In NAV 2016, Microsoft introduced a proper workflow engine and some templates, opening the door for user defined workflows right out of the box (where previously, an ISV solution or customization would be required). That said, with few exceptions, such as e-mails for approval requests, the scope of the workflows was entirely within the NAV application: being triggered by an event in NAV, resulting in one or more actions and responses in NAV. Despite the limited number of pre-built workflow templates, events, and responses, it has definitely been a good selling feature for the solution.
Now imagine what you could do if NAV workflows could interact with other applications and services that your organization uses every day? Think SharePoint, CRM applications, SQL, cloud based file sharing services, Office apps (traditional and Office 365), BI.. or even social media! Actions driven by events in NAV, or triggering processes in NAV based on events in another application that drives your business.
The possibilities are truly amazing! Even more amazing is that it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to do this. So where do we begin? By signing up for Microsoft Flow, a new, free service that is part of the Office 365 suite (but does not require an Office 365 subscription). It supports 72 services today, and I’m sure many more will be added in the months to come. Among these services are Microsoft Dynamics 365 and NAV 2017. I have not tested it with 2016/2015, but from the looks for it, I think it should work with those versions as well.
In the video tutorial below, I show a simple use case scenario where we take an event like the creation of a new Customer record to drive a social media update on Twitter to spread the word about our new business relationship:
Leave us your feedback, questions and comments on how you plan to use Microsoft Flow with Dynamics NAV or Dynamics 365, here or on the Youtube video page.
Teaser: Later this week, I’ll be posting a blog entry on how to extend NAV data into your own custom mobile apps, courtesy of Microsoft PowerApps.