31 March 2011

mSketch: Dynamics CRM 2011 Designer's Tool - Using Microsoft Expression Blend with Sketchflow

I have been asked to test the Magnetism mSketch application - a mockup tool for Microsoft Dynamics CRM using Microsoft Expression Blend with Sketchflow.

That is something I were looking for - to have a "CRM template" on Sketchflow, I'm so pleased to see it - well done Magnetism guys!

Imagine how quickly a CRM designer can draw a CRM screen quickly without doing the CRM form customisations, collect feedbacks from team/customer and get the design signed off quickly:

The designer opens the Microsoft Expression Blend 4 with Sketchflow, create a new Silverlight Sketchflow Application project , then drag-and-drop CRM elements on several screens, publish the design on to SharePoint site for the team/customer review, team/customer write comments/feedbacks directly onto the design, designer make changes accordingly, export the design into Microsoft Word document directly, email customer and get it signed off.

The Microsoft Expression Blend 4 with Sketchflow can do all above except the "CRM elements" - but where to get it? The mSketch helps here!

The current version of mSketch provides a Microsoft Expression project, you need to open the project first and then create your Silverlight Sketchflow Application project, and then copy/paste the CRM elements from 7 screens that comes with mSketch.

Here is the mSketch user guideline.

I hope in the next version, it can provide a installation package. Once installed, create a CRM mockup library in the Assets list of the Microsoft Expression Blend. The CRM mockup library provide the following elements for designers to allow quickly drag-and-drop, i.e.:

  • Global Icon Elements
  • Top Ribbon Bar Elements
  • Left Navigation Panel Elements
  • Entity Left Navigation Panel Elements
  • Entity Form Elements
  • Entity View Elements
  • Field Control Elements(textbox, lookup, picklist etc.)

mSketch is a handy tool for CRM designer and architectures.

Moving forward, I also hope the tool can provide more interactive actions with developers, i.e.: perform more CRM Form functions in Sketchflow.

09 March 2011

MVP Summit 2011

It's great to meet CRM MVPs in Bellevue, WA last week.
Great thanks to the CRM product group and communities, congratulate to the successful launch of CRM 2011 and CRM 2011 Online!

Great product for the clouding solutions!