The Spring 2013 / SP1 / Leo release for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 gives us the ability to link multiple Cases under a Parent Case.. Here’s exactly what you get:
System-wide options can be configured under: Settings –> Service Management –> Parent and Child case settings
You can opt to have fields map down from the Parent when you add a new Child Case:
And you can determine how Case Closure should be controlled / automated:
Adding a New Child Case to an Existing Case
From the Case form a Command Bar now provides a means of adding a Child Case:
This pops the Quick Create Case form, with fields auto-populated based on the inheritance rules you configured:
Clicking Ok generates the Child Case, closes the Quick Create form and returns you to the Parent Case. You can see the Child Case listed in a new sub-grid on the form:
Now, if your Parent Case is already a Child Case of another Parent you won’t be able to do any of this. Grandparent relationships are not yet supported. If you are not seeing the “Create Child Case” button that will be why.
I tried disabling the Case entity for Quick Create to see if the “Create Child Case” button could pop the the ‘full’ Case form. This didn’t seem to work, things just spun. I expect this is a quirk of the pre-release software I am using.
I also tried adding a Child Case via the Sub-Grid rather than the Command Bar button and found that does the same thing as the button.
Parenting an Existing Case to another Case
You can also pick up an existing Case and then Parent it. You just need to populate the lookup field on the Child Case. This works fine. In this scenario, the inheritance does not fire though (which make sense). So, it is a similar experience to what we know with mapping rules on relationships.
Closing a Case
The process for resolving a Case remains unchanged. If you configured Child Cases to auto-close they seamlessly close in background without notification. If you configure it so that the Child Cases must be closed before the Parent can be you will get a helpful error when you try to break that rule:
Bulk Associate Cases to a Parent
One last feature. Say you have a bunch of Cases reported from Customers that all relate to the same issue. You might like to link those all under the first reported Case for that Issue to drive your reporting. From the Case view you can do this by bulk-selecting your Cases and clicking the “Associate Child Cases” button:
You need to select not only the Child Cases but also the one you want to be the Parent. You will be prompted to identify the Parent:
And CRM pops a little confirmation dialog to let you know its all done:
Parent–Child Case Views and Attributes
To support parent-child relationships there is obviously a new “Parent Case” lookup field on the Case entity. Microsoft has also kindly provided a “Child Cases” field that gives you the count of Child Cases attached to a Parent. This was a nice surprise to see.
You will also see a couple of new System Views that isolate Cases that are either Child Cases or Parent Cases (filtering on Cases that have one of these two fields populated):
Ok, what have I missed? Please share anything via the Comments and I’ll add into this Post.