Professional Services Tools Library (PSTL) - Practical Uses

Microsoft now offers Professional Tools Services Library as part of the base Microsoft Dynamics package.  The set of tools offer many under-utilized tools that are easy selling points from an administrative side and simple to implement and manage going forward.

Installation

Before we get too far along, let's be sure that everyone knows how to install PSTL within your Dynamics GP environment.

Once Dynamics has been installed, select 'Change' from the machine's Add or Remove Applications page for Microsoft Dynamics GP.  After the installation window appears, select the Professional Services Tools Library & 'Enable'.

After the installation is complete, PSTL must be setup in EACH GP company that you wish to be able to use the tools within.  Simply navigate to the PSTL 'Gear' Icon that should now be available in the list of available modules & open the hub.

Tip:  For frequent users of PSTL, we typically recommend adding PSTL to the Home navigation pane.  This can be done by right-clicking the pane & selecting Add>>Window>>Technical Service Tools>>Project>>Professional Services Tools Library

One-Time Tools

There are a handful of tools that we recommend making use of in almost all circumstances.

Doc Date Verify

First & foremost is doc date verify under the Purchasing module.  This tool does as imagined and checks the document date of transactions being saved and posted in the posting module.  The days of posting transactions with document dates from 2216 are now behind us.  Thank you PSTL!

During transaction entry, if entering a document date for a close fiscal period, the user is warned that the fiscal period is closed & allows them the ability to override.  If the user tries to enter a document date for a fiscal period that does not exist, entry is prevented until the document date is corrected or the fiscal period is created.

Master Triggers

Ever have the problem of vendors, customers or accounts existing in 10 different GP companies with 10 different values?  You certainly wouldn't be alone as this is a very typical problem.  The master triggers within PSTL aim to ease these woes by 'triggering' creation of master records in all companies that you select.  That means when you add ABC Company as vendor ID 0001 in company A, that vendor ID will automatically be created with the full information in all other GP companies that you've setup.  Pair this feature with field-level or window security in subsidiary companies and instruct your users to create records in only one company and you're one step closer

to standardization.

SOP Customer Item Lookup

We all love quick & beneficial reports right?  Enabling the SOP Customer Item Lookup provides you with an additional inquiry window that quickly lists all items that a customer has purchased as well as their current prices.  After enabling the tool, you can populate the report with historical data from Sales Order Processing Setup>>Additional.  After the data has been populated, the inquiry window becomes available under the SOP Entry & SOP Item Detail windows.

Maintenance Tools

Maintenance tools are the tools that make all of our lives easier as being those responsible for keeping our Dynamics environments up and running smoothly at all times.

Toolkit

Toolkit under the Systems module provides us with the capability to quickly and efficiently rebuild the GL00105 table using the GL00100 table.  Too many times have we seen the GL00105 table become corrupt and the archaic methods required a semi-advanced working SQL knowledge or using 'other' tools within GP that gave us little to no confidence in the efficiency of the task being performed.  The rebuild tool is a great tool.

Update User Date

This tool will automatically update the system date for all users in the system @ midnight.  For environments where users are typically logged in around the clock, this is a nifty little tool that avoids confusion for end-users and prevents the accidental "Posting an entire day's worth of activity in the wrong period".

RM Transaction Unapply

How many times have you or your users questioned 'Removing' paid transactions from the sales module?  One of the biggest headaches with this process is that once a transaction is in the historical tables, it became an overly complicated burden to make changes to that transaction (like unapply a payment).  This tool allows you to do just that and will move the transaction(s) back to the open tables automatically.

Everyday Tools

Our final grouping of tools are the tools that can be used to solve common business/data problems that are typically encountered

Master Record Modifiers/Combiners

Ever wanted to combine checkbook activity, change an item number, update your chart of account format, etc?  More likely than not, PSTL is a good place to begin this process and the tools available can handle the execution of changing data on the back-end.  We recommend starting small & testing any changes in a development environment before attempting in production.  Also, factor in the 3rd party applications in your environment that may NOT be updated using the PSTL tools available.  No need to fear if PSTL doesn't reach far enough, most ISVs are prepared to handle any data changes that are needing to be made.

Company Copy

This tool isn't perfect and doesn't do ALL of the work for you (what good would we be if it did?) but it does handle a large majority of the simple company setup tasks.  When setting up a company and wanting to use another company as a template, try using the company copy tool.  You'll be glad that you did after you're hours into the new company setup checklist provided by Microsoft.

Years ago, this article might have never ended but with each new release of Dynamics GP, Microsoft has done a great job at providing some more robust tools directly within the normal interface or made improvements so that some of these cleanup tools are no longer needed to be relied on.

Want to know more about a tool or have another favorite in mind?  Let us know in the comments below!