How to Automate Dynamics 365: Use Cases and Tutorials

Maria Homann

Automation Expert

With the development of the Covid Crisis, there is an increasing pressure on businesses to do more with less. For businesses using Microsoft Dynamics 365, there are a range of opportunities for lowering costs, increasing efficiency, and reducing risk with automation.

In this blog post we outline a number of automation possibilities within testing and robotic process automation (RPA) and showcase how some of the most basic processes can be automated with Leapwork’s no-code automation platform, which is a tool that aligns with Dynamics 365 applications, fits into the CI/CD pipeline, and lets teams test continuously.

Processes that can be automated in Dynamics 365

There are countless opportunities for automating processes that involve Dynamics 365 - more than we can list here. The common denominators for good automation cases are processes that are repetitive and predictable in nature.

More specifically, tasks that involve fetching data in one place and migrating it to another, and that are repeated hundreds or thousands of times, are, as a rule of thumb, better performed by a robot than by a human. This is because robots can complete these tasks at higher speed, with higher accuracy, and with lower risk of error than humans.

Below we have listed some of the most common use cases for Dynamics 365 automation, that match these criteria:

  • Invoice automation: This includes creating invoices by pulling data from sources and combining them into an invoice for sending, or reading invoices and paying them. Invoice automation is perhaps one of the most sought after uses for automation in Dynamics 365, and is possible with the right automation tool.
  • Customer service and support automation: Automation can be used for fast retrieval of customer data, immediate response to customer queries and support tickets, and more. This is not about replacing human interaction with robots (which often leads to miscommunication and frustration), but about eliminating the highly repetitive tasks that drive little-to-no value for the customer.
  • Automation for budgeting, income and expense tracking, and reporting: Many tasks in Finance involve highly repetitive processes entailing data, typically from excel. Automation can not only help ensure that data is moved between excel and finance and accounting systems in Dynamics 365, it can also ensure that data is synchronized across platforms outside Dynamics 365, and that teams always have the most updated data at hand. 
  • Automation of HR tasks: Human resources is more about personal interaction than it is about mundane computer work. For this reason, HR can benefit immensely from introducing automation as a resource to eliminate repetitive tasks such as scanning through applications, updating employee information in systems, managing onboarding, and other repetitive administrative tasks that occur in and between Dynamics 365 applications.
  • Test automation: This is a major field in and of itself. You can learn more about testing Dynamics 365 with a codeless automation tool here.

These processes can be further broken down into fragments:

  • Extracting data from emails or voice calls
  • Transferring data between Dynamics 365 and external systems
  • Interpreting and manipulating data to complete standard transactions such as processing returns
  • Updating or syncing data between Dynamics 365 and legacy systems
  • Generating custom reports from Dynamics 365
  • Finding information faster in Dynamics 365
  • Integrating Dynamics 365 with other business applications

For every automated process, there is a set of actions that take place. These often include opening applications, logging into systems, filing in forms, finding items in lists, and pulling data from external sources.

In the following tutorial series, we show how each of these actions are performed in Leapwork’s no-code automation platform. To see a video tutorial, simply click through to each individual tutorial in our learning center.

You can also watch our on-demand webinar about automating Dynamics 365 to get a more general introduction to Dynamics 365 automation.

How to automate Dynamics 365 login

The login process is perhaps the most basic of processes that take place in Dynamics 365. 

When performing a process in a production environment, you may need to use just one login to complete a series of actions, but when testing, it can be useful to verify features and updates as different users and roles.

This tutorial covers how to automate the login process using a Dynamics 365 login component that you can download to your local Leapwork installation.

Watch tutorial

How to automate forms in Dynamics 365

There are various reasons why it can be useful to automate the process of filling in forms.

Examples include creating contacts in Dynamics 365 marketing and sales platforms, or, from a testing perspective, verifying that contacts are created correctly.

This tutorial shows how you can automate forms in Dynamics 365 consisting of different field types, including plain text fields, drop-down menus, look-up fields, date fields, and two-option fields. Specifically, you will learn how to automatically create new contact data in the Dynamics 365 sales application.

Watch tutorial

Automatically find items in Dynamics 365 lists

There are numerous lists and views in the Dynamics 365 applications, and having a method for finding items automatically within those can save significant time.

This tutorial shows how this can be made possible by Leapwork’s locator strategies and reusable components. In Leapwork, reusable components are called sub-flows. Sub-flows can be reused across any number of automation flows, which lowers maintenance workload and speeds up the automation setup process.

Watch tutorial

Data-Driven Automation of Dynamics 365

Data-driven testing is key to creating scalable automation.

This tutorial covers how to automatically fill in forms in Dynamics 365 using an external data source to create multiple data entries in no time. 

The tutorial also covers how to use a hierarchy of small sub-flows to simplify both the design and maintenance of your Dynamics 365 automation. Finally, we show how you can dynamically verify that processes in Dynamics 365 are performed correctly. 

Watch tutorial

Ready to start automating? Start a trial of Leapwork today or watch our on-demand webinar about Automating Dynamics 365 with Leapwork’s no-code automation platform.

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