5 Tips on How to Succeed with Your ERP Implementation

By Devang Mehta, NAV Practice Director

Implementing a sophisticated ERP system, for the first time is a lot of work. It can also be complex for firms that are implementing many components and have a lot of entrenched processes they are trying to overhaul. We at interDyn BMI have successfully implemented hundreds of basic and complex ERP projects.

Obtain Support from Leadership

 It is critical that the project has executive support and commitment. Without this, the accounting department or IT department (usually the “owner” of the implementation process) will be fighting an uphill battle in getting firm-wide buy-in and adoption. When everyone in the firms recognizes that the executives are stakeholders in the outcome of the system implementation, they are much more likely to embrace the new system and comply with new policies and procedures.

Assemble a Strong Group of Subject Matter Experts

It is important to assemble a group of key stakeholders that will take ownership of the system implementation. This committee will determine the goals, manage the timeline for the project, and keep everyone accountable to getting their weekly “assignments” done on time. The committee should have at least one principal and a representative from each of the major divisions of the company: accounting, HR, project management, and marketing.

Change Management Processes

Changing a system can be stressful for some of your staff. Start early by explaining the reasons for the change and the goals the company has set for improving financial results is critical to success. You will see a much better attitude and approach by everyone if they fully understand why the firm is upgrading technology.

Processes

An ERP implementation will bring a change in your current processes. If you continue to use the same old processes that you have always used, you will get the same results. Take the time to understand how your current processes work and then try to document them. We can help you with suggestions to make the system more powerful and automate as many of new processes as possible better if we have a good understanding of your current process.

Data

Your current data is probably residing in multiple systems and platforms. Start reviewing these different platforms and initiating the data cleansing process.  This will reduce significant time during implementation.

Contact us if you would like help or have any questions.

Dynamics NAV versus Dynamics 365 for Financials

By Devang Mehta, NAV Practice Manager

Dynamics 365 for Financials and Dynamics NAV are business management solutions for small and mid-sized organizations that automate and streamline business processes and help you manage your business.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 for Financials are very similar products. The Dynamics 365 for Financials was earlier known as “Project Madeira”. These two solutions aren’t really competitors. They target different markets and address different needs. Dynamics 365 Financials is a complete cloud SAAS solution based on the NAV platform. Therefore, two ERP systems have more things in common than things that set them apart.

Deployment

Most likely the biggest difference between the two solutions is deployment.

Dynamics 365 for Financials is purchased as a service. The benefits here are lower cost, scalability, accessibility, etc.

Dynamics NAV, on the other hand, has a little more flexibility in this regard. You can host the software on your own servers, or in a 3rd-party cloud like Azure if you choose. Dynamics NAV actually works very well when hosted by a 3rd-party cloud, so don’t base your choice between these two products on whether you want “the cloud” or not.

Pricing & Licensing

Dynamics 365 for Financials can only be licensed as a subscription for $40/month for every person. It can only be for named users. This means that Dynamics 365 for Financials will have a lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) than Dynamics NAV.  This is because Dynamics 365 for Financials licenses are less expensive per named user ($40 monthly vs $65 monthly); and all infrastructure costs are included in its price.

Dynamics NAV can be purchased either perpetually, or as a subscription. This means you can bear the full cost of licenses up-front, or subscribe to retain access rights. You can also purchase Dynamics NAV users as “concurrent” users, or “named” users. This means you can either buy the rights for up to [x number] of people to use Dynamics NAV at the same time, or you can buy the rights for certain people to use the solution whenever they want. Your choice.

Functionality

Dynamics NAV is a much more robust solution. Currently, the Dynamics 365 for Financials limitations are:

  1. It does not provide any features for production, storage, or services and human resources management.
  2. Although it allows you to create more than one company, it offers no functionalities for inter-company transactions or consolidation.
  3. In the inventory module, Financials doesn’t provide for the management of several different warehouses (locations), or the management of batches or serial numbers.
  4. In the Purchasing module, Financials doesn’t allow you to create purchase quote requests to vendors; it only allows you to prepare purchase orders.

Customizations

Financials can only be personalized through “extensions”. This is a new development approach (also available for NAV), which is only just starting to be used by partners.

If you require a lot of customizations, Dynamics NAV will have the edge. It has one of the most “open” codebases of any ERP; about everything is exposed to the system developer to customize. It also has a lot of customizations created by Independent Software Vendor (ISV) . Due to its longevity, a lot of the customizations are already developed, and a rich talent pool of developers already exist.

For Dynamics 365 for Financials, you would have to reach into the Appsource and find an app that plugs right in to Dynamics 365 for Financials. Dynamics 365 for Financials currently does not have all of the configuration options available to NAV.

Conclusion

Dynamics 365 Financials is not a competitor to NAV 2017. I would consider it “baby NAV”.

It is a powerful cloud solution based on the Dynamics NAV technology, targeting the needs of small businesses. Although there are several current differences between the two solutions, Microsoft will expend a significant amount of resources on updating Dynamics 365 Financial to make it a complete cloud based robust solution.  They are announcing new features every month to the software.

How to Receive Multiple Shipments Against a Purchase Order and Track Costs

By AJ Ansari, NAV Product Manager

Question: How can I handle multiple shipments from a vendor for a single Purchase Order in Dynamics NAV (or Dynamics 365 for Financials),  and how do I track the total dollar amount of each receipt?

Answer:  Start by adding the Qty. to Receive, Quantity Received, Qty. to Invoice, and Quantity Invoiced columns visible in the Lines FastTab/section of the Purchase Order. You can do this by right clicking one of the column headers under Lines, and clicking on Choose Columns.

When you are about to receive a partial shipment from a vendor, overwrite the value in the Qty. to Receive field. This field should be showing the same value as what you see in the Quantity field, assuming you have not yet received any goods (if you are using NAV, depending on your Purchase & Payables Setup, the Qty. to Receive field may also be be 0 by default). Also look at the vendor’s quote / shipping document / packing slip to ensure that you have the right $ amount per unit in the Direct Unit Cost Excl. Tax field.

Continue reading “How to Receive Multiple Shipments Against a Purchase Order and Track Costs”

Overcoming Dynamics 365 Data Migration Blues (Importing Balances and Historical Data)

By AJ Ansari, NAV Product Manager

A key shortcoming with Microsoft’s current data migration tools for importing data from QuickBooks, Dynamics GP or Excel into Dynamics 365 for Financials is that they all focus on migration of Master records, and not on import of any transactional data.

Data Migration to Dynamics 365

Most customers at least want an opening balance for each G/L Account, and sometimes Net Change by G/L Account by month for the last 12 months (for comparative reporting), and to bring in opening Receivable balance for each Customer, Payable balance for each Vendor, and Inventory valuation and quantities.

These can be done by entering or importing data into the General Journal, Sales Journal, Purchase Journal, and Item Journal. BUT, with no RapidStart for Data Migration yet, and the fact that none of these Journals have an ‘Edit in Excel’ option out-of-the-box, getting transactional data in can be quite a hassle.

What I find curious is that there is an Edit in Excel button on the ribbon on the Batch selection screen for each journal, but not on the actual journals themselves (where it is needed).

So you either need to type all that data in, or you have to get creative. What we’ve done is created and published a Web Service for each of those Journal pages, and did a little reverse-engineering to be able to Publish data from Excel into Dynamics 365 for Financials like you can from an “Edit in Excel” list.

Continue reading “Overcoming Dynamics 365 Data Migration Blues (Importing Balances and Historical Data)”