In a world of “Internet of Things” (IoT), wouldn’t it be nice to be able to proactively service your customer’s needs almost without them knowing about it? As our world is more connected than ever now, IoT provides service organizations abilities to monitor and identify equipment issues before they become even larger and more unmanageable. This can all be done without involving the customer having to contact customer service because a “red light is flashing” on a device they may own. Being alerted of a customer device issues remotely and being able to send commands remotely allows service agents the ability to have some “touchless” service opportunities for their customers. Using Dynamics 365 Customer Service’s Connected Customer Service model you are able to do just that with the “power” of Azure IoT Central + Power Automate + D365 Customer Service.
You may have noticed an area for Devices within your Customer Service Hub application in D365 with Devices and IoT Alerts and wondered…what is this for?
By the end of this article, you will know for sure!
The Connected Customer Service for D365 provides the abilities to send (commands) and receive (alerts) from your companies IoT devices through services provided by Azure IoT Central. By registering your devices in Azure IoT Central and utilizing Power Automate in the Actions, you are able to push device data into your D365 Customer Service Hub to get IoT alerts from connected devices.
Step 1 – You must create and provision a new device in Azure IoT Central.
Step 2 – You create new Rules in Azure IoT Central to fire based on conditions for the device that would warrant a new alert be generated. This could be an error, extreme condition, warning or just routine maintenance timeframes.
Step 3 – On your Rule, you can call a Power Automate flow to fire when the rule is fired to create a new IoT Alert in your D365 CS environment.
Once we have Azure IoT Central pushing IoT Alerts into our D365 Customer Service Hub, we are able to manage these IoT Devices and Alerts. CSRs can respond to IoT Alerts coming into the Customer Service Hub by creating a new Case and walking through the typical Case to Resolution business process flow.
Suppose you want to automate this process instead of having your CSRs create cases manually as new alerts come into your Customer Service Hub application. The easiest way to do this would be to extend your IoT Alert Power Automate flow to create the Case when a new alert is fired and update the IoT Alert with this new Case once it has been created.
Personally, I think it’s great to be able to connect remote IoT devices and receive alerts directly into your D365 Customer Service instance all without having to “write code” to call web APIs or web hooks. However, if you enjoy that sort of thing, then you certainly can do it that way too!