How to Find the Best Software that Fits Your Requirements and Integrates with Dynamics GP

The current process of finding software is broken. Organizations utilize search engines, high-level catalogs, reviews, sit through countless demos & at the end of their vetting process, jump into an agreement where stones (requirements) may still be left unturned and the agreement may end up feeling like a leap of faith.

Let’s examine further…

  • Search Engines. Talk about information overload. If you search ‘Top Budgeting Solution’, you’re left with websites that do nothing but gather outdated reviews from paid customers (or from the vendors themselves, YIKES) or you’re left with the software companies themselves and their well-funded and clever advertisements selling to you. After looking a software site for awhile, you then jump into the next step…

  • Countless Demos. It could be the first demo or it could be the tenth demo that you ultimately move to the next step with. The point is that time is wasted on all fronts with unnecessary “canned” demos from sales teams that don’t know your business, your challenges or your actual requirements. Great.

  • There Are So Many to Choose From. In each category, there are dozens and dozens of solutions and they all have different approaches, different targets, different features & fit different types of customers. You can ‘t possibly vet them all to find the best fit and can’t afford to end up selecting the wrong solution. Purchasing software isn’t like buying a new laptop; you can’t just take it back or trade it in for another if you’re unhappy. The costs to switch after you’ve started a project (even when you do find there’s a better solution for you) are simply too great.

  • Referrals. Referrals are great and should always be utilized when the right one is found. However, what does a referral typically look like? You’ve requested one from a vendor and they provide you with the contact information of one of their biggest fans OR you find a referral from a more trusted source but that referral still ultimately doesn’t have the same requirements as you do…

  • Half-Vetted Solutions Turned Agreements. How often do you have every single process and requirement hashed out with the vendor to ensure there’s a fit EVERYWHERE before you ink the dotted line? There isn’t a large enough sales force in the world that has time to sit with all prospects in the pre-sales process to go through every fine detail. What typically happens is that the agreement is signed & then these requirements are hashed out (or found to be misses) as the implementation / go-live proceeds. Not good.

Let’s take a look at finding software using a smarter approach. Let’s take a look at Solugence.

Solugence is a software matching platform where you build a “software profile” that entails what your business requirements are for a particular software category (let’s say a Budgeting/Forecasting & Financial reporting tool) and then Solugence’s software matching algorithm identifies the best solutions that FIT YOU and provides you with a detailed breakdown on why the match. The days of countless demos, endless Google searches, spending weeks—>months trying to vet out software are finished! Oh and Solugence is 100% free!

The best part about Solugence is that its originating roots come from the Dynamics GP world so many of the categories deployed, the solutions that are being matched against, and even the profiles themselves have the specific requirements of a typical GP customer in mind.

Simply put, if you’re looking for software in any of the following live categories, you HAVE to consider using Solugence to help you find the best fit. Solugence will save you time, money and is the smartest way to finding the right software that fits you.

“Live” Categories on Solugence

  • Budgeting, Forecasting & Financial Reporting (which Management Reporter replacement is the best fit for you?)

  • Lease Accounting (ASC 842 is upon us and it’s crystal clear that this is not something we’ll find in GP or any ERP system for that matter)

  • Expense Reporting (Did you know that there are over 50 EXPENSE REPORTING SOLUTIONS in the marketplace? Solugence will help you find what fits you best and integrates with GP)

  • A/P Automation (GP has made some strides in this category with their workflows and document attachments, however, full A/P Automation solutions are incredibly beneficial to organizations running GP).

  • Fixed Assets (GP has a simple fixed assets solution that will suit some with some patience and oversight; there are dozens of other great solutions that focus solely on Fixed Assets available)

Learn more & get to finding smarter @ https://solugence.com.

Workflows Galore in GP2018 and What Makes Them Great!

Curious as to what Workflow options are available in Dynamics GP? Check-out the full post HERE! Microsoft has done a fantastic job with the workflow system and our post touches on the pros and cons as well as what features and workflow options you should expect if/when you decide to jump on board with workflows.

Read More

Dynamics GP Training/Tutorial 101 - Youtube Video Series!

For all of the new/un-guided Dynamics GP users out there, this one’s for you!

Introducing the “Learn Dynamics GP - 101 Series” now up on YouTube! A lot of time and effort has gone into these tutorials but I’m happy to finally roll them out and make them official.

The 101 series is what you would think but is broken down core module by core module and includes some bonus 101 series training/tutorials (Fixed Assets, Navigation, etc.).

The hope is that these videos can serve as an introduction to Microsoft Dynamics GP and get you or your team up to speed very quickly. If you ever have questions or are looking for more in-depth & hands-on trainings, let our team help you out.

The 101 series is just the beginning and more videos are to come! Let us know what you think in the comments below or on the YouTube channel and do us a favor and SUBSCRIBE to stay up to date with our future releases.

Enjoy!

Youtube - GP Training/Tutorial 101 Series

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYaFvNBJI6Dq8HQP3gr9tr2c3F9Sa6seP

GP-Training-Tutorial-101-Series.png

GPUG - All-Star Nominations!

With the User Group Summit conference right around the corner in October, there are lots of exciting things going on in the GPUG world at this time of year, one of which is the yearly "All-Star" awards.

All-Star nominees are put up by their peers based on their contributions to the GPUG community & this year, I've been fortunate enough to be considered!

If you're a part of the GPUG community and have benefited from all that GPUG offers, take a look @ the 2018 All-Star nominees that can be viewed @ https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/GPUG2018All-StarVoting.  There are quite a few recognizable names on the nominees list this year.

If you're not familiar with GPUG & you use GP, I'd HIGHLY recommend taking a look @ what the group has to offer.  There are benefits to non-members but for members, here are a few of the things that you can take advantage of:

  • Live & Recorded Webinars
  • Open GP Related Forum (Highly active!)
  • Conference discounts
  • Local chapter events
  • Other exclusive member discounts

If you ever find yourself around the New Orleans area and want to check-out a local chapter meeting, we'd love to have you!  Presenters and/or attendees are always welcome!

Hope to see some familiar faces in Phoenix for Summit!

Start Processing Credit Card Payments in GP TODAY!

On another installment of our video series, we covered a feature that's been around for quite awhile but was recently added to with Dynamics GP 2018.

Setting up credit cards, processing credit card transactions, and issuing payments for credit card bills all done within GP.

This short video will cover everything that you need to setup credit cards & begin processing them TODAY!

Enjoy, subscribe, and let us know what else you're interested in!

Provided by ALaCarteGP.com Don't forget to subscribe to our Youtube channel to stay in the loop w/ future posts & also check-out our blog @ ALaCarteGP.com/blog

Fixed Assets - Upgraded Projection Reports Using SSRS

Quick show-off of how to utilize SSRS to deploy improved Fixed Asset Projection reports in Dynamics GP 2018. Versions are a month over month report as well as a summary/detailed projection listing with G/L account.

Read More

Payables Payment Process Using Dynamics GP 2018!

The payables process within GP is tried & true within Dynamics GP.  It's one of the fundamental process that GP was built-on and it works very very well.  Below is a video that can be found on our YouTube channel that covers the payment process from beginning to end and highlights some of the additional features that Microsoft brought to the table with Dynamics GP 2018.

Feel free to take a look @ our full video library on our YouTube channel & let us know what you think!

If you like our videos, give us a like and a subscribe to be in the loop on future posts.

If there's a future topic that you'd like us to cover, let us know in the comments below!

SmartList Builder - Develop & Deploy Reports

eOne Solutions' SmartList Builder is the equivalent of the SmartList Designer product that Microsoft now offers with the out of the box Dynamics install.  SmartList Designer has been around a little longer thus was the focus of our post.  Everything that's done in this particular video can be accomplished using SmartList designed in almost a similar sequence.

Please check out our video post on Youtube and <SUBSCRIBE> to our channel for notifications on future posts.

Also, if you have feedback on our videos or have a topic in mind that you'd like for us to cover, please let us know in the comments below!

Automate Unit Account Values Based on Sales Quantities

It is a typical KPI request to be able to report on unit account values.  Let's go ahead and say that we're looking at a profit and loss report, by product and the business wants to see units sold that are included in that margin.

In a perfect world (and using some tools that are not named Management Reporter), if you're capturing the Product A quantity in the Sales Order Processing (SOP) module in GP, you'd be able to reference the sum of the sales instead of using a unit account.  However... We don't live in a perfect world whilst using Management Reporter thus Unit Accounts are required.

So what we'd see is in GP, we'd setup a unit account for something like "Units Sold - Product A"

In Management Reporter, we'd then have a row definition that looked something like...

Sales Product A

- Expenses Product A

= Margin

/ Units Sold - Product A

= Margin/Unit

In a typical fashion, in order for this report to be up to date, the accounting team would need to make a routine journal entry to the unit account within GP.  This process leaves way for manual errors, timing issues & the potential for management to lose confidence in their reports.

Using the method below, we complete streamline this process by automating the unit account journal entry within GP.

Part 1: Associate a unit account with an inventory item in GP.

Note: For example deliverable, one item may be used at multiple locations (segment 1 of COA).  Therefore, we just assign the Natural account to the item & then let the integration define the remaining COA segments)

Approach: We accomplish this using

eOne Solution's Extender product

Part 2: Setup integration that captures posted activity in GP & creates journal entry in GP.

Note: For example deliverable, we're pulling the prior day's activity & creating a journal entry first thing in the morning.

Note: Integration script defines COA segments based on the SITE of the sale on SOP invoice & then the natural account that we associated to the item.

Approach:  We accomplish this using

eOne Solution's SmartConnect product

Map/Integration Setup

ODBC Connection to Company Database - Selecting Prior Day Sales

Part 3: Enable map/integration schedule.  This is an out of the box functionality of SmartConnect.

Part 4: Create reconciling reports using SmartList/SmartView.  These reports can be used at month-end to reconcile financials.

Note: This report is best suited to be built using a Sales Line Item report, filter on the posting date & ensures that returns are shown as negatives

Part 5: Notify accounting team that all they need to do moving forward is post their batches & reconcile once @ month-end!

Integrated transactions in GP would look similar to...

Note: All prior day activity are rolled into 1 line.  Option to separate for each sales transaction would be available if desired.

A few other notes to consider in this process...

- Returns must be accounted for

- When deploying, it is recommended to have the accounting team reconcile more frequent.  As they gather an understanding of process and ensure that numbers are tying out, reconcile less frequent.

- Failed integrations should auto-notify an integration PowerUser.  PowerUser could re-run integration if/when needed

This solution is built in a manner that's easy to implement & maintain and quickly accomplishes the goals of time savings, accurate data & providing a more robust GP system.

Thinking about implementing for your business and looking for additional details?  Already implemented and have feedback?  Let us know in the comments below!

Copying Quick Links from One User to Another

Microsoft has come a decent ways to allow each user to customize their home login page.  For a long time there has been the feature for the first time that a user connects, they are prompted to select their "Role" that determines how their out of the box homepage will look & feel. 

With later versions of GP, there also came the ability to copy a user's homepage settings from 1 user to another (along with every other setting from the original user).

However, Microsoft still hasn't made it simple just to take an existing user's quick links and apply them to another user.  From using the interface, you'd have to copy ALL user settings from one user to another using the "Users Maintenance" window OR you'd have to login to a certain user's account and set their quick links OR provide them with instructions on setting them themselves. 

NO MORE! 

Using the script below, you can define a copy from user (TestUser1) & a copy to user (TestUser2) and either replace the existing quicklinks or add to.

--Declare Variables
DECLARE @CopyFromUserID CHAR(15), @CopyToUserID CHAR(15), @Count INT, @Delete CHAR(1)

 --Provide Values for Variables
--This is the section that MUST BE UPDATE
SELECT @CopyFromUserID = 'TestUser1', @CopyToUserID = 'TestUser2', @Delete = 'N' --Delete = Y means delete any existing quicklinks for copy to user, N = Append Only

--This script will delete existing favorites if @Delete = Y
DELETE FROM dbo.SY08140 WHERE userid = @CopyToUserID AND @Delete = 'Y'

--Start copy from one user to another
SELECT * INTO #TempQuickLinks FROM sy08140 WHERE userid = @CopyFromUserID AND dsplname NOT IN (SELECT DSPLNAME FROM dbo.SY08140 WHERE userid = @CopyToUserID) AND @CopyToUserID IN (SELECT userid FROM SY01400)

SET @Count = 1

WHILE @Count <= (SELECT COUNT(seqnumbr) FROM #TempQuickLinks)

begin

UPDATE #TempQuickLinks SET SEQNUMBR = ISNULL((SELECT MAX(seqnumbr) + 1 FROM sy08140 WHERE USERID = @CopyToUserID),1)

INSERT INTO SY08140 (USERID, SEQNUMBR, TYPEID, CmdID, CmdFormID, CmdDictID, DSPLNAME, ScbTargetStringOne, ScbTargetStringTwo, ScbTargetStringThree, ScbTargetLongOne

,ScbTargetLongTwo, ScbTargetLongThree, ScbTargetLongFour, ScbTargetLongFive)

SELECT TOP 1 @CopyToUserID, SEQNUMBR, TYPEID, CmdID, CmdFormID, CmdDictID, DSPLNAME, ScbTargetStringOne, ScbTargetStringTwo, ScbTargetStringThree, ScbTargetLongOne

,ScbTargetLongTwo, ScbTargetLongThree, ScbTargetLongFour, ScbTargetLongFive FROM #TempQuickLinks WHERE DSPLNAME NOT IN (SELECT dsplname FROM sy08140 WHERE USERID = @CopyToUserID)

SET @Count = @Count + 1

END

DROP TABLE #TempQuickLinks
--End copy from one user to another

--View ending results
SELECT * FROM dbo.SY08140 WHERE userid = @CopyToUserID

Note: The script has only been used in limited GP 2015 R2 environments.  As always, it is recommended to run the script in a development environment before deploying to production.

This script might be useful when...
- Setting up a new user and wanting to setup their quicklinks based off another user in a similar role
- Setting up a new module and wanting to add quicklinks to all users based on your model user (say when setting up Fixed Assets & wanting to add an external link to the new GAAP Financial Leases requirements)
- Setting up a new SmartView favorite for certain users but also wanting to add the quicklink to their homepage

Have feedback or have you expanded the user of this script?  Let us know!

Company Address IDs - Import

Did you know that within Purchase Order Processing that the list of available ship to addresses pulled from the Company Address ID setup within GP?  During a POP/Inventory/SOP implementation, it's no uncommon for companies to have 100s of potential ship to addresses for purchases.  Below we've covered our favorite way to get this list of address IDs into the system using .csv/.txt files and SQL.

Step 1.)  Create a spreadsheet that list all address lines.  Our example contains the following columns.

Company ID, Address ID, Name, Contact, Address 1, City, State, Zip Code

Step 2.) Save spreadsheet to a tab-delimited text file

Step 3.) Open the text file & replace any " characters w/ {blanks}.  " characters will appear when a field contains a comma.

Step 4.) Import into SQL using SQL Server Management Studio

>>Right-Click Database

    >>Select Tasks

        >>Select Import Data

           >>Select Flat File as source

              >>Enter Staging Table Name in SQL Destination (Use name of CoAddressID_Template in our example below)

Step 5.) Create backup of table that we're about to insert into (select * into sy00600_backup{date} from sy00600.  This step is important in case we need to roll-back our insert and don't want to have to refresh the entire database.

Step 6.) Ensure that no address IDs in your staging table already exist within GP.

select * from sy00600 where locatnid in (select [Address ID] from coAddressid_template)

Step 7.) Run SQL Insert statement to move data from staging table (CoAddressID_template) to SY00600 table.

declare @cmpanyid numeric(2,0);

set @cmpanyid = (select cmpanyid from dynamics..sy01500 where cmpnynam = '{ENTER YOUR CO NAME}');

insert into gpent..sy00600 (CMPANYID,LOCATNID,LOCATNNM,ADRSCODE,ADRCNTCT,ADDRESS1,ADDRESS2,ADDRESS3,CITY,COUNTY,STATE,ZIPCODE,COUNTRY,PHONE1,PHONE2,PHONE3,FAXNUMBR,CHANGEBY_I,CHANGEDATE_I,CCode)

select @cmpanyid,left([Address ID],15),left([Name],30),'',left([Contact],60),left([Address 1],60),'','',left([City],25),

'',left([State],30),left([ZIP Code],10),'','','','','','','1900-01-01 00:00:00.000','' from coAddressid_template

That should do it.  You can add additional columns to your sourcefile if you please.  Just be sure to update your insert script to account for the new columns & remember character limitations! left(Address1,60)

Our first preference is to always use the Microsoft eConnect procedures or integration tools like Integration Manager when available.  However, when all else fails, a carefully executed SQL script can achieve the same outcome.  At the end of the day, it's all data in a database.

Let us know if this works for you or if you'd like to see similar processes using SQL!

Submitting Microsoft Dynamics Feedback - Updated 2018!

"The only thing that is consistent is change"

Change in the GP world is always coming and in most cases should be welcomed with open arms.  Changes for the betterment of the system ensures that you're getting the most out of your investment and using a product that is competitive in the current marketplace.  

Did you know that you can factor into the upcoming changes for GP?  There's an actual direct line to the Microsoft Dynamics GP team that allows customers and partners to submit product improvements and bugs to be considered for future releases.  We urge everyone to use this avenue when you're looking for more from your system!

Update 2018:

The feedback/suggestion process is now a whole lot simpler and with the times.  Simply go to the new Microsoft Dynamics GP Ideas page, create an account, review existing suggestions or suggest away!

Give it a shot and keep us posted on what new features you'd like to see in GP.  We're happy to give your submission a vote as well!

Handling Unapplied Open Balance on Purchase Order Prepayment

The ability to create purchase order prepayments was introduced w/ GP 2013R2.  With any new feature, there is almost always rooms for improvement and POP prepayments is no exception.  One of the areas of improvement is such a cluster that we felt a blog describing the issue and the necessary workaround was warranted.

Issue:

When a PO prepayment has a remaining balance and the corresponding Purchase Order is moved to history, it becomes nearly impossible to apply the prepayment to any future vouchers.

When closing a Purchase Order under Purchasing>>Transactions>>Edit Purchase Orders, the following screen appears which prompts you that there is an unapplied balance on a prepayment.

At this time, we are still able to apply the prepayment balance to any offsetting invoice or debit memo without issue.

However, once the Remove Completed Purchase Orders routine is run (Purchasing>>Routines>>Removed Competed POs), the PO is moved to history and the prepayment is NO LONGER available to select and apply to existing vouchers.  It cannot be transferred to regular payables, there cannot be any transactions entered against the PO since it is now historical, it is not available under Apply Payables Documents, & cannot be applied to future check runs.

Quite the conundrum...

Workaround:

Although the balance cannot be transferred to regular payables, we do still have the ability to transfer the balance to A/R using customer/vendor relationships.  After transferring to A/R, we can turn around and transfer it back to A/P where it will now become a regular PM voucher (Credit Memo) that can be applied to existing invoices or debit memos for the vendor.  We covered the process to transfer balances between customers and vendors in an earlier video here.

Perfect World:

All is well up until the point that the Remove Completed Purchase Orders routine is run.  During that process, there are no warnings that you'll no longer be able to apply invoices & nothing that stops you from proceeding to create the scenario that we've highlighted above.  Here's to hoping that the developers at Microsoft prevents Purchase Orders from moving to history if there is an outstanding balance on a prepayment OR they provide a more direct route to move a POP prepayment to regular payables.

Until then, this will assist you in clearing up those A/P trial balances and remaining documents come month/year-end!

Recurring Sales Transaction in GP Using Sales Order Processing

For the environments that rely on the Sales Order Processing module for billing purposes, one of the downsides is that recurring batches that are available in other modules aren't so readily available within SOP.  While recurring batches may not be available by name, there is still the opportunity to create recurring transactions using sales orders.

Instead of a batch of recurring sales invoices, we'll create Sales Orders that can be placed in a batch and transferred to invoices over and over.

Setup Recurring Sales Orders

The first thing that we'll want to do is create a sales order document 'template' that will allow recurring transactions.

1. Open the Sales Order Processing Setup window and create or open a sales order document ID by selecting the 'Order ID' link.

2. Setup Sales Order

Note Required:

- Allocate by: None

- Allow repeating documents

Create Individual Recurring Sales Order

1. Open the Sales Transaction Entry window

2. Enter normal Order information

3. Drill into each lineitem (blue arrow) and set distribution accounts

4. Review transaction distributions to ensure they are valid for current and future transactions.

5. Drill into Document Number (blue arrow) once Sales Order has been filled out

Note Required:

- Enter times to repeat

- Enter frequency of recurrence.  (This will update order date, not posting or invoice dates)

- Ensure Invoice Type ID is valid

- Enter batch ID of recurring INVOICES - Create holding batch if necessary

- Save

Process: Batch Transfer from Order to Invoice

Transactions can be transferred from recurring sales orders to sales invoices in a batch or at the transaction-level

1, Open 'Recurring' Sales Order batch

2. Select Transfer

Note Required:

- Transfer Order to Invoice (bottom-left)

3. Preview items to be transferred

4. Transfer document(s)

5. Open sales batch window and ensure posting date is correct.

6. Open Transaction(s) and ensure expected invoices transferred to designated batch(es)

Note Required:

- Check document date 

Process: Transaction Transfer from Order to Invoice

1. Open sales order transaction

2. Select Actions>>Transfer>>Transfer to Invoice

Best Practice Notes

- Utilize separate recurring batches for orders and invoices.

Example is to create a recurring sales order batch for daily, weekly, monthly transactions and have the transferred transactions push to similar setups for invoice transactions.

- Always review posting and document dates of transferred invoices.

We hope that this process makes your billing process easier?  Have any billing tips of your own that you'd like to share?  Let us know in the comments below!

Re-Enable New Account Segment Notification in Dynamics GP

If you've ever integrated new accounts via Integration Manager, you've probably found that the notification that prompts users that a Chart of Account segment does not exists and that prevents you being able to add accounts easily.  The easiest and quickest solution for this problem is to quickly select 'Yes, add segment' and 'Do not display this message again'.  No harm no foul.

The downside of this is that the notification window exists for a reason and that reason is to ensure that users are not accidentally adding unnecessary COA segments.  Once you've selected 'Do not notify me again', GP listens and will no longer notify that user.

However, via SQL, we can reverse these effects and force GP to forget what we told it earlier.

Step 1. View users that currently have disabled this notification window

- Select * from {CompID}..SY01401 where coDefaultType = 13

Step 2. Create database backup or table backup

- Select * into SY01401_backup_MMddYY from SY01401

Step 3. Run delete statement

- This delete statement removes the records that suppress the notification window from appearing

- Delete from (CompID}..SY01401 where coDefaultType = 13

- To filter for one specific user, add the filter "and UserID = {User}"

Step 4. Run select to confirm records have been removed

- Select * from {CompID}..SY01401 where coDefaultType = 13

Step 5. Add a non-existent COA segment in GP & ensure the prompt window appears

Seems minor but notifications like these are valuable in ensuring account structures remain clean in consistent in an environment.

Simple solution to a simple problem?  Let us know in the comments below.