How to Inspections in Dynamics 365 Field Service?

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This is a curated post to share best resources to explore, understand and use one of most amazing feature of Dynamics 365 platform: Inspections in Field Service. "Inspections" is the only option (other than Customer Voice) in Dynamics 365 for business administrators to design a form, end users to fill it up, and then business users to be able to see responses and analytics.

The Basics

To understand how Inspections works, we need to explore three basic areas:

  1. How to create an Inspection and how it works with Dynamics 365 Field Service (hint: Work Order Service Tasks)

  2. How can a user fill up data in inspection forms

  3. How to extract and report on inspection responses

For the first and second question, there is no better resource than the following video from Dynamics 365 Field Service channel:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDfwIP7rT-U

The inspection responses are saved in JSON format but are also de-serialised in Customer Voice tables immediately or at a pre-specified time daily (based on the setting). Following article gives a good primer of how to extract and view inspection responses data:

Advanced options for inspections in Dynamics 365 Field Service | Microsoft Docs

Advanced Topics

In a recent project, we encountered two advanced scenarios which we initially thought as curve balls but were later turned out as very easy to implement:

Inspection Versions

The first one was to cater the requirement of maintaining form versions. For instance, a lot of businesses are conducting Covid related inspections. The requirements around what to capture and the shape & format of same are evolving - and hence the requirement to maintain versions of same Inspection form. This is now inherently supported and the following excellent video from the development team gives good overview of the functionality:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8DlfhJ2UQ0&t=34s

Cascaded Inspections

The second scenario was based on a business requirement to create a new cascaded inspection record based on the responses of a first inspection. For example, if an initial inspection related to Work, Health & Safety has a 'no' against a certain question, you may want to immediately create a new inspection for Hazards team to go and inspect. This also turned out to be common requirement and luckily, Shawn Tabor (THE field service expert!) recently wrote an article about the very same requirement using Power Automate flows:

Using Power Automate to create events based on an Inspection Response – CRMHobbit's Field Service Blog…or "Dispatch there and back again"

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