Modern GIS data and images may be used for scientific and historical research.

The extensibility of Dynamics CRM makes it possible for developers to include maps in the Dynamics CRM user interface and also to make CRM data available as a web service for consumption by GIS.  By default, Dynamics CRM includes Bing Maps integration, but administrators can disable the Bing Maps or replace them with ESRI ArcGIS, Google Maps or others.

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