Dual Write for Dynamics CE and the Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations Global Address Book

By Michael Robideau | April 15, 2022

By now your organization has overturned enough stones to give the green light to implement Dual Write for Dynamics CE to Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations (F&O) integration.

This means real-time data is here! The only problem is the existing Dynamics Customer Engagement environment has already been highly customized when it pertains to contact and address information.

How the Global Address Book can Help You Centralize Your Dynamics Customer Engagement Contact Information

D365 Finance and Operations relies heavily on what they call the Global Address Book to manage these items with out-of-box functionality.

The Finance and Operations Global Address Book is defined in a Microsoft article as:

“The global address book is a centralized repository for master data that must be stored for all internal and external persons and organizations that the company interacts with. The data that is associated with party records includes the party's name, address, and contact information.”

Dynamics Customer Engagement does not have a centralized repository for similar bits of data and no centralized repository like in Finance and Operations Dynamics Customer Engagement has a parent and child hierarchy where addresses may belong to a parent Contact and a Contact may identify an Account as its own parent.  The Account may have its own addresses and contact information independent of child Contact records.

At this juncture, your team must decide how much “out-of-the-box” Dual Write functionality should be implemented between the Customer Engagement and Finance and Operations systems. All three systems have their own foundation of designed features they feel are best for the immediate consumer. All systems are highly customizable, but all come with a cost of development and long-term maintenance.

When you install Dual Write into Customer Engagement, the Global Address Book is one of the many options you can consider.  Installing the Global Address Book solution for Dual Write provides business logic, supplemental tables, relationships, core validation, and master form enhancements that will support Finance and Operations' Global Address Book’s needs by way of Dual Write.

We recommend installing, configuring, and adopting data and processes in Customer Engagement to adhere to the Finance and Operations Global Address Book. The recommendation is relatively simple:

  • We understand that you don’t want to rebuild an ERP system into a CE system
  • However, we also understand that common denominators are great for configuring integrations.

This means you spend less time transforming data and requiring business logic for integrations, which is the beauty of Dual Write in its basic form. Dual Write is intended to be a real-time sync between environments.  As Global Address Book provides out of box functionality as a foundation for Finance and Operations, Dual Write, and Customer Engagement you end up spending less time customizing and maintaining the other two systems.

As a starting point in its most basic form is it easier to customize and maintain 3 systems away from out-of-box foundations and features? Or is it better to adopt one to accept the common denominator of the other two?  Can today’s process adapt with some customizations and data migration?

As always, we recommend installing these features into a sandbox environment first so you can test how close everything is to suiting your company’s needs.  This is where you can get a feel for the general scope and subsequent effort required to move forward.

Please click here if you want to download Dual Write.

Questions?

If you have any questions about this or other topics please reach out to us. 

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