Monday, November 29, 2010

The Jump Bar - From A to Z!

Although the alphabetical “Jump Bar” appears on almost every Quick Find view within CRM, it seems like not everyone knows how to use it or exactly how it works!

In a nutshell, the selected letter (or number, #) within the Jump Bar will be applied as a filter against the first character of the currently sorted column in the view (regardless of whether or not you have already applied a filter using the “Search for records” text box).

By default, this will be the column selected for sorting when the view was setup ... if this column contains data which always starts with the same character (or does not make sense to apply first character filtering to) – then using the jump bar will not be very valuable.

What users can do however is sort on a column of their choice by clicking on the column’s heading.

For example, on the Account view, if you had both “Account Name” and “Primary Contact” attributes displayed as columns, you could click on the heading of “Primary Contact” to sort and then use the Jump Bar to apply a character filter.

Another thing to take note of is the restriction on filtering columns with any attribute type other than nvarchar, nText or lookup; although CRM will sort the column without issues, it will ignore the filter you set and apply it on the “Primary Attribute” of the entity instead (if this attribute is not on the view, the filter will not return any values).
While this restriction is understandable for some of the attribute types ... it also means that applying an alphabet filter on a picklist field will also not work (... this would’ve actually been quite useful in some cases!).

Notice (a) the message which appears when there are no records found and also (b) that the sorting is on a different column to that in the message:

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