Activity entities in Dynamics CRM 2013

An activity can be thought of as any action for which an entry can be made on a calendar. An activity has time dimensions (start time, stop time, due date, and duration) that help determine when the action occurred or will occur. Activities also contain data that helps determine what action the activity represents, for example, subject and description. An activity can be opened, canceled, or completed. The completed status of an activity will have several sub-status values associated with it to clarify the way that the activity was completed.

Activity entities can only be owned by a user or team, they can’t be owned by an organization.

There are 15 system entities that represent activities as shown in the following table.

Name Description Display in activity menus
Appointment Commitment representing a time interval with start/end times and duration. Yes
Campaign Response Response from an existing or a potential new customer for a campaign. Yes
Email Activity that is delivered using email protocols. Yes
Fax Activity that tracks call outcome and number of pages for a fax and optionally stores an electronic copy of the document. Yes
Letter Activity that tracks the delivery of a letter. The activity can contain the electronic copy of the letter. Yes
Phone Call Activity to track a telephone call. Yes
Recurring Appointment The master appointment of a recurring appointment series. Yes
Service Activity Activity offered by the organization to satisfy its customer’s needs. Each service activity includes date, time, duration, and required resources. Yes
Task Generic activity representing work needed to be done. Yes
Campaign Activity Task performed, or to be performed, by a user for planning or running a campaign. No
Case Resolution Special type of activity that includes description of the resolution, billing status, and the duration of the case. No
Opportunity Close Activity created automatically when an opportunity is closed, containing information such as the description of the closing and actual revenue. No
Order Close Activity generated automatically when an order is closed. No
Quick Campaign System operation used to perform lengthy and asynchronous operations on large data sets, such as distributing a campaign activity or quick campaign. No
Quote Close Activity generated when a quote is closed. No

You can create new custom activity entities. For example you might create a custom activity entity to record instant message communications. Creating an activity entity is different from creating a non-activity entity because you don’t specify a primary field. All activity entities have a Primary Field set to Subject and other common fields that are defined by the Activity entity. This allows all types of activities to be shown in a view where just the common fields are displayed.

To create a custom activity entity, select Define as an activity entity. After you select this, you’ll see that Display in Activity Menus is selected. This setting allows people to choose to create this type of activity in the activity menus. This isn’t selected for activities that are typically associated with specific events and created behind using code or by a workflow. After you save the entity, you can’t change these settings.

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3 thoughts on “Activity entities in Dynamics CRM 2013

  1. Great info here. A related question about custom activities – how do you ensure that a custom activity is added to the calendar? We’re created a “trip report”, which is basically a sales visit, and we want all scheduled trips to show on the calendar.

  2. Is the end purpose of an activity to keep a historical record of an event? i.e. customer Jim Smith has an appointment next week. Next week comes, appointment happens, That activity is stored in the system… After that activity, a new activity can be created, in the subtype of a “task” for a staff member to record notes about that appointment, That task is “assigned” to the staff member responsible for finishing that task. If that activity requires additional action, such as “review client’s financial allocations” a 2nd activity task should be created and assigned to a staff member to finish? i will continue reading more on your site to understand the concept of “work” tasks vs activities, and which types of activities can be assigned, versus owned.

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