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Business Card Scanner in D365CE

The Business Card Scanner is a new, highly requested feature, coming to Dynamics 365 Customer engagement from October 2019. The Business Card Scanner will allow you to quickly and easily, scan Business Cards into Dynamics 365 and create contacts where the Business Card info is automatically populated into the fields. This could save a lot of time, especially if you have Sales people on the road going to several meetings in a day or when you go to trade shows and come back with a stack of cards. Instead of typing all this data in, and potentially making mistakes due to manual entry, you can use this new feature!

To get started, again if you are reading this before October 2019, refer to my previous article on turning on the 2019 Wave 2 preview. This feature as actually turned on by default but you can add/remove the field from the contact forms if you wish. There is a setting for this functionality to retain the business card image after scanning. To turn this on navigate to Settings -> Administration -> System Settings -> Sales.

Once this is switched on, you are good to go. N.b This functionality is only available in the Unified Interface. Start off by adding the new business card field to your main form and your quick create form and publishing it.

Navigate to a quick create contact form and you should see the new option (which I believe is a PowerApps Control Framework component) and you can begin playing.

Click on scan business card, if you are on mobile, it will prompt you to take a picture of a business card, if you are on desktop you can select an image to upload. This is versatile as for Sales people on the road or at trade shows, they could take pictures then and there, if they don’t have time, you could take the cards back to the office, scan them all into a scanner and then upload them via desktop as it might be easier.

Once the image has been taken/uploaded, the scanner will start to do it’s work. You will see a loading icon where it is trying to read the card and determine what data is present. Once it is finished, the data from the business card will appear in the fields in the quick create form. You can then save and create the record

If you switched the settings on in the system settings menu and if you have added the business card field to the main form, navigating to the contact record will display the business card you just scanned in.

It’s important to notes 2 things here:

  1. This is in preview, it might not work 100% and things may change in the final release

  2. This is a tool to help, it might not work 100% of the time and it might identify the wrong fields so you need to ensure it is being checked as the data goes in.

In the dozen or so times I tried this, with a combination of physical business cards taking photos and uploading photos via the desktop, I found this worked pretty well. It did have trouble with Fax numbers but it’s 2019, if you are still using Fax, there’s a bigger issue than the business card scanner not assigning them correctly.

I’d love to hear people's thoughts about this new functionality, have you tested it yet? How is it working for you? Is this something you will be rolling out in October?

Ciao for now!

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