Monthly Archives: July 2014

One of the coolest features within the Office 365 Power BI suite is the Q&A function where you can type in questions about the data and it will translate it into a query and then show you a report of the results. By linking this with your Dynamics AX data, even the most un-technical person should be able to become their own report writer. If you want to take this to the next level and make it even more accessible to the users then you may want to do a little bit of coding and add it directly to the users menus so that they can just click on the link and go straight to the Q&A page without even having to know the URL for Office 365.

It is like having your own personal data guru at your beck and call.
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Now that Dynamics AX R3 is available you may be working with the new Warehouse Management browser client. And if you are like me, opening up the browser window and then typing in the URL (http://localhost:82) may just be too much work and giving you serious carpel tunnel syndrome. Don’t worry though, if you want to write a couple of lines of code then you can easily add a menu item to your Tools menu that will open the mobile client up with just a click of the mouse.

It’s like having your own personal Stargate… sort of…
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 If you ask me, Power BI is the best thing since sliced bread because it gives you a great set of reporting tools. I didn’t think it could get any better until it was released out on Office 365 giving you a hosted solution without the hassle of having to configure your own SharePoint site to host your dashboards on, and also included cool tools like the natural language Q&A feature. It couldn’t possibly get any better than that. But it can, because you can also use the Data Management Gateway to link your on premise data to Office365 making the data available to users that are not even logged in to Dynamics AX through Excel.

Don’t chain up your data within your local system – set it free so that it can help everyone. Read More

Like Fez’s, Collaboration Sites are cool. They give you a way to share information about Campaigns, Projects, and Opportunities through SharePoint sites, and as a result, non-Dynamics AX users can contribute to the sites without having to use the Dynamics AX clients. There is an added benefit with Collaboration Sites since this is built upon SharePoint, then you can also allow external users to access the data – i.e. Customers, Vendors, Project Participants etc. But this is easier said than done if you are hosting the SharePoint site internally, because you need to grant the external users rights to access the site, and then give them credentials for the sites as well.

Don’t despair though – built into Dynamics AX is the option to host all of your Collaboration Workspaces within Office 365. Not only does this give you a better way to manage your SharePoint sites, but also it has inbuilt sharing features with both internal and external users without the headache of internal security configuration, and also opening up your system to the outside world.

Now you can post to the cloud and collaborate with your friends. Read More

The Project Accounting module within Dynamics AX is great. It includes features like collaboration workspaces that you can share project documents both internally and externally, and also includes integration with Microsoft Project to make it easier to you to plan out projects through a planning tool that everyone is used to using. You probably think that it couldn’t get better than this, but oh yes it can, because you can configure your Collaboration Workspaces so that they will synchronize with your Microsoft Project Plans giving you a way to have an online view of you projects.

Now everyone will be able to track the projects and always be kept in the look with those important tasks. Read More

Lifecycle Services has a nifty feature that allows you to estimate your hardware requirements based on your business process flows and also your expected transactional usage within the system. This is a great way to get the official sizing’s for your Dynamics AX system directly from the source – Microsoft.

This will ensure that you don’t create a system that is either under or over powered.
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In the perfect world, all documents and reports that are created out of Dynamics AX should be created within Reporting Services, sometimes don’t have the time or the resources available to create the reports, so you end up resorting to using other tools like Word or Excel to create quick and dirty versions. I’m not judging you all, because you have to do what you have to do, but if you do use Office as a reporting tool, then there is a feature within Dynamics AX that allows you to save your Word documents as templates and then link data directly from the system into the document, and also automatically save the document that is created as a document attachment. It gives you the best of both worlds – reporting on a shoe string, and also control over the documents.

It’s like having your own personal printing press.
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If you are a little flexible with your pricing that you give to your customers and negotiate prices at the time of quoting your orders then you may want to take advantage of the Price Simulation feature that is built into Dynamics AX. It allows you to model a number of different pricing and discounting scenarios directly within the Quotation and also calculate the expected discounts and margins and their effect on the final pricing.

Be careful, this may make you feel like you a boiler room wheeler and dealer. Read More

There is nothing worse than when a customer short pays on their invoice and you don’t quite know if they just didn’t get the right invoice, or if they are deducting amounts off the invoice for some specific (but currently unknown) reason. In the past you have probably had to either set the payment aside so that you can investigate it after you get through the other stack of checks that you need to enter into the system, or entered in the payment short and then remember that there is a balance on the invoices that you then need to investigate. It throws a spanner into your whole day.

Don’t fret though – with the R3 release there is a new Deductions Management feature within Dynamics AX that allows you to record that there was a deduction and then have all of the short pays go to a special Deductions Management Workbench that either you (or someone else) can then work through and decide if the deductions are valid or not.

If your customers act like the Amish Mafia then at least you can track it. Read More

With the R3 release of Dynamics a lot of new features have been added that you can take advantage of. One of them is a new and nifty feature hidden within the WMS module that allows you to add additional filter codes to your released products and then restrict access to them by customer and by vendor. This gives you the long needed ability to restrict which customers can buy which products.

Now you don’t have to resort to homemade filters.

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