Dynamics 365 Unified Interface Enables A Consistent Experience
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Published by Michael Springer, on Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Since last October, new Dynamics 365 subscribers have been introduced to an updated look for the web application by default. Current subscribers can leverage it but have a grace period to transition to it. 

What is this new look? Well actually, it’s not brand new since the mobile apps and Outlook Add-In have been using it for some time.

It’s called the Unified Interface and has also been referred to as the “Modern” user interface (“UI”), in contrast to the “Classic UI” that currently is the default for organizations that have used Dynamics 365 for a while. This is probably the most significant change in the UI since the transition to 2013 that moved the navigation from the left side to the top of the screen (spoiler alert: the navigation has been relocated back to the left side).

Dynamics 365 Navigation

The new interface is intuitive and shouldn’t be a tremendous learning curve for users to get used to—especially those that have used the tablet app. The reason we’re seeing this interface is because it provides users and developers alike one way of working with and viewing the application across all platforms.

When you view the Unified Interface, you’ll notice the navigation changes right away. The main navigation is along the left side of the screen and can be expanded or collapsed. When you open a record, instead of needing to scroll to the bottom of a page, you can click on tabs to move around. The sections and fields on the forms are distinguished by subtle lines and shade differences. Also, the viewports are now larger- to allow more space for toolbars. The breadcrumb trail at the top is now for tracking back to places rather than finding related records.

Some of the most prominent aspects of the new interface include:

Timeline Control – The timeline now enhances collaboration among team members because it provides a quick way to see the entire communication thread. This feature, which had become very “busy” and had more tabs than the form itself, now displays posts, activities, and notes all in a single thread. The timeline can be filtered and sorted based on dates and is generally a bit more configurable than the prior version.

Reference Panel– The reference panel is another form configuration option to better handle the organization of sub-grids and quick view forms which previously have always created awkward, jumbled sections on forms. They’re a great way for users to get work done without having to click out of the screen because of the contextual information in the view.

Business Process Flow Enhancements – The business process flow has also been improved. You can now dock the business process stage on your screen, making it easier to stay focused on the task at hand. This feature is especially helpful when the stage of the business process flow has many complex steps to complete. Business process flows also look different. They no longer default to expanded with green coloring but are now orange and collapsed by default. With the new UI, each stage can now be dropped down to a to-do list (and docked to the right).

Business Process Flow

Dynamics 365 Business Process Flow

Reflow – A major pet peeve for a lot of users previously has been field label length. Seeing cut-off descriptions has never been popular. Now, unreadable elements are no longer an issue since they wrap and continue so the reader sees the entire description. The app also scales by reflowing components on the screen. More space will be available to display information. The increase in space is due to the responsive design of the app adapting to your screen size. In addition to labels, sections also now adjust to their position.

If you’re currently using Dynamics 365, it’s time to plan your transition to the updated Unified Interface. The PSC team is ready to help. We’ll help you optimize the value of the transition and minimize the impact on your end users to gain quicker adoption. Call us to review your current state and the new interface.


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Categories: dynamics crm,Dynamics,Dynamics 365

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