Armanino Dynamics Blog

Armanino Dynamics Blog

Welcome to the Dynamics Blog hosted by the professionals at Armanino. This blog is about anything that may be helpful to others regarding Microsoft Dynamics' software. The topics can be anything from Microsoft Dynamics GP, AX, CRM, SharePoint, MAS 90/200, .NET development, accounting, compliance and more.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Scott Mangelson Named to Armanino Partnership

Armanino recently named Scott Mangelson amongst the newest partners to be added to the Armanino leadership team. Scott has over 20 years experience in sales and marketing with consulting experience in seven countries.

Andy Armanino, managing partner at Armanino noted of the partner additions, "Each of them possesses a passion for serving our clients and acting as leaders in the firm by ensuring top-of-the-line quality client solutions and preparing our staff through guidance and mentoring."

As the head of Armanino's Microsoft Dynamics CRM practice, Scott is no exception. Learn more about Scott Mangelson and the rest of the Armanino leadership team.

Read the full Nasdaq Globe Newswire announcement about Armanino's newest partners.

PrecisionPoint Names Armanino as Exclusive North American Distributor

 Earlier in January, PrecisionPoint and Armanino announced an exclusive partnership. The partnership is an extension of a long commercial relationship and both teams are excited about this new endeavor. Armanino will be the exclusive North American distributor for PrecisionPoint, a global business intelligence software developer, and the North American staff at PrecisionPoint will join Armanino's consulting team. 

Learn more about the exciting partnership and read the full announcement on Nasdaq's Globe Newswire or check out the report from MS Dynamics World.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Refreshable Excel Reports from Smartlist Designer in GP 2015

Dynamics GP 2015 includes the option to publish SmartList Designer reports to Refreshable Excel Reports. This is a big advantage because you can use the data connection created by the Refreshable Excel Report to create reusable reports.

To be publishable, the SmartList Designer reports must be based on a SQL View. SQL Views are readily available in your Dynamics GP databases, you can download them from such excellent sites as: victoriayudin.com, or you can create them yourself.
ProTip: Go to Victoria’s site first to see if she’s already created something you can use.

Additionally, some changes you make to the SmartList Designer and save as a favorite will be published to Refreshable Excel Reports as well. For example, if I have SmartList Designer report created from a view and remove a column, that column won't be published. I made some changes using the “Search” tool and those changes were not published.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Fixed Assets Additions in Dynamics AX-2012 R3

Situations often arise in business where fixed assets need maintenance like a car needs an oil change or a lamp needs a new bulb. These additions are not necessarily tracked as individual fixed assets but are tagged to the existing fixed asset (FA) and may or may not increase the life span of the parent FA.

It also becomes necessary to have reporting based on those additions. It's possible the fixed asset has a disadvantage of being a high maintenance asset which could impact production, operations and general ledger in the future. With Dynamics AX 2012 R3, these impacts can be minimized with the Fixed Asset additions functionality (image 1).

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Importance of Scalable ERP Planning for Fabless Semiconductor

Fabless semiconductor companies often start up as an engineering focused organization, investing all their time and energy into their core differentiator: integrated circuit (and software) designs.

In the early operating stages, many fabless start-ups will implement a small financial package such as a Quickbooks/Peachtree, or a lower tier ERP package such as a Sage MAS 90/200 or Microsoft Dynamics GP. These lower tier ERP packages are generally effective at managing the financial reporting and capturing the expenses of an early stage R&D organization.

As R&D organizations grow into commercial sales and high volume manufacturing organizations, the need for business systems evolves. Those lower tier ERP solutions that were adequate during the R&D stage of the organization's life cycle were not designed to handle the complexity or industry specific needs of a commercial fabless organization. The ramp up of operations to full production mode often happens quickly, leading the supply chain operations team to look for short term solutions to get basic operations software in place, such as a web browser based operations tool from companies like Serus and Tensoft.

While these packages offer an entry point for basic supply chain management and WIP tracking, it’s important to note that these 3rd party solutions have very limited integration capabilities to small business financials packages or lower tier ERP systems.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

10 Critical Reasons Medical Device Manufacturers Choose Microsoft Dynamics GP

Why do medical device companies choose Microsoft Dynamics GP? Check out our latest infographic on the top 10 reasons GP is the solution for savvy medical device manufacturers.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Overcoming ERP Supply Chain Integration Hurdles in Fabless Semiconductor Manufacturing

With so many of their critical supply chain operations happening outside the four walls of a fabless semiconductor manufacturer, it becomes crucial that they effectively communicate with  partners to direct supply chain operations and receive timely updates from them to maintain full supply chain visibility in order to operate efficiently. So how can the supply chain operations and planning groups get real time visibility into their outsourced operations? The obvious answer here is that they need to establish a means of electronic integration with their supply chain partners.

Integration is easier said than done. In a perfect world, all partners would be able to adopt some sort of integration standard akin to the EDI standards set for the automotive industry in the US – but this is far from the case. The reality is, with the broad set of systems in use on both the fabless OEM side and the manufacturing services side, the attempts to establish and enforce an industry standard of communication have been challenging to say the least.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Vendor Audits are Essential with Stricter Conflict Minerals Rules

Conflict minerals are utilized in numerous high-tech products, from semiconductors to consumer electronics. The two-year grace period for SEC conflict minerals disclosure has just ended (December 31, 2014), meaning many public companies are now required to gather more detailed information about the source of the raw minerals used in their products. Even companies with outsourced manufacturing need to comply with the stricter rules.

The Conflict Minerals Rule was issued by the SEC in August 2012, as required by the Dodd-Frank Act, and took effect at the beginning of 2013. The rule requires public companies to determine annually whether their products contain so-called conflict minerals―gold, tin, tungsten or tantalum―mined in the mineral-rich Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) or adjoining countries, and if so, to disclose certain information. To comply, companies must determine the source of their minerals and whether they are conflict-free.

Ensure your business has an effective audit system in place to comply with the stricter rules. Check out the recent article, As Conflict Minerals Rules Tighten, Vendor Audits are Critical, from Armanino's High Tech and Life Sciences Industry practice leader, Jeff Russell, to learn more about the background on the rules, filing requirements, creating a vendor audit system, and leveraging the audit system.

Discover more best practices, tips and tricks, and helpful information from Armanino's Trends and Insights.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Tales from the Trenches - Dynamics CRM Online: Stalled Provisioning

Have you ever tried to set up a CRM Online Trial instance and it gets stuck during the set-up process? Does it display the message “configuration” for days on end, with no visible progress?

Rather than spending time on the phone with Microsoft in the hopes of reaching a technician who knows this shortcut, just follow these steps:

1. Log out of Office 365.
2. Close all browser windows.
3. Open a single Browser window and login to your 0365 portal.
4. Paste this link into the same window: https://port.crm.dynamics.com/g/setup/index.aspx

Your CRM Online provisioning should then continue and complete within a few minutes.

By Ben Whitestone, Consultant for Armanino's Microsoft Dynamics CRM Practice

Convergence 2015 Early Bird Deadline Fast Approaching!

This is the last week for early bird pricing at Microsoft Convergence 2015! Be sure to register by this Thursday, January 8th to reserve your space.

Whether you have attended in the past or you are a first-time attendee, Convergence is definitely a can’t-miss opportunity! With tons of information on AX, GP, CRM, and more, Convergence is the place to learn about what’s new, what’s happening, and how to best utilize your Microsoft Dynamics solutions. Check out the full agenda – featuring keynotes from Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, and Kirill Tatarinov, executive VP for Microsoft’s Business Solutions Group.

Learn more about Convergence and register by January 8th to lock in early bird pricing. We're looking forward to seeing you at the Armanino booth during the Expo! (Check out more on the Dynamics solutions before the event).

Already registered? Be on the lookout for details on Armanino's client appreciation dinner on March 17th!