Dynamics NAV 2017 – Item Attributes

The release of Dynamics NAV 2017 presents several important features, which proves how advanced this release is. One of these important features is the item attributes which are highly essential features especially for companies with high variations of SKUs such as but not limited to distribution, retail and manufacturing companies.

Item attributes are completely different that item variants, you may refer to the previous post on Dynamics NAV essentials for a better understanding of the item variants on this link.Item attributes are more of characteristics of the same SKU while an item variant is a variation that can be tracked under an item SKU.

Item Variants versus Item Attributes | Example:

Lets suppose that a distribution company has an item which has three specific colors (red, blue and white). There are two different scenario that can be considered:

1- Creating one item card, with three different variants (red, blue and white) | for that the system will support quantity tracking for all variants across all locations. Although, the system will have one item code under which there are three variations.

2- Creating three different item cards, and creating one attribute called (Color). The first item will be assigned to the item attribute value (red), while the second will be assigned to the second item attribute value (blue) and the third one will be assigned to the item attribute value (white). Although, there will be three separate item codes in the inventory module.

Understanding Item Attributes

In Dynamics NAV 2017, item attributes can be assigned either to single items or to item categories. Although, it is definitely better to assign attributes to the categories in order to make sure that they are inherited by items when assigned to categories.

item-attributes

Item Attributes

When creating a new item attribute, you can choose from one of the following types:

  • Option (predefined list)
  • Text
  • Integer
  • Decimal

Note: Both decimal and integer can be assigned to a predefined unit of measurement.

item-attributes-values

Item Attribute Values

Now the next step is to assign a specific set of attributes for either an item category or to an item card. As shown below, the item category (Table) is assigned to a set of attributes which are (Color, Depth, Height and Material Description), it means that once an item is added to the system and assigned to the item category (Table), it will automatically inherit all these attributes.

item-category

Item Category – Attributes

item-card

Item Card – Category and Attributes

item-card-item-attributes

Item Card > Attributes Values

 

It is worth to mention finally that item attributes could have default values either on the item category level or item card level.

The next post will shed a light on the technical aspects of item attributes, SQL tables and import insights.

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

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MS Connect Suggestion | Add Arabic Language module to Dynamics NAV

Dynamics NAV is being promoted widely in the middle east as a powerful and capable product, and there is a high demand on this product due to its flexibility, user friendly, mobility, unlimited packed features and most importantly being extendible. Although, there is a feature which is not fully utilized and is actually missing which is; the Arabic Language Module.

As Microsoft Partner in the Middle East, we are seeing a high demand on this specific requirement since it has already been provided in Dynamics CRM; through which you can add the Arabic Language quite easily, and work on a multi lingual interface by switching between Arabic and English smoothly. In this essence, the Multi Lingual capability has already been presented in Dynamics NAV, although it doesn’t support Arabic, and there is no standard Arabic Language module which you can download from the product page on Microsoft website.

There is a wide range of languages which have already been delivered such as Czech, Danish, German, French, Italian, Russian, Swedish ….etc. But there is no Arabic Language.

I have created a new ticket on MSConnect requesting this product enhancement, please login and vote:

MS Connect – Add Arabic Language to Microsoft Dynamics NAV

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Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2017 Page – Language Modules

 

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

NAV 2017 – Release date has been postponed

We were all waiting and passionate about the new version of NAV 2017 which was scheduled for release by yesterday the 24th of October. Microsoft has officially published that it will be released on the 28th of October.

Products Downloads

Coming Soon – Oct 28, 2016

Partner Translation Toolkit

Coming Soon – Oct 28, 2016

Language Modules

Coming Soon – Oct 28, 2016

Reference: Microsoft Partner Source – NAV 2017 Page

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

Dynamics NAV 2017 Limited Beta is now Available for Download

It has been announced recently that Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2017 (Limited Beta) is now available for download. Several interesting features stands out with this release which is represented with the following:

  • Richer incoming documents
  • Inventory items
  • Smarter Sales and Purchase Documents
  • Account Categories in the Chart of Accounts
  • Payment Reconciliation
  • Jobs
  • Fixed Assets
  • Simplified Setup for using Dynamics CRM from inside NAV
  • Simplified Opportunity Management  and CRM Functionality
  • Smart Notifications
  • Extensios
  • Office 365
  • US Financial Reports
  • and many other interesting features ..

nav-2017

The download is available on the following link (partner source) including; use of terms, what’s new document, release notes, third party notice and the NAV 2017 Limited Beta version >>> Download Link (Partner Source)

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

After-Sales Service

When selling items to customers, it is very important to manage associated after-sale services in an automated way in order to make sure that every single service category is being delivered to clients in terms of the SLA (Service Level Agreement) and the given warranty.

In this post, I am shedding a light on some of the capabilities and features of the service module which is specifically related to selling items and after-sales services. Therefore, we will have to address and explain the following points: service items, service item groups, sales order and service order.

After Sales Services

After Sales Services – Process Flow

Lets consider an example in which the item is tracked by serial number, which means that every single serial of an item; which is sold to specific customer, shall have specific service bundle such as warranty, preventive maintenance …etc. The following item number is created and configured to be tracked in terms of serial number.

As shown below, we are creating an item number with the general common details. When it comes to the after sale services, there is an option to assign the item to a “Service Item Group” in order to fulfill the process flow mentioned above. Although, it should be taken into consideration that the service item group should have the option of “Create Item” checked in order for service items to be created automatically when selling the inventory items. Furthermore, we will make sure to configure the item to be tracked by serial number.

Service Item

Service Item Groups

Service Item Groups

The service item group has the following configuration options, which are:

  • Default contract discount %
  • Default service price group code
  • Default response time (hours)
  • Create service item

Process Flow - Construction Vehicle

At this step, we will proceed with the sales order in order to ship the item to the customer, and start managing the associated service bundle.

Sales Order

Once the sales order above is posted, the system will automatically create associated service item for this specific item serial and customer.

Service Item - After Sales

Service Item Details

At this point, the after sales cycle is just starting. Further details related to the contractual agreement, SLA (service level agreement) details, receiving service calls, following up on items within warranty, service tasks, inspection, fault and resolution registration will be illustrated in future posts.

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

Microsoft Dynamics 365

We have been reading the news for a while, and the term “Dynamics 365” has been intensively trending among Microsoft customer and partner networks. So much news has come out of Microsoft World Partner Conference #WPC2016 in Toronto specifically about the future of the Dynamics line of business software, the wall street journal published previously this month; July the 6th, that “Microsoft Corp. plans to update its business software line called Dynamics on Wednesday, weaving together the web-based versions of programs that manage a variety of corporate operations to better compete in markets where it trails giants like SAP SE and Oracle Corp“.

In fact, Dynamics 365 will offer an embedded experience within office 365 in order to manage the various business operations such as; finance, sales, marketing, field service…etc. For instance, you will be able to create customers, vendors, quotes and even invoices without leaving outlook.

Dynamics 365

WPC 2016

In this essence, Dynamics 365 will unify the ERP and CRM cloud services offered by Microsoft along with Office 365, Power BI and Power Apps …etc under a single Microsoft AppSource. This includes; but no limited to, AX 7 (the online version of Dynamics AX, “Ranier”), CRM online, Project Madeira, Office 365, Power Apps. Therefore, Dynamics GP, NAV and SL will not be part of Dynamics 365 nor will be replaced by it. In fact, the roadmap presented by Microsoft at WPC shows the new versions of GP, NAV and SL along with the new great addition, Dynamics 365.

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Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Edition – Roadmap

Furthermore, additional details were presented as related to Dynamics 365 roadmap, which are illustrated below:

  1.  April 2016  | Project Madeira public preview launches in US
  2. July 2016 | Project Madeira public preview launches in Canada
  3. Q4 CY16 | Microsoft Dynamics 365 for financials available in US and Canada
  4. CY17 | Microsoft Dynamics 365 for sales, Business edition available
  5. CY17 | Microsoft Dynamics 365 for marketing, Business edition available
  6. CY17 | Microsoft Dynamics 365 financials available in 4 additional countries
  7. CY17 | Microsoft Dynamics 365 for business plan available
    >> reference: Microsoft WPC 2016 

I am not going to dig into furter licensing details, but will consider the above part as sufficient details in order to briefly shed a light on the future of Dynamics family as related tothe new offering, and that; most important of all, Dynamics GP, NAV and SL; which are not part of this offerings, will continue to flourish and introduce greater new versions.

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

Dynamics NAV | Fixed Assets Maintenance

An important part of the Fixed Assets Management is represented with the ability to keep track of maintenance costs encountered throughout the asset life cycle, which aims to preserve the value of the asset. It is essentials to shed a light on the fact that maintenance expenses do not increase the value of the assets, which is different from capital improvements/ additions, which adds up to the original asset cost value.

Keeping track of maintenance expenses associated with the fixed assets is illustrated below through several primary phases, which are:

  1. Creating the fixed asset
  2. Keeping track of maintenance registration
  3. Invoicing maintenance costs / Purchase Invoice (which is integrated with the fixed asset module)
Maintenance Process Cycle

Keeping track of Maintenance

As shown below, the fixed asset card includes several fast tabs, which are: asset general, asset lines, posting details and mainteance.

Fixed Asset Card

Fixed Asset Card

Initially, in order to keep track of all the maintenance services performed on a specific asset, along with other important details such as; service date, service agent, service vendor number …etc. These details can be recorded under the “Maintenance Registration”.

You can later on print a report addressing the next service visit for every single fixed asset in the company, this can be printed from : Departments > Financial > Fixed Assets > Reports > Maintenance Next Visits

Maintenance Next Service

Maintenance Next Visit Report

Eventually, invoicing maintenance expenses can be applied from the purchase invoice form, by including a fixed asset maintenance line addressing the expense amount to be applied automatically to the maintenance ledger entry of a specific asset card.

Purchase Invoice

Once posted, the maintenance expenses can be checked from the maintenance ledger entry window on the fixed asset card as shown below:

Maintenance Ledger Entry

Maintenance Ledger Entry

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi

Dynamics NAV Number Series

In Dynamics NAV, basically any transaction or master card can be assigned to a number series in order to govern how serial numbers/ codes are being automatically issued. Through No. Series, relations can be defined as well in order to assign multiple codes to a specific entity such as item card/ item journal, journal entry …etc. Althgouh, it must be conceeded that the GL accounts is an exception, since it can not be assigned to a number series as derived from the fact that COA accounts are governed by a specific coding criteria that can not be logically assigned to a set of serial numbers.

In order to understand how No. Series are managed by Dynamics NAV, we will consider the example of item cards, which is theortically illstrated below:

Suppose that a manufacruting company is considering the following criteria to code their inventory which in turn consists of raw materials, semi finished goods and finished goods:

  • RM – Raw Materials
  • SM – Semi Finished Goods
  • FG – Finished Goods

Item code is designed to include a prefix of two letters (RM, SM or FG) then a separator (-) then a serial number of 5 digits (00000).

The criteria above requires three No. Series to be created in Dynamics NAV along with relations in order to have them all bundled in one pack, and assigned to the item table. In order to create a new No. series, go to Departments > Administration > Application Setup > General > No. Series

No. Series

Each of the number series above has one line, addressing the starting number and the starting date of the associated Line code. It is important to mentioned that it is possible to include multiple lines per a No. Series, although, it is not required in this case that we are presenting.

Until this moment, the three number series are not linked together as one bundle, in order to do so, we will highlight one of them, and click on “Relations“. Then, choose the other two number series as related entities.

Relations

So far, these three number series are packed under one bundle and can now be assigned to the item table in order to populate the codes when entering new items into the system. In this case, we will have to go to Departments > Administration > Application Setup > Warehosuse > Inventory > Inventory Setup

Under Number Tabl, we will choose the IV-RM number series, which already has relations with the other number series as shown below:

Inventory Setup

Now as you open a new item, the item No field has a button next to it, which opens the associated number series for the item card, click on it to choose the required serial number; either raw material, semi or finished goods.

Item Card

Eventually, it is important to shed a light that a number series has a variety of options that can be quite useful in order to govern how codes are populated into transactions/ master cards, these options include; ending number for a specific No. series, warning when a specific number is reached, starting and ending date, allow manual entries …etc.

Best Regards,
Mahmood AlSaadi

Dynamics NAV 2016 Web, Phone and Tablet Clients

In this post, I am shedding a light on the usability enhancements of Dynamics NAV 2016 as related to the web client which introduced over 60 enhancements resulting with significant performance improvements, improved list navigation, enrriched user experience.

Dynamics NAV 2016 Web Client 

Here is a a close look into Dynamics NAV 2016 web client, this is meant to present the look and feel of the client rather than listing all the enhancements.

NAV 2016 Web Client

You can hide the navigation pane in such an elegant way in order to focus on the main page of the system, while you can expand it back anytime, along a new home button to return to the role center smoothly.

NAV 2016 - Navigation List

Through the list, you have the ability to search across columns, hide/ add columns, horizontal scroll and freeze pane.

List

You can search for pages quickly and smoothly as shown below:

Search for pages

Dynamics NAV 2016 Tablet Client

Tablet Client

Dynamics NAV 2016 Phone Client

Best Regards,
Mahmoud M. AlSaadi