CRM Online and Office 365—The Global Admin

Written By: Dave Packard

from May 9, 2013

Now that CRM Online is under the Office 365 umbrella, you must maintain your CRM licenses, users, and user information via Office 365 and not in CRM itself. You can no longer even disable a user or update a name. All of that is handled in O365.

But there are a few things to know about how O365 and CRM Online interact in regards to the administrator roles.

Global Administrators in Office 365 will automatically be a CRM user, regardless of whether or not you give them a CRM license. By default they will also have System Administrator rights in CRM that you cannot change. All of these settings are maintained in Office 365 and are done by design.

For example, if you have Exchange Online through O365 and have a Spam Admin filter set up as a Global Admin in O365 it will also be a CRM user by default. As you can see here, the SpamAdmin does not have a CRM license.

But when you log into CRM, you see SpamAdmin is a user.

And SpamAdmin has System Administrator privileges.

If you try to change the privileges you get this error.

So, are you stuck giving a license to a spam filter? Fortunately not. As the error says, any Office 365 Administrator will automatically have access to your CRM Online as a System Admin. This SpamAdmin does not have a license but does have access to CRM because it is a Global Admin in O365, so it does not burn a CRM license this way.

And what if you don’t want your O365 Global Admins to have access to CRM? Short of removing their global admin permissions in Office 365, the only option you have is to limit what type of access they have in CRM, although not via security role. Instead, use the new CAL options.

Changing the CAL option to Administrative will limit the access to administrative functions only.

Granted, since they are a System Admin they can change their CAL but this is the best option for now if they must remain an O365 Global Admin.

To learn more about Office 365 and CRM Online contact Cargas Systems, a certified Microsoft Dynamics CRM partner offering software, services, and support that help improve your business processes.