The Power of ‘Copy Fields’ in Microsoft Dynamics 365 and How Visionary Rules Can Make You More Effective (Without Coding!)

As a Dynamics 365 System Admin or Consultant, how do you deal with field values that are constantly changing? If an Account address changes, does the new address show up on the Contact form? What about the price of an item on a Product Master Form? Are you currently able to copy that price onto a Quote or Order form, add on a sales tax, and calculate the shipping costs? What happens if the price changes weekly?

In today’s business climate, companies need to do everything in their power to be as efficient as possible. You want your Sales or Customer Service Reps to have the most relevant and up-to-date information at their fingertips, not clicking around their CRM system trying to find the info they need, or worse, relying on sticky notes or cheat sheets.

Visionary Rules can make it easy to ensure that fields with changing values always contain the most current information – even when that information appears on different but related forms. This functionality would take an experienced Consultant many hours to code. But with this simple Dynamics PowerApp, you simply input your requirements into Visionary Rules using your own field names and JavaScript is generated and properly placed for you.

BOOM! Your data is now up to date across the system and can be acted upon – whether it’s calculating a sales tax or a commission, showing or hiding a Tab or Section based on that data, or setting off a Workflow.  This gives your employees the advantage they need to solve a customer issue quickly, close a sale, and get their job done.

Visionary Rules ‘Copy Fields’ action

The possibilities are limitless. Visionary Rules “Copy Fields” functionality allows you to copy an unlimited number of Field Values from a “Parent” Entity onto a “Child” Entity.  You can then use that data in other rules, for example: “IF Account Type = Customer Then Require Contact Email”.

Can’t I do this in Microsoft Dynamics Business Rules?

Microsoft Business Rules offers a similar-sounding, yet subtly different, solution with Mapping. In Microsoft Dynamics 365, it is possible to define mapping rules out-of-the box that will pass a parent’s field value to the child.

But here’s the key difference: you can only do that ONCE – when you first create the child record.

If that Field value changes going forward, it will not automatically update the Child Field. If there is a possibility that the Account Field value you mapped may change, then you need some very complicated JavaScript code to keep that mapped value on the Contact record in sync. (Or, Visionary Rules.)

What about D365 Quick View forms?

Quick View Forms in Dynamics 365 can SHOW data from a “Parent” entity (show Account fields on the Contact form by displaying an Account Quick View form) which is fine for some scenarios.  But if you want to USE that Account data on the Contact form, in calculations, or to hide/show/require fields, keep reading.

Typical Scenario 1: Synching Account & Contact Forms

Let’s say you want to sync the address between the Account Form and the Contact Form. Using the Visionary Rules “Copy Field” function (and others), you could copy the field values, compare them to the value on the Contact, and display a notification message alerting the user that the Account address differs from the Contact.  You can put the user in control, and update the out-of-date data upon their request.

Typical Scenario 2: Product Sales Information

You can extend that concept of copying/synching from a Parent Field to a Child Field to other scenarios, involving any related entities.  You could copy field values from the Product Master Form to an Opportunity Details Form, or a Quote or Order Form, or to an Invoice Form, and then use that data in calculations.

The resulting workflow: the user simply selects the product and a Visionary Rule can then copy the price, weight, or other important shipping or fulfillment details into fields on the form, saving time and improving accuracy.  This sort of customization would take an experienced consultant hours to code, and can be done by a D365 System Admin in minutes with Visionary Rules.

Typical Scenario 3: Phone Call Form

The Phone Call Form can really shine using advanced Copy Fields functions and can save a lot of time and improve data quality.

You can set up a series of rules to automatically fill in the phone number on the Phone Call Form depending on in the Person or Company this Phone Call record is linked to. If the user selects that it is regarding an ‘Account’, then the system will fill in the phone number with the Main Number in the Account Form. If they select ‘Contact’, the system will fill in the field with the Mobile Phone, Home Phone, and Business Phone Numbers of the Contact.

By copying phone numbers to the form, you can improve data quality. The user can verify those numbers and change them right on the Phone Call form, instead of having to open the Contact form to make that change.  Using a simple OOB workflow or Power Automate script, you could then update the Contact’s record with the revised phone number entered on the Phone Call form.

Typical Scenario 4: Rental Market Rates

Let’s say you have a company that rents out apartments. Your Apartment Rate Table would store all the information – how many bedrooms, monthly rent, etc.  Using Microsoft Dynamics 365 Quick View Form you can see that information on your form, but you can’t take any action on them.

Visionary Rules takes it a step further and allows you to use those values in calculations. You may want to add your commission to the monthly rent. You could also change the visibility of the fields on the form (ex. If the monthly rent is over $1,000, require a credit check and show the Credit Tab)

Conclusion

On any Dynamics 365 CE/CRM form that has a lookup field, you can copy any field values from that lookup’s record to your form, and then ACT on that information.

In short, Copy Fields is one of the more useful action types in our vast arsenal of ways you can modify Microsoft Dynamics 365 without coding.

With Visionary Rules, you save money on consulting costs, save time on solving problems, and you can empower yourself to build the CRM system you’ve always wanted! #nocode

Easy to use interface with Visionary Rules - no coding Javascript

Visionary Rules is available on Microsoft AppSource and on Visionaryrules.com

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