Bitrix24 Customization Guide - How to do it correctly
The on-premise version of Bitrix24 CRM in skilled hands is an excellent tool for fast process automation in any company.
As the power and adaptability of Bitrix24 become more and more evident, a lot more enterprises are implementing Bitrix24 CRM and are requesting for customizations that would make the system better suited to their needs.
From the start, Bitrix24 CRM was created to be used “as -is”, not as a “product to be customized”. This makes Bitrix24 customization a delicate process that should be left to certified professionals.
Only a few people really understand how Bitrix24 was made, and are able to modify it and add new features correctly.
So, although, on paper, there are over 10 thousand companies that claim to be able to customize Bitrix24, in reality, just a handful have the required skills to do so correctly.
We are one of the handful, and our claim is proven by our “track record”
The essence of this article in one paragraph:
Bitrix24 is a powerful, complex, and cleverly designed system. Do not entrust amateurs with the task of customization.
INTERVOLGA is one of the best Bitrix24 development contractors. Why?
possess all Bitrix24 development competencies from Bitrix Inc.
have the required competencies for "Bitrix24 Large implementations" and the certifications to develop Enterprise projects
have completed 800+ Bitrix24 projects (each one, having several subtasks).
INTERVOLGA specialists have the technical know-how to customize Bitrix24 correctly.
We are creators of key training courses for developers released by Bitrix Inc. on
Correct customization of Bitrix24 on-premise;
Building a Sales system in Bitrix24 CRM.
We help businesses grow by automating their workflows.
What can be customized in the on-premise Bitrix24 CRM?
The on-premise version is a unique feature of Bitrix24 CRM.
No other CRM offers its customers an on-premise version (In essence, a personal copy of the cloud service).
Bitrix24 not only provides this opportunity but also allows you to modify the logic of the system to suit your company's needs!
In this article, we will tell you how to modify Bitrix24 correctly.
- Custom reports
- Pages and entities
- Interface - buttons, custom fields, links
- Integration with ERPs and other systems
- Standard modules
1. Bitrix24 Custom reports.
Deals, tasks, and projects are important aspects of business. Running a business means seeing results and making decisions.
The Bitrix24 report builder is a very useful tool. If you need more functionalities than the cloud Bitrix24 offers, then, you need an on-premise version.
In Bitrix24 on-premise, you can create create custom reports.
Examples of reports that are not available in Bitrix24 cloud, but can be customized in Bitrix24 on-premise:
Workflow reports - states, statuses, etc.
Report on “time deals spend in stages”
Summary report from different parts of the system in one screen - tasks, CRM, and calls.
Reports with information from external systems - link the cost price of a product from an external product base with the deal price in Bitrix24.
These are some examples of Bitrix24 Custom reports we have implemented correctly. Correctly here means using the right technologies and doing so efficiently.
2. Bitrix24 Pages and entities.
Bitrix24 has several standard tables where you can store data and build Workflows:
- Work Group or Project
- Work report for a day, week, or month
- Calendar Appointments
In the CRM section, the following entities are used:
- Commercial offer
- Printable Template Document
- Product from the Product Catalog
- Activities (call, email, meeting)
- Sales plan
Sometimes, however, businesses have tasks that often go beyond the capabilities of standard Bitrix24 tables.
To be able to create such tasks in Bitrix24, you need to create several new entities and logic for working with them. This is acceptable practice.
An example of a custom Bitrix24 entity with a special interface.
A good developer must bear in mind the data structure of the system with which he is working. It looks something like the picture below.
If you need a new entity in Bitrix24 CRM, ask the developer 2 questions
what other entities will the new entity be connected to?
How is the connection going to be implemented?
If the response is silence, it is worth taking a step back.
Now, we'll tell you how to do it correctly.
3. Interface: buttons, custom fields, links
An example of a customization: add a new status “at Customs” to tasks, and link the CRM deal with the project.
This can only be done in Bitrix24 on-premise.
Usually a task list looks like a table. It is good practice to "highlight" tasks which can be solved by simply tweaking settings in green, tasks which require programming in yellow, and tasks which are best not implemented- red.
4. Bitrix24 integration with accounting systems and other ERP
Data exchange and synchronization with accounting system in many cases can be implemented in Bitrix24 cloud. Standard modules help well in standard situations for basic entities and at low loads.
We implemented a large project (200 hours) - Bitrix24 integration with an accounting system, Google services and telephony.
Bitrix24 API capabilities are sufficient for working with standard entities.
You need an on-premise Bitrix24 when you need to develop your own web service for new entities.
If you need to create new entities, then, you need a Bitrix24 on-premise to be implemented and customized correctly.
Why does a company need to synchronize their product cataloging system or other systems used by sales department with Bitrix24? What do they stand to benefit?
- For one, it simplifies the work of sales department.
- Bitrix24 allows employees to work on a simpler interface than most accounting systems, and also
- provides a convenient interface for management to monitor and control the process.
To make the work of sales personnel easier, you need to solve all their problems comprehensively -
- Set up a sales system,
- set up debugging processes,
- develop and implement regulations.
Everything is important
The system used by the sales department should be user-friendly, simple and intuitive. A bank will not be able to work in CRM tailored for the film industry, and vice versa. The employees of each industry need systems that are developed around them.
To achieve this, you need to customize the interface of the systems they use, remove unnecessary buttons and menu items – in essence, simplify the systems, and do this step by step.
5. Bitrix24 Standard modules
Data exchange between Bitrix24 and ERPs is often a requirement during Bitrix24 implementation for companies. Usually, integrators need to start with standard modules for integrating Bitrix24 with ERPs. The functions of these modules are most times insufficient.
What Bitrix24 standard modules can't do:
● Send custom fields, entities and statuses;
● Take into account the specifics of the enterprise (for example, 2 legal entities in one 1C: Enterprise Accounting);
● Work with large amounts of data;
● Support configurations that are highly modified for business tasks, especially outdated ones.
Any task of information exchange between Bitrix24 and any ERP can be achieved only in Bitrix24 on-premise by developing your own exchange mechanism.
ERPs include SAP Business One, NetSuite, Sage, JD Edwards EnterpriseOne etc.
Frequently asked Questions about Bitrix24 Customization, Integration and development
- Is Two- way data exchange between Bitrix24 and ERPs possible in real time?
- When should you customize Bitrix24?
- Is Two- way data exchange between Bitrix24 and ERPs possible in real time?
Yes, it is possible.
For many years, only long and capricious "file exchanges" between Bitrix24 and other systems were available. Users had to deal with multiple errors and wait for the "full upload" to be completed.
Well, times have changed!
If your developer is not able to create two way data exchange between Bitrix24 and another systems in real time, then it is worth considering their qualifications.
Two way real time data exchange is expensive but possible, and effective.
We have specialists in both Bitrix and ERP systems like Oracle, SAP ERP, Stripe, Sage.
We will collect your requirements, design and develop the two way data exchange.
- When should you customize Bitrix24?
Bitrix24 can be used "as is" in the cloud version. After the correct basic implementation, employees can begin to work in the system, and the business begins to reap the benefits – more conversions and sales, more profit.
We have implemented Bitrix24 for many companies. A few examples
1. Bitrix24 Implementation for a construction company
2. Bitrix24 Implementation for an IT company
3. Bitrix24 Implementation for a Large Enterprise
4. Bitrix24 Implementation for a fitness Centre
However, the standard Bitrix24 Cloud will not be suitable for a company with many specificities. Specificities apply not only to each individual industry, but sometimes to individual businesses within the same industry.
Some things may need to be modified: You can either modify the company’s processes or modify Bitrix24 to suit to the company's processes.
Whichever you choose, we can help you:
Set up processes in the company and implement them in Bitrix24.
This is suitable for new and small companies without complex accounting systems.
- Change the logic of the Bitrix24 standard components and add new functions.
Examples of company specificities that require Bitrix24 customization:
The responsible person for a task is not a specific person, but whoever is on duty or call;
- There are "temporary deputies", chosen according to the company’s vacation schedule;
- Discounts depend on the sales volume of the previous quarter;
- The possibility of a cargo shipment should be checked in real time from another system.
“We have totally different processes from other companies: instead of leads, we have media plans, shipments and also personal prices"
Very often companies use unique terms and documents. For example:
● Media plans are used in the advertising business. This is not really a deal, more like a project with stages, deadlines and results. Bitrix24 does not have a ready-made page for media plans and their analytics.
● Shipments are needed by trading companies. Bitrix24 can generate several types of forms, but there are no tools for convenient work with orders, shipments and debt management.
In addition, many companies need the ability to specify different prices for different customers in the catalog or give discounts depending on the volume of the customers’ orders.
In Bitrix24, there are currently no such features. INTERVOLGA knows how to add them.
Please do not pay attention to the language, this was for a Russian client.
In the magnified section, we can see different prices for different customers
"We already have an old system we use, why should we invest in a new CRM?"
Often, a company already has a system in which managers work.
For example, an Excel document for calculating margins or a customized section in the ERP for managing groupage cargo.
The business has already invested money in this program and does not want to spend more developing a new one. What should be done in this situation? There is no easy way.
If such a question arises at all, then there is pain (an inadequacy of the current system), which can manifest in various forms - loss of data, lack of proper control, regular inconvenience that slows down work - that is, the inevitable loss of time and money.
There are 2 solutions that we successfully apply:
● We transfer the calculation logic to Bitrix24, and your managers will have a simpler interface to work with.
● Fast online information exchange between systems is possible. For example, if an ERP checks the availability of goods in the supplier's warehouse and a Finance Management system gives permission for a discount for the client, there needs to be a connection between the systems. This way, when carrying out an operation in Bitrix24, the ERP and the finance Management systems will respond in real time without the manager leaving Bitrix24.
How NOT to make modifications to Bitrix24 code - Bad advice
So, you come to the conclusion that you need Bitrix24, but the state it is in, out of the box isn’t sufficient. You decide that you will change the logic of Bitrix24 " to suit your needs". Your tech guys/programmers agree with you and asked for just a little amount of money, No questions asked.
Would you like us to tell you what awaits you?
Here are some modification “plans” they might have.
1. Change the Bitrix core
This is an absolute NO!
Good Bitrix24 programmers know that “modifying the kernel” is WRONG.
When creating websites and online stores, it is quite easy to make improvements without touching the core. In Bitrix24 there is more logic and the temptation to "go into the core and fix it" is very great.
Almost all projects that we work on after other programmers have kernel edits in them.This brings the client a halt after each update and painful debugging in “ping-pong” mode. Your integrator will be scolded by Bitrix Inc. and Bitrix24 technical support, and you will have to wait, unable to use your CRM, waste time and suffer loss.
Modifying your CRM, which was supposed to bring you a business growth point, in the end, gets you a loss point.
Do not allow your integrator to change the core of the product.
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1. a checklist for the correct modification of Bitrix24 and
2. instructions for checking the quality of the work done.
2. Edit standard Bitrix24 components
Let's imagine that you need to add a new button "At checkpoint" to the Bitrix24 task card. What does a junior developer who considers themselves a guru do?
They make a copy of the standard component and then edit the standard component. Theoretically speaking, the core of the product is still in place. The decision is correct if this was an online store.
However, for Bitrix24, this is WRONG. Bitrix declines updating such systems.
The 1C-Bitrix company updates Bitrix24 about once a month, and every six months there are large updates.
Don't allow your integrator to freeze the system. When Bitrix releases something particularly useful, you will have to incur unexpected costs.
For example, a major update of an incorrectly modified Bitrix24 may require 100 hours of work.
The right approach allows a business to control costs, automate processes and earn more.
3. To Create copies of CRM pages?
Programmers also like to create copies of entire sections of Bitrix24 and edit them "a little". This is fraught with compatibility issues, owing to the fact that there are 2 copies of the same code.
Don't allow your integrator to clutter up your system. This would make maintenance of the system more expensive.
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1. a checklist of the correct modification and
2. instructions for checking the work quality.
Problems that arise due to wrong modification
Thoughtless tinkering with Bitrix code leads to errors. Let's look at a few examples.
Conflicts between revisions
Example: programmers add 200 additional fields to the deal card. Then they programmed a heavy report on the effectiveness of managers which displays all the added fields. After that, they downloaded 10,000 old deals from 1C or another system.
The report does not open.
Even in the absence of managers in the system - and, consequently, the extra load of tracking their effectiveness - CRM pages still do not open.
How does a competent integrator work?
A good integrator will delve into work, map out a development strategy taking the current architecture of the system into consideration.
Assess the consequences of each change and discuss the consequences with the customer, and put aside resources for optimization.
Tests modifications under high load - Manually and automatically.
Bitrix24, adapted to the specifics of a company, is a tool for growth. Trying to economize on proper design and testing will deprive you of stability.
Bitrix24 updates break everything
Bitrix24 updates must be performed carefully, at a time specially allotted for such operations. Each update needs to be carried out first on a test copy of the portal.
The goal is that updates should not affect the standard logic, or any previously made modifications to the system.
If your business is rendered idle regularly due to the work of programmers, it's time to change something. Check out the revision quality checklist at the end of the article.
Performance is degraded with every new revision.
On-premise Bitrix24 works well with hundreds of thousands of deals, companies and products. But non-systemic revisions or modifications can slow it down even in the absence of load.
Example: you wanted to set up “View rights” to deal value and markup percentage for different user groups. The programmer implemented the revision suboptimally and as a result, even when viewing even 20 deals in the CRM list, you get an error. The server load increased and the system stopped opening completely.
How to Modify Bitrix24 On-premise CORRECTLY. Best practices
We have discussed the importance of revising Bitrix24б as well as "how not to" revise it.
Now, we’ll share The RIGHT way to revise Bitrix24 and in doing so, differentiate the work of a professional from an enthusiastic amateur.
1. Change the interface gloved gracefully.
INTERVOLGA developed a technology to replace any standard element of the system interface with special ones. This technology allows you to install updates without losing logic.
The qualifications of INTERVOLGA’s specialists are confirmed by the fact that our approach is described in webinars published on the Bitrix website. We are pros at this and are ready to help you test your programmers and the quality of their work.
For this, we usually carry out a “Solution Audit”.
2. Modules and installers are the only way to go.
Business thrives on stability and predictability of work. Confidentiality and regulation are important.
Therefore, any changes to the logic of the system should be developed as modules. This way, you can limit the access points of the programmer. Asides that, each module will have a settings page, where you can turn them on and off by clicking a button.
Naturally, a module must have an installer and the ability to be correctly uninstalled.
Bitrix24 is a system for the mature, therefore, Programmers working with it, must also be mature.
In many of our projects, the programmer does not need access to the client's Bitrix24 at all. The clients’ IT department installs and updates our modules by themselves. With this approach, the question of information confidentiality does not arise at all.
This method is a bit more expensive, but its advantages are well worth it.
3. Follow the vendor's rules
All INTERVOLGA specialists undergo special training to carry out Bitrix24 customization correctly. Our lead programmers and analysts are the creators of key educational materials released by Bitrix Inc:
Business Processes and Workflows Course;
The correct customization of Bitrix24 on-premise version;
End-to-End Analytics Course.
Our internal knowledge base contains a lot of information on common Bitrix24 tasks and architecture.
How to assess the quality of your Bitrix24 developer's work - Checklist
Adequate assessment of the expertise of your contractors and employees is an important aspect of making the right decisions in business.
We will teach you how to validate developers and their work.
How do you install updates on the on-premise version?
Assessment of your programmers and their work
This is bad!
You are an INTERVOLGARU’s SLA service client
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Run the performance monitor built into Bitrix24. The picture should not be very different from this (do not pay attention to the language, this is an international project):
Pay special attention to the performance drawdown during business hours, when the average time to open a popular page is more than 2 seconds.
You will receive a complete list of questions for verification if you share the article on social networks and fill out the form below the article.
How to organize work according to the most frequent tasks
INTERVOLGA has been working with Bitrix technologies for over 10 years. We have accumulated extensive experience in analyzing, staging, designing, implementing new features and customizing Bitrix24. We are ready to share our design templates.
You will receive all of the following documents in the form of templates if you share the article on social networks and fill out the form under the article.
An example of a Technical Specifications Document
Business process development brief
Bitrix24 integration brief
technical specifications for the implementation of Bitrix24 Corporate portal.
Add new functions in your Bitrix24.
I understand all you’ve explained, how do I start? What you need to do before starting Bitrix24 Customization.
A competent integrator separates reasonable changes from redundant ones, teaches the client to use basic capabilities correctly and creates new ones when needed.
In reality, no more than 20% of tasks require system modifications. Be wary of integrators who respond to any refinement request with "sure, let’s do it."
Adding functions to the system and automating processes using Bitrix24 can make your business more efficient. You’ll work faster, gain more market share, make more money and avoid problems - if you follow our advice and work according to our checklist.
We are professionals in the development of the on-premise version of Bitrix24.
To order new Bitrix24 functions, CLICK HERE
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