The Dynamics 365 July update has brought a lot of new features and improvements. Including the new Multi-Select option sets. The desire of many Dynamics 365 customizers has finally been answered. We will present you the new feature shortly within the Dynamics 365.
Option Fields in older versions of Dynamics
The functionality of the option set already exists since the 4.0 version of Dynamics CRM. Option sets were introduced at the time to limit the selection for the user and thus guarantee a certain data purity. Created option sets were limited to the entity for which they were created. If you wanted to use the option set in another entity, the option set had to be created again.
This was problematic, for example, when a country option set was included on the contact and company entity. The better solution was to create a country entity in which all countries were stored as a data set rather than an option set. With Dynamics CRM 2011, Global Option Sets were introduced, with which it was possible to reuse option sets for other entities.
At the moment, no multi-select option sets are still provided out of the box. What is currently the closest to a multi-select option set without involving 3rd party vendors are the following options:
- Multiple Boolean fields (in which each option is a single field with a Yes / No selection)
- Use an N: N with an additional entity created
The disadvantage of these methods is that the complexity of the system and the data enormously increases and this has a bad influence on the reportability of the data.
With the latest Dynamics 365 July update, Microsoft finally gave the users the opportunity to use multi-select option sets.
The features are as follows:
- A new data type: "MultiSelect Option Set"
- Up to 150 values can be selected
- "Select all" and "Clear" functions
- Supported by the Web Client and the new Unified Interface
- Supports advanced search and FetchXML queries
Users can select multiple values in a field after the update, make the selection visible in a view, and filter it with the advanced search.
This is how it looks for the user at the form:
The selection is displayed in thisview: