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Dynamics 365 CE Transition to New Unified Interface: What You Need to Know

By Art Small | August 15, 2019

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement (formerly known as Dynamics CRM) has been in use by customers since December 2003. Over the years, the Web Interface, sometimes called the classic interface, has definitely improved:

Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface

Here at Alithya, we have worked with our customers (and an internal user ourselves) with this UI every step of the way through the years.

In 2017, Microsoft announced a new User Interface was on the way.  Once details were available in late 2017, we were able to give you a glimpse behind the curtains. This interface is faster, the same interface used for mobile devices, and constitutes a significant improvement in the background technology, based on modern capabilities, making better experiences available for users. This new technology allows Microsoft to continue to enhance it over the coming years.  In the short time this updated user interface has been active, Microsoft has already enhanced it as we described for you in November 2018.  Microsoft is also promising more enhancements this fall too. 

Since this new UI was released, Microsoft has advised of and maintained that eventually the classic interface would be deprecated.  This is to save us, the users, the overhead cost of maintaining two separate UIs.  While Microsoft still hasn’t OFFICIALLY announced a deprecated date, we have seen one heavily hinted this month by more than one Microsoft MVP.  It may happen as early as October 2019, but this has not been confirmed by Microsoft.

There are many advantages to switching to the User Interface:

- Still familiar: while different, the UI is not radically different… just enhanced! The layout of the forms is still the same and the views are also similar.

Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface 2


- Many web apps are available: the UI allows multiple separate web apps (also called hubs) to be made for different business purposes. Each can be configured to cater to the audience using it. New web apps may be made too.

Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface 3


- New charts and dashboard look/feel: The charts and ways in which you can interact with data in a dashboard now have new options.

Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface 4


- Navigation: The navigation is collapsible, but still available for one-click navigation as needed.


Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface 5


- Timeline: Posts, activities and notes and other activity window features (including OneNote) are now collapsed into a single pane for easier review of all content.

Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface 6


- Business Process Flow docking: The BPF is now collapsed by default to save screen real estate, but it may be docked to use it similarly to how it was used before.

Art Small Blog - New Unified Interface 7


- Screen scaling: The fundamental coding of the UI, as referenced above, is modern and responds to all screen sizes enabling a single UI to be used for Web, Tablet, and Smartphones.

While there are these and other advantages, there are still some capabilities not written into the new UI including the Admin user experience.  With these and other reasons in mind, some organizations are not yet ready to switch over to the new UI.  This is understandable.  At the very least, we encourage all D365 CE organizations to become educated on what the new UI is, how it would work for your organization, and effort to change to the new UI.  For some organizations, it may only require a few hours, but for others, it could be a great deal more of an investment. 

For those that would like to consider the new UI now and learn more about it… or go ahead and make the switch, we are here to help you!  Click on the button below to contact us today. 


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About Art Small

Art combines his knowledge of CRM’s capabilities with his process-driven approach to help each customer plan on the right amount of effort to make CRM fit their organizational needs. He has spent over 8 years with the Microsoft Dynamics CRM (now Dynamics 365) product and provides tailored and non-tailored demonstrations of the product to his customers.

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