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How to Use Lookup Fields in Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM

Lookup fields in Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM applications can help users find what they’re looking for quickly. Learn more and find helpful tips in this video.
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Lookup fields in Microsoft Dynamics 365 customer relationship management (CRM) applications can help users find what they’re looking for quickly. A lookup field creates a reference to a specific record type or table/entity. There are several different types of system lookups.

The core purpose of lookup fields in Microsoft Dynamics 365 is to link information together. To learn more and find helpful tips, check out this video. The transcription is provided below.

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Do you have questions about how to use lookup fields in Dynamics 365 or other CRM features? The Business Technology Solutions team at FORVIS can help you leverage technology to build a competitive advantage through improved efficiency and customer engagement. Connect with us to learn more or request a personalized demo.



Today, what I'd like to do is talk a little bit about lookup fields in Microsoft Dynamics 365. In the system, there are several different field types that are available—everything from dates, currencies, choices, or option sets for lookup fields.

Now a lookup field is important in Dynamics 365, because it’s what allows us to link two records to each other. It’s what allows us to link a Contact to an Account, an Opportunity up to an Account, or any two records that we’re looking to establish that type of relationship that a CRM system is great at handling.


What we’re going to do here today is take a quick look at interacting with these lookup fields and the different things you can do to get the right information in your fields quickly and easily.

To do so, I’m going to head into my Opportunity table here and I’m going to create a new opportunity.

Now, the first thing to know is that you can always tell when something is a lookup field because you’re going to see the little magnifying glass on the right side of the field.

This means that on this field we are going to be looking up to another table within the system, and the table that we're looking up to is defined on the field.

So, in this case, we are going to look at an Account record.


Now there’s a few ways for me to start filling in this information. Number one, I can simply click inside of the field, and you’ll oftentimes see a list of recent records that have been chosen in this field.

This is showing me all of my recent accounts that have been chosen.

Now up here at the top, I also can simply click on All Records and it’s going to show me all accounts that I have available in the system to pick from.

You also can get to the All Accounts list by clicking on the magnifying glass on the right side of the field.

Now in this screen, what we also can do is start typing in the name of an account and as we do so, we’re going to see that list of records start to filter down. This is based off whatever fields are set to be searchable on your Account table in this case.


Finally, what we’re able to do, of course, is click and pick any one of these and fill in our lookup field.

So, in this case, as I save this opportunity, it’s going to link to Blue Yonder Airlines.


Now a little bit more detail and a little bit more about we can do.

I’m going to move down to my contacts and what we’re going to see when I do my magnifying glass is I only have one contact available here. That’s because right now I have this field set so that it will only show me records and contacts that are listed under Blue Yonder Airlines.

So, the system is filtering down our lookup based off another field. This way I can make sure that the contact that I pick is going to be someone who actually works for the account that we’re working with at this moment.


Last thing I want to show here is clicking on the “Advanced lookup” page. When you click on the advanced lookup, you’re going to get a pop-up window that’s going to show you a list of all the available records to choose from. You can search in the top left corner. On the right side, you can add in some additional filters.

Here we can see we are filtering by our related company. I can unselect that and now we see a full list of all our available contacts. I can search within this list to pull up someone specific or I can even add a new record.

If I don’t find the contact I’m looking for, I can click on “Add new record,” and I’ll have a Quick Create form for a contact show up where I can fill in my information, hit “Save and Close,” and have that contact created and filled in.


Lookup fields are a very important part of the Dynamics system. They allow us to create relationships between our different records, making them as easy to use as possible—as always, a goal for us.

Hopefully this information was helpful.

If you ever have any questions or would like assistance in setting up your system, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at FORVIS Business Technology Solutions.

Thanks so much.

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