A lot of sales teams are frustrated with how lead conversion works in Microsoft Dynamics 365. Starting with CRM 2013, whenever a user clicks the “Qualify” button, an Opportunity is always created. We were hoping to see a fix in later versions but, sadly, the process still works the same.
Microsoft has recently made updates that provide the above mentioned solution! If you are on a recent version of Dynamics 365 for Sales, check out this document from Microsoft to see if you can use this recently re-introduced feature: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/sales-enterprise/define-lead-qualification-experience
If the linked solution doesn't work for you, then read-on for more information.
How can an organization reconfigure Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales to allow sales to qualify a lead without creating an opportunity? This article offers 6 options.
The qualify process built into Microsoft Dynamics 365 assumes that the lead conversion process always ends either in disqualification, or in the creation of an opportunity. But most businesses have lead conversion scenarios that don’t end in the creation of an opportunity. Consider the following:
There are many more scenarios like the two above.
How can the sales department fix CRM to work the way that they do, instead of being forced to work the way CRM does? Here are a number of options ranging from simple to sophisticated.
I get the feeling that this is the option that Microsoft wants businesses to take. But after numerous conversations with clients, I’ve seen this work about 0% of the time. With that said, here are some thoughts:
You can tell users to delete opportunities if they aren’t needed. Not a great option either. Dynamics 365 for Sales is supposed to work for users – not create more work for users to clean up the messes created by CRM. And, if you create/convert a lot of leads, this could be painful.
This is the first viable option, in my opinion. You can give users the ability to set a lead to qualified without creating an opportunity. Here’s a glimpse of a workflow to do that.
Train your users to set the Existing Account and Existing Contact field and then run the workflow when they have a lead that is a duplicate account or contact and they don’t want to create an opportunity. It will set the record to qualified and be done with it.
This approach is helpful, but has limitations. It only works if the account and contact are both duplicates (you can get around this by training users to go to the Existing Account/Contact fields, click the lookup, then click the new button – which opens the Quick Create form and maps relevant data from the lead). And it requires a different process on the part of the user depending on the disposition of the lead, which they have to remember and can easily forget and end up creating duplicate records.
More to remember, more to do … not ideal, but it’s a reasonable no code, no cost solution (particularly if you have a pretty tech savvy group of users).
Let’s see if we can build on that to do a little better…
To remove some of the room for error in the above suggestion, you can move the Existing Account/Contact fields to the last stage of the lead business process flow, and make them required. Before CRM will allow the user to qualify the record, these two fields will now need to be filled in. This forces the user to either link it to the existing records, or create those records, before they qualify the lead..
Couple this with #3, above, and you have a somewhat more fool-proof process. Still with no code.
The downside is that you’re forcing the user to take a few extra steps to always create those two records (even if they already exist). Versus the built-in qualification process that will create the account and contact for the user automatically. And the user still has to remember to either use the native qualify button (if they want to create an opportunity) or your workflow (if they just want to set the lead to qualified).
You can make it a bit more intuitive by adding your workflow to a custom ribbon button. An example picture is below. This drop-down has an option for the classical qualify (I’ve called it “Qualify and Create”) and for your workflow (“Qualify Only”).
Or you can use the solution developed by C5 Insight for just this purpose. When the user clicks the “Qualify” button, they are always presented with a dialog box that includes the option to create and name an opportunity as in the image below.
It’s a step that Microsoft was trying to eliminate, but most businesses want to have it back. Contact C5 Insight if you need assistance developing a solution that meets the above requriements.
Other solutions are possible. You could create a custom dialog for lead conversion (and call that from a custom button). And here is a clever solution for cases where you may want to associate a Microsoft 365 CRM lead with an already existing opportunity.
In any event, avoid changing your business model to fit your CRM solution. Instead, focus on making your sales team more productive – even if it does require a few extra hours of your time.
For more information about C5 Insight or this blog entry, please Contact Us.
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