New Navigation for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM navigation menu is changing!

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015 Update 1 (released Q2 2015) includes a new navigation interface and controls to improve the user experience.

Also, for the first time CRM enables database administrators to edit the colour scheme of their database.

In CRM 2015 (released December 2014) Microsoft added a global search box and advanced find to the navigation bar:

CRM 2015 Update 1 which rolls out in Spring '15 features additional enhancements to Dynamics navigation:

Here's a diagram of the revised navigation bar:

To highlight five of these updates:

Navigation Tiles

Since the release of CRM 2013 users have needed to scroll through horizontal menus in the navigation bar before selecting a tile.

If numerous options exist within a menu group this can prove a laborious process.

That's especially so in the marketing section when Dynamics CRM is integration with a marketing automation platform such as dotmailer or Click Dimensions which adds many extra entities to the CRM navigation menu.

In CRM 2015 Update 1 the user interface is made easier to navigate.

Individual tiles are shrunk so they all appear in a single drop down panel and are arranged in categories. That's sure to prove a time-saving enhancement that involves no more scrolling!

Area Switch Module

This icon replaces the current Microsoft Dynamics CRM logo to switch between the main navigation sections, e.g. workspace, sales & settings.

In addition to this cosmetic change the major benefit is that users can now switch between these sections in a single click without having to wait for the page to reload.

For example, switch from a workplace view to the expanded the CRM marketing menu seamlessly.

Most Recently Used Items

Last seen in CRM 2011, a Most Recently Used icon is added to the navigation menu in Update 1 (Spring 15).

Users can pin frequently accessed CRM records and views and click this button to bring up the list which also features recently viewed records.

CRM Themes

Update 1 for CRM 2015 offers a new option to personalize the database colour scheme using a new theme entity.

This includes replacing the Microsoft Dynamics CRM text with your logo and creating CRM colour themes to bring the appearance of Microsoft Dynamics in line with your own organisation branding:

A customised logo can be uploaded as part of a bespoke CRM theme to define colours for the navigation bar, header, mouse hove, selected links and more items.

CRM themes are not designed to dramatically alter the CRM user interface and this release does not include capability to customise CRM navigation menu icons. Due to the colour of existing icons it means that certain navigation items must retain dark or light colours.

New themes can be built from scratch, or adapt a sample record. Individual themes can be previewed before publishing:

Read more about CRM Themes

Like all the updates in the Spring '15 release this will be an Online only release for Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

The new navigation and other 2015 Update 1 enhancements will be rolled up in an Autumn 2015 release for on-premise users.

Form Navigation

Click the new form navigation button to shortcut to a tab within the form.

It's an ideal solultion for improved navigation of longer forms by avoiding repeated scrolling to find the appropriate section.

Demonstrating the new CRM navigation