Cross Platform MVP activities: my foray into CRM at the CRM UG UK event

I went to the CRM UK User Group event today, and wow – what a blast! To know more about the CRM User Group for the UK, please visit here.

It was a great example of what a community event can be. The CRM MVPs are welcoming, friendly, generous with their time and expertise, hard working and – most of all – ‘other’ community oriented, not ‘self’ oriented. What is an MVP? According to Microsoft, Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals, or MVPs are exceptional community leaders who actively share their high-quality, real-world deep technical expertise with the community and with Microsoft. They are committed to helping others get the most out of their experience with Microsoft products and technologies.

I love the fact that some of the MVPs in the UK are reaching out to other product groups. For me personally, I hope I started some new friendships today, and I hope to keep the conversation going with the CRM community. I’ve come to the conclusion that we all might speak different technological languages, but, by sharing our insights and community spirit, we help to make the community more ‘sharing’ and open. I really enjoyed my conversations with the CRM folks, and I learned a lot too. It’s true that you have to give and take in the community, and I will cherish today.

My session over-ran by half an hour, which was particularly naughty because I only had an hour session. I can honestly say I’ve never over-run like that before. However, the ‘over-run’ was actually delivering value for the attendees, because they fired a lot of their data type of questions at me. I was glad to have help from Peter Baddeley to answer some of the more intricate aspects of SharePoint (he’s a guru, by the way!) and after a while, Adam Vero was kind enough to step in the room and to help me out with some of the CRM questions that I couldn’t answer, and I dealt with a lot of the ‘data’ type questions from the SQL Server and Power BI point of view. The truth is, a lot of data issues are multi-faceted and the session-turned-panel segment was extremely useful for everyone, including me!

I’d also like to thank the CRM User Group members. The audience were very friendly and welcoming to me, and they appreciated my PowerBI session. What did I show? Firstly, I wasn’t sure at what level to pitch the session. This was the first time I’d ever spoken to a CRM audience before, and I was more nervous than usual. Would they be technical? Would the be sales, marketing or service oriented? Were they business users? Or, worst of all, would I end up with a mix?

If you want to see some of the slides, I stayed with the staple Partner pack of PowerBI material that you can download from here. I didn’t use them all – just a few of the architectural overview slides. I also used some of the CRM information, which you can download, if you are a fully paid up partner. I knew that this material would be ‘safe’ because there was a slide dedicated to the PowerBI and Dynamic CRM connector. I’ve posted the main slides for you below:
Power BI and CRM  The technical architecture overview can be found below:Power BI Technical Architecture

If you are interested in knowing more, please take a look at the Power BI community website.

If you need more information on the actual connector setup between Power BI and CRM Online, then please visit this website here which also mentions the Power BI and Dynamics CRM Content Pack. There is also a Dynamics Marketing Content Pack, which is worth a look.

And here is a picture of me, looking very small next to the lectern.
CRMUGUK Jen Stirrup
I walked alone, loving the sun, walking the earth… and enjoying simplicity in life and data. I hope that you do, too.

Love, always,


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