Making the Most of Your GP Upgrade (Part 2)

Businesswoman Talking to Colleagues in Meeting

This is a two part series of blog posts that address the questions of:

  1. Why Upgrade
  2. How to make the upgrade process most successful and least stressful

So, how do you make the upgrade process most successful and least stressful? Hopefully you saw part #1 of this blog series: Why Upgrade? 

Now it is time to develop a strong plan.  This is where an experienced GP Partner can be especially helpful. InterDyn BMI is ready to assist!

  1. Review compatibility of every application and system that GP either runs on or interacts with:
    1. Server Operating System
    2. Workstation Operating System
    3. SQL Server Version
    4. 3rd Party Versions
    5. Peripheral Software Versions
    6. Customizations
  2. Define your infrastructure choices/decisions. What platform have you chosen and will there be a migration path to a new solution required?  Also consider the various deployment options available to you.
    1. On Premise – Physical or Virtual
    2. Hosted and/or Cloud – Offsite, no server hardware required on premise
    3. Managed Services – InterDyn offers IT managed services in an array of formats to help relieve or supplement your existing IT resources.

Regardless of your choice in this area, InterDyn will work closely with your IT team to come up with a plan for how to move forward with your chosen solution.

  1. Define which new features and functionality are to be deployed within the new version, and schedule training where appropriate to ensure your organization is well positioned to maximize the use of the new capabilities.
  2. Review the detailed list of all of your reporting requirements made in the ‘Why Upgrade’ steps. Some requirements may dictate the use of new technologies available like SSRS, Excel Refreshable reports, or possibly additional third party software.  Have all requirements been addressed?
  3. Business process efficiencies. Determine where you can leverage new functionality to replace time consuming manual or repetitive tasks.  Consider what tasks take what you consider ‘too much time’ that InterDyn can help find you options for?

Take action….incorporate a Test upgrade.  This test process provides you and your organization the opportunity to walk through the upgrade process and learn the impacts at a time when you have more flexibility.  You will then be able to process your company specific transactions and scenarios in the upgraded test system to learn what the difference might be and address any questions or concerns within the new platform, all without disrupting your business.

The TEST upgrade process will result in you having reliable information including:

  1. The amount of time needed for the actual live upgrade, beginning to end
    1. Time it takes to download software
    2. Ensure operability of registration keys
    3. Server processing time for upgrade actions
  2. Your required changes to your processes as a result of:
    1. Customizations
    2. 3rd Party
    3. Modified reports
    4. Test Payroll

Test, Test, Test.   It does take time…..but the unforeseen negative consequences are alleviated.  It’s especially important to test those business processes made available to you by the use of any third party products.

If you are interested in an efficient, well executed upgrade then a taking the time to do a test upgrade can save you time and money overall.

InterDyn has years of experience upgrading customers in all sorts of businesses, with all sorts of configurations.  Please contact us today at Upgrades@InterDynBMI.com to learn how we can provide support to your initiatives to upgrade.

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Making the Most of Your GP Upgrade

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This is a two part series of blog posts that address the questions of:

  1. Why Upgrade
  2. How to make the upgrade process most successful and least stressful

So, why upgrade?

If you are on Microsoft Dynamics version GP2010 or older, the chances are that you are either in the process of upgrading to a newer version of GP, or are considering an upgrade soon.  The Microsoft support discontinuance deadline of October 13, 2015 applies to GP2010.  Older versions will have already stopped Microsoft support.  An upgrade will then ensure you continue receiving enhancement support and important tax update patches/code availability. InterDyn BMI is always happy to provide application level support to any version you are on in GP.

With that knowledge in mind, now consider the business drivers of your upgrade up front.  What are the key objectives of the upgrade?   This determines the basis of how a successful upgrade for your organization is defined and measured.  Examples of some frequently noted business objects are as follows:

  1. Staying Current on the Software features – The primary objective of your upgrade may very well be to stay current on the latest release of GP.  If so, determine where you can leverage new features to replace time consuming manual or repetitive tasks.  There are several new features available in GP2013, and GP2015 which you should review to see if you can take advantage of them.
  2. New or Emerging Compliance and Reporting Requirements – One topic top of mind today is how organizations can meet reporting requirements associated with the Affordable Care Act (ACA).   Also, you might consider making a detailed list of all of your reporting requirements, ACA related or not.   Some requirements may dictate the use of new technologies available like SSRS, Excel Refreshable reports, or possibly additional third party software.
  3. Creating Business Process Efficiencies – Determine where you can leverage newer version functionality to replace time consuming manual or repetitive tasks.  Training on new functionality after an upgrade is a perfect opportunity to consider “Why have I always done it this way when it seems so labor intensive?”  New navigation tips and tricks are available to you during scheduled time with the InterDyn consulting team within the upgrade process.  Ask us about easier ways to do tasks and see the data you need.
  4. Updating an Aging Infrastructure – The question of hardware compatibility can drive planning to replace old outdated hardware.  Replacing infrastructure can actually make your upgrade easier and can also be a requirement of newer releases of software.  If existing hardware were to fail, would your version of Dynamics GP be able to run on new hardware?  InterDyn experts can help you understand the requirements and options, including several cloud or hosted possibilities.  Imagine….no initial outlay of cash to purchase new servers as a part of the upgrade process!?
  5. Timing – What timing is best to schedule your upgrade and by what date do you need to be upgraded?  Can your business tolerate downtime during business hours?  What amount of time can be committed by your internal staff to the testing of scenarios prior to rolling out the live update?  How should rolling out the live update coordinate with your internal accounting cycle to be the least interruptive to your business?  InterDyn experts have options for your consideration that can meet your requirements for a smooth timing transition.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this blog series which addresses: How to make the upgrade process most successful and least stressful.

Inventory Insight with Dynamics GP is better for Business and Customers

factory_in_beijing_188179The manufacturing and distribution industries are fast-paced and highly competitive, which introduces many challenges – one of which is inventory management.  In order to stand out ahead of the others, you need to be able to provide customers with quality products, in the right quantities, at the right time. Gain greater insight and control over inventory by deploying strong technology.

There are many methods and software solutions that can assist with managing inventory counts, however, you need to know more than just what’s in the warehouse. Manufacturers and distributors need to be able to identify trends with what customers are ordering so that the warehouse is stocked appropriately. Modern business management technology, including enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions, can provide the insight you need to satisfy customers and your bottom line.

Robust ERP solutions, such as Microsoft Dynamics® GP, offer powerful inventory management in addition to other tools. You can manage all of your core business data from within this single, integrated solution including financials, supply chain and inventory, manufacturing and distribution operations, and human resources and payroll processes. It’s easier to enter, access, and use your data when it’s located within a centralized solution. In addition, your data can work together to provide a bigger view of your operations, productivity, and profitability. Not only can you have reliable inventory counts, you can identify trends with customer purchases. You may identify products that are increasing or decreasing in popularity and adjust safety buffer levels as well as procurement strategies accordingly.

In addition to improving inventory control, you can use Microsoft Dynamics GP to improve customer satisfaction. Your sales team can check on inventory availability while negotiating with a customer, for example, without putting the customer on hold. In addition, while discussing replenishment orders, your team can boost up-sales and cross-sales by offering items that may be complementary to what your customers already purchase.

Inventory insight and control is good for your customers and your business. Contact InterDyn BMI to learn how ERP can provide the insight you need to deliver the products your customers want, on time, and profitably.

What’s New in GP 2015 Webinar

Hear the reasons customers are upgrading to Microsoft Dynamics GP 2015. We will cover the improvements made in the following areas:  System Wide, Web Client, Business Intelligence (BI), Financials, and Distribution.

How To Link an External Spreadsheet to a Management Reporter Report

Have you ever wondered how you could link an External Spreadsheet to a Management Reporter report?

The following is an example of how to get your report to present GP and Excel data from two different spreadsheets.

The two screen shots below reflects the Excel spreadsheet data we want to use. This is a Management Reporter report.

EXCEL SPREADSHEET – Sheet 1:

Excel Spreadsheet 1

EXCEL SPREADSHEET – Sheet 2:

Excel Spreadsheet 2

To build the report, you may want to build the components in the following order – Row, Tree, Column and the Report Definition.
ROW DEFINITION:

Add the Row link to the Row format.  Edit>Row Link.  In the Row link window you can add more than Excel file link.

Row Links

If the Excel file that you are linking to has multiple columns that represent different periods (for example, a worksheet that has a detailed, 12-month Budget Forecast), you can use the /CPO (Column Period Offset) option to match the accounting periods in the Column Definition with the appropriate columns in the Excel worksheet.

You can use this technique with either the Combined Worksheet link or the Separate Worksheet link.
To use the /CPO option, in the row definition, type the cell address that points one column to the left of the first period (column). Then, add the /CPO option at the end of the cell address.

CPO

TREE FORMAT:

Add unit names to the tree that will define the Spreadsheet Information to review.  You will need to assign a Row Definition before you can select the Worksheet link.  The Worksheet Link Column (G) will allow you to select any link you’ve defined in the Row format.

Tree Format

COLUMN FORMAT:

Create a column type WKS and then in the Report Unit Field select the Summary Unit you created in your Reporting Tree definition.

Column Format

REPORT DEFINITION:

Create you Report Definition using your new Row, Tree and Column.  You will want to make sure you name the Use Row Definition from the Reporting Tree Check Box.

Report Definition

 

REPORT GENERATED:

Report Generated

Report Generated 2

Visit our website to learn more about Microsoft Dynamics GP and our full product line.

Contact InterDyn BMI today!

How To Link an External Spreadsheet to a Management Reporter Report

Have you ever wondered how you could link an External Spreadsheet to a Management Reporter report?

The following is an example of how to get your report to present GP and Excel data from two different spreadsheets.

The two screen shots below reflects the Excel spreadsheet data we want to use. This is a Management Reporter report.

EXCEL SPREADSHEET – Sheet 1:

Excel Spreadsheet 1

EXCEL SPREADSHEET – Sheet 2:

Excel Spreadsheet 2

To build the report, you may want to build the components in the following order – Row, Tree, Column and the Report Definition.
ROW DEFINITION:

Add the Row link to the Row format.  Edit>Row Link.  In the Row link window you can add more than Excel file link.

Row Links

If the Excel file that you are linking to has multiple columns that represent different periods (for example, a worksheet that has a detailed, 12-month Budget Forecast), you can use the /CPO (Column Period Offset) option to match the accounting periods in the Column Definition with the appropriate columns in the Excel worksheet.

You can use this technique with either the Combined Worksheet link or the Separate Worksheet link.
To use the /CPO option, in the row definition, type the cell address that points one column to the left of the first period (column). Then, add the /CPO option at the end of the cell address.

CPO

TREE FORMAT:

Add unit names to the tree that will define the Spreadsheet Information to review.  You will need to assign a Row Definition before you can select the Worksheet link.  The Worksheet Link Column (G) will allow you to select any link you’ve defined in the Row format.

Tree Format

COLUMN FORMAT:

Create a column type WKS and then in the Report Unit Field select the Summary Unit you created in your Reporting Tree definition.

Column Format

REPORT DEFINITION:

Create you Report Definition using your new Row, Tree and Column.  You will want to make sure you name the Use Row Definition from the Reporting Tree Check Box.

Report Definition

 

REPORT GENERATED:

Report Generated

Report Generated 2

Visit our website to learn more about Microsoft Dynamics GP and our full product line.

Contact InterDyn BMI today!