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Winter 2014

DYNAMICS UNIVERSITY Providing Learning Opportunities for Microsoft Dynamics速 Users








You Already Own


DYNAMICS UNIVERSITY Dynamics University represents the culmination of great ideas and content from the best reselling Microsoft Dynamics partners with a focus on helping Microsoft Dynamics customers achieve more for less. The idea for Dynamics University was born out of a desire to drive greater educational offerings within the Microsoft Dynamics community.




Advanced Solutions & Consulting Business Ready Solutions

Solana Beach, CA

Durham, NC

Cargas Systems

Lancaster, PA

Express Information Systems

San Antonio, TX

Integrated Business Group

Altamonte Springs, FL

Knaster Technology Group

Englewood, CO

Summit Group Software

West Fargo, ND

The TM Group

Farmington Hills, MI

Turnkey Technologies, Inc.

Chesterfield, MO

WebSan Solutions Inc.

Toronto, Ontario CAN



Dynamics University Winter 2014



06 BI Tools You Already Own Gain Business Insight 08 Nurture Marketing Grow Your Customer Relationships 12

Microsoft Social Listening Top 5 reasons to Use It

06 12 14 Managing Risk in a GP Environment Data Safety in GP 22 Sales Tax Collection & Reporting For Small and Medium Sized Business 28 Show Me the Money Inventory

30 Time Saving Features In Microsoft Dynamics CRM 32 Year End Closing Procedures 34 Convergence 2015 See You at the Expo






36 Copy & Paste in General Ledger Copying Data from Excel to GP 38 Getting Started with SmartList Designer Making Searching Data Easy 42 Distribution 5 Underutilized Features


05 Welcome Barry Knaster 18 Tips & Tricks for CRM Users 21

GP Exam Cram Certification Questions

24 Interview Doug Burgum 40 CRM Exam Cram Certification Questions 44 Debits & Credits for GP Users

28 Dynamics University is a free magazine published four times a year. Request a subscription by going to Josh Behl Executive Editor Kristen Juven Design & Layout l Website Content Kate Mund, Lucy Communications Copy Editor Midstates Printing, Inc. Printing & Distribution Photographs & Images Contact Us 1405 Prairie Parkway, Suite A, West Fargo, ND 58078 Email Us


Dynamics University Winter 2014



Microsoft will soon release Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015, the latest version of what has evolved into an industry standard for ERP solutions oriented for the mid-market enterprise. To fully understand the significance of this accomplishment, a bit of history is in order.

In 1989, Knaster Technology Group became the first authorized Great Plains training partner in the country (in effect the precursor to Dynamics University) for the DOS and MAC versions of the time. Four years later in 1993, Great Plains Software released Great Plains Release 1.0, one of the first Microsoft Windows-based ERP solutions available on a mass scale. We sold four customers Release 1.0 that inaugural year; three subsequently requested a refund. Customer 4, however, still uses Microsoft Dynamics today! Since 1993 there have been more than 20 major upgrades to Microsoft Dynamics – culminating with GP2015. In the words of Pam Misialek, Microsoft Dynamics GP product manager: “We moved from DOS to Btrieve/Ctree and then to SQL. We reimagined the traditional client/server to the Web client. We reimagined how to deliver business intelligence. Looking back, our journey has been a wild ride” Navigating both partners and customers on that crazy, and at times unpredictable, ride was of course Doug Burgum, the featured interviewee in this issue. Read the story to gain incredible perspective of the person behind the vision of Microsoft Dynamics. From the initial premise of a platform dependent product, Microsoft Dynamics has evolved into a world-class business intelligence solution that is accessible anyway, anytime, anywhere. We now conduct our business matters in whatever manner we choose. Indeed, take a look at the major features touted within Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015: Service-based architecture, identity management, Azure procurement, and applications on multiple platforms. In some way, all these features deal with expanding the reach of the Microsoft Dynamics GP user experience across various means. The potential for productivity is limitless. In the Fall 2014 issue of Dynamics University, Eric Gjerdevig mentions the “experience economy”. I encourage everyone to experience firsthand Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015 to enrich and improve your business success. Over the next several issues, this publication will provide in-depth exposure and visibility to all things Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015. Take advantage of this information, provide feedback, and share your story. It is time for us all to embark on yet another Microsoft Dynamics journey.

Oh, the picture? That’s Doug and me in 1993. I would like to think we all have changed considerably - for the better - over the past 22 years!

Wishing everyone an enjoyable holiday season and a happy (Microsoft Dynamics GP) 2015!

Barry Knaster President The Knaster Technology Group


By Perry Thebeau, Brad Vorbeck, and Michael Ramatowski, Turnkey Technologies



You Already Own


our business is speaking to you in the language of data and opportunity. Can you understand it?

Fluency in this language of business intelligence (BI) is a key difference between good companies and great companies. Since every company knows that strategic advantage can be generated from data analysis, why wouldn’t a company pursue true BI as a primary component of its overall strategy? Some companies face numerous challenges to implementing BI, including culture adoption, usability, and master data issues. But for many, they simply don’t know where to start. Kicking off your BI strategy often comes down to a simple piece of advice: Understand the information and tools you already have, use them to the fullest potential, and then expand as necessary. The functionality within Microsoft Dynamics and Microsoft Dynamics-connected tools can help your business uncover shockingly powerful insights that lead to real strategic improvements and positive results. The key for this depends on a combination of understanding your business and its data, and using the tools that are right for your needs. This article focuses on two solutions that provide powerful BI capabilities without requiring extensive BI expertise. You likely already own both, and they are highly interrelated with Microsoft Dynamics GP. These solutions are Excel Report Integration and Analysis Cubes for Excel (ACE). 6

Dynamics University Winter 2014

Powerful BI capabilities without requiring extensive BI expertise

to uncover insights and metrics for very specific aspects of the business.

Like ease-of-use, familiarity of the application itself is a huge leap forward on the learning curve that other solutions may present. By using an application you already know, less training and education are required, and users can save a lot of money. Perhaps the best part of familiarity with Excel, however, is that users can enhance their reports with interactivity, calculations, and visual options they already know how to use.

Understand and Optimize What You Already Have Excel Report Integration With more than 200 built-in Microsoft Excel reports that connect directly to the Microsoft Dynamics GP database source, Excel Report Integration alone offers a solid foundation for reporting. It’s a surprisingly powerful starting point, and users can connect Excel to their Microsoft Dynamics GP solution at no additional charge. To generate reports, Excel pulls data from the Microsoft Dynamics GP database to populate an Excel workbook using an Office Data Connection (ODC). The workbook, now populated with cleanly formatted, relevant data, transforms it into a report. There are numerous advantages to using Excel Reports, especially for non-expert BI users. Ease-of-use is a primary benefit, and it goes a long way for improving BI adoption in a company. If reports are hard to generate or understand, users will resist implementing them into the everyday routines of the company. You want BI to become a part of your company’s operational culture. For this to happen, the process should be facilitated through an easy-to-use starting point.

One of the unique advantages of Excel-integrated reporting is the ability to run live reports. These reports don’t need to be generated each time you need them. They use real-time, refreshable data in Excel to maintain up-to-date reports that can be viewed at any time. For reports that use information that is easily outdated, this feature is a huge time-saver. Excel Reports offer a great starting point and are part of the Microsoft Dynamics-integrated reporting solution, but they are only the tip of the iceberg. Let’s evolve their capabilities with another tool you already have included in your Microsoft Dynamics GP licensing: Analysis Cubes for Excel, or ACE. Analysis Cubes for Excel (ACE) Excel Reports offer two-dimensional views of the relationships between your various segments of data. Analysis Cubes for Excel allows you to add more dimensions to your analysis and manipulate your data in ways that are more specific to your needs. This allows users to derive more significant insights from their data by adding details to their queries. Cross-dimensional analysis provides users with points where their segmented data intersects. Each intersection represents a measure that can be used

To create these multi-dimensional cubes, ACE uses an online analytical processing (OLAP) database that is specifically designed to help analyze data. To populate the OLAP database, integration services extracts data from the Microsoft Dynamics GP transactional company database and stores it in a data warehouse database. Analysis Services aggregates the data into totals and subtotals, then stores this consolidated data into arrangements called cubes. Because the data warehouse and the OLAP cubes are isolated from Microsoft Dynamics GP, and the data remains static between updates, the data can be retrieved more quickly. Using Excel and ACE Together While ACE can be applied to other BI sources, the two solutions (Excel Report Integration and ACE) are planned by Microsoft to be utilized together in one solution scenario. But how? ACE is already included in the Microsoft Dynamics GP Starter Pack, and most Microsoft Dynamics GP users already have Microsoft Excel. Both solutions connect seamlessly with Microsoft Dynamics GP. Common business application examples of BI with ACE are: · Asset management and optimization (fleet management) · Retail forecasting, supply chain, and product placement · Gaming industry consumer behavior analysis · Healthcare industry disease detection/prevention · Business scorecard implementation (for operational control) · Executive dashboard implementa tion (for quick strategic analysis) · Performance management applications (to address performance or sustain it)

BI Tools, continued on page 11


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Nurtured leads make


larger purchases than non-nurtured leads. (Annuitas Group)

Grow Your

CUSTOMER RELATION with NURTURE MARK Convert leads, close sales, and build customer trust using marketing automation and Microsoft Dynamics CRM.


urture marketing. Lead nurturing. Drip marketing. You’ve heard the buzzwords, but what exactly are nurture programs, and – more importantly – how can they benefit your business? In its simplest form, nurture or “drip” marketing is the process of sending a series of communications (typically emails) to a prospect over a period of time in order to drive sales or generate interest in your product. However, by using marketing automation to produce and execute your nurture campaigns, you can do so much more. Automated nurture programs include decision points and actions based on how the recipient interacts with your message, allowing for a very customized experience.

Stage 1

By tailoring your nurtures to a specific audience and sending your messages at the right time, a nurture program can build rapport with your customers, increase trust in your brand, save valuable sales resources, and convert a higher percentage of leads into paying customers. According to the Aberdeen Group, it takes, on average, 10 marketing-driven “touches” to convert a lead into a revenue-generating customer. That’s a lot of work! Nurture programs automate the process of contacting these prospects, giving salespeople the time to focus on the hottest leads. And through well-planned nurture campaigns, marketers are able to reach potential customers during each stage of the buying cycle:


In this first stage, your customers are just realizing that they have a business need. They are unsure of which products or services will help them solve their problems. It is important in this phase to make your prospects aware of your brand and stay top-of-mind so that when they decide to move forward with a purchase, your company is on their radar. Use social media, online advertising, your website, and/or other marketing channels to capture the attention of new leads. Whether through a contact form, newsletter sign-up, or eBook landing page, provide a method for prospects to give you their contact information and opt-in to receiving your emails. Using the ClickDimensions marketing automation solution with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, lead records can be created in Microsoft Dynamics CRM each time a new visitor submits his/her information.


Once you have captured the lead, your first “awareness” nurture campaign should contain messaging that provides an introduction to your company and its offerings. This is not the phase for high-pressure sales tactics; merely begin a dialog with the prospect. Introduce him/ her to your products or services, provide links to blog articles, or offer to send a brochure for more information. Dynamics University Winter 2014

Move to


By Heather Wright, ClickDimensions

Stage 4


During this stage, customers are making a final purchasing decision. Email messages in the “purchase” nurture will have strong calls to action and could include buying incentives such as free trials, coupons, or limited-time offers. And don’t forget about service after the sale. A “post-purchase” nurture campaign could be used for implementation and onboarding. Sending regular emails to new customers about your product or service ensures that they have a successful transition to your solution.

Stage 5

Stage 2


Forrester suggests that today’s buyers are anywhere from 66 to 90 percent of the way through the buying process before they reach out to a vendor. So what are they doing during that time? Research. This is the phase where customers are shopping around. They are learning what is necessary to solve their business problem and investigating potential solutions. During this phase, you must educate customers about the business problem and how your product or service can solve it for them. Customers typically spend the greatest amount of time in this phase, so your “research” nurture may have a longer timeline than the others. In this nurture, send email messages that feature content that will educate your customers about how your product or service can solve their business problem. Invite them to attend your webinar, provide a link to download an eBook, or direct them to an overview video. By providing the information they need, you become a trusted resource.

Stage 3


In this stage, the rubber meets the road. Customers have narrowed down their decision to a few options, and they are evaluating possible vendors. At this point, it is important to build credibility and trust with the customer and overcome any objections – why should they go with your solution over the competition? The emails in your “evaluation” nurture should contain information that will help solidify your product or service as the best solution. Include links to case studies or white papers, offer to schedule a live demo, or provide testimonials from other customers. If it hasn’t already happened, customers should be introduced to a salesperson at this stage. You may also wish to include direct contact (via a phone call or onsite visit) into your nurture program. In the nurture, an action can trigger a Microsoft Dynamics CRM workflow that creates a phone call activity for the salesperson, letting him/her know it’s time to follow-up with the lead.



You successfully manage your customer accounts with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, but are you communicating with your contacts on a consistent basis? Marketing automation is not just for marketing! Nurture programs are a great way to keep your current customers engaged with your company and brand. Create a “retention” nurture to send subscription renewal reminders. Or use a “loyalty” nurture to educate customers about new features, provide them with valuable content, or invite them to your webinars and events. The success of any nurture campaign is relevance. Your timing, messaging, email frequency, and calls to action must vary based on the needs and readiness of your audience. In the examples above, separate nurture programs were created for each stage in the buying cycle. However, you could also transition from one stage to another within the same nurture campaign. For example, start with messaging that raises awareness of your brand, and then transition into providing educational content as time progresses and the prospect enters the research phase. Nurture programs bring value to both the marketing and sales teams. Marketing can construct a nurture campaign that includes the exact messaging that they want presented to the prospect or customer, and sales can determine the appropriate nurture in which to place a prospect based on their level of buying readiness. Nurture Marketing with ClickDimensions The ClickDimensions marketing automation solution for Microsoft Dynamics CRM includes a nurture builder that is embedded directly inside Microsoft Dynamics CRM. This allows you to easily add your existing CRM leads and contacts into a nurture program, notify your salespeople when a lead or contact takes an action, and measure the results of your nurture campaigns using Microsoft Dynamics CRM dashboards and reports. The ClickDimensions drag-and-drop builder includes a variety of nurture actions such as sending an email, checking email opens/clicks, waiting a period of time before the next action begins, adding/removing individuals from CRM marketing lists, and much more. Learn more about ClickDimensions nurture marketing by visiting or see the features in action during free weekly webinars at


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Dynamics University Winter 2014

Before you can decide which BI tools are right for you, you must first formulate your BI strategy and its requirements. What business events and processes will be analyzed for decision support information? How much visualization, such as charts and dashboards, will be needed for your users? How deeply will you need to query your data? How frequently will you export and distribute your BI reports? Answering questions like these will help you understand your goals and preferences for your BI solution.




ACE and Excel are two of the most readilyavailable tools and provide great all-around functionality. But for users who want to evolve their BI and take it even further, there are numerous BI tools to help translate data into insight, and each one has its strengths and weaknesses in terms of functionality.


Overview of Other Microsoft Dynamics GP BI Tools


BI Tools, continued from page 7


































This chart is a great starting point for assessing the high-level strengths of the most common BI tools for Microsoft Dynamics:




Least Capable

This chart shows that from an overall functional perspective, Excel and ACE arguably provide the richest self-service and usable BI functionality across the board, making them appealing for the broadest range of Microsoft Dynamics GP users. As previously mentioned, since ACE and Excel can quickly generate ad-hoc and flexible multi-dimensional business insights, the two solutions, when used together, are highly-rated and form a multi-featured BI solution. We recommend this as your starting point for fundamental, yet powerful, BI.

BI Adapted with New Microsoft “Power” BI often becomes decision modeling. It happens through the preparation of flexible reporting solutions and decision applications that can take advantage of data to answer your business questions. That, in essence, is the definition of “Power BI” from Microsoft and a value proposition for your evolving use of ACE. Power BI consists of numerous integrated analysis tools that provide ways to visualize your data and translate it into verbal insight that’s easy to understand. Analytics with visualization tells a data story leading to a business action, using your business dimensions and/or geographic data with metrics and facts about your business transactions and events. Seeing the answer to complex relationships presented to you visually and contextually with data visualization is





6 Most Cabable

extremely valuable for any Microsoft Dynamics GP user. Analytics with visualization is integral to business persuasion as well as fact-based data storytelling strategies.

The End in Mind For BI to work in an organization, it must be not only sustainable, but also usable. Fortunately, Microsoft Dynamics GP provides various BI capabilities, including ACE and various flavors of “right time, right format” Excel-adapted reporting that is completely usable for non-experts. Microsoft has invested heavily in solutions such as the Power BI stack that can be sourced from the Microsoft Dynamics transactional database. Using BI for decision-making is a significant step in taking your company to the next level of its success. It fosters confidence and, more importantly, it’s a foundation for recurring good decision-making. If you’re not using the data already being generated by your business, you’re actually ignoring one of your most valuable assets. Understanding and capitalization of this vast opportunity are the new language of business. Your fluency in BI strategy will pay dividends if you take steps to formalize a strategic plan and recognize its potential using Microsoft Dynamics and readily-available BI tools you likely already own.



ith the spring 2014 release of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 came Social Listening, a powerful new service that businesses and organizations can use to monitor their social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter. All Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Professional License users now have access to this tool, and here’s why you should use it:

GAIN A BETTER PERSPECTIVE OF YOUR CONSUMER BASE Microsoft Social Listening allows you to detect trends and listen for specific posts to keep you informed of what your consumer base is talking about. Top influencer tracking lets you see not only who is talking most about your topic, brand, products, and/or services, but it also helps you determine how influential they are. By using Social Listening, you can gain a true understanding of your customers and your business across social media.

PROVIDE BETTER CUSTOMER SERVICE Last year, J.D. Power and Associates released a study finding that 43 percent of branded social media engagement by consumers ages 18-29 was customer service-related. Additionally, the study found a connection between overall satisfaction with a company’s social marketing efforts and consumers’ likelihood to purchase. Eighty-seven percent of “highly-satisfied consumers” in the study indicated that online social interaction with a company “positively impacted” their likelihood to purchase from that company. (Associates, 2013)

1 2

In other words, more and more consumers are using social media to air their complaints, give compliments, and ask questions. For that reason, it’s essential that businesses meet their customers where they are and address any customer service or support issues as quickly as possible.

By Jim Carroll, Advanced Solutions & Consulting

12 12

Dynamics DynamicsUniversity UniversityWinter Winter2014 2014

Top 5 Reasons for Using




IMPROVE COMPANY PRODUCTIVITY Social Listening allows users to track conversations over thousands of sources including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, videos, and news sources. The design is built to integrate directly with Microsoft Dynamics CRM with an intuitive user interface; you don’t have to be a social power user to use it. With all social activity taking place through Microsoft Dynamics CRM, your team can increase their current capabilities, gain a better understanding of insights, share ideas, and plan campaigns. It will be markedly easier for your employees to coordinate social media efforts and marketing campaigns, assign responsibilities, approve content, and make each other accountable for tasks, thereby improving overall company productivity.

HELP IDENTIFY, UNDERSTAND, AND SOLVE BUSINESS CHALLENGES If you’re not aware of a problem within your business or company, how can you fix it? Social Listening’s early warning alerts allow you to quickly identify customer issues and trends, while its interactive and visual analytics provide easy insights and understanding. You receive the data you need to gain deeper social insight and develop strategies not only to help solve problems, but also to deliver the solutions that your consumers want and need.

DEVELOP BRAND LOYALTY AND DRIVE SALES According to Microsoft, 75 percent of B2B customers are likely to use social media to influence their purchase decisions, and customers are more than 60 percent of the way through the sales cycle before they contact you. (Microsoft) And while social interactions may not directly result in immediate conversions, they will support engagement that may indirectly generate leads, create influential relationships with consumers, and build confidence in the brand, eventually driving future sales. The person who goes from following you on Twitter to downloading your white paper to posting on Facebook about a positive interaction with your call center is very close to wanting to buy from you.

4 3 5

In short, it’s not enough to just have a social media presence anymore; customers expect more. All brands should be integrating social media into their CRM strategy, and Microsoft Social Listening can help. When you combine the power of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 with Social Listening, you go from simple hashtags and selfies to actual sales generated from social media. Now, doesn’t that sound nice?





k, FastPath

By Andy Snoo


magine this scenario: Hackers break into a retailer’s payment system and troll through customer credit card data for nearly eight months. Because they’re using sophisticated hacking software that deletes itself every day, the company’s security system never catches onto the breach. Before it’s over, the hackers have obtained more than 300,000 credit card numbers. Think this sounds like something that could never happen? It already has – at Neiman-Marcus over an eightmonth span in 2013. Of the card numbers that were stolen, more than 9,000 have been used to make fraudulent purchases. Neiman Marcus isn’t alone. Target’s CEO recently stepped down after hackers broke into the retailer’s system and stole nearly 40 million credit card numbers. The hackers also obtained email addresses and phone numbers for an additional 70 million customers.



Dynamics University Winter 2014


Enterprise risk management is the process of analyzing and managing business risks. It involves identifying all possible risks, data and otherwise. Companies then determine the probabilities of the risks occurring and the potential damage that the risk could inflict. The final step is to design and implement a plan for managing the risks and mitigating any damages should they occur. This formal approach to risk management helps companies react faster and make more informed decisions. With a comprehensive approach, companies can quickly determine which risks are priorities and what steps should be taken. Is the cloud safe? What safeguards should we put in place? Does this expansion threaten our financial viability? These are all difficult questions that require a formal system. Microsoft Dynamics GP is often the most effective system for the enterprise risk management process. Your company may not talk explicitly about risk management, but risk plays a part in every decision that is made. If you have ever built a list of pros and cons, you are engaging in risk management. When companies take a more formal approach to risk, they can react faster and make more informed decisions. Do we have enough money to acquire that company? Can we hire additional staff? Should we move our Microsoft Dynamics implementation to the cloud? Beyond better strategic decisions, there are many other reasons why risk management is important to a company using Microsoft Dynamics GP. Some companies fall under regulatory compliance such as Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX), FDA, HIPAA, or DCAA. Each of these regulations mandates that companies have a risk management system in place for protecting things like the accuracy of financial statements, personal data privacy, credit card data security, and the protection of public health. Each of these regulations comes with a periodic, mandatory audit of a company’s risk management for the affected areas. Failure to pass one of these audits can lead to a drop in stock price, negative publicity, loss of ability to process transactions, fines, and even jail time. Essentially, the

government is requiring companies to have and demonstrate a risk management strategy. Many companies think they are too small for risk management or think that they escaped it because they do not fall under the aforementioned regulations. But even small companies and nonprofits benefit greatly from formalized risk management. Consider a few common but unexpected benefits: • Banks are more willing to offer loans to small companies who have audited financials, and larger companies are more willing to acquire companies that demonstrate an understanding of risk. • A $150,000 embezzlement is a rounding error for a Fortune 500 company. An event of that size may put a small company or nonprofit out of business. • Nonprofits can protect their nonprofit status as well as donor confidence in the organization by mitigating risks. Fraud will quickly put an end to even the best of causes.

BUILDING A RISK FRAMEWORK FOR YOUR MICROSOFT DYNAMICS ENVIRONMENT Taking a risk-based approach to auditing Microsoft Dynamics GP is not only a best practice, but it also will save you a tremendous amount of time and money during internal and external audits. The first step in building a successful risk management environment is building a risk framework. A common challenge we see in many Microsoft Dynamics GP environments is difficulty identifying which risks are

Risk, continued on page 16


Risk, continued from page 15

relevant to the company. These companies end up implementing excessive controls or auditing excessive amounts of data because they do not understand where their risks truly exist. This has a major impact on productivity and costs. To avoid these misdirected activities, companies need to implement effective risk management which begins with knowing thy corporate self. Every company faces a unique set of risks based on industry, size, location, etc., and every company should conduct risk assessment workshops to identify the specific risks that they face. To ensure a comprehensive evaluation of risk, the workshops should include key stakeholders and business process owners who have an in-depth understanding of each area of the business. Separate workshops may be conducted for each business process, but it is advisable to include business process owners from related areas like finance and IT in each session. The output of these workshops will be a prioritized list of risks and the necessary mitigation strategies to minimize risk where it cannot be eliminated. The first step in the workshop is brainstorming all of the risks that each area of the business may face. No risk should be discounted at this point because risks that are seemingly insignificant can be found to have far reaching consequences across business processes. Once the risks have been identified, they need to be scored based on probability and impact. Probability is the likelihood that a situation will occur. For a company based in Fargo, North Dakota, there is a very low probability of a hurricane but a very high probability of a blizzard. The exact opposite would be true for a company based in Miami, Florida. For impact, a company needs to consider the consequences of the event. Does a blizzard knock your Fargo data center offline for 10 minutes or does it destroy your Florida orange crop, putting you out of business permanently? Once the risks have been identified and scored, a risk appetite or tolerance may be defined. Something that has a high probability and high impact should be avoided/eliminated or minimized as much as possible with the appropriate mitigation. Conversely, an event that 16

scores low on both scales may be small enough that it is acceptable to the business and would only require periodic evaluation for change in threat level but no ongoing action. Now that the risks have been identified and prioritized according to the risk appetite, each risk is assigned to a business process owner. This individual is now responsible for developing a mitigation strategy for the risk. The mitigation should be a component of the business process so that it has a minimal impact on productivity while minimizing both the probability that the risk would occur and its impact if it did. The best way to build this type of mitigation is to map it to the business process.

VISUALIZING RISK IN MICROSOFT DYNAMICS USING BUSINESS PROCESS MAPPING If implementing Microsoft Dynamics is like building a house, then business process maps are the blueprints. You shouldn’t start hammering without blueprints, and you shouldn’t start implementing without process maps. They provide a clear overview into how the business operates, the individuals responsible for each step in the process, and the systems required to complete the activities. A well-developed process map is the baseline for system configuration, end user security and training, product documentation, and system customization. Evidence for the importance of process maps in implementation success can be found in the investment Microsoft has made in the Microsoft Dynamics Lifecycle Services Business Process Modeler. This is a free tool for Microsoft Dynamics GP customers and partners that provides template maps linked to end user training and security. Another benefit of business process maps is that they clarify how risks manifest themselves in key business processes and systems including Microsoft Dynamics. One of the main challenges

Dynamics University Winter 2014

in auditing Microsoft Dynamics is that it sits between key teams, finance and IT. Is payables risk management finance’s responsibility because it is an AP process, or is it IT’s because it involves Microsoft Dynamics GP and SQL Server? A business process mapping session helps individuals visualize that the risk belongs to both teams and helps them agree that their responsibilities are inexorably linked. Using the risk framework we discussed as a guide, pick the highest risk processes to map first. In many organizations, this will involve the procure-to-pay or order-to-cash business cycles. The key players in a business mapping session are the business process owner, the team members who execute the process, IT team members who understand the related systems, a facilitator who understands the business at a high level, and a scribe. The key tools in the session are a roll of butcher paper, a stack of Post-it notes, and a set of markers. Here are the key steps in running a session: • First, tape a long piece of butcher paper to the wall and begin to describe the roles involved in the process. • For each role mentioned, write it on a sticky note and create a column on the far left of the paper. Remember that there are roles internal to your company (AR clerk) and external (customer). • Do the same for each system, such as Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM, that is included in the process, and add it under the roles. • Now proceed to describing each step and decision in the process. For a step such as “order created”, add a box and stick it in the row of the role that performs the step. For a decision such as “was the order cancelled”, use a diamond. Using the sticky notes is key because they are easy to move around as the process evolves during the discussion. • Once the team is confident in the process map, tape each sticky note to the butcher paper so that they do not fall off prior to transcription. • Now transfer your map into Microsoft Visio.

Now that the processes and systems are finalized, take your risk framework and apply it to the maps. If management of vendor data is a high priority risk, identify any step on the process map that includes maintaining vendor data. This could be during vendor setup or it could be updating vendor information during purchase order entry. In adding the risk to the process, it may be obvious that a control or mitigation is already in place. In this case, the vendor setup/change process may include a workflow for approval. Take this mitigation and add it to your risk framework for the vendor data risk to complete the documentation. However, it may become obvious that there is no mitigation or control for the risk and one needs to be added. When discussing mitigations, it is important to consider the impact they will have on a process. Will a workflow approval adversely affect the timing of a process? Can we afford to wait for manager approval? Conversely, can we afford to let a mistake out the door? Is it something that must be incorporated to the process like a workflow, or would a periodic review suffice? Examples of periodic reviews would be reviewing access to vendors and changes to vendor data on a monthly basis.




The business process map will help drive the mitigation discussion and decision. When a mitigation is finalized, add it to the risk framework. If you decide to use a periodic review, define who is responsible for the review, the frequency of the review, and be prepared to show evidence that the review has been completed. The better you understand your business and risks, the easier it will be to configure, implement, and document the control features and the security in Microsoft Dynamics GP. If you want to learn more, be sure to attend Dynamics GRC Day in Atlanta on March 16. Visit for more information.


OWNERSHIP OF CUSTOM ENTITIES By Margaret Riley, Integrated Business Group When you are creating custom entities within Microsoft Dynamics CRM, you have two choices for ownership of the entity: “User or Team” and “Organization”. In most cases, you want to choose “User or Team”. The only time you want to choose “Organization” is if you are creating a look-up or reference entity. For instance, you may be creating an entity to hold Sales Territories. These entities should have a limited number of records and should not change often. There are several limitations with Entities that are owned by the “Organization”. These entities cannot be used in roll-up filter queries. You also cannot create duplicate detection rules against these entities. For this reason, you should never create a transactional entity with “Organization” for the ownership type. Once the entity is created, you cannot change the ownership type. If you need all your users to have access to all the records of a custom entity, you can do this by granting organization-level security to the entity without losing the duplicate detection and roll-up filter functionality.




REMEMBERING THINGS POST-TRAINING By Josh Behl, Summit Group Software Have you heard this statement (or perhaps ran into this yourself): “It was easy to do while I was in training, but once I got back to the office, I couldn’t remember how to do it!” Sound familiar? Well, I would be surprised if it doesn’t. Most training courses are designed to present the student(s) with scenarios that the trainer is confident that the student will be successful doing. In fact, some curriculum and training courses will even take a more recursive approach to the materials and keep coming back to common themes throughout the lessons. It is practically inevitable, however, that once back to your desk the first day after training, you’ll open the application and have a moment of “…ummmm…how in the heck did they do that again?!” Microsoft has a new tool called the CRM Customer Center ( This free online resource might be considered a very beefed up help file. Even calling it that (in my opinion) is likely not entirely fair. From this site, you have access to eBooks, videos, and content for each module and for different types of users. If you are an administrator, there is pertinent information for you. If you are a salesperson who doesn’t remember how to track an email from Microsoft Outlook and push it into Microsoft Dynamics CRM, the site has simple steps and tools for you. For any user or business, this is the best place to start when you need help learning how – or remembering how – to perform a particular task or find solution information.


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LESSER-KNOWN ACTIONS ON A MARKETING LIST By Josh Behl, Summit Group Software Marketing lists, for the most part, are used as part of marketing campaigns. While many Microsoft Dynamics CRM users know what they are and how to add accounts, contacts, or leads to them, there are a handful of features that seem to have been a bit elusive to many users. I’m not talking about the difference between a static or dynamic marketing list. I am talking about the following features/functionality that are part of Microsoft Dynamics CRM: Copy a Marketing List Imagine a scenario where you have a marketing list you have named “Big Customer Event 2014”, and on that list you have 100 contacts. Now imagine that you want to have a new marketing list for your Big Customer Event 2015, and you want to get all 100 contacts on that same list in the fastest way possible. While there are numerous ways to accomplish this (most of which are anything but quick), your best option is to go the list of marketing lists in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, find the list you want, and select it in the list. You’ll notice a button appear with the label Copy Marketing List. If you click that button, you will have saved yourself some potentially tricky advanced finds or manual member management to get those contacts on your new list. Create a Quick Campaign The Quick Campaign might be thought of as the younger, notquite-as-impressive sibling to a Campaign within Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Beyond the ability to quickly distribute campaign-related activities (emails, phone calls, etc.) and track campaign responses, quick campaigns also use marketing lists in the same way that the full-blown marketing campaign does within the application. If you have a marketing list you are currently utilizing, you can create a quick campaign either directly from the marketing list itself or from a marketing list view. Create Opportunities Recently I was meeting with a customer who had the following need: “We have a bunch of marketing lists we migrated over from Goldmine, and we know that the people on these lists are all qualified customers who need to have opportunities created for them as quickly as possible. Is there a way to do this?” When you open a marketing list, you will see that there is a button located within the More Commands menu (that’s that little button with the three dots). Within that menu is an option to Create Opportunities. If you click that, you will be presented an opportunity template that you can fill in with the information you need. Once you are finished, an opportunity will be created for each account or contact on your marketing list. While there are others of potential interest, these three lesser-known features can provide some very tangible value to any organization using marketing lists within Microsoft Dynamics CRM…even if they are not using the full campaign functionality.

Welcome to Avalara, Doug! Doug Burgum has joined the board of Avalara and we couldn’t be more excited. Doug’s transformative leadership is the kind of perspective we value as we work to bring revolutionary change to the sales tax and business compliance issues businesses face every day.

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dynamics gpexamcram how well do you know GP?

The questions are similar to what you’ll find on certification exams. Visit page 47 for the answers. Good luck!


While reviewing quantities of an item sold in Sales Order Processing, you discover the quantity on hand, quantity allocated and quantity available are not correct for that item. What will reset item quantities to ensure they match all posted transactions? a. b. c. d.

Reconcile Item Quantities Reconcile Sales Documents Check Links on the Item Master Tables Check Links on the Sales History Tables


Which Inventory Item Type(s) will track quantities for the item? Choose all that apply. a. Discontinued b. Kit c. Sales Inventory d. Services


Sally is responsible for entering all of Contoso’s orders in Sales Order Processing. Every time she opens the Sales Transaction Entry window, the Type defaults as Invoice and she would like the Order type to default. What needs to be updated so Order will default every time she opens Sales Transaction Entry? a. b. c. d.

User Security User Preferences Sales Document Setup Sales Order Processing Setup






n the not-so-distant past, it was relatively easy to determine if a company needed to collect sales tax from its customers. Usually, a physical office location in a single state meant that companies needed to collect tax in their home state only. Times have changed, and so have tax laws. With the stratospheric rise in Internet sales, the laws that govern sales tax have left many small and medium-sized businesses scrambling to both understand and comply with the law. Vertex, Inc., the leading provider of tax solutions for large corporations, has expanded its business to include Vertex SMB, a division dedicated to small and medium-sized business. A large corporation can rely on its in-house team of accountants and finance managers to wade through the myriad tax laws to determine the company’s obligations. Often times that’s not the case in small and medium-sized businesses. The first decision a company must make is whether to collect tax in a specific state at all. This decision means understanding nexus laws. Nexus is a term used to measure a company’s business activity in a particular state. If nexus is determined, the company must collect sales tax from its customers.


Dynamics University Winter 2014

Nexus laws vary widely from one state to another. To further complicate matters, there are quite a few legislative actions passing through state governments that will further change the tax landscape. Companies must comply with the laws of their state; ignorance of the law is certainly not an excuse for the lack of reporting and compliance. Users of Microsoft Dynamics products now have a powerful tool to help them with both accurate sales tax collection and reporting. Through a partnership with Cargas Systems, Vertex SMB is introducing products for Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM customers that will ensure accurate tax calculation for every transaction, based on up-to-theminute tax rules that are continuously maintained by Vertex’s database. The power of Vertex’s vast repository of tax rules, currently used by some of the world’s largest corporations, is now available to smaller companies at the touch of a button. The products developed by Cargas Systems for both Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM are designed to be practically invisible to the end user. After installation, users of Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft

Dynamics CRM simply process transactions as they normally would, and each transaction is communicated to Vertex to obtain – and report – the correct sales tax. In addition to precise calculation, Vertex SMB offers a full range of tax reporting services for small and medium-sized businesses. Services include the automation of tax report preparation and filing. Setting up a state jurisdiction in Tax Central, Vertex SMB’s customer portal, takes only minutes, compared to the hours of expensive consulting time that some companies resort to in order to make sense of complicated tax law. Cargas Systems is proud to partner with Vertex SMB to bring products for Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM to the marketplace. Vertex SMB for Microsoft Dynamics GP is now available, and the product for Microsoft Dynamics CRM is scheduled for availability before the end of the year. Cargas Systems and Vertex will continue to expand their product offerings and continue to expand their current products with additional features to meet the needs of small and medium-sized businesses. Please visit for more information about Vertex SMB and its offerings.


DOUG BURGUM An interview with

By Eric Gjerdevig, Summit Group Software


fter helping lead Great Plains Software to a worldwide presence, many people may assume that Doug Burgum – who served in executive roles including chief executive officer and chairman of the board of directors at Great Plains – rode off into the sunset to enjoy early retirement after Microsoft’s $1.1 billion acquisition of Great Plains in 2001. They would be wrong. At 58, Doug’s ambition and passion to be a great father to his children, to positively impact his community, and to utilize his experience to help technology start-ups is stronger than ever. I recently met with Doug – the iconic leader of Great Plains and the visionary of the Microsoft Dynamics family – for an exclusive interview. He lacks the swagger that some may expect from a person with a similar background. Dressed casually in jeans, his look hasn’t changed much from his Great Plains days. And much like his Great Plains days, he has big goals in mind.

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What important lessons have you learned since leaving Microsoft in September of 2007? To get to the after, we need to start with the beginning. Being involved with the Great Plains and Microsoft evolution from March of 1983 until September of 2007 was a remarkably wonderful and amazing time. What made it remarkable was more than just the success. I was the people; the team members, partners, and customers. The whole global ecosystem was value-driven, supportive, and cohesive. To have been a part of that 24-year evolution provides me with a ton of gratitude. When you spend your life building something like that, it’s like building the world’s most sophisticated aircraft carrier. In 1983, Great Plains was a dream, a plan, and 15 very young people, and then at the end you have tens of thousands of people that you are working with directly and across the channel. You have global capability, discipline, teamwork, values, systems, and sophistication. You understand how everything relates; you know their names and their families. Then leaving and getting back into the world of start-up software is like whitewater rafting where the raft has a couple of holes and you lose your paddle on the last section of class 5 rapids. You’re not sure what lies ahead, and there is a little bit of disorientation. The world of start-up software has been a fun re-education.

What do you miss most about microsoft? In the end, it’s about relationships. I was very close to many partners. It was a group I spent time with through events such as Stampede, Convergence, President’s Club, and Inner Circle. I knew many of them like family and watched their businesses grow and expand. The community had such strong values, and I miss being a part of that community.

What are you focusing your time on? My time is split between three things I’m very passionate about: the revitalization of downtown Fargo, North Dakota, building great software companies, and being the best dad I can be for my three kids. On the software side, we’ve worked with many early-stage start-ups through Arthur Ventures, and I’ve been involved with many later-stage companies such as Success Factors which was sold to SAP a few years ago. Currently I’m working with Infusionsoft, Avalara, and Atlassian. These are later-stage companies that are growing quickly. It’s been rewarding and a ton of fun to bring the experiences I had with Great Plains and Microsoft to these organizations.

what have you learned since 2007? I continue to learn every day, and I learn a lot from my children. However, one thing that has really stuck out for me is how far behind healthcare is compared to other industries. There is a huge opportunity for software to drive improvement and efficiency in the healthcare industry. Many of the start-ups I’m working with are healthcare-related for this exact reason.

What drives you? If it’s a single word, it would be impact. Impact can be measured in many ways. It can be value to shareholders, jobs created, productivity gains, ROI for customers, or by the success or vibrancy of a community. I strive to identify a need, make a positive change, and drive impact with the organizations I am involved with. I consider myself a catalytic philanthropist.

What is a day in the life of doug burgum today? In some ways things haven’t changed relative to before. My life has always been full. I typically take on more in a day that I can get done in a day. I’m surrounded by great people in a great environment. That’s what I did for 24 years at Great Plains Software and Microsoft. I’m still doing that today, so it feels somewhat the same. I enjoy building businesses and having an impact on the communities I’m involved with.


Dynamics University Winter 2014

Do you stay in touch with many partners? I gained friendships through those 24 years that will last a lifetime. I haven’t spoken at a Microsoft Dynamics event nor done a Microsoft Dynamics-related interview like this in seven years. I am looking forward to speaking this fall at the reIMAGINE Microsoft Dynamics event here in Fargo. I look forward to seeing some old friends. I’m working hard to deliver a great message, but it actually makes me a little nervous.



North Dakota State University, class of 1978

Stanford Graduate School of Business, class of 1980

PAST WORK EXPERIENCE: McKinsey & Co (1980 – 1983)

Great Plains Software (1983 – 2001) Microsoft (2001 – 2007)


Founder and chairman of Kilbourne Group, a company guided by the knowledge that vibrant downtowns create smart, healthy cities. They act on this knowledge by being the catalyst for inspiration and action in the revitalization of downtown Fargo, North Dakota.


Co-founder and General Partner of Arthur Ventures, a Fargobased venture capital group that focuses primarily on early-stage software companies Executive chairman of Intelligent InSites, a leading provider of enterprise real-time location systems (RTLS) software Chairman of the board and an investor of Atlassian, the leading provider of collaboration software for teams. Board member of Avalara, a leading cloud-based sales tax and compliance automation technology provider.




INVENTORY By Ken Jacobsen, The TM Group


or those organizations that have to deal with it, inventory can really make or break you. If you don’t have the inventory your customers need, then they’ll buy from someone else, and you’ll suffer from lost sales and poor customer satisfaction. Even if you don’t sell your inventory or use it to create finished goods for customers, inventory can still be a big challenge. If your employees


Dynamics University Winter 2014

need inventory to do their jobs and they don’t have access to it when they need it, you’ll also suffer from lost sales and poor customer satisfaction. On the other hand, if you have too much inventory, you’ll need more space to store it, have to be more concerned with obsolescence or spoilage, and have too much of your working capital tied up in your stock inventory. I’ve

walked through many warehouses full of items that are essentially worthless due to obsolescence, and I’ve seen supply rooms full of worthless items. And don’t forget: You’ll have to count that excess inventory also. The art of inventory management, like tightrope walking, is all about balance. Accuracy of your stock counts is the foundation of good inventory management. In an inventory

location, the two biggest areas where inventory inaccuracies occur are shipping and receiving. Data collection using bar code scanners can greatly increase the accuracy of your receiving and shipping transactions by validating that the right items are being transacted. Bar code scanners, which are much cheaper today than they were five or 10 years ago, can also be used in assembly and manufacturing functions to speed and improve the accuracy of manufacturing transactions. Handheld data collection devices can also help speed up and improve the accuracy of cycle and annual inventory counts. Add-on data collection solutions for Microsoft Dynamics GP vary from SalesPad’s DataCollection GP up to the full-featured Appolis WithoutWire™ Warehouse Management Solution (WMS). Besides WMS, Appolis also offers manufacturing management, remote site, field service, and route delivery solutions.

With accurate inventory counts established, you can now look to have the system determine what and when to order. If you are a distributor, one of Microsoft Dynamics GP’s modules that’s useful is PO Generator. This tool assists with purchase planning by suggesting POs to fulfill current orders and inventory stocking requirements. This is based on the items specified by the Order Point Quantity (minimum target inventory), Order-UpTo Level (maximum target inventory), and Vendor Economic Order Quantity (minimizes total inventory holding costs and ordering costs). You can also tell the system to select vendors based on the site’s defined primary vendor, the vendor with the lowest cost, or the vendor with the shortest lead time. PO Generator looks only at current quantity information and cannot look at a forecast quantity or assembly components when suggesting POs. If you are a distribution company trying to better plan your purchases based on a forecast or have highly seasonal demand, then there are a couple of add-ons for Microsoft Dynamics GP

you’ll want to review. Trinity Advanced Inventory Replenishment is designed specifically for Microsoft Dynamics GP and will look at historical demand, forecasts, and imports to generate order points and order-up-to levels based on an ideal algorithm. This solution enhances the Microsoft Dynamics GP PO Generator with more accurate data to make better-informed purchasing decisions. Another add-on for advanced purchasing is RockySoft, which offers Demand Manager, Requirements Planner, Economic Order Management, Exception Signals, and Supply Base Manager as well as several other collaboration, import tracking, and KPI (key performance indicator) solutions. RockySoft is a best-of-breed solution that integrates with Microsoft, Epicor, NetSuite, Sage, and other ERP solutions. If you are a manufacturer, then you’ll want to use Microsoft Dynamics GP’s Manufacturing MRP module, which enables production managers and buyers to make better decisions on when to make items and purchase items based on current sales orders, a forecast, and/or manufacturing demands. This module calculates the Gross Requirements (how many units are needed in a specific timeframe), the Scheduled Receipts (how many units have been confirmed), and the Net Requirements (Gross – Scheduled Receipts). The MRP module uses this information to suggest manufacturing orders, defining what to build and the purchase orders, and then “time phasing” them by days, weeks, or months.

The art of inventory management, like tightrope walking, is all about balance.

the approval processes before creating a purchase order, which will help you better control spending and inventory levels. We also have a client in the healthcare industry that implemented Binary Stream’s Healthcare Materials Management Solution to manage its requisitions, procurement, fulfillment, and consumption processes. Because materials costs are the second-highest expense for healthcare providers, the importance of controlling inventory is crucial to every healthcare organization’s success. Inventory is a game of balance. It is hard to keep your levels just right – at a level that will not disappoint customers or tie up too much capital as well as physical space to store it. Luckily, there are many tools available today to help with this either out of the box with Microsoft Dynamics GP or with a great add-on solution.

Even if you are not a distribution or manufacturing organization, there are add-on modules available to help you better manage your purchasing and inventory. One of our clients’ favorites is Requisition Management from ReQlogic, which adds a web-based requisition process to Microsoft Dynamics GP that is easy to follow, manage, and complete. You can even add items to a requisition from a supplier’s website by using its Punch Out functionality. And the requisition can be routed through


CRM By Omayra Class, Integrated Business Group



TIMESAVI N G Features for Microsoft Dynamics


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Dynamics University Winter 2014

1. Navigate Using the Browser’s “Back” Button Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 now supports the use of your browser’s back button function. If you want to go back to your previous page, all you have to do is hit the “Back” button.

2. Create Records Faster Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 has a new functionality called Quick Create that allows you to create new records in the system. It is available for most system entities as well as custom entities.

3. Quick View Form Microsoft Dynamics CRM now offers the ability to see the parent record information inside the children records. For instance, you can now see information on what industry the company is in, what the main address is, and so on from the contact form.

4. Setting a Default View In Microsoft Dynamics CRM, if you want to change your default view, all you have to do is to click on the “pin” symbol next to the view name, and it will be set as the default view.

5. Auto-Save Microsoft Dynamics CRM can now auto-save all your changes. No more waiting for the record to save before you can get back to doing more work.

You’ll have to talk about it sooner or later. Find out if hosted Dynamics ERP and CRM are right for you at

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By Janelle Montplaisir, Summit Group Software

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YEAR end?

y d a e R u o Y Are for



CLOSE ORDER here has the year gone? It is once again time to discuss year-end closing procedures and updates for modules in Microsoft Dynamics GP. Now is the perfect time to start reviewing this information to ensure you are prepared for any procedures and changes that affect your business for 2014 and 2015. Planning ahead is very important!

Year-End Closing Procedures First and foremost, the number one action item is to make a backup of the databases BEFORE doing the year-end close. The second action item is to review the closing procedures for each module being closed. Whether this is the first time closing or the 10th time closing, review the procedures; make a checklist of the steps to follow and close the modules in the correct order. The closing procedures are created by Microsoft and provided for each module. Module close instructions will be published at the Microsoft Dynamics GP Year-End Resource Center once they are released by Microsoft (November/December time-frame). Closing the modules could differ depending upon the organization’s fiscal year. Some modules are date-sensitive and are for calendar and fiscal years; others are just for fiscal years. To ensure accuracy in summary windows and reports, modules should be closed as Microsoft recommends.

Payroll For customers who use Microsoft Dynamics GP Payroll or Canadian Payroll, it is extremely important to complete all 2014 pay runs prior to processing payroll year-end procedures. Microsoft is scheduled to release the Year-End Update at the end of November 2014, and the payroll tax update is typically released in December. Microsoft will provide updates for the following versions: Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 and Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013. Information regarding year-end close, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), links to needed service packs, and payroll tax updates will be located at the Microsoft Dynamics GP Year-End Resource Center. Make sure to bookmark additional resources, such as the Dynamics University website, where information is centralized in one place to assist with the year-end close process. For organizations looking for year-end close information, is the place to go! Additionally, the Microsoft Dynamics GP Year-End Close Resource Center contains year-end close procedures, demos, FAQs, and blog articles. Now is the time to be proactive and get time scheduled with your Microsoft Dynamics Partner if your organization needs assistance with the Year-End Update.

Below is a list of modules in the order they should be closed and when:


Inventory- Fiscal


Receivables - Fiscal/Calendar


Payables - Fiscal/Calendar


Fixed Assets - Fiscal


Analytical Accounting - Fiscal


General Ledger - Fiscal


CONVERGENC March 16 – 19


Atlanta, Georgia



Dynamics University Winter 2014


Microsoft Convergence is the premier business event where leaders find solutions to their everyday challenges. Experience new innovations, gain insights from industry leaders, connect with experts and peers, and discover ways to accelerate your business.


Part education, part conversation – Convergence brings the entire business community to life. Customers, partners, Microsoft team members, industry experts and visionary leaders join together at Microsoft’s premier business event to learn and connect.


a dynamic portal solution



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By Jeff Pfershy, The TM Group






ow many times have you wished that you could just copy data from Microsoft Excel and paste what you’ve copied right into Microsoft Dynamics GP when entering journal entries?

That day finally arrived when with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 R2! The most important/obvious information you’ll need are the required columns and their order. The other important tidbit is that you are only pasting distributions (think scrolling area), not journal entry header information. You might logically assume (as I did) that the columns in your Excel file should appear in the same order they are entered in the window. Think again, my friend! The following columns must be used and appear in this order: • • • •

Distribution Reference (even if the entire column is empty) Account Number Debit Amount Credit Amount

Don’t include column headers or footer totals when you copy from Excel. It’s as simple as 1-2-3: 1. Highlight the Excel area to be copied and choose Edit > Copy in Excel, CTRL+C, or the Copy icon in the ribbon. 2. In Microsoft Dynamics GP, Create a new Journal Entry – Transactions >> Financial >> General. 3. Click the Paste button in the window (When I did it, Microsoft Dynamics GP pasted a 226-line journal entry in less than three seconds). Voila – your journal entry is now in Microsoft Dynamics GP!


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But wait – it gets better: • You can paste formula values from Excel – they are converted during the process. • Copy/Paste can be used with Reversing Transactions. • Values can be pasted from a tab-delimited text file. Amounts can be in “double quotes”, but a distribution reference that is in double quotes will be pasted to include the quotes. • You can paste values for accounts that require Analytical Accounting information, but not the accompanying AA information. • Unbalanced entries are fine as well, since the window


allows unbalanced posting account transactions to be saved (but not posted). • Entries that contain Unit accounts or Allocation ac counts and values can also be pasted.

It’s time to go paperless

Of course, there are a few gotchas: • The GL Account Number must be in one field – sepa rate segments can’t be in separate columns. • The feature can’t be used for Intercompany Transactions. • You can’t paste to a transaction that has already been saved. You can only paste to new transactions. As the paste is processed by Microsoft Dynamics GP, it will validate all fields, and, if it finds errors, it won’t complete the paste and will print an exception report of the errors found. Typical errors include accounts that don’t exist, accounts with no amounts, and columns imported in the incorrect order (although the exception report won’t specifically tell you the columns are in the wrong order).


Depending on your user preferences, your menu bar in the Transaction Entry window will look like one of these three styles:


a. Window Command Display default – “Action Pane”

Papersave gives you the ability to go paperless and focus your efforts on critical tasks, and not the mountains of paper.

b. User Preference set to “Action Pane Strip”

We integrate seamlessly into your Dynamics system and help streamline your organization’s documents, and workflow. Available now on premises or in the cloud!

c. User Preference set to “Menu Bar”

Note that the “Copy” menu item in the window is only for copying an existing posted journal entry; it is not related to this feature.

Visit our booth at Microsoft Convergence 2015 or go to to learn more.

Happy pasting! Disclaimer: If you are using an integrated product or have custom code that alters the behavior of the Financial Transaction Entry window, you will need to test the paste functionality to ensure it behaves as described above.

3.5x9.75.indd 1

10/20/14 378:14 AM

Getting Started with SmartList Designer By Diann Fariss, Express Infromation Systems


f you have clicked the “New” button in the SmartList, either out of curiosity or thinking you were clicking “Search”, you have opened the SmartList Designer, a new feature with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 R2. SmartList Designer allows the exposure of Microsoft Dynamics GP data beyond the views that Microsoft provides. This opens up many possibilities that can make searching for data even easier than before.

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You can get started with a simple listing of data from one table, such as a list of Checkbooks. • • • • •

• •

Click the “New” button from SmartList Type “Checkbooks” into the List Name field Select “Microsoft Dynamics GP” for the Product Select “Financial” for the Series Under the Database View column, expand on Microsoft Dynamics GP (click the + symbol next to the name), then expand on Tables, and Financial Scroll to locate “CM Checkbook Master” and expand on it Select the following fields by clicking the box next to their Name o Checkbook ID o Description o Bank Account Number

o Current Balance Click “OK” to see your new SmartList view

Try this example! • • • • • With understanding of how the tables in Microsoft Dynamics GP should be linked, you can also add related data. An example of this would be the general ledger account number associated with the checkbook. • •

• • •

While on the “Checkbooks” view, click the “Modify” button Under the Database View column, expand on Microsoft Dynamics GP (click the + symbol next to the name), then expand on Tables, and Financial Locate “Account Index Master” and expand on it Select the following fields by clicking the box next to their Name o Account Number String In the “Relationship” area, select the following:

• •

o TableName – CM Checkbook Master o FieldName – Account Index o Choose “Inner Join” o TableName2 – Account Index Master •

o FieldName2 – Account Index Click “OK” to see your modified SmartList including the account number

Click the “New” button from SmartList Type “Vendor Checks” into the List Name field Select “Microsoft Dynamics GP” for the Product Select “Purchasing” for the Series Under the Database View column, expand on Microsoft Dynamics GP, then expand on Tables, and Purchasing Scroll to locate “PM Paid Transaction History File” and expand on it Select the following fields by clicking the box next to their Name o Voucher Number o Vendor ID o Document Type o Document Date o Document Number o Document Amount o Voided In the “Filter” area, select the following: o FieldName – PM Paid Transaction History File. Document Type o Condition – “Is” o Value – 6 (This will restrict the view to Payments) o FieldName – PM Paid Transaction History File. Voided o Condition – “Is” o Value – “No” Click OK to see your new SmartList view

You may notice that to filter on a field, it must be in your Selected Fields. You can always save your favorites without these fields (columns). It is also helpful to view your SmartList without the filter first so that you know what values to filter on. Now that you are pointed in the right direction, challenge yourself! Add the PM Vendor Master File to this SmartList and establish the relationship needed to list the Vendor Name. Hopefully you’ve thought of a few things to try that will help you find data in Microsoft Dynamics GP using the new SmartList Designer!

By using the “Filter” area of SmartList Designer, you can eliminate data based on common restrictions (such as excluding inactive or voided records), giving users all four of the SmartList search fields for additional filtering.


dynamics crmexamcram how well do you know CRM?

The questions are similar to what you’ll find on certification exams. Visit page 47 for the answers. Good luck!


Contoso needs to be able to provide its customers service contracts that provide them up to 10 support phone calls, 10 support emails, and 10 online support cases. Additionally, this customer’s service contract should only apply to cases related to three different products you support. Which of the following record types should Contoso use to establish all of these parameters and rules? a) Contracts b) Contract Templates c) Service Level Agreements d) Entitlements e) Queues

2 3

Which record type within Microsoft Dynamics CRM can an administrator or service manager configure the following elements: Success criteria, failure actions, and warning actions? a) b) c) d) e)

SLA Contract SLA Item Entitlement Templates Case Templates

Routing rules enable an administrator or service manager to route cases to which of the following? a) Queues b) Business Units c) Field Security Profile d) Users e) Teams


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5DISTRIBUTION Underutilized Features in

I 42

n previous issues, we have highlighted existing features from different areas of Microsoft Dynamics GP that are often underutilized. The last series we will discuss for the year is Distribution, which, as we all know, has hundreds of different features. These are just a few of the features that we find customers are unaware of or may have forgotten about.





Do you have customers that have standing orders with your company or fees that are billed out monthly, and users manually enter these items each time? If so, Sales Order Processing has the ability to create repeating Sales Orders and Sales Quotes. Rather than having users manually enter these documents every month or upon request, set up a repeating order or quote for that customer based on the times to repeat and the frequency needed. When it comes time to invoicing, simply transfer the repeating order or quote to an invoice and bill it out. The original order or quote will remain in the Sales Order Processing work tables to be invoiced again, and its document date is automatically incremented to the next document date based on the repeating frequency set up for that document. When the next billing cycle occurs, all the user needs to do is transfer those repeating orders to an invoice and bill them out.

At times your company may need to order a large quantity of a single item to get a better price from the vendor or because a vendor may have purchase quantity limits, but you do not want all the items shipped at once. A blanket purchase order allows your company to create one single purchase order for multiple quantities of a same item, and then allows those quantities ordered to be split into separate shipments based on specific dates entered by the user. Blanket purchase orders contain a control blanket line, which is not part of the purchase order total. The remaining lines of the blanket purchase order indicate the set quantities and dates the items are needed by.

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By Janelle Montplaisir, Summit Group Software








When entering an item on a Sales Order Invoice, have you ever wanted a pop-up window that lists out other related or upsell items that go along with the selected item? The Suggested Sales Item feature allows you to assign up to five other inventory items, along with quantities, to a specified original item through the Inventory Item Maintenance window. For example, you may have the Keyboard item listed as a suggested sales item under the Computer item card. When the original item is entered on a Sales Order Processing Invoice, the Suggested Sales Item Entry window automatically opens, allowing the user to quickly select other items related to the original sold item for your customer, increasing your sales.

At one time or another, your company will need to create new inventory items. Many of these new items contain the same attributes and setup information as an active item already being used in your company. Use the Copy button in the Inventory Item Maintenance window to copy site assignments, price lists, list prices, vendor assignments, and currency assignments to your new inventory item, saving valuable data entry and setup time for your user.

Many users ask if Microsoft Dynamics GP can suggest and/or create a Purchase Order based on item quantity levels and demand. Yes, the PO Generator feature allows a company to generate a list of suggested Purchase Orders and can create those Purchase Orders based on item setup. Before the PO Generator feature can be used, a number of setup tasks must be completed on the item first.


By Linda Brock, Knaster Technology How wonderful does it sound to immediately access a customer’s item sales history while entering a new sales document? When you activate the SOP Customer Item Lookup in the Professional Services Tools Library, you give immediate access to a customer’s item sales history. The window includes the Item Number, U of M, Quantity Invoiced, Document Date, Unit Price, SOP Number, and Item Description for all items invoiced to that customer. As new invoices are posted, the data for those items is updated, so the window always displays the last document posted for that item. You can highlight an item in the Customer Item Lookup and zoom back to the last document. You can also use the Find By field at the top of the window to find by Item, Description, or Date. This window can be opened from the Sales Transaction Entry window or the Sales Item Detail window by clicking CTRL H, or by pulling down the Additional dropdown and selecting Historical Lookup. In order to use this tool you must activate it. The steps to do so are as follows: • • • •

Get all users out of the company Make a backup of your company database Log into GP as the sa user and open the Professional Services Tools Library Under the Sales Tools section, check the second box next to SOP Customer Item Lookup and close the Tools Library • Build the history by opening Sales – Setup – Sales Order Processing and pull down the Additional menu and select Create Initial Lookup Data Plan to do this during a low traffic part of the day because if you have a lot of historical sales line items, the initial creation could take some time. You will receive a message when it’s finished. Going forward as new sales invoices are posted, the Customer Item Lookup data is automatically updated.





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THE ABC’S OF PHYSICAL INVENTORY By Bob Callanan, Business Ready Solutions Year-end is here, and if you carry inventory on your balance, then perhaps it’s time to revisit how Microsoft Dynamics GP can help make your physical inventory run more smoothly. There are just two Microsoft Dynamics GP screens required to set up and execute your physical inventory: the Stock Count Schedule and Stock County Entry. The Stock Count Schedule window is used to create a Count ID and assign items to be counted. We recommend at a minimum that you create a separate Count ID for each site ID that you have. There is also a “Mass Add” button so that you can include all the items assigned to that site. When your warehouse is ready for counting (all shipping and receiving has been cut off), then simply press the “Start Count” button to effectively freeze the on-hand quantities in the system. Users can also print stock count sheets from this window. Once you start the count, you can then use the Stock Count Entry window to record actual counts that were made from the floor. Users will enter the actual amount counted in the base unit of measure, and the window will present the variance. Also, the user can view any allocated quantities (amounts on sales orders) and any “unposted” transactions to assist in reconciling the variance. Once all counts are entered and verified, use the process button to create inventory increase/decrease adjustments to adjust the quantity on hand to what was counted. The above example is an easy overview of year-end physical inventory. But what about cycle counting or mid-year counts? Microsoft Dynamics GP has a great feature to assist here as well. If you are looking to reduce variances found at each year, you may choose to count certain items every month. The items you select may be high-dollar items or high-moving items. To do this, utilize the Item ABC analysis routine. This routine allows you to group your items as “A”, ”B”, or “C” items based on usage value, usage quantity, on-hand value, and unit cost. In your grouping, you can set the value for each breakpoint. For example, your “A” items may be your top 20 percent, “B” items are the next 20 percent, and all others are “C” items. Once set up, you can create a stock count schedule for your “A” items only. There are numerous variations that you can try. Review the ABC Item analysis and stock count windows before year-end to create an effective process for keeping your inventory accurate at year-end and throughout 2015.


Mark Your Calendar!


2015 Convergence 2015 is set for

MARCH 16 – 19

(Monday through Thursday) and will again be held at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia. Convergence is the premier event bringing the entire Microsoft business community to life. It is where opportunity and innovation meet to deliver real business value and truly amazing customer experiences. It’s the chance to make key business connections and to discover the full potential of Microsoft solutions.


Dynamics University Winter 2014

exam cram answers

1 gp 1

crm Answer: d

Answer: a

The Reconcile Items Quantities utility will reset inventory quantities for a range of item numbers so they match quantities of all posted transactions for that item.

2 2

Answer: c

Answer: a & c

Item types set to Sales Inventory and Discontinued will track item quantities. Quantities are not tracked on Kit item types because Kits can consist of one or more components which can be services, sales inventory, miscellaneous charges, discontinued or flat fee items. Service item types do not track quantities.

3 3

Answer: a, d & e

Answer: b

In User Preferences (Microsoft Dynamics GP > User Preferences) the user can set the Default Sales Document Type to whichever document they choose. This document type will then default every time that user opens the Sales Transaction Entry window.



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