Cobalt’s products employ the use of wizards or guided processes for data entry in CRM when the data structures involved in a process are complicated enough or business rules need to be enforced to ensure data integrity. These wizards provide a more robust user experience than the built in CRM Dialogs but also have the unique characteristic of being able to be reused as xRM Portal processes.
Recently, I was tweaking the User Experience for some of the Cobalt xRM wizards and decided to highlight the Event Registration wizard as an example of the power of these processes. In CRM 2103 the wizard processes are launched from the action menu on a record or list view (same as Run Workflow and Start Dialog) or in CRM 2011 from the Ribbon. When a wizard is launched from a record it operates in the context of that record. So, in the case of the Event Registration wizard you can register a contact for a event by opening a contact’s record in CRM and clicking ‘Register for a Meeting’
Inside CRM this will bring up a list of upcoming events in a new window. You can select the event for which you want to register the contact and click the Select button to view the details of the Event before continuing through the registration process.
Once you’ve chosen to register for the event there are a number of different paths the wizard can take based on choices you make on subsequent pages including registering for activities and sessions for conferences or registering additional attendees or guests. Ultimately, the user will be brought to the registration summary page with a list of all their selections and the option to pay for the registration by credit card on the spot.
This functionality, apart from being accessible from the CRM back office application, is also available to registered portal users, with only slight variations in the flow, but all the same options and capabilities. So, whether a customer calls you to register for an event, mails in a paper application or chooses to register via the self-service portal the ability to track all of that information in CRM quickly and simply is available to all.