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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, April 21, 2014

Upsides and Downsides of 4 Common ERP Implementation Strategies

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Managing a client’s appetite for customizing the standard product (Dynamics AX in this case) can be extremely challenging for a project manager, whether they’re part of an implementation team or work in-house.

However, if the customization processes aren’t carefully managed, it can be like the proverbial Dutch boy putting his finger on the leak in the dam wall. The dam will break, and customization after customization will put the project into a holding pattern, which will delay CRPs, UATs and ultimately the go-live date.

For this conversation, our definition of a customization is: a change to the basic functionality of the base system (not altering a screen, or creating or updating a report or inquiry where the data required for the new report or changing the report exists in the base system).

Friday, April 18, 2014

Convergence review and what to expect from the Microsoft Dynamics AX R3 release!

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I was lucky enough to be part of  Microsoft Dynamics Convergence 2014 last month, and I’d like to share some of the highlights of this experience, especially around the new R3 capabilities.

Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 delivers new warehouse and transportation management capabilities. On the transportation side, the new capabilities include inbound/outbound planning; multi-shipment load; shipment consolidation; split order planning; rate shopping (carriers/rates comparison) and route plan, where you can create your own segments, setup restrictions and constraint-based routing.

Transportation planning can be done directly from the purchase order or sales order, or

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Introducing New Microsoft Dynamics CRM Search Functionality

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As you probably know, Dynamics CRM includes “Advanced Find” functionality that allows users to easily create complex queries to return specific datasets. Those datasets can be edited en masse, exported to Excel for further analysis, or saved as personal views for future reference.
However, there are times when Advanced Find will not suffice:

  1. You may encounter search considerations that render conventional query criteria unworkable.
  2. You may need to share records in the result set with users who are sans computer. 

Fortunately these situations can be addressed by a little-known CRM search alternative: Primitive Find. Just follow these two easy steps to prepare your “database”:

Monday, March 17, 2014

ERP Vendor Evaluation Series for Job Shop & Made-to-Stock Manufacturers

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If your company needs an ERP, but doesn’t have the resources to avoid disrupting business in order to travel off-site for evaluation, then there’s an alternative.

Ultra Consulting’s ERP Vendor Webinar Series, enables companies to hear from multiple vendors, see demos and compare which solution is right for their organization – without having to leave the office.

Start by joining Armanino on April 2nd 2014, to see how Microsoft Dynamics AX meets the needs of job shop manufacturing. View demos right from your own location, invite your team and bring your questions. Registration includes six-month access to on-demand demo archives, which can be shared throughout your organization.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Measuring and reporting financial results

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Financial results is the main scorecard used to measure business performance. Used by internal and external parties, you want to make sure that financial results for your business are reported accurately and on time. You also want to make sure that all users of the results have a common understanding of how to interpret the results.

Accounting standards provide a common basis for publishing and consuming financial results and are fairly easy to adopt. The challenge in a business then is how to accurately record and classify business transactions on a day-to-day basis so that the periodic presentation of financial results is a routine process that can be accomplished easily.

Having a reliable accounting system is essential to meet that goal. If you’re still using spreadsheets or rely on an abundance of manual records for this, you’re not taking advantage of an easy solution. An integrated accounting system can keep you on top of things.

These are some of the common business situations that are greatly improved by using an integrated accounting system:

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Making an NN searchable in views or advanced in Microsoft Dynamics CRM

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By default, the NN relationship isn’t directly accessible in advanced find or filter views. When you create a new N:N relationship it is set so as not to be displayed on either side:

Creating a new N:N relationship in Microsoft Dynamics CRM

The “Display Option” and “Searchable” properties control if the relationship is displayed in views and advanced find. To make the NN searchable from one side or both sides, you’ll need to set the appropriate display option:

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Don't miss Dynamics GRC Day 2014 in Atlanta, GA - March 3rd!

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Are you responsible for risk management in a Microsoft Dynamics environment?

Then don't miss Dynamics GRC Day. This one of a kind conference featuring industry leading experts discussing issues and strategies surrounding security, risk, audit, compliance and governance. You'll gain critical knowledge that you can apply immediately in your current environment.

Key presenters include Protiviti, Fastpath, PwC and Armanino partner Jeremy Sucharski, who brings extensive experience and has worked with numerous Dynamics customers. These experts will share best practices and cost saving strategies developed from deploying GRC solutions in hundreds of environments across the globe. There will be four hours of CPE Credit available.

As an Armanino client, you will receive $100 off the registration price, just be sure to enter the code ARMGRC. To see the detailed agenda, visit www.dynamicsgrc.com.

The Details:

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

AX 2012 Consolidations for Multi-company and Multi-currency scenarios

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Many growing companies have subsidiaries and locations all over the world. Some of those companies are tracked as separate legal entities and are required to be reported at a consolidated level in a different currency than its transactions. Here’s how to do this in AX 2012.

First, make sure your consolidation company is setup correctly under Organization Administration > Setup > Organization > Legal Entities, with the “Use financial consolidation process” checkbox marked. Eliminations can be tracked separately in a different company or the same consolidation company. When consolidating under General Ledger > Periodic > Consolidate [Online], go through each tab in detail the first few times (outlined below). Then, subsequent consolidations only need small changes like Date range and Description—everything else is saved from the previous consolidation.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Multi-Company Smartlists for Microsoft Dynamics GP Smartlist Builder

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If you use Microsoft Dynamics GP, you most likely use Smartlist. And you may even be lucky enough to own Smartlist Builder, which allows you to build your own custom Smartlists. If you do have Smartlist Builder, there is one feature I would like to highlight that you may or may not be aware of—the ability to create Multi-Company Smartlists. You might be wondering what you would use a Multi-Company Smartlist for, but once you have them, I am sure you will feel like you can’t live without them!

Here are some examples of when you might want to set up a Multi-Company Smartlist:

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Best Practices for Designing New Entities in Microsoft Dynamics CRM

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MS CRM is a very powerful tool, and very easy to customize—this can be good and bad. However, with some planning, you can help ensure that any new entities you add to the system make sense and are easy to use.

Before Adding the New Entity