Microsoft NAVUG Summit Provides Product Roadmap

There were almost as many product announcements as cowboy hats at NAVUG Summit 2017 in Nashville. For Dynamics NAV users, Microsoft’s roadmap guidance was clear: NAV will continue to receive yearly updates, and customers who want to remain on-premise or hosted (non-SaaS) can do so. Customers can expect Dynamics 365 “Tenerife,” when it arrives in 2018, to offer both a SaaS option and an on-prem roadmap for NAV.

Codename Tenerife

The NAV/Tenerife product roadmap now calls for Dynamics NAV 2018 in fall 2017, with a December 1 general availability date expected; then NAV 2018 R2 in Spring 2018 alongside the initial Tenerife launch. Beyond NAV 2017 R2, Dynamics NAV will adopt a new name under the Dynamics 365 brand, but the software continued updates to the same product, said Marko Perisic, Dynamics 365 R&D general manager. “Codename Tenerife will be rolled up into the Dynamics 365 brand,” Perisic said. “It is an important brand that Microsoft is putting its weight behind.”

Is it me, or does this codename business make you feel like a spy?

Important Release Dates to Remember

Dynamics NAV 2018: DEC 1

Dynamics NAV 2018 R2: Spring 2018

Codename Tenerife: Spring 2018

NAV 2018 Productivity Updates

Microsoft program and product managers showed off a range of productivity updates that will be included in NAV 2018. Office integration will continue to expand in NAV 2018, with an eye toward more streamlined processes. Microsoft demonstrated a quote-to-cash process executed entirely in Outlook, driven by NAV. After creating a quote, order, and invoice from Outlook, the customer can also pay the invoice via their Microsoft account, again from Outlook.

Within the NAV 2018 web client, the in-app designer will allow for users to personalize their own experiences by rearranging interface elements and adding and removing fields. Global interface changes completed with the in-app designer are saved as NAV extensions, meaning they should be manageable and stable across core system updates.

Tenerife User Interface Updates

There is a revamped user interface coming with Tenerife that will aim to simplify role centers, with more visible information and actions moved higher on the page for easier access. The left-side menus will be moved to the top of the screen to add more real estate to content. List pages will be redesigned to look more like financial reports. And the preview shown at Summit featured a monochrome look and feel that Microsoft believes will improve the visual impact, especially around data visualizations.

Microsoft has positioned Dynamics 365 Tenerife as a business application platform that offers a full range of capabilities, backed up by the Common Data Service for augmenting apps as needed. Microsoft wants customers to look at it as a solution that can be augmented easily with standalone Dynamics 365 apps like Sales, Marketing, Talent, and service using Common Data Service.

Cloud-first

Microsoft made it clear that Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations – Business Edition (formerly NAV), is a “cloud-first” solution. “Emphasis has to be on the cloud, but it’s important to recognize and know [that] despite trends, we have a huge customer base and Microsoft will not leave any of those customers behind,” said Perisic. “We recognize you have installations on your own hardware and we will continue to support that. And because of that we’re not a cloud-only company, we’re a cloud-first company. Make investments there first and mirror those for customers who are on-premises. We see it as an advantage to provide that choice.”

Let us know if you have any questions about these latest product updates for Microsoft Dynamics 365 and/or NAV.

Best regards,

Dave Drouin
EVP of Professional Services, SBS Group

About David Drouin

David is a graduate of Wharton School of Business with a B.S. in Accounting and Economics.  After graduation, he began a twenty year career in public accounting, including five years as a partner where he built a successful systems advisory practice and managed it as partner-in-charge.

David joined SBS Group in 2006 as the Executive VP of Finance before taking on his current role as Executive VP of Professional Services.Dave Drouin, Executive Vice President, Professional Services at SBS Group

In addition to his business and accounting background, David has strong technical skills which he has leveraged in helping hundreds of small businesses and large enterprises evaluate and implement ERP systems in his nearly thirty years in technology services sector.​

https://www.linkedin.com/in/daviddrouin

Microsoft Dynamics Focuses on Productivity, Ease of Use and Simplification in a Wide Range of ERP Product Enhancements Announced in 2014

In this post, we have provided a round-up of major enhancements announced by Microsoft Dynamics ERP product lines in 2014. Improvements have been made across the board. New features and functionality, streamlined workflows and integrations with Office 365 focus on increasing productivity and collaboration for end users, while a wide range of user experience enhancements simplify screens and improve ease of use. A number of important industry specific features have been updated or added as well. On the technical side, improvements have been made throughout the application lifecycle, from new tools to expedite the implementation and upgrade processes to protecting data and disaster recovery with Windows Azure Cloud Storage.

We’ve highlighted some of the more significant changes by product for you here and provided links to deeper dive information as well.

Microsoft AX 2012 R3 enhancements have been grouped around three main themes – engaging customers, efficient operations and expanding businesses. Highlights include:

  • Several enhancements related to improving the consumer experience, including new e-commerce enhancements, assisted sales & customer purchase intelligence, mobile POS for multiple platforms, OOB integration with Facebook and Twitter & SDK for Amazon and eBay, customer specific pricing, customer management, omni-channel wish list and multi-language storefront
  • New functionality for the warehouse including flexible, advanced picking rules and workflow for outbound shipping; and flexible, advanced put-away rules, workflow and location directives for inbound receiving.
  • Analysis tasks around transportation planning including inbound/outbound planning, multi-shipment loads, shipment consolidation, optimization of loads based on capacity, and ASN have also been upgraded in the new release.
  • New inventory management features include RF support, license plates, cycle counting, inventory blocking, and QMS integration.
  • A number of new forecasting tools are available for statistical baseline forecast generation based on historical data, baseline forecast visualization and editing, and forecast accuracy KPIs.
  • Enterprise management updates allow companies to scale their systems and operations to changing marketing needs through AX on Azure, global supply chain execution, 36 markets support, life-cycle services and Business Analyzer and reporting improvements
  • Visit our Dynamics AX Product Page to learn more.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2015 includes several enhancements to make the solution quick to implement, easy to use and able to support important functionality for SMBs, including:

  • Rapid Start Implementation and Rapid Start Upgrade provide new features and tools to help streamline the initial implementation of Microsoft Dynamics NAV as well as the upgrade process from one version to another or from one update to another.
  • Microsoft Dynamics NAV for tablets allows users in small and midsized business to access the data they need from the device they prefer. A fresh and modern interface designed exclusively for touch provides the same RoleTailored experience users are already familiar with.
  • Several new user experience enhancements make Microsoft Dynamics NAV more intuitive for the end-user by making data entry on pages faster. Improvements such as showing mandatory input fields, auto-fill fields, and the ability to show only relevant fields to the user through user permission sets are some examples.
  • More than 60+ pages and ~100 objects have been simplified and localized for each supported market to provide a more streamlined user experience focused on basic sales and purchase scenarios.
  • Enhanced interoperability with Office 365 including simplified email messaging and sign in to Microsoft Dynamics NAV using your Office 365 account is now available.
  • Microsoft Word is now a layout editing option for document reports and report scheduling has been added.
  • Several enhancements to cash management have been made including conversion of electronic bank statement files into data that can be imported into Microsoft Dynamics NAV and improvements in the payment journal and credit transfer registers to better manage payment creation and tracking of payment history.
  • Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2015 includes a control add-in that enables you to embed hosted service in Microsoft Dynamics NAV pages. This includes solutions like Microsoft Social Listening, which collects data from social media websites and presents it in easy to consume charts and graphs with drill down capabilities to more detailed data.
  • Visit our Dynamics NAV Product Page to learn more.

Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 R2 includes some system-wide feature enhancements as well as new functionality in financials and distribution.

  • Workflow is being completely redesigned and rebuilt with five new workload types and several methods for workflow approval.
  • The user log in experience will be improved through enhancements to the identity management features. Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 R2 is simplifying the web client login, reducing identity maintenance between apps and supporting service based architecture scenarios.
  • Several new modules around added value for self-service users are included in this release, including new pages for time management, requisitions and project time & expense.
  • Improved disaster recovery options with Microsoft Azure backup options are now available.
  • A new one step process for emailing and printing batches or statements has been enabled.
  • A number of enhancements to the email capabilities have been included, including allowing users to email or print reports in word format and use word tools to modify reports. In addition, emails can be sent to different contacts based on document type, for instance users can specify different recipients for a sales quote report and an order report, rather than having to make the change in the sending process. Doc attach has been added to the payables transaction.
  • Financial features include the ability to reverse the GL year end close process, more quickly set up asset records, integration of multicurrency revaluation with analytical accounting, copy and paste to general ledger, reprint of outstanding transactions report from bank reconciliation, and the ability to sort checks by option.
  • Distribution enhancements include the ability to assign items to multiple sites, payables prepayment additions, and suggested items functionality that allows users to analyze and suggest items based on historical data and create sales scripts for service reps to use when looking at suggested items in the sales transaction entry.
  • Visit our Dynamics GP Product Page to learn more.

Microsoft Dynamics SL 2015 enhancements center around three themes – work productivity, delivering insights across the organization, and more flexible integration of a host of applications and platforms. Highlights include:

  • New web apps allow access to screens from your desktop as you currently have, as well as access via tablets & smartphones. Built in HTML5, these apps adjust to the size of the screen. Supported devices include Windows Phone, Surface Tablet RT/Pro, Android 4.0+, iOS release 6 & 7, Windows or Macintosh desktop and any browser that supports HTML5.
  • Current web services include project, customer, project time entry, and project expense entry and project time and expense approval. Future releases will continue to add web services such as project budget & invoice approvals, project delegations, project resource assignment, and project timesheets.
  • Usability improvements for all users have been included in Microsoft Dynamics SL 2015, including more flexible time entry options and the ability to attach receipts in project expense reports for project employees. Project managers now have access to view all of their projects with filters available to locate a specific project. Project financial summaries, AR billings, and unbilled amounts are available along with drill downs to details such as project and task net profit.
  • System wide upgrades include color themes that provide out of the box customized visual experiences, allowing companies to create their own custom theme.
  • In addition, Microsoft Dynamics SL 2011 Business Portal now offers support for SharePoint 2013.
  • Visit our Dynamics SL Product Page to learn more.

Contact your SBS Group Account Manager today to learn more about what’s new in the Microsoft Dynamics ERP product line or start a discussion with a business technology expert at 888.725.2555.

Getting the Most from your Supply Chain Analytics

“Supply chain, across industries, constitutes about 50-80% of the value add.” Kaveh Taghizadeh, the Vice President MESA SCM & Procurement at KPMG, knows that fully understanding the entire supply chain should be a primary business requirement.  For an organization to better understand their supply chain, diving into analytics would be a logical development.

According to Dr. Philipp Biermann, a partner in the Competence Center Transport & Logistics at Simon-Kutch & Partners, “Some sectors sometimes spend up to 10% of their revenues on all logistics related activities. Unfortunately too many companies have not established an integrated view on their supply chain…However, in a faster moving world your supply chain might even become a competitive differentiator because you are able to respond faster to new consumer trends.”

While some companies do have well-established analytics integrated into their supply chain management process, many do not generate the right type of data. “This misunderstanding often leads to investments in the wrong type of support systems… when implemented correctly, an investment into the improvement of the Analytics of the supply chain is something that firms should be undertaking.”

SBS Group has a suite of Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions that can be tailored to your business needs. You can contact us to get in touch with one of our industry experts.

Integrate Multiple Sales Channels with Dynamics to Maximize Profit

A new age of commerce is among us. As eCommerce technology continues to mature, companies that sell online are upgrading their systems to take advantage of newer and better functionality, small retailers are venturing into online sales for the first time, while others are selling items through online marketplaces like eBay and Amazon.

The opportunity to increase sales is appealing, but adding new sales channels can be more of a challenge than you expect. Manual processes and inconsistencies between channels can frustrate buyers and quickly eat away at new earnings. nChannel offers a multi-channel management platform that helps companies maximize their profits by:

  • Integrating marketplaces and ecommerce systems with Microsoft Dynamics ERP and POS solutions
  • Automating and managing sales processes
  • Synchronizing item and inventory data
  • Providing business intelligence to make better decisions and service customers

 

To learn more about the nChannel multi-management platform, please fill out the contact form below for a link to a free video with more information.

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