New Query Rule for Related Entities in Dynamics 365 Advanced Find

They are familiar questions but Microsoft Dynamics 365 has previously struggled to quickly help users find answers:

  • How many leads don't have scheduled activities?
  • Which accounts don't have any contacts associated?
  • What active cases don't have activities?
  • How many of my accounts don't have an opportunity? 

Let's focus on the first one. 

Marketing teams need to know their leads are being followed up and nurtured so it will be useful to understand if there are any active leads that don't have a scheduled activity. 

Without a reminder task there is greater risk of a lead being forgotten and falling between gaps in the sales process so it will be useful to have view in D365 to monitor this.

In earlier versions, an advanced query for leads will reference activities as a related entity but the problem was this would be set-up to find only data that contained this criteria.

Various lines could be added to the query but nonetheless it wouldn't change the fact that Dynamics would only look for leads with activities in line with these rules.

What about active leads where there isn't a scheduled activity?

Without this type of query rule built in to the advanced find interface, users would be forced to look at an add-on option, or build a marketing list using rules in multiple steps to find the information they needed. Alternatively, a developer might look to customise the FetchXML to fit this purposes.

That's why it is good to see that D365 v9 provides a better solution that will help users to find matching records in response to the above queries and similar examples.

To illustrate this, the same query is run in v9 using the new rule.

As the example below shows, Dynamics no longer restricts the query for related entities to 'contains data':

The advanced find can now be set to 'Does Not Contain Data' for related activities which means that open leads will be found that are owned by the current user where there isn't any activity associated.

This query has immediately identified several matching lead records that don't have any activity:

This represents a much improved solution to quickly resolve these type of queries but there remains some limitations in the v9 release.

That's because when the 'Does Not Contain Data' rule is set for the related entity it removes and blocks any additional filters at this level:

In this example, it might also be useful to search for leads that do not have any activities scheduled in the next 60 days but as the screenshot illustrates above, no further lines can be added to filter the activities entity beyond the blanket 'Does Not Contain Data'. 

Overall, this is a very positive development and we are looking forward to seeing further improvements to this process in upcoming releases.

Please get in touch if you want to learn more about this, or any of the latest Dynamics 365 v9 updates. 

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