About escalated menus and Lookups.

About escalated menus and Lookups.

There are times when you wish you had the chance to have a way to customize dropdown menus on a cascading fashion; for example, drop down menu number 1 including a country and drop down menu number 2 showing states that apply to that country.

Although Microsoft Dynamics CRM out of the box does not provide you with that ability on Drop Down menus, you can make it happen with Lookups.

I have implemented this solution for multiple customers, some of those going as deep as 4 levels of escalation (I.E. Government -> Health Care -> Distributor -> E.R. Supplies), filtering the applicable options along the way.

Here is an example with Countries and States. On the first image you can see a list of countries available:


 

On this second image, you can see the unfiltered list of States (the entire list shows if a country is not selected first – Notice 243 States on the list from 7 different countries):


 

However, when a country is selected first, the second lookup will only show the states that apply to that country; on this image, you can see the list of states displayed when USA is selected as the country:


 

Here is how it's done:

  1. Create a new entity to work as the main entity or level 1; in this case, our Level 1 entity is country:


     

  2. Create the Level 2 entity, which will be filtered by what is chosen at the Level 1 entity; in this case, our Level 2 entity is State:


    As you can see, this entity is also basic but the difference between Level 1 and Level 2, is a Lookup placed on the Level 2 entity form to Level 1.

     

    When data is added to these entities; save all information for Level 1 first, and then create Level 2 data pointing to its Level 1 "connection" or "parent"; here is an example for the State of Georgia:


     

  3. Once all the data has been saved for all Levels; navigate to the form of the entity for which you want the escalating lookups to be available. In this case, we are using "Accounts".
  4. Place a Lookup on the Account form for Level 1 entity. Do not change any properties for this lookup.
  5. Place another Lookup on the Account form for Level 2 entity and click on Change Properties:


     

  6. On the Change Properties dialog box, change the default view for Related Records filtering and select Level 1 entity as your filter as shown here:


     

  7. If you want to prevent users from being able to select records at Level 2 that are not related to Level 1, uncheck the "Allow users to turn off filter" checkbox.
  8. Save and Publish.

Note: Repeat these steps for any additional Levels.

If you would like more information regarding this functionality, please contact us at: info@zero2tencrm.com


Microsoft Dynamics CRM Blog