Archive

Archive for the ‘Dynamics GP’ Category

Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Word Templates and E-mail Capabilities

August 2nd, 2011 Edward Jose No comments

Dynamics GP 2010 has been out for quite a while, but one of the very cool features that it offers is the ability to leverage the functionality and ease of use of MS Word for GP Reporting needs, and the capability to then send the report via e-mail to customers or vendors directly from Dynamics GP.

With this feature, users can quickly and easily e-mail single documents, batches of documents, and/or multiple documents from a list within Dynamics GP 2010. This works mainly with the Purchasing and Sales Series where you can send the templates to your vendors/customers seamlessly.

Here are just a few of the supported documents that can be used and modified using the new MS Word templates:

  • Sales Order Processing Documents:
  • Sales Quote
  • Sales Order
  • Sales Fulfillment Order
  • Sales Invoice
  • Receivables Invoice
  • Receivables Return
  • Receivables Debit Memo
  • Receivables Credit Memo
  • Receivables Finance Charges
  • Receivables Warranty
  • Receivables Service/Repair
  • Purchase Order Processing Documents:
  • Standard Purchase Order
  • Blanket Purchase Order
  • Drop Ship Purchase Order
  • Drop Ship Blanket Purchase Order
  • Vendor Remittances
 

Here are some overview steps to get you started in using MS Word templates and using the send e-mail functionality:

I. Email Setup:

  1. Company E-mail Setup Window (Microsoft Dynamics GP >> Tools >> Setup >> Company >> Email Settings) First you need to set up e-mail options for the company in the Company E-mail Setup windows: Select which document formats will be used and how the documents will be sent in e-mail. Documents can be sent as an HTML, XPS, PDF, or DOCX attachment. You also have the option of having the templates be sent as attachments or embedded in the message body.

    Company E-mail Setup – you can choose the preferred formats for your reporting needs.

    Figure: Company E-mail Setup – you can choose the preferred formats for your reporting needs.

  2. Click on the hyperlink of Sales/Purchasing Series from the Company E-mail Setup window and this opens up the E-mail Setup window of the module selected where one can set which type of documents can be emailed. A Message ID can also be selected from here which will be used as the email message content that will be used by GP when e-mails are sent.

    Users can setup the messages from (Microsoft Dynamics GP >> Tools >> Setup >> Company >> E-mail Message Setup window). You would also want to enter an e-mail address that a customer/vendor can use to send a reply e-mail for the document type. The address you enter in this field is the default reply-to address if you create a new message for the sales/purchasing series.

    You can mark the available documents that can be printed with Word Templates in SOP

    Figure: You can mark the available documents that can be printed with Word Templates in SOP.

    You can mark the available documents that can be printed with Word Templates in POP

    Figure: You can mark the available documents that can be printed with Word Templates in POP.

    From the Sales and Purchasing E-mail Setup windows, there are the buttons for ‘Customer Setup’ and ‘Vendor Setup’. When you click on these buttons, it opens up the Customers or Vendors list from the Navigation Pane and you can update multiple customers or vendors to enable e-mail options. You can mass select customers or vendors in the list and select E-mail Settings from the Modify group's overflow menu to open the Mass Customer or Vendor E-mail Settings window.

    Multiple customers can be easily enabled for e-mail settings using Navigation List for Customers

    Figure: Multiple customers can be easily enabled for e-mail settings using Navigation List for Customers.

  3. Setup/Enter e-mail addresses for customers or vendors in GP via the Internet Information window (Microsoft Dynamics GP menu >> Tools >> Setup >> Company >> Internet Information). Another way of also doing this is you can enter directly the e-mail address of the recipient of the e-mail from the i.e. Sales Transaction Entry window and use the E-mail Detail Entry window. Below is a sample screenshot of where it is located.

    Setup e-mail addresses for Customers and Vendors via the Internet Information window

    Figure: Setup e-mail addresses for Customers and Vendors via the Internet Information window.

    E-mail addresses entered from the Internet Information window defaults for the transaction. If there is a need to change an e-mail address on the fly, use the Email Detail Entry window

    Figure: E-mail addresses entered from the Internet Information window defaults for the transaction. If there is a need to change an e-mail address on the fly, use the Email Detail Entry window.

  4. Start sending e-mails. One way of doing it is by using the Navigation List to send e-mails to a list of customers/vendors, or you can also do it per document. Below are screenshots showing this.

    You can immediately e-mail this document to the customer by just looking it up from the Inquiry window and using the ‘Send Document in E-mail’ button

    Figure: You can immediately e-mail this document to the customer by just looking it up from the Inquiry window and using the ‘Send Document in E-mail’ button.

    You can select and send e-mail for multiple documents and customers, and also use filters to narrow down results within the Navigation List window

    Figure: You can select and send e-mail for multiple documents and customers, and also use filters to narrow down results within the Navigation List window.

II. Using MS Word Templates: The Word template forms in GP 2010 have some nice advantages to the Report Writer (GP Report Modification Tool) forms, such as increased graphics capabilities.

  1. The first thing to know is that when installing a GP 2010 client for a user who needs to modify Word templates, you need to also install the “Microsoft GP Add-in for Microsoft Word” found under additional products in the installation media.

    The Add-in is required to be installed for the user who is printing the MS Word templates

    Figure: The Add-in is required to be installed for the user who is printing the MS Word templates

    This Add-in will add access to Great Plains fields from within Word. Once installed, you will find a “Field List” icon on the Developer tab of Word. This will enable you to add in fields from tables used by the original report into the Word template.

    If you don’t see your Developer tab in MS Word, you can enable the Developer tab in Word Options >> Popular >> Show Developer tab in the Ribbon.

    Screenshot may vary depending on the version of MS Office where the Developer tab is being enabled

    Figure: Screenshot may vary depending on the version of MS Office where the Developer tab is being enabled.

  2. Go to Template Configuration Manager (Reports >> Template Configuration) to enable which templates will be used in GP 2010. The Template Configuration Manager window has a tree view that you can use to select the companies, series, and Word templates you want to use. If you don’t want to use the Word template functionality, you can use this window to disable Word templates.

    It is suggested to only enable documents that will be required to print the MS Word templates. Unmark reports that will not be required to use templates

    Figure: It is suggested to only enable documents that will be required to print the MS Word templates. Unmark reports that will not be required to use templates.

  3. Now start creating/modifying your MS Word templates from the Template Maintenance window (Reports >> Template Maintenance). You can then assign templates to, or remove them from, companies, customers, or vendors as well.

    Once a template is assigned to a report, make sure to use the ‘Assign’ button and set a report as a ‘Default’ for the company

    Figure: Once a template is assigned to a report, make sure to use the ‘Assign’ button and set a report as a ‘Default’ for the company.

Some helpful tips on setting up these new features in GP 2010:

  • The Word templates are based on the standard reports in GP. If you want to get additional data into your templates, you will still need to modify the standard report using GP’s Report Writer so that the additional information is included on the modified version of the report. Also, make sure that security is granted to the Alternate Modified Forms and Report ID has been changed to use the modified report so that the new information can be used on the Word template.
  • On a client workstation, check in Add/Remove Programs and verify that the following two items are installed:

    * Microsoft Dynamics GP Add-in for Microsoft Word
    * Open XML SDK 2.0 for Microsoft Office (this should be dated 4/1/10 or later) – Ideally this should be initially installed with GP.
    Note: These two items are required to ensure MS Word templates can be modified and e-mailed.

  • If the client PC printing the MS Word template is using an IP Address in the DSN for GP, this causes issues printing the templates. This is a current Quality Report at Microsoft. It is suggested that the client PC printing MS Word templates has the SQL Server Instance name as the DSN name as a workaround to this. This is also fixed in GP 2010 SP2.
  • The user who is printing and sending e-mails using the MS Word template should be a Local Administrator on the workstation.
  • If using MS Office 2010 and sending documents as attachments using the PDF format and not ALL of the format options available (DOCX, HTML, PDF and XPS) are marked in the Company E-mail Settings window, e-mails will not be created and sent as the user will get the error “You must have the Microsoft Save As PDF or XPS Add-In for 2007 Microsoft Office installed to send documents”. It is suggested to have all format options enabled to fix this issue.

Now enjoy and start building your templates, and try out the e-mail capabilities.

Edward Jeff Jose is a Senior Business Analyst at Ignify. Ignify is a leading provider of Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions to mid-market and Enterprise businesses. Ignify has been ranked as Microsoft Partner of the Year Winner in 2011 and 2010 and in the Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle, Microsoft Dynamics Presidents Club in 2009. Ignify has offices and team members in Southern California, Northern California, Arizona, Tennessee, Illinois, Washington, Canada, Malaysia, India, Philippines.

Landed Cost in Microsoft Dynamics GP

April 21st, 2010 Raja.SLN No comments

What is meant by Landed Cost?? In general any cost incurred in addition to value paid to vendor to procure the item is a landed cost. Examples are shipping and handling, customs and excise.

The What of Landed Cost

Landed cost is not that big an issue while dealing with vendors who charge a consolidated value to leave the goods at your door. Life would be too easy if it were that simple, wouldn’t it? We ask vendors to charge our account with carrier while shipping because we have better negotiated rates with the freight carrier. Vendor does not have control over import duties such as customs, excise. So we need to find handling agencies that take care of paper work and get the goods out of the yard. Or we pay to government and handle it ourselves.

The Why of Landed Cost

Guess what, all these are additional costs paid on top of the bill paid to vendor for the item. We need to add all these up to get the true cost of inventory. So you get to know the real margin. Some businesses simply expense out the cost because they don’t have the facility in their system and it is too much overhead for them to track it manually. Well, Dynamics GP customers can use the  Landed Cost module to track landed cost at ease.

Dynamics GP provides true ability to handle third party landed costs

So if your Vendor charged your UPS account for the freight, log an approximate value of freight in landed cost are of the purchase receipt. When you receive the freight bill from UPS

  • Match the UPS invoice to the landed cost recorded on shipment from Vendor. The variance between the approximate value and this actual value can be applied to inventory or recorded to a Purchase Price Variance account.
  • So GP provides ability to record the third party vendor landed cost invoice, match it landed cost, updated variance to inventory or to a variance account.

Oh, what did you say, the UPS invoice has several lines each pointing to shipments for multiple items or multiple shipments for the same item. Don’t worry, Dynamics GP provides ability to record a third party vendor invoice and match each line to different shipments.

Other real time applications of landed cost are adding the freight cost when moving items between warehouses.

Have you ever had to move goods from one warehouse to another? What happened to the cost incurred in moving stuff from one warehouse to other? Use the landed cost feature the ‘In Transit Transfer’ window. This is a very useful feature, especially when you want to obtain the true cost for an item in the warehouse.

Nice to haves:

It would be nice to get a feature similar to landed cost in SOP module. So we can record an approximate freight charge. When we get a real invoice from a carrier, we can either charge the excess or return the balance by way of a credit memo or debit memo.

This post is written by Raja S L N. Raja is a Manager in the Microsoft Dynamics GP Practice at Ignify. Ignify is a Global Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle Partner specializing in Microsoft Dynamics ERP for RetailDistribution, Manufacturing and Chemicals verticals. For help on Microsoft Dynamics ERP email us at dynamics@ignify.com

Dynamics GP MACROS: LITTLE HELPER BIG ON RESULTS

February 6th, 2010 Tod Heath 1 comment

Written by Tod Heath, Senior Dynamics GP Business Analyst for Ignify

If you’re like me, there are times when you have more work than you can handle.  This is based on the fact that we are limited in what we can accomplish by our two hands and some of our tasks can be quite repetitive.  Well, what if you had the ability to recruit a ‘Little Helper’ to assist you with some of your chores and tasks?

Dynamics GP has a Little Helper ready to assist you.  All you need to do is recognize that’s he’s waiting around, hoping that you call upon him so he can feel productive.  Providing him with some simple instructions can make him happy and you more productive.  By the way, he is known as the GP Macro. 

Macros in GP are simply recordings of a series of keystrokes, mouse-clicks and mouse-movements made while performing a procedure. It’s like taking a video of a series of tasks that you want to accomplish and then being able to replay it at any time to accomplish various tasks.  Your Little Helper can be a big time saver while performing certain tasks such as Bank Transfer entries or other repetitive tasks.  Simply record the series of events up until the time you need to key in any data.  When ready, just replay the macro and you’ve saved yourself a series of keystrokes.

However, your Little Helper can really be productive by helping you import data.  Running Macros can be effective when working with these situations:

1)      Integration Manager does not support what you’re trying to import.

2)      You are using a customized or third party version of a window that might interfere with Integration Manager.

3)      You don’t want to use eConnect, Table Import, SQL or some other technical method.

4)      GP Master Records.

5)      Transactional data that would access only a single form (window).

6)      Any process where identical repetitive steps are required. As an example, members of my team have deleted selective inventory Items in GP using macros as it was not possible to be done via SQL as there were multiple related tables.

7)      Some developers even use them for testing purposes.

 

Summary Steps to create a Macro to import data are as follows:

1)      Record a dummy macro in Dynamics GP to be the template macro.

2)      Open the macro template in an MS Word document.

3)      Use the Mail Merge feature using the Step By Step Mail Merge Wizard to locate your data set and create your letter to define the records in the template.

4)      Run the macro in Dynamics GP to import the data.

 

Dynamics GP Macros really can aid you in many different ways.  It’s just up to you to give your Little Helper some instructions. 

 

This post is written by Tod Heath. Tod is a Dynamics GP Senior Analyst in the Microsoft Dynamics GP Practice at Ignify. Ignify is a Global Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle Partner specializing in Microsoft Dynamics ERP for RetailDistribution, Manufacturing and Chemicals verticals. For help on Microsoft Dynamics ERP email us at dynamics@ignify.com

Make your ERP project more than just a new system that works like the old one did

December 18th, 2009 Sandeep Walia 1 comment

I'm still surprised at how many customers still insist that the new system work exactly the last one does or supports their business process like they had it before the project. A fundamental question then is - why are you doing this project? If you are just looking for a nicer looking interface with no meaningful results then don't even waste time on an ERP project. Modern ERP systems bring with them bundled best practices. And an ERP project is the perfect time to re-evaluate your business processes and bake those processes into your new implementation.

I lead the implementation for an global Activity Based costing (ABC) effort for a 1 billion dollar division of a Fortune 10 customer. Of the many things I was analyzing, one key element was how people spent their time.One report in particular took about 5 person days of time to get ready every month. An annual cost of over 15,000 ($40/hour X 12 month x 5 days x 8 hours a day).This particular unit had a net profit margin of just $1 million on revenues of $1 billion and such reports were a gold mine to bring that net margin up. However, the cost to auotomate this report was estimated to be in the $45,000 range as it was a fairly complex report. The management balked at this cost. So we started digging into ways of simplifying the report. The report was initiated by a person in San Jose, California. Other data was filled by a finance person in Singapore and then by a team members in UK, Phoenix, Malaysia, UK and Germany. Certainly a lot of coordination and time. When finalized, the report was distributed to about 50 executive team members. I took the approach of reaching out to each recipient to ask them what was truly critical in the report so we could eliminate some of the complexity of the report. The results were staggering – none of the recipients ever readthe report and felt it was something that others probably found useful. Instead a simpler report was designed that cost only $2,000 to write and built in a day and was actually useful to all the divisional heads in improving their bottom-line. The report was completely automated and required no manual intervention.However, the fact that we developed a report that saved $15,000 is not so significant as the fact that had we not dug deep enough to find out the true pain we would have spent $45,000 ensuring the system worked like the client worked prior to the implementation and achieved nothing in the process. Are you sure you are not doing this to some degree?

I even found traces of this at Ignify. When we cut over to Dynamics AX – we got the ability to attach each receipt or expense with an AP invoice. We no longer had to sort and catalog these on a portal as Dynamics AX automatically catalogued our attachments with the invoice that was posted. However, our booking team members for a full 6 months after going live on Dynamics AX kept uploading the booking receipts to the portal while our payables team kept cataloging this in Dynamics AX. Of course we stopped the earlier process of uploading to the portal as soon as we found out. We had found a better way to do this, adopted it but forgot to tell someone to stop doing what they were doing :-) . How much work goes on that is useless and redundant. In my ABC analysis project that I had done – I found it was very significant. Employees were spending approximately 40% of their time doing non value-adding activities. When you cut over to a new system – leverage its intrinsic benefits of best practices. There is no better time to re-engineer your business process and ask 'How can I make this better simpler and more cost-effective' for every process. Weigh the cost with the benefit. The highest benefit with the lowest cost is when you can leverage what is out of the box and use that.

When Ignify adopted Dynamics AX globally, we cut out several redundant and manual processes – the workflow and ability to review postings, role-based security allowed us to cut out all the manual approvals that we had.We are still learning to improve but we implemented Dynamics AX globally for 300 employees across seven offices in 6 weeks by staying vanilla. We made zero customizations and drove our business to the best practices Dynamics AX provided to us. We spent a lot of time on business process design and how each process can be improved over what we had today. We spent time writing up process training documents for pretty much every finance, accounting, collections, and AP job – how to post a credit card transaction, how to post vendor invoices, how to post wire transactions, how to apply a customer payment. It was great- suddenly we moved from an undocumented, disorganized set of processes to a methodical way of doing business that supported our core consulting and software implementations.And these processes were written 100% by the Dynamics AX task recorder tool and have Microsoft Dynamics AX screen shots in them. At the heart of it we asked ourselves if we were a complex business and the answer was a resounding no. We are a simple business model and we wanted everything to be simple and easy to understand. Our goal was to make our processes even simpler and yet have the desired level of controls which Microsoft Dynamics AX did a great job of bringing to the table.

Microsoft Dynamics AX was great for us and has been great for our customers but I'm not proposing that as your ERP. I'm proposing that whatever system you choose to work with, that you leverage its native strengths and use the ERP implementation as a way of strengthening and simplifying your business processes and getting more for less. I've also run into situations where customers want to wait for writing up the perfect business process before starting an ERP project.That can take a really long-time and you may never start. The ERP application you choose will give you business processes out of the box as a starting point – use that as a spring board to move to the next level.

Sandeep Walia is the President & CEO of Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of ERP, CRM, and eCommerce software solutions to businesses and public sector organizations. Ignify is a Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle Partner and ranked in the top 18 Microsoft Dynamics partners. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for 3 years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine.

Dynamics GP 11 Release and Future Roadmap

December 2nd, 2009 Sandeep Walia No comments

 Microsoft today announced that Microsoft Dynamics GP 11 will be released to market  in May 2010 and provided a roadmap of future versions including Dynamics GP 12 and Dynamics GP 14. Microsoft Dynamics GP v11 provides deeper functionality such as credit card integration, provides a role tailored BI beyond the role center that is there today and provides additional office integration and workflow. Finally – Dynamics GP will provide the ability to email reports and extract  the reports to Word. The detailed timeline for the next few months is listed below

Timeline

Microsoft Dynamics GP 11 will reach General Availability in May 2010.

Release to Manufacturing is scheduled for April.

A partner-ready, beta Virtual PC image will be ready in March.

GP 11 RoadmapSandeep Walia is the President & CEO of Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of ERP, CRM, and eCommerce software solutions to businesses and public sector organizations. Ignify is a Microsoft Dynamics Inner Circle Partner  and ranked in the top 18 Microsoft Dynamics partners. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for 3 years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine.