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Release Notes

The Open-Source OroCRM for Commerce and the OroPlatform

OroCRM 2.0.0-rc.1

In this release of OroCRM we focused primarily on improvements of our Sales pipeline. We improved multi-channel versatility of Opportunities as a general sales tracking tool by making them available for all types of customers. We also made possible to record sales in multiple currencies by adding multi-currency support to Enterprise Edition.

On the more down-to-earth level we introduced a portfolio of safety minded features that will allow administrators to secure access to the system with the variety of tools. Workflow capabilities got a major expansion—multiple parallel workflows are now a reality.

Finally, in the anticipation of upcoming growth of Oro product family, we have prepared OroCRM to seamlessly integrate with OroCommerce when it is released later in January.

Sales pipeline management

Enable Leads and Opportunities as features

Leads and Opportunities became the first application of the new OroPlatform feature management capability. Enabling or disabling them in your instance no longer requires manipulations with the Sales channel—from now on it is as easy as checking a box in the system configuration. When enabled, each feature will bring in not just the menu item with the grid of records, but also all the necessary paraphernalia: workflows, reports, dashboard widgets, etc.

Note that Sales channel remains available in the system, but now its functions are reduced to enabling Business Customers and controlling their grouping at the Account view. Also, Channel relation is no longer considered necessary for both Leads and Opportunities and will not appear in new 2.0 installations. If you migrate from 1.10/1.12 EE, the field and relation will remain but will be converted into extended relation, so you can easily remove it in entity management.

Create Opportunities for any customers, or for Accounts directly

We have made Opportunities truly universal sales tracking tool by removing the restriction of a mandatory Business customer relation. From now on, Opportunities can be related to any customer type—Magento customers, Commerce customers, or any other type of customers that might be introduced by third-party extensions.

Opportunities can also be related directly to Accounts. This is the most basic and most natural setup of OroCRM if you don’t need to track multi-channel sales, or just want to keep things simple. And you can always enable the additional complexity of multiple customer channels later when the need arises.

The functionality of Account lookup control at Opportunity create/edit form has changed accordingly:

  • You can search for an existing account not just by its name, but also by names, emails, and phones of its contacts and customers, so you can find the account quicker and more conveniently
  • Customers can also be searched for by emails and phones in addition to the name
  • Customers that belong to the same account will be grouped together in the lookup, and the account will be displayed on top. All records feature entity or integration icons for better clarity
  • “Type-in” feature now allows to create Accounts only, and the action is correspondingly labeled
  • New customer records should be created via the Plus button, that gets a dropdown selector if you have more than one customer type

Note to developers: Please read the Sales Customer Relations section in our documentation to learn how to introduce your own customer types that will properly work with Opportunities.

Known issues:

  • Account field has been temporarily removed from Opportunity grid. We will re-introduce it as soon as possible in the future maintenance releases.
  • Data template for import & export of both Opportunities and Leads will contain all fields of all customer types that are enabled in the organization so if you have many different customer types, it might become hard to manipulate. Again, we will do our best to improve this experience asap.

Opportunity lists at customer views, 360° view at Account

You can relate your sales opportunities to any customer now, so it is only natural that you will be able to see the full history of deals with the particular customer at their view. And, staying true to our 360° Account view promise, we’ve added the complete list of all related Opportunities to the Account view as well.

Create Opportunity from Account and customer views

The final point in growing ubiquity and convenience of Opportunity management is the ability to create it from any customer view, or from Account view. The action is available under More Actions dropdown, and the Account field will be prefilled with the Account or customer you’re creating it from.

See relevant Opportunities at Opportunity view

This feature allows the sales reps to check the history of the deals with the particular account directly on the Opportunity view, so the crucial pieces of past wisdom and experience that might make the difference between a successful sale and the failed one become more readily available.

This feature is optional and can be turned on or off in the Opportunity section of CRM configuration. It’s enabled by default.

OroCommerce integration

Seamless single-application experience

The integration with OroCommerce will provide seamless experience as both applications will work as a single one. All combinations are supported—it will be possible to install OroCommerce over existing OroCRM instance; add OroCRM to existing OroCommerce instance if you were using its beta; or finally install both applications as a single package.

Either way, integration between OroCRM and OroCommerce will yield you a single application with a combined menu and shared organization backbone: users, business units, roles, and organizations if you’re an Enterprise customer.

Accounts with Lifetime sales values for Commerce customers

When OroCommerce is integrated with OroCRM, Commerce customers are treated in the same way as other customers—Magento or Business. Their data and business transactions are displayed at the Account view, and their activities are added to the Account’s activity list. Finally, the LTSV metric will be calculated for Commerce customers based on the orders placed, and

When a customer is created or edited at backend, the Account can be specified directly. When a new customer is self-registering at frontend, a new Account of the same name will be created automatically, so addition of CRM to Commerce won’t affect customer experience.

If you install CRM over existing Commerce instance, new Accounts will be automatically created for all existing customers. Note that you can specify the strategy of Account creation under System configuration > Integrations > CRM and Commerce. Two options exist: create a single account for the entire customer hierarchy, or create a separate account for every customer regardless of their parent-child relations with other customers. You can change this option at any time, and customers will be re-related to accounts accordingly.

Track & forecast Commerce sales using opportunities

As already explained above, CRM Opportunities can now be related to any customer type, including Commerce customers. This allows Commerce sales representatives to track their ongoing deals and forecast future revenues for all sales that are or will be conducted via the Commerce website by relating the Opportunity to the respective Commerce customer record.

Advanced application security

Password strength configuration

This feature allows administrators to impose mandatory complexity demands to users’ passwords. It is possible to configure the following restrictions:

  • Minimum length (8 characters by default)
  • Require password to contain a number
  • Require a lowercase letter
  • Require an uppercase letter
  • Require a special character

User statuses

As part of this feature we’ve introduced two sets of user statuses to better reflect the current state of the user’s account.

Status for state of the user account. This is a system status that determines general validity of the user’s account and usually corresponds to state of user’s employment within an organization. It has two options: Enabled (used to be Active) and Disabled (formerly Inactive) and can be manipulated directly at User edit page or via Enable User/Disable User actions.

Authentication status provides information of the validity and applicability of user’s login credentials. In Community Edition it has two options: Active and Password reset, and in Enterprise Edition a third Locked option is added. This status cannot be manipulated directly and is changed as a result of administrator’s or user’s own actions, such as resetting the password or getting locked after unsuccessful logins.

Impersonate a user

This feature allows external developers or administrators to log into system under someone else’s account using oro:user:impersonate console command. Impersonation is the best way to examine the system behavior when you’re trying to reproduce an issue reported by the user.

All changes made by impersonated users are marked accordingly in the Data audit, allowing you to clearly identify possible abuse of this feature.

Workflow capabilities

Workflows got a major revision in this version of OroCRM.

Multiple active workflows for an entity

We have lifted one of the most basic restrictions for our workflows, allowing you to have multiple active workflows for the same entity at the same time. The use cases for multiple workflows are endless: alternative sales workflows that the sales representative can choose when they decide how to deal with an opportunity; parallel sales follow-up and order fulfillment workflows for a placed order; you name it.

New design for workflow widget at record views

As it is now possible to have multiple active workflows on the same record, we had to redesign the workflow widget, so it can display states and let you run transitions of multiple workflows at once.

Mark workflows as exclusive

Two or more workflows can be marked as mutually exclusive so once one workflow from the exclusive group is started, others can no longer be run. This feature serves the use case of multiple alternative flows, e.g. sales flows: You have many to choose from, but once you’ve made your choice, you no longer need the alternatives.

Please note: so far, this feature can only be utilized by developers.

Manage user permissions to run individual workflows

Multiple active workflows for different tasks is a great function, but it brings additional complexity which many of the system users won’t really need. For example, if you have a sales follow-up flow and a support flow for your Magento order, chances are, the support representative don’t even need to know about the sales rep’s work, and the sales rep could be aware about the state of problem resolution, but should not intervene into it.

In order to fine-tune user’s access to workflows we have added workflow permissions to Role management interface, allowing you to configure:

  • Visibility of the entire workflow and its steps/current step
  • Ability to run workflow transactions
  • Ability to run every individual workflow transaction

    Workflow translations

    All workflow labels are now translatable to other languages similarly to other system interface, allowing you to create even better localizations for your users from different countries.

    Other workflow engine capabilities

    Please check OroPlatform release notes to learn more, as these capabilities are more technical and developer-oriented, and cannot be managed from the UI at the moment.

    Translations and localizations

    This feature allows system administrators to manage OroCRM translations to different languages from within the system interfaces.

    Define localizations

    Define custom localizations which can then be applied to OroCRM in the system, organization, or even personal configuration. The localization is a combination of language and formatting rules (locale).

    Upload your own language packs

    Language management has been moved from system configuration to separate interface under System > Localization > Languages. Here you can enable and disable system languages, download language packs for translation and upload your own language packs if you don’t want to depend on Crowdin translation or are not satisfied with it.

    Manually translate UI elements

    Translations can be manually applied to every UI element that is marked as translatable, such as workflow transition label or workflow step name. These translations are added under System > Localization > Translations.

Other features and improvements

Navigation and general UX

Application menu configuration

Application menu can now be managed and configured from the UI. You can adjust the menu for the entire application, or create personal menus for every user if you want to.

Show/hide filters at data views

Filters on data views (grids and the Kanban board) can now be hidden to save screen space. Click the funnel button in grid controls to toggle them on and off. Note that applied filters will still be visible above the grid, so you can identify which records you’re supposed to see.

Import & export execution in the background

Import and export of data will no longer block you from using the system—it will now be performed in the background, so you can continue working even when you are importing very large files with millions of records. Once the file is imported or exported, you will receive an email notification with report on import results or a link to download the exported file.

Emails

Enable or disable user emails as a feature

All email-related functionality can now be easily disabled if you are not using it and don’t want it to get in the way. A simple checkbox under System > Configuration > Email configuration will disable My emails page, user and system mailboxes, email activities, email-related widgets, and all email-related settings in both user and system/organization configuration. You can turn off emails for the entire system, or a specific organization.

Note that this feature does not affect transactional emails, such as notifications about password reset, or invites to calendar events. Email notifications will stay in place, and email templates will still be available for editing. Email marketing campaigns also won’t be affected.

Configure SMTP provider for system or organization

SMTP provider for transactional, marketing, and other emails sent from OroCRM can now be configured explicitly in email configuration. You can choose a popular provider, such as Mailgun or Sendgrid, or set up your custom server.

System SMTP provider will also be used for outgoing user emails if their personal mailboxes weren’t configured. However, when set up, user’s mailbox SMTP settings will override the system SMTP provider.

Turn off HTML purifier for email templates

You can now create rich HTML templates in OroCRM by simply pasting the HTML code prepared by designer into template editor. To make sure no tags are stripped, turn off HTML purifier in Email configuration settings for your system or organization.

Limit email attachment size

Email attachment size can now be limited in the system configuration (set to 50 MB by default) to reduce DB growth and adverse effects on application performance.

Other activities

Recurring calendar events

Recurring calendar events are no longer read-only—now you can create and edit them straight in the OroCRM calendar. Multiple recurrence patterns are supported; all events in the series can be managed on their own, creating exceptions when necessary; Outlook integration has full support for events created and edited in OroCRM.

Non-OroCRM invitees to events

We have also expanded functionality of invitations—now you can invite everyone to your events, not just OroCRM users. Invitation is done by email address, and an external invitee will also receive a RSVP notification—obviously, without the link to OroCRM’s calendar.

Close tasks directly from the activity list

Task status is now clearly displayed on its row in the activity list, letting you to know what’s going on at a glance. And you can start or stop the task progress, or mark it as complete straight from the row actions—all task workflow transitions are just one click away, so you no longer have to navigate back and forth between the task and its context record.

Task contexts are shown in the grid

Task contexts are now displayed in the Tasks grid, allowing you to quickly identify what this particular task was about. All contexts are clickable, so you can easily navigate to them.

Call duration now supports decimal points

Tags

Tag taxonomies and colors

Tags can now be grouped in taxonomies, and every taxonomy can be assigned with a distinctive color, to let you clearly identify different group of tags that might serve different purposes.

This feature has been contributed by our community member Samuel Denis-D’Ortun (@sadortun) – thank you!

Marketing

Enable or disable marketing features

Marketing-related features, such as Marketing lists, Campaigns, and Web Tracking can now be turned on and off in system configuration.

Marketing as a separate package

Marketing-related OroCRM bundles: MarketingListBundle, CampaignBundle, and TrackingBundle have been combined in a separate package that was moved to its own repository. The package is included into OroCRM by default, but can be removed if necessary. Note that our marketing extensions—MailChimp and dotmailer integrations, and Abandoned Cart Campaign extension are dependent on this package, so they won’t work if it’s been removed from the application.