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Office 365 Groups

In this step, we will be introduced to Office 365 Groups, available with Dynamics 365, which provide an environment for collaboration with Office 365
In this step, we will be introduced to Office 365 Groups, available with Dynamics 365, which provide an environment for collaboration with Office 365 users who don’t use Dynamics 365.

Office 365 Groups, available with Dynamics 365, provide an environment for collaboration with Office 365 users who don’t use Dynamics 365.

For example, use Office 365 Groups when a sales team has a major opportunity requiring input from several people who don’t have access to Dynamics 365.

Office 365 Groups provide a single location to share documents, conversations, meetings, and notes. You can enable Office 365 Groups for any entity.

When looking at collaboration options you should consider Microsoft Teams integration with Dynamics 365 as a more modern collaboration experience.

A Venn diagram of Dynamics 365 and Office 365 Groups. In the intersection are logos to indicate Calendars, Folders, Mail, and Chat. Not within the intersection are the Dynamics 365 and Non-Dynamics 365 Users respectively.

Collaborate with people inside and outside of your Dynamics 365 organisation.

A table showing that Office 365 Groups enables shared conversations and meetings in Outlook, Shared documents in SharePoint, and shared OneNotes in OneNote for users who would otherwise not be able to collaborate.

Office 365 Groups in Dynamics 365

  • Allows group information to be surfaced in Dynamics 365 in the context of a record
  • Requires installation of Microsoft provided Dynamics 365 solution
  • Allows for auto-create of the group starting from Dynamics 365

Office 365 Groups Connector

  • All task activity for a record is sent to a new or existing Group
  • Configuration starts from Office 365 Outlook Web App
  • Office 365 has over 60+ other connectors that can be used to bring other data into the group view

Office 365 Requirements

The following are required to use Office 365 Groups with Dynamics 365:

  • Dynamics 365
    • This feature requires that you have an Office 365 subscription or a subscription to an online service such as SharePoint Online or Exchange Online.
    • For full Office 365 feature integration with Dynamics 365 (online) and Dynamics 365 (on-premises), you’ll need Office 365 Enterprise E3 or better. Skype for Business PSTN calling and conferencing requires Office 365 Enterprise E5. Other Office 365 plans are not supported.
  • Exchange Online
    • To use document storage with Office 365 Groups, you will need SharePoint Online and access to the group OneNote notebook.

Office 365 Installation

Office 365 Groups is a Dynamics 365 solution you provision from your Office 365 admin portal.

  1. Browse to the Office 365 admin centre and sign in using Office 365 Global administrator credentials.
  2. Click Admin centers > Dynamics 365.
  3. Click the Instances tab.
  4. Choose your instance, and then click Solutions.
  5. Select Office 365 Groups and then click Install.
  6. Review the terms of service and then click Install.

A screenshot of the Instances tab of the Dynamics 365 Administration Center, titled Manage your solutions. There is a list of Solution Names, with corresponding Versions, Available Until dates, and Status

Once installation of the solution has completed, you can configure Office 365 Groups.

Required Privileges

The security privilege, ISV Extensions, is required to use Office 365 Groups. You can add or remove this privilege from custom or default security roles to meet your business needs. If a user doesn’t have this privilege, they won’t be able to see the Office 365 Groups item in a record’s navigation menu.

  1. From https://admin.powerplatform.microsoft.com
  2. Go to Environments > Select Environment >Security.
  3. Click Security Roles.
  4. Choose the security role to check and then click the Customisation tab.
  5. In the Miscellaneous Privileges section, review the ISV Extensions privilege setting. If the security role doesn’t have the ISV Extensions privilege, select it to set it to Organisation.
  6. Click Save and Close.

Screenshot of Security Role: Salesperson screen on PowerApps back-end. The Option for ISV Extension is highlighted.

Office 365 Configuration

Once you provision Office 365 Groups, you can enable them for any entity. Security group membership is associated with the entity. You configure Office 365 Groups in Dynamics 365.

  1. In Dynamics 365 Classic click Settings > Office 365 Groups.
  2. On the Office 365 Groups Settings page, click Add entity and choose an entity from the list. Repeat this step for each entity you want to enable, including custom entities.
  3. Optionally, you can click Auto-create for an entity to have a new group automatically created when a new record for that entity is created. However, we recommend you choose this option only for entities that typically require large groups to collaborate.
  4. When you have added all the entities you want to enable for Office 365 Groups, click Publish All.
    All of your pending system customisations will be published, including those you may have saved but not published in another area.
  5. You’re now ready to use Office 365 Groups. A screenshot of the Dynamics 365 Office 365 Groups Integrations settings screen, choosing which entities to enable group integration for

Use the Office 365 Connectors for Groups

Use the Office 365 Connectors for Groups to connect new or existing Office 365 Groups with Dynamics 365 so the group is notified when new activities are posted. To set it up, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to your Office 365 Outlook.
  2. Create or choose an Office 365 Group.
  3. Click Connectors.
  4. Locate Dynamics 365, and then click Add.
  5. If you have access to more than one Dynamics 365 instance, choose which instance to connect to this Office 365 Group. If you only have access to one Dynamics 365 instance, this step will be skipped, and you will advance to the next step.
  6. Choose the Dynamics 365 record you want to connect this Office 365 Group to, and then click Save.
  7. Once connected, the Dynamics 365 connector shows up at the top of the connection list with a summary of connected records.
  8. To delete a connected record, click View, and then click Remove.
Note: the following about the Office 365 Connectors for Groups:
  • Only account, lead, and opportunity records are supported.
  • You can connect up to five records.
  • Only task type activities are sent to the group as connector cards.
  • The activity appears as a new conversation in a card format in the group.
  • The fields in the card shown in the group conversation are not customisable.
  • Nothing is required in Dynamics 365 to make the connector work.
  • For sensitive information, you should connect your Dynamics 365 record to a private group where only approved members can view contents.

View in Dynamics 365

From with Dynamics 365 open the record you want to access Groups on and selected related records. From the list select Office 365 Groups.

A screenshot of an account on Dynamics 365, with the Office 365 Groups tab in view

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