Checking out Field Service on the Unified Interface (version 8)
As much of the Dynamics community is aware, Field Service version 8 is now available. We first released Field Service version 8 in August with subsequent updates coming roughly once a month. We released the first version which supported upgrade from Field Service version 7 in November (Field Service v8.2).
For our customers that are using Field Service version 7 in an existing org, you may be wondering why we haven’t made this upgrade available on your org. For orgs where customers are using previous versions of Field Service, we’re currently only making this available behind an opt-in process on the insider portal (https://experience.dynamics.com/insider). For the time being we’ll keep the upgrade for existing orgs a strictly opt-in process to protect customers from undertaking this upgrade without a full understanding of the impact of the navigational and mobile project changes.
Aside from user interface and performance improvements, to understand the many advantages to upgrading to the latest version of Field Service, check out the October 2018 Release wave notes to learn about our newest features. Please see our release notes on the Customer Engagement Team Blog or review the documentation at aka.ms/fs for more details on these features.
For organizations considering the upgrade from version 7 to version 8, there are a few key considerations:
- First, do not install this directly on your production environment. This upgrade should initially be attempted in a non-production environment following good change management and release practices. While we don’t anticipate any breaking changes, this effort should include testing to ensure that no customizations are impacted by the upgrade process.
- Second, Field Service version 8 relies entirely on the Unified Interface and all navigation is controlled by model driven apps. Field service version 7 had significantly different navigation which will no longer be available when using Field Service.
- Further, for organizations leveraging the Field Service mobile solution, Field Service version 8 takes advantage of the new Field Service Mobile app and an new mobile project. Using any of our previous project templates or mobile apps, including Field Service Mobile (2017) and Field Service Mobile (2016), on Field Service version 8 is not supported. Plan to follow our detailed steps to build a derivative mobile project against the new project template and move your mobile users to the new app.
- As an additional optional step, organizations may want to run the Solution Checker on your org to assess potentially problematic customizations.
- Finally, many organizations may choose to take this opportunity to update internal documentation and conduct internal training to manage the organizational impact of changes from the navigation, mobile app, and any potential functionality impacts discovered by testing or the Solution Checker.
- Once ready, this can be enabled on your production environments.
While we’re excited for all our customers to move to Field Service version 8 on the Unified Interface, this upgrade is not yet mandatory. As soon as we make decisions around the end of life for Field Service version 7, we’ll be sure to share the timeline. In the interim, for organizations that are interested to adopt version 8 or simply interested to evaluate the latest version in advance of adoption, there are several ways to get it.
For existing paid customers with entitlements that allow Field Service, there are three paths to choose from:
- Customers can opt-in via the insider portal to enable the latest version to show up in the Admin Center for install. This opt-in process should be completed for each org on which you want the latest version to be available to install. Note that once an org is opted in, Field Service version 7 will no longer be available.
- If Field Service is not installed on an org, installing Field Service Trial from App Source will install the latest version on your org. If you attempt this on an org with Field Service version 7, this install will fail as we have blocked this to protect organizations from accidentally upgrading to the latest version without an understanding of the impact of this upgrade.
- Through Trials, you can create a trial associated to your tenant by using your user credentials. Trial orgs are still subject to normal trial expiration policies but it can be an effective way to evaluate the latest Field Service solution.
To evaluate the newest solution without a paid tenant, simply go to Trials and sign-up for a Field Service trial org.
We’re excited for all of our users to begin using our latest version and continue to appreciate your feedback on how to improve the Field Service and Resource Scheduling solutions. Please share Ideas or engage through Yammer and the Dynamics Community.
Program Manager for Field Service
Dynamics 365 Engineering