CRM Sync Technical Implementation and Security for Dynamics
This document describes the technical implementation and security of Sales Navigator CRM Sync for Microsoft Dynamics, a capability which imports MS Dynamics CRM Data into Sales Navigator, and writes back select Sales Navigator activities to the CRM.
Current Features and Benefits
CRM Sync is a capability that enables LinkedIn Sales Solutions to match our People and Companies to the Leads, Contacts, and Accounts within your CRM, enabling a variety of time-saving features:
Auto-Save – Auto-saving Accounts and Contacts associated with Open Opportunities for the Opportunity Owner, removing the manual step and ensuring those owners are always getting the latest Alerts on their most important Accounts and Contacts.
CRM Badges – Enables links to the CRM from the Sales Navigator interface, allowing for immediate navigation between Sales Navigator and related MS Dynamics records.
Activity Writeback – Offers Sales Navigator admins the ability to enable Activity Writeback. With one click, Sales Navigator users can log InMails, messages, phone calls, notes, and PointDrive views back to CRM. And once enabled per user, it remembers the setting for the next InMail or note. (Can be deactivated by the user.)
Contact Information – Displays contact information present in the CRM on Sales Navigator Lead pages, reducing user effort to access this information when working in Sales Navigator.
Search Filters – Activates a new search filter that allows you to limit lead search results to just those contacts included in your CRM or those that are not in your CRM.
Seat Assignment – Allows Sales Navigator administrators to assign seats based on users found in the CRM.
Current Limitations of CRM Sync
Creation of data in CRM – CRM writeback functionality does not push, update, or create LinkedIn Company or Person data into the CRM, it only pushes the activities users take.
Single CRM Record Match Limit – LinkedIn Profiles and Accounts can only be linked to a single CRM record, so if you have intentionally duplicated CRM Leads or Contacts, our model will only pick the single best scoring match and all functionality will apply to that one contact.
Once auto-saves are processed, we will NOT auto-unsave if ownership/other changes occur. That said, we will auto-save Contacts again as they are associated with new Open Opportunities for new owners.
Specific activity writeback must be enabled on a per-user basis (after Admin activates the control for the Contract/Dashboard), and can be deactivated by users on an ad-hoc basis (e.g. Users can decide specifically which messages they want to write back). It cannot be defaulted to “enabled” for all users/activities, although it is sticky once enabled per user (remembers the setting for the next InMail or note).
CRM Sync is only available to Sales Navigator Team or Enterprise edition customers (some features are limited to Enterprise) and must be enabled through a LinkedIn account representative.
- CRM Sync is only compatible with the following versions of Dynamics with API access enabled:
- Microsoft Dynamics 2016 online (including 0.1 and update 1 releases), or Dynamics 365 for Sales (online only).
- A Dynamics Administrator account is required when installing the integration.
- Sales Navigator for Microsoft Dynamics app, installed by a Dynamics Administrator (required for writeback of data to the CRM, latest version recommended to ensure all of the newest features are supported).
- See our Sales Navigator for Dynamics Installation instructions to learn more.
- A Sales Navigator Admin account:
- Team member + Admin account is strongly recommended for ease of testing.
Sandbox installation is not supported at this time.
The CRM Sync (& Activity Writeback) is a bi-directional data flow that relies on secure, dedicated APIs between Sales Navigator (LinkedIn) and your CRM. Data is encrypted in transit between Microsoft Dynamics and LinkedIn, relying on TLS over dedicated APIs. OAuth is used for authentication as a single administrator or System integration account that performs actions on behalf of users; ensuring that customers retain control of their data and provide a seamless experience for end users.
As a result, LinkedIn does not have access to the member’s CRM credentials, and the administrator can revoke the access token at any time either through Sales Navigator Admin settings or through the service provider’s Microsoft Dynamics application authorization flow.
Sales Navigator imports/downloads Opportunity, Contact, Account, and Lead data from the CRM. This data is processed to identify matching people and companies that exist in both LinkedIn and within your CRM. Matches are based on a scoring model that uses a variety of criteria including names, contact information, and geographic information.
A listing of all objects and fields downloaded and used in matching is included in the appendix.
Import and Matching Strategy
Imported data is stored securely within a LinkedIn database.
- Matched Records – Matched CRM Accounts and Leads will have the “CRM” badge/link displayed and those that are associated with an open Opportunity are auto-saved in Sales Navigator for the Opportunity Owner.
- CRM Badge – Users will see a “CRM” badge within Sales Navigator for all matched records (CRM Accounts, Contacts, and Leads). Clicking this badge saves users time by taking them to immediately to the corresponding CRM record in Microsoft Dynamics.
- The “CRM Badge” badge is displayed for all Sales Navigator users, even if they do not have permission to view the matching object within the CRM (permissions limit access in CRM).
Unmatched Records – CRM records not matched will not show a CRM badge, but users can manually create matches from within the CRM using the Embedded Profile (Display Widget) integration – matches made in this fashion will be stored and visible to all users on the Sales Navigator contract.
Incorrect Matches – If incorrect matches are found, then users can manually re-match to the correct SN Lead/Account from within the CRM, on an individual basis, using the Embedded Profile (Display Widgets) integration – this match will be stored for all users on the contract.
Match rates for all data are reported in aggregate within the Sales Navigator administrator console.
Frequency of Data Import
Sales Navigator imports data once during the initial configuration as well as on a daily basis, pulling updates/changes/new information every 12 hours. Each time new data is imported, it is processed to add new badges, contact information, auto-save Leads/Account, and update search filters. Sales Navigator admins can verify the last CRM sync by checking the timestamp in Admin Settings in Sales Navigator.
Sales Navigator makes most of its API calls to Microsoft Dynamics using the Bulk APIs. This allows batching of calls and reduces the total number of total API calls – decreasing the likelihood of hitting CRM API limits.
Once matched auto-saves are processed, Sales Navigator does NOT auto-unsave, if ownership/other changes occur. However, Contacts will be auto-saved again as they are associated with new Open Opportunities for new owners.
Sales Navigator administrators can enable Activity Writeback, allowing users to log InMails, messages, phone calls, notes, and PointDrive views back to CRM.
Users are able to writeback select Sales Navigator activities (Notes, InMails, Messages, Notes, Phone Calls, PointDrive views) to the matched Account/Contact/Lead records in the CRM.
Writeback primarily works to CRM Leads/Contacts, Accounts Writeback only supports Notes.
Data Writeback Strategy
InMails and Messages are displayed as “Activities” and Notes are logged within the “Notes and Attachments” section of the Page Layout.
Activities are written back with the system integration user as the “creator”, while the individual Sales Navigator user is the “owner”.
Users are able to writeback activities for non-matched Leads, but they will be saved as unassigned activities and users will need to manually assign them to the correct Lead/Contact in CRM.
Frequency of Export
Activity is written back to the CRM on a more frequent basis, about every 2-5 minutes.
How is the imported CRM data used by LinkedIn?
The imported CRM data is used as a convenience to the end user to quickly sync their relevant Accounts and Contacts and power optimal use of our Sales Navigator tools with better alerts, search, and easy centralized access to contact information. In addition, the imported CRM data is used to ensure that actions taken within Sales Navigator are properly and immediately recorded to CRM, so that no information is lost and duplicative actions are not required by Sales Teams.
With your approval, LinkedIn may also use your imported CRM data to analyze and provide you with custom “ROI” reporting. These reports can help you understand the influence LinkedIn/Sales Navigator has on Opportunities in your pipeline, the value of those Opportunities, and how efficiently your sales professionals are able to close them.
What security protocols/measures does LinkedIn use to protect customer data and where is the data being stored?
In addition, the imported data is secured on production databases with limited audited access and is encrypted at rest, ensuring your private data is never used for anything other than the above-mentioned purposes.
What data and customizations are pushed back into my CRM?
The data written back to the CRM is specified in the table in the appendix. Note that no existing data is ever over-written or merged, we only append new information within new activities or notes.
Limited customizations are made to the CRM through the Sales Navigator for Microsoft Dynamics app, which contains metadata, fields, and record types specific to LinkedIn activities (ex. InMails, Messages).
Am I able to permanently delete any data sent from my CRM to Sales Navigator?
Yes. You may purge all imported CRM data at any time by selecting “Disconnect CRM Sync” and “Yes, clean up all previously imported CRM data”.
If you are just temporarily disconnecting, we do not recommend you use this option, as it may delay reaction of the feature.
Do I need to enable data writeback to my CRM in order to use the CRM Sync feature?
No. You can enable CRM sync to import CRM data (details above) into Sales Navigator, without turning on activity writeback.
When you are ready to turn on activity writeback, as an admin you’re able to choose to enable the specific activities you’d like to be written to the CRM.
How does LinkedIn authenticate to my Dynamics instance? How is that communication secured?
For all data integrations, we use OAuth to make the integration process seamless and to ensure a member is always in control of their data. For these integrations, LinkedIn does not have access to the member’s credentials, and the member can revoke the access token at any time either through Sales Navigator Admin settings or through the Microsoft Dynamics application authorization flow. All of our communication between LinkedIn and Dynamics is over TLS 1.2.
Did LinkedIn perform any penetration testing?
Yes, we have completed internal penetration testing of the CRM Sync feature and as of date, we are not aware of any issues that would compromise the confidentiality and integrity of the CRM data stored on LinkedIn’s platform.
Has the CRM Sync been certified on Microsoft AppSource?
Yes. LinkedIn is a certified Microsoft Dynamics partner and goes through a standard security review process for our integration. CRM Sync is not distributed through the Microsoft AppSource, but directly uses Dynamics’ API to access and write clients’ CRM data.
What admin configuration tools are offered to manage the sync functionality?
LinkedIn offers the ability to control what users have auto-saving and writeback functionality, whether writeback is enabled at all, and the ability to clarify when deals enter your pipeline and what field revenue information is stored in. For more details please see the Sync enablement guide here.
Objects and Fields Imported from CRM
|Account ||Accountid,_owninguser_value, _parentaccountid_value, customertypecode, revenue, fax, name, numberofemployees, telephone1, industrycode, tickersymbol, websiteurl, createdon, modifiedon ||Match CRM Accounts to Accounts in Sales Navigator|
|contactid,_owninguser_value, _parentcustomerid_value, department, |
emailaddress1,fax, firstname, fullname, jobtitle, lastname, leadsourcecode, telephone1, createdon, modifiedon, address1_line1, address1_city, address1_stateorprovince, address1_postalcode, address1_country, address2_line1, address2_city, address2_stateorprovince, address2_postalcode, address2_country
Match CRM Contacts to Leads in Sales Navigators
|Lead||leadid, _owninguser_value, _qualifyingopportunityid_value, statecode, revenue, companyname,emailaddress1,fax, firstname, fullname, |
numberofemployees, jobtitle, lastname, leadsourcecode, mobilephone, telephone1, industrycode, _transactioncurrencyid_value, websiteurl, createdon, modifiedon, address1_line1, address1_city, address1_stateorprovince, address1_postalcode, address1_country, address2_line1, address2_city, address2_stateorprovince, address2_postalcode, address2_country
Match CRM Leads to Leads in Sales Navigator
opportunityid, _owninguser_value, _parentaccountid_value, estimatedvalue, statecode, actualclosedate,name, stepname, createdon, modifiedon, _parentcontactid_value
Filter Accounts and Contacts to import into Sales Navigator by selecting only those that are related to open Opportunities whose stage is past the stage selected in CRM sync preferences
|systemuserid,_positionid_value, isdisabled, fullname, firstname, |
lastname, internalemailaddress, mobilephone, title, createdon, modifiedon
Map CRM Users to Sales Navigator Users
|Position ||positionid, name, _parentpositionid_value, createdon, modifiedon || |
Filter CRM users to specific groups when selecting users to assign seats
Objects and Fields Written to the CRM
(custom task activity)
senton, actualstart, subject, ownerid, regardingobjectid_account, description, statecode
InMail messages written to non-connections
(custom task activity)
senton, actualstart, subject, ownerid, regardingobjectid_account, description, statecode
LinkedIn messages written to 1st degree connections
subject, objectid_account, notetext
Notes captured against Accounts or Leads in Sales Navigator
Task (standard object)
actualstart, description, ownerid, subject, email@example.com
PhoneCalls made through Sales Navigator Mobile application
|Pointdrive Presentation Viewed (custom activity type)||actualstart, ownerid, description li_url,location, senton, subject||Pointdrive Presentation viewed|
LinkedIn maintains ISO 27001 & ISO 27018 Certifications, as well as a SSAE-18 certification, SOC 2 Type I report
LinkedIn meets the following compliance standards:
- TRUSTe's Privacy Seal
- U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks
- General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
For more information about our security practices, visit https://security.linkedin.com