Walkthrough: Synchronizing Information Between Outlook and Microsoft Dynamics NAV
You can set up synchronization between Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Microsoft Outlook, so that information about meetings, to-dos, and contacts can be shared between team members and updated across the two products. For example, a salesperson working outside the office can create a new meeting in Outlook in her company's calendar, and then her manager in the corporate office can see that to-do in Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
The synchronization framework provides default mapping between the Microsoft Dynamics NAV contacts, salesperson, and to-dos, and Microsoft Outlook contacts, tasks, and meetings. You can synchronize the entities either manually or automatically at set intervals.
You can create new a salesperson contact in Outlook, but that contact will not be synchronized to Microsoft Dynamics NAV as a salesperson.
One of the strengths of the Microsoft Dynamics NAV Outlook synchronization feature is that it can be customized without adding code. It is fairly simple to add more fields in order to optimize synchronization.
The default setup contains mapping for five different Microsoft Dynamics NAV entities:
To-dos of type Meeting
Contacts of type Company type
Contacts of type Person type
To-dos of type blank or Phone
Companies might want to add more fields to this mapping. For more information, see the "Customizing Synchronization Fields" section in this walkthrough.
About This Walkthrough
This walkthrough illustrates the following tasks:
Creating a to-do, and synchronizing it with Outlook.
Handling a conflict between different data on the same record.
Customizing fields that are being synchronized.
A conflict will only appear if changes have been made in both applications after the last synchronization. Therefore, some steps in this walkthrough force a conflict so that you can practice solving it. In this case, you enter two different telephone numbers for the same contact, and then handle the conflict.
This walkthrough demonstrates tasks that are performed by the following user roles:
Account Manager, Michael
Sales Representative, David
So that you can quickly begin performing the following procedures, you will use your own Microsoft Dynamics NAV user settings and Outlook account, instead of setting up Michael and David as new users in the CRONUS International Ltd. database. See the "Prerequisites" section that follows for information about the required Outlook integration setup.
To complete this walkthrough, you will need:
Perform the steps in the walkthrough: Walkthrough: Setting Up Outlook Synchronization.
Ensure that web services are running.
In Microsoft Dynamics NAV, make sure that the following is true:
Outlook Integration is installed.
CRONUS International Ltd. demonstration database is installed.
Your name is added as a salesperson, with your name and email address defined exactly as they are in your Outlook profile.
Your name is assigned as a user to synchronization entities.
In Outlook, make sure that the following is true:
Microsoft Dynamics NAV Synchronization buttons are displayed in the Add-ins tab on the Outlook ribbon.
The connection between Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Outlook is working. To test the connection, choose the Settings button, and then on the Connection tab, choose Test Connection.
Michael is an account manager for CRONUS International Ltd. He works primarily in the CRONUS office, and uses Microsoft Dynamics NAV. His coworker, David, is a sales representative who works mainly in the field and uses Outlook to track contacts, tasks, and appointments. Because Michael and David share information, they synchronize their information regularly throughout the day. This enables Michael to set appointments for David, while also keeping track of David's activities in the field.
In this scenario, Michael creates an appointment for David to meet with an existing customer. When David synchronizes, he sees the meeting that Michael has created. He does not think that he can drive to the location in time, so that he moves the meeting to another day in his Outlook calendar. He synchronizes again and the changes are updated in Microsoft Dynamics NAV, so that Michael can track the change.
Michael attempts to call the contact, but the telephone number is incorrect because someone else has entered a new number in Outlook and not yet synchronized with Microsoft Dynamics NAV. Michael reviews the conflict details, determines that the problem is related to the telephone number, and resolves the conflict.
Michael also realizes that he has to add some additional fields to the entities that are synchronized. He adds the territory code fields as user-defined fields to the company contact information so that they will be displayed in both Outlook and Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
Performing a Synchronization
First, Michael sets an appointment for David to meet with a customer by creating a to-do in Microsoft Dynamics NAV, and then synchronizing with Outlook, so that the appointment is displayed on the team calendar.
To create a to-do and synchronize it with Outlook
In the Search box, enter Contacts, and then choose the related link.
In the Contacts list, select the contact card for A. Gibson's Law Firm, CT100006, and on the Home tab, in the Manage group, choose Edit.
On the contact card, on the General FastTab, change the Salesperson code to your initials.
On the Navigate tab, in the Contact group, choose To-dos.
On the Home tab, in the Process group, choose Create To-do.
In the Create To-do wizard, add the following information:
Set the to-do as type Meeting.
Add a short description, such as "discuss proposal."
Set the meeting for today and add a start time.
Choose the Next button. Your name is displayed as the To-do organizer, and A. Gibson's Law Firm as a required attendee.
Choose the Finish button.
In Microsoft Outlook, choose Calendar to open the calendar view, and then in the My Calendars list, open your Microsoft Dynamics NAV calendar.
On the Microsoft Dynamics NAV toolbar, choose the Synchronize button to activate synchronization.
The synchronization runs, and you can see the appointment that you created on the shared calendar.
David checks the synchronized calendar for Microsoft Dynamics NAV updates. He sees the appointment and adjusts the time to fix the conflict.
To change a meeting request in Microsoft Dynamics NAV and synchronize with Outlook
In your Outlook calendar, move the appointment created in Microsoft Dynamics NAV to another day, and then choose the Synchronize button to activate synchronization again.
Now, open Microsoft Dynamics NAV and locate the contact card for CT100006.
The Next To-do Date field lists the new date of the meeting. You can choose the date field to open the to-do list, and see the changes that you made to the appointment.
Handling a Synchronization Conflict
Michael decides to call the customer to let the customer know that David has made changes to the appointment. He finds that there is a conflict in the contact information, and troubleshoots the conflict. Although this scenario demonstrates how to solve the conflict manually, you can also set up synchronization to handle conflicts automatically. For more information, see How to: Set Up Synchronization Conflict Resolution Options.
To handle a conflict
In Outlook, choose the Settings button to open the Settings dialog box.
The Settings dialog box presents several options for resolving conflicts, including options to automatically replace Outlook items with Microsoft Dynamics NAV records, or to automatically replace Microsoft Dynamics NAV records with Outlook items.
Select the Resolve conflicts manually, and close the Settings dialog box.
In Microsoft Dynamics NAV, open the contact card for A. Gibson's Law Firm, CT100006, and add the telephone number 1234567.
Open Outlook and find the contact for A. Gibson's Law Firm.
Change the telephone number to 1224567, so that it differs from the number that you entered in Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
Choose the Synchronize button to activate the synchronization.
Choose the Troubleshooting button, and choose the Conflicts tab.
The conflict is listed here. You can either choose Show Outlook Item or Details to see more details about the conflict.
The Conflict Details dialog box displays a list of the fields that are mapped between the two entities. The conflict is listed in red, which enables you to see that the difference in the telephone number is creating the conflict.
Choose Replace Outlook Item, select the item from the list, and then choose the OK button.
Customizing Synchronization Fields
Because CRONUS has many foreign contacts and frequently uses the territory code, Michael decides to add this field to the synchronization mapping.
To add fields to the existing setup
Open Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
In the Search box, enter Outlook Synch Entities, and then choose the related link.
The Outlook Synch. Entity window contains the definition of the mapping between contacts in Microsoft Dynamics NAV and contacts in Microsoft Outlook.
In the Code field, select CONT_COMP. On the Home tab, in the Manage group, choose Edit.
All the fields that are mapped between the two programs are listed in this window. To add the requested field, add a line in this window and choose the fields that you want to include in the synchronization.
On the Navigate tab, in the Synch Entity group, choose Fields.
Choose New, and then select Field No. 15, Territory Code.
Because there are no comparable Outlook property to map this to, select the User Defined check box for the Territory Code field. Choose the OK button.
Because entries in the Change Log are used to identify changes in Microsoft Dynamics NAV, you must add this field to the change log as well.
On the Navigate tab, in the Sync. Entity group, choose Register in Change Log Setup. Choose the OK button.
Choose OK again in the dialog box that opens.
To make sure that the added territory code appears in Microsoft Outlook, you must create and synchronize a new contact. Changes in the synchronization setup are only shown for newly synchronized items.
In the Search box, enter Contact, and then choose the related link.
On the Home tab, in the New group, choose New, and create a new contact of the type Company.
Add a new customer name.
Expand the Foreign Trade FastTab, and then in the Territory Code field, select a territory code.
Choose the OK button.
Open Microsoft Outlook, and start synchronization.
When the synchronization is finished, in Microsoft Outlook, open the new contact that you created in Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
On the Contact tab, in the Show group, choose All fields and then select the User-defined fields in this item option.
Here, you can see that both the salesperson code and the territory code are included in the Outlook contact information.
Now that you have completed this walkthrough, you can establish synchronization entities and begin synchronizing between Outlook and your company's Microsoft Dynamics NAV implementation.