This post will walk you through adding an additional column to the system view “Active Contacts” in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013. The process is fairly simple, albeit long. If you are unfamiliar with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013, head over to the Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 site. To get started with this example, log in to your MS Dynamics CRM 2013 front-end using an account that has the necessary permissions to make these changes (Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 security is beyond the scope of this post). To display the “Active Contacts” view with the current configuration, before making changes, perform the following steps:

1. Select SALES from the main menu:

Select Sales from main menu

2. Select CONTACTS from the SALES menu:

Select Contacts from Sales menu

3. This brings you to the default view of Contacts. I’ve set up Dynamics CRM to default to the “Active Contacts” view instead of “My Active Contacts.” Making that change is beyond the scope of this article, but check back often, as I may publish that tip as well at a future date. Here is a brief snapshot of the Active Contacts view:

Default display of Active Contacts view

To this view we will be adding a “LinkedIn Profile” column, but you can add any available column. Here’s the process for adding a column to the view:

1. Select SETTINGS from the main Dynamics CRM 2013 menu:

Select Settings from main menu

2. Select CUSTOMIZATIONS from the SETTINGS menu:

Select Customizations from Settings menu

3. Now, click on “Customize the System”

Customize the System option

4. Under Components/Entities, click on Contact:

Components/Entities

5. Under Components/Entities/Contact, select Views:

Select Views

6. As the above image shows, be sure to select the system view named “Active Contacts.” You could do this for any of the views listed. Now, Edit the view:

Click on Edit

7. You should now be in a view editor window. On the right side of the window, under Common Tasks, click on Add Columns:

Add Columns

8. This brings up a list of available columns to choose from. Pick the one you would like to add and click OK. For this example, I am adding a column called LinkedIn Profile:

Available Columns

9. You should now be back in the view editor window. You should also see the newly added column:

New column in view

10. Before navigating away, you must first save your work:

Save and Close

11. After clicking on “Save and Close,” you should be back in the window listing the available views for the Contact entity. IMPORTANT!!! In order for your changes to be seen by users of the CRM front-end, you MUST Publish your customization! If you don’t, you will be able to see the newly added column in the view editor window, but not in the view itself.

Publish your customization

While Dynamics CRM 2013 is publishing your customizations, you should see the following message:

Publishing

12. Now verify that the newly added column shows up in the Active Contacts view:

New Column is published

That’s it! I struggled with this for a while until I realized that the changes must be published before they’re viewable via the front-end. I hope this brief example is of utility to you!

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