Task Recorder Help in Dynamics 365 for Operations

By Donald Hilton, AX Practice Director

I would like to share with you a great feature in Dynamics 365 for Operations that allows you to create your own help recordings. (It can be tied to your Business Process Model in Life cycle services too!)

Click on the gear to select the Task recorder option.

Click on + Create Recording.

Next, fill in the name of the recording and a description.

Click on the Start button to begin. (Best practice is to start at the home page).

You can see that the recording has started by the icon on the left status bar at the top of the window.

Continue to click through the process that you are documenting. Do not worry about extra clicks; they can be removed after the recording is complete.

When you have completed your steps, you can Stop the recording.

Click on Save to this PC to keep a copy of the recording.

Click on Save to Lifecycle Services to make the recording accessable from within Dynamics 365.

Watch for the file download to be completed.

Watch for a message that the LCS upload has been successful.

You can save to any libray you have in LCS.

Once complete, you will be able to see and edit the recording in LCS.

In order for this to be visable inside of Dynmaics 365, you will need to link your LCS library: Navigate to System Administration > Setup > System Parameters.

Finally, under the Help section, you can select the correct Library.

Please let us know if you have any questions or would like to learn more about the task recorder feature in Dynamics 365 for Operations.

If a Picture is Worth 1000 Words, Then a Video is Priceless!

By Donald Hilton, AX Practice Manager

In this fast-moving world of Dynamics ERP, we are always looking for ways to teach ourselves.  As a Solution Architect, I am also being asked all the time for a good place to do training. Five years ago, you might have gone to two or three places to find information on Dynamics AX.

Today, I am going to share a site that I have found to be very helpful: OrganicAX.Com.

The blog is written by Lachlan Cash, who is currently working for Microsoft as a solution architect.

There are two main sections, Business Basics and Microsoft Dynamics AX. (You can also just do a search on the topic you are looking to find information on).

I have found this process for updating my workflow as an example.

Once on the site, clicking on the picture will take you to the jump page.

Also, I would like to provide you with a screen shot of the video description:

Run the video and enjoy the click-through process to learn as you listen.

Click here if you would like to download and add the videos to your training library.

I hope you enjoy the site as much as I do and hope that you share the knowledge!

Contact us if you have questions or would like to learn more about how we can help you.

Why NOW Is the Time to Upgrade Your Dynamics AX

By Donald Hilton, AX Practice Manager

Upgrading your ERP system has always been a task unto itself.  I have met very few companies after implementing a new ERP system who have set out a plan to keep it updated with the latest features.  They often were just happy about surviving the implementation and keeping the status quo.

That is not true either, because for many, the Status Quo means customizing all of the parts of the system that they did not like or automating processes to save time and money.

Microsoft has released its 90-day notice of a price increase for Dynamics AX and change in licensing.  That is not a monumental announcement but it is worth noting a few items in the announcement.

  1. There will be an on-premise version of Dynamics 365 coming out in June.
  2. There will also be a price increase starting in July for current AX 2012 over 10%.
  3. There will not be an upgrade path from AX 2009 to AX 2012.

The reason why the third announcement is important now is that there is no way to upgrade your current AX 2009 to Dynamics 365 and move the transactional history you have created over the last 4-10 years.  I am not always sure that moving that transactional history is important, but if your company thinks that it is, you have to first upgrade to AX 2012 and then to D365.  However, that will not be an option after July 1, 2017.

You must upgrade to AX 2012.   The reason for the upgrade has to do with the database structure of AX 2012.  There is one database that holds transactions and another that holds the code.  We are in the process of upgrading a very early version of AX 2012 before R1 when the database was still a single repository.  The two-step process allows for the code to upgrade and leave the data behind or bring it forward.

Now is the time to plan your long-term goals and strategies for your upgrade path.  Is it important that you take your transactional data with you? Can you load it in a data warehouse and access it for reporting?  The decision you make now will affect your cost of doing business over the continued life of AX 2009.  Mainstream support will be ending in 4/10/2018 and only Extended support until 10/21/2021.  That is paid support except for security hot fixes, which would include your upgrade should you wait another 4 years.

If you would like assistance in reviewing your current installation or you have a goal to find the ROI for moving to a perpetually updated platform like Dynamics 365, contact us today and one of our Business Analysts will be glad to work with you.

Dynamics 365: Everything Old is New Again

By Donald Hilton, AX Practice Manager

There is a great deal of chatter these days about Dynamics 365 and how it can be utilized for existing and developing companies.  I think that this is a game changer for those in the SMB enterprises space.  With the emergence of Dynamics 365 for Operations, a small company can utilize a platform of powerful software that was initially out of their reach.

The reason they can do this is the work Microsoft has done to integrate the technology of ERP, CRM and Office products into one seamless system that will grow and adapt to quickly changing business requirements.  Without the need to invest in expensive hardware and infrastructure, the Microsoft Cloud provides most of the components needed to manage your IT requirements. With the addition of a mobile platform, work can be transformed from desktop to tablet or phone, creating a seamless flow of work.

This has caused a change in the delivery of this product to customers by the VAR community that services them. No longer is there a “one-fits-all” model. When you have companies of 5-10 people who want to take advantage of the Dynamics 365 platform, you need to find a better way to delivery your implementation. Companies of this size have complex business requirements, but they are more flexible on meeting those requirements.

These smaller-sized companies are looking for a quicker ROI on their investment and want to find ways to leverage the software sooner.  How you bring up a company’s financials in 90 days vs 9 months will be the key to success in these situations. Once you have reached the goal of your 1st sprint, what is the goal for the next 90 days?  It is clear that today many businesses like these are moving away from bad habit, overly burdened accounting structures and complicated business process.  They are looking for a faster and more efficient method to delivery their services and record revenue.

How can you do that?

  1. Build a “Proof of Concept” environment
  2. Import a standard “best business practice” configuration instead of 20 days of configuration and documentation
  3. Load the company chart of accounts and dimension
  4. Turn your consultants into the Business Analyst
  5. Walk through standard business processes
  6. Negotiate changes to both business process and Dynamics 365.

This process will put you 30-60 days ahead of traditional implementation and you start getting buy-in from your users at the beginning to make adoption of the new system faster and easier.

I am not limiting this to just small to midsize companies who are looking to host all of this in the cloud for ease of management and limited investment of capital.  Companies of all sizes and complexity can take a page for this simplified approach to focus on the area where they can gain or have a competitive advantage and not on reengineering the whole business.

Contact us to learn more

Attend User Group Summit 2016 in Tampa!

Axug 2016

Join InterDyn BMI and your Microsoft Dynamics® peers, including Microsoft staff and UG All-Stars at this year’s AX User Group Summit taking place October 11-14 in Tampa, Florida.

Here’s what you need to know about Summit 2016.  You will find the below for each of the four User Groups:

  • Hundreds of sessions for you to customize your experience, including role-based sessions for Accountant, Controllers and more
  • Two full-days of instructor-led Pre-Conference Academy Training (Arrive early and participate!)
  • Exclusive access to the Summit 2016 Online Community
  • Presentations by many InterDyn BMI clients and teammates
  • Dedicated Networking Receptions for you to interact with thousands of your Dynamics Peers and collaborate withMicrosoft Dynamics® Staff, InterDyn BMI team and GPUG All-Stars
  • Opportunities to fulfill CPE Credits
  • And of course, a beautiful destination – Tampa!

At InterDyn BMI, it is our goal to help you become successful, both as an organization and as an individual. That is why we encourage you to take advantage of resources (yes, even ones that extend beyond our desks) and tap into the Dynamics community. Dynamics companies and individuals have been digging deeper into their investment at each Summit and discovering areas of growth. Be one of those companies and individuals: register today.

As a client of InterDyn BMI, we can offer you a 10% off registration discount.  Please email Marketing@InterDynBMI.com to receive the registration code.  Keep an eye out for updates (Party plug… we are hosting a party!!)

Any questions?  Email UserExperiences@InterDynBMI.com

REGISTER NOW

Invoice Workflow for Purchase Order in Dynamics AX 2012

For many years now the buzz has been around going paperless and how this would save time and money.  There is more to becoming paperless than just having scanned documents that you can retrieve as needed.  To make documents more useful the addition of OCR software can use some logistics to map data on the document to fields within Dynamics AX.

One of the most useful functions that this process has been used for is receiving Vendor invoices. This has been a great advantage to many Accounts payable departments with high volume of Vendor Invoices that are not associated with Purchase orders.  If you are a company with a high volume of purchase order and you want to continue doing 3 way matching there has not been any products on the market that fills that niche well.

I have recently reviewed a products latest release for Dynamics AX 2012 R3 but it is compatible back to Dynamics AX 2009.  This product has impressed me with its handling of Purchase order invoices and standard invoices.  In addition this product has an extensive set of rules for workflow to direct vendor invoices to the correct departments for approval or Purchase Order invoices when there is a discrepancy.

Invoice Work Flow by To Increase, has 3 ways to consume your invoices.

Paper or PDF

OCR – there is already an integration for ReadSoft

XML-EDI – there is an integration for Lasernet

There are a number of field that are used to validate the Invoice.  Once the invoice is entered the 1st set of rule will decide if the invoice can be posted automatically.  This could be dollar amount, vendor group or other criteria setup.

1

When invoices move to workflow approval process there a number of criteria that can be set to decide the direction the invoice should follow.    In the three main boxes you can see that IWF integrates with purchasing, accounting and projects.  The workflow engine will direct the workflow as the rules are written, allow for out of office substitutions, reminders and escalation.  Those notification can be sent via email or the workflow foundation in Dynamics AX.

Once approved they will move on to be paid.

Additionally IWF integrates into AX like a standard module and has its own build in security roles.  IWF has its own document management functionally and allows you to decide where to store the document on SharePoint. Lastly, IWF allows you to format the emails templates that you send with email notifications.

Once you setup the import process for your files.

2

You will be able to set this up to run in batch

3

The invoices once imported are visible in a single window

4

Review the invoice and fields is done by clicking on the tabs

5

IWF has a log tab on both the Header and lines of the invoice to help you know what needs to be done to the invoice to pass into workflow.

6

Once AP completes the basic information on the invoice it will be routed to the correct approver.

7

The approval will see this window and has a few options

Approve

Change Status to Reject

Redirect to another approver

8

This is part of the larger window where the invoice and all its detail can be reviewed.

9

There are variation on posting when you select different account types.

Fixed Assets

Projects

10

All the above functions are part of what you would expect form an Invoice workflow process. Now let’s look at the way we deal with Purchase orders.  The import process will work the same as other invoices.

To do 3 way matching you need

Purchase Order

Purchase Order Receipt

Purchase order Invoice

11

Add your Charges at the line or header level

12

Especially when using electronic methods of sending an invoice, the invoice will appear in the Accounts Payable department before the shipment arrives on the dock.  You may still process the invoice to a certain stage while waiting on the receipt to be entered.

Instead of matching up PO invoice by PO invoice, you can run a batch process called Automatic purchase invoice approval and posting on a scheduled basis or manually that will perform the matching, approval, and posting per your configuration.

13

After all of that you can process the Purchase Orders to the correct workflow based on the 3 way matching details or post so they can be paid.

Contact us today to learn more.

Features in Microsoft Dynamics AX That Support Form 1099-MISC Reporting

Prepared by: Greg Griffith of Interdyn BMI

Overview

In the USA, it is tax season every spring from January through April 15.  For enterprises, this includes an obligation to send out IRS forms like Form 1099-MISC’s on a timely basis.

Form 1099 is a document of the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that many companies must use to report on payments to small vendors and individuals. For many companies, like manufacturers or distributiors, most reporting will involve Form 1099-MISC reporting for Box 7 – Non-Employee Compensation. This blog article describes features in Microsoft Dynamics AX that support Form 1099-MISC reporting.

Disclaimer: This information is likely to be helpful but please consult your own sources for complete tax accounting and software information.  Please use this information at your own risk.  Thank you.

Vendor Setup

  1. Go to the All Vendors list at one of the following locations:
    1. Accounts payable > Common > Vendors > All Vendors
    2. Procurement and sourcing > Common > Vendors > All Vendors
  2. Select a Vendor or enter a new Vendor.  If needed, enter Edit mode.
  3. Go to FastTab for Tax 1099.
    1. See screenshot for illustration and additional steps below:
    2. If the Vendor needs Report 1099 reporting, then do the following steps:
      1. Select the checkbox for Report 1099.
      2. Enter value for Federal tax ID:
      3. Enter value for Tax ID type.
      4.  Enter value for: Name to use on the 1099. Options are Vendor name; Doing business as.
      5. If applicable, enter value for DBA:
  4. Within the Vendors form on the Vendor tab, go to button for Setup > Vendor state tax IDs. Form will open.
    1. Complete data as needed.
    2. Close the form.

Recording Form 1099 Reportable Transactions

Once a Vendor has been setup for Form 1099 Transactions, then transactions will begin to accumulate automatically:

  • AP Invoice Journal (Non-PO Invoices)
  • AP Vendor Invoices (PO Invoices)

Invoice Journal

On an Invoice Journal, transactions for a Vendor who has been set up for Report 1099 will be automatically posted as 1099 transaction. See screenshot.  The invoice journal has a tab for 1099 activity but no entries are required unless you want to change values such as over-riding the amount to something less than the full amount.  The 1099 tab can also be a place to enter a State code (if needed).

Even if you do not enter a value in the 1099 amount field, any payment that is posted for the invoice amount contributes to the 1099 total for the specified 1099 box. If you do enter a 1099 amount, the amount that you entered is used instead of the posted payment amount.  You can clear the 1099 box field for any invoice line that needs no 1099 tracking.

Vendor Invoice

Similar to an Invoice Journal, the Vendor Invoice will automatically post transactions as 1099 transactions for a Vendor who has been set up for Report 1099. See screenshot below.  The Line Details area of the Vendor Invoice form has a tab for 1099 activity but no entries are required unless you want to change values such as over-riding the amount to something less than the full amount.  The 1099 tab can also be a place to default in a Delivery State code (if needed).  Even though a 1099 amount does not show, it will be recorded.  A Delivery state amount will not be recorded unless a value is provided for Delivery state.  See screenshot below.

Even if you do not enter a value in the 1099 amount field, any payment that is posted for the invoice amount contributes to the 1099 total for the specified 1099 box. If you do enter a 1099 amount, the amount that you entered is used instead of the posted payment amount. You can clear the 1099 box field for any invoice line that needs no 1099 tracking.

Updating Vendor Transactions Mid-Year

If a Vendor is set up at mid-year for Report 1099, then transactions from earlier in the year can be added to the 1099 transactions using the Update process.  Steps are described below:

  1. Go to: Accounts payable > Common > Vendors > All vendors.
  2. Select Vendor.
  3. On Vendor tab, select action button for Update 1099. Form will open.
  4. Enter parameters on the form and press the OK button.

Note: This form provides a way to update the State/province code on existing 1099 transactions, if needed.

  1. When ready, press the OK button.

See screenshot for details:

Adjusting Form 1099 Transactions

  1. Go to: Accounts payable > Periodic > Vendor settlement for 1099’s.  Form will open.
  2. Select text button for Tax 1099 transactions. Form will open.
  3. Set and remove parameters and filters as needed.
  4. Edit fields as available and needed.   Many values can be changed.  See screenshot:

1099 Transactions – Beginning Balances

When going live on AX 2012 during mid-year, you may want to bring in a Form 1099 transaction balance from a legacy system.  In order to do this, one way is to enter a “dummy invoice” equal to the total of 1099 transactions from the legacy system.  Enter an offset account and remove the Method of Payment it so that it does not get selected to be paid.

You may want to use a clearing account such as an AP clearing account.  If so, use an AP invoice journal with offset to Account 2002.  Use an AP Payment journal with Method of Payment left blank and an offset to the AP Clearing Account.

1099 Reporting

For 1099 Reporting options, see the following menu paths:

  • Accounts payable > Reports > Tax 1099 > Tax 1099 summary
  • Accounts payable > Reports > Tax 1099 > Tax 1099 detail
  • Accounts payable > Periodic > Vendor settlement for 1099s

Note: Microsoft has published software “hotfixes” at the end of calendar years to help support Form 1099.  Look for Microsoft hotfixes in the usual places.