How a successful implementation of Microsoft Dynamics 365 can help you (and your team) avoid information overload
Information overload is the excess of information available to you when aiming to complete a task or make a decision. This excessive information impedes the decision-making process, resulting in a poor (or even no) decision being made. There are many ways that a successful implementation of Microsoft Dynamics 365 CE can help you avoid this horrible situation.
Quick and simple capture of client communications
Perhaps the most effective way is that successful use of Microsoft Dynamics 365 easily allows all communications with a client or prospect to be easily captured – and in the case of emails, tasks and appointments, directly from Microsoft Outlook – into the timeline of Dynamics 365. This means that it is no longer necessary to copy (or bcc) lots of people on emails. Instead, those people can retrieve the information that they require when they require it. I like to refer to this as information pull not push. The searching within Microsoft Dynamics 365 also makes it easier to find a relevant communication that it would often be from within a user’s email.
Effective storage of client communications
Additionally, if the communication activities are linked to the lowest possible row (record in the old lingo!) within Microsoft Dynamics 365, it becomes even easier. For example, activities should be linked to the opportunity, or case or invoice etc to which they pertain, rather than the account. This means that a user can easily get to a small set of communications that relate to the problem in hand.
Efficient User Interface
Another way that Microsoft Dynamics 365 can reduce information overload is by having a user interface that works for each group of users. Different groups of users have different user interfaces so they see what they need to see rather than each user wading through a complex screen full of unnecessary-to-them and often badly arranged fields – which is commoner than you might think.
Another way of ensuring that our users avoid information overload is to create views that present a subset of information to the user without them having to work out which aspects are appropriate. As in many areas of life, the eighty twenty rule serves us well here. Eighty percent of a user’s needs will be met by twenty percent of the possible changes that we can make. It is these changes that deliver the best value and should be implemented first.
When we are designing aspects of the user interface, we should remember who we are serving. A common mistake that I see is that members of the IT team, who are rarely daily users of Microsoft Dynamics 365, design an interface that is easy for them to support, or that meets their perception of the needs of users. This is avoided by involving the users in the design and more importantly by conducting through user acceptance testing.
Future facing analysis
One of the causes of these poor user interfaces is that during project design, the current system was replicated into Dynamics 365. This means that whatever existed prior to the Dynamics 365 project was simply lifted and shifted into Dynamics 365 – complete with all its inefficiencies and idiosyncrasies.
This can be avoided by instead of simply lifting and shifting, analyse what you have and optimise it for Dynamics, and for your business going forward.
All of these ideas are made significantly easier by ensuring that you have both deep and broad understanding of Microsoft Dynamics 365 CE within your team.
Are you experiencing information overload?
Learn how to avoid information overload through successful Microsoft Dynamics 365 implementation.
Or, connect with Gill and her team at Opsis, via LinkedIn, and consult with her today.