Dynamics 365 for Sales – Spring 2018 Release

The capabilities in the Spring ’18 release of Dynamics 365 for Sales, empower your sales team with more intelligence and analytics, deeper integrations with LinkedIn and Office 365, and consistent user experience for web, mobile, and clients using the Unified Interface framework.

Let’s take a look at some of the highlights of the release:

  • Embedded intelligence lets sellers focus on selling. Embedded intelligence collects, manages, and analyzes the diverse data and communications throughout the sales process, and then automatically suggests relevant actions and captures relevant activities to let salespeople spend more time selling.
    • Embedded intelligence features introduced with this release are:
  • Relationship assistant, Auto capture, and Email engagement (previously these were part of a group of features named Relationship Insights) provide sales intelligence and are embedded within the Sales app.
  • The Sales app is built on the Unified Interface framework for consistent user experience. The Sales app delivers a consistent, uniform, user interface, and follows responsive design principles for optimal viewing on any screen size or device. All core sales entities used in business processes, including products, goals, and sales literature, run on this responsive platform and conform to common data model standards. Dynamics 365 App for Outlook, LinkedIn Sales Navigator integration, and the Gamification solution all run on the Unified Interface framework.
    • User interface controls use a Common Controls Framework (CCF) for consistenc Controls follow consistent, familiar patterns on every surface of the application, making it easier for sales users to learn and be productive.
    • Enhanced integration with LinkedIn Sales Navigator enables a seamless sales workflow. On forms, LinkedIn Sales Navigator controls provide up-to-date context and insights about companies and LinkedIn members. On dashboards and forms, salespeople see LinkedIn profile pictures for contact records synced with LinkedIn Sales Navigator.
    • GDPR and accessibility enhancements. Investments address the European privacy law’s requirements, and enhance accessibility for users who need assistive technologies to interact with the application.
    • Professional user license for streamlined Sales Force Automation (SFA). With the addition of the Professional user license, along with the Enterprise user license currently in market, you can choose the capabilities that make sense for your specific business requirements.
    • Dynamics 365 for Sales insights add-on provides advanced intelligence capabilities to salespeople. The add-on includes Relationship analytics that show relationship and sentiment health. Relationship analytics analyzes the overall health of customer relationships by letting salespeople know how they’re spending their time and who they’re interacting with. Relationship analytics also recommends which customers and opportunities to focus on.  Sentiment health analyzes customer interactions and signals to inform salespeople how satisfied their customers are with their relationship.
    • Self-serve installation of the Dynamics 365 for Sales insights add-on speeds onboarding. System administrators can quickly get set up with a simplified installation process.

To learn more about Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales, contact us at info@trideapartners.com.

Dynamics CRM Sales Invoices to D365 for Financials

In this blog we will be highlighting the steps to send sales invoices from Dynamics CRM to Dynamics 365 for Financials.

Use Plugin in CRM

Here are the steps:

  1. Download the CRM SDK from Microsoft.
  2. In SDK package, add the “CRMSDKTemplates” into Visual Studio (find the matched one with your VS version).
  3. Create a new CRM Plug-in Library in Visual Studio.
  4. Create early bound entity classes with the code generation tool (CrmSvcUtil.exe, run it in Command Prompt under this tool’s directory).
  5. Use the early bound entity classes to retrieve the Sales Invoice entity from the LocalPluginContext.

Create and use Web API in D365 for Financials

Now you have your Sales Invoice entity from CRM and want to map the related fields in Financials and send those field values to Financials.

  1. Create a Web Service for Sales Invoices in Financials. Make a copy of the Web Service URL and you will need it later. https://yourcompanyname.financials.dynamics.com:7048/MS/ODataV4/Company(‘ yourcompanyname’)/SalesInvoice
  2. Find out the metadata (data structure formatted in JSON) of the Web Service you just created. What I did is creating a temporary Console Application and adding the service reference. Then I could check the data type of the sales invoice in Visual Studio.                                            
  3. Decide and map the related fields. Create your own class with the same fields in the Plugin code (the class name can be any, but the type and name of those fields you need to map should be exactly the same as what is in the service reference).
  4. Use DataContractJsonSerializer to serialize your created class for sending it to the web service.
  5. Create a web request to the URL of the Web Service using HttpClient class (username is your account user name in Financials and the password is your web service key).
  6. Send the request to the Web Service using POST method.
  7. Then you maybe want to send the Sales Invoice line items. You should repeat Steps 2 to 6 for the line items: creating a line item class, mapping the fields, serializing it and posting it. The only tricky point is the line item URL is based on the header you previously sent. It looks like: https://yourcompanyname.financials.dynamics.com:7048/MS/ODataV4/Company(‘yourcompanyname’)/SalesInvoice(Document_Type=’Invoice’,No=’SampleInvoiceNo1′)/SalesInvoiceSalesLines

What’s more tricky is that sometimes the header passed into Financials successfully but the line or lines do not. Then you have to log into Financials and delete the header manually.

To learn more about Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Financials, contact us at info@trideapartners.com.

A Guide to Transformation in the Cloud for your Life Science Company

Unleashing growth, compliance and productivity

In a life sciences business, there is no lack of data related to product development, clinical trials, production (in-house and contract manufacturing), quality assurance, costing, the supply chain and other areas of the operation.  How do you make sense of it without investing in compliance, data processing and analytical technologies?

Moving to the cloud can help you cut costs and achieve compliance, but you run the risk of needlessly limiting the potential cloud benefits you can achieve by focusing on financials alone. We recommend considering all the 4 following aspects of cloud computing in your planning.

Download our guide to learn the 4 reasons why life sciences and the cloud belong together!

At Tridea, we help our life sciences customers digitally transform their businesses and improve the value realization of their business application investments. We mitigate the inherent risks associated with implementing, upgrading and replacing legacy ERP systems. We lead our life science customers with best-practice consulting services we have refined over thousands of engagements. We take care of our customers and aspire to keep them for life.

To learn more about how Tridea can help you get the most out of your Microsoft solution in the cloud, visit our website.

Integrating Manufacturing Execution Systems to Microsoft Dynamics 365

Manufacturing execution systems (MES) are software programs that are used to control and track production processes in manufacturing environments. The MES software sits above the SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition), PLCs (programmable logic controller) and sensors on the production equipment, and is thus specifically designed to receive information from these machines. These systems often house data that is very valuable to pass on to an ERP system.

At Tridea, we have encountered numerous MES systems, including Inductive Automation’s Ignition, Wonderware, and Rockwell Automation. Our clients  frequently capture in their MES systems such things as quality data related to production batches, quantities of raw materials issued to production orders, and quantities of finished product reported as finished on production orders. In many cases, this data flows electronically from the production equipment to the MES system, with no human intervention. An obvious next step is to pass that information on to Microsoft Dynamics 365.

Whereas with Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 we typically used middleware such as SQL programs and tables to pass this information between the MES system and Dynamics AX, we are now using web services for the communication with D365. Some examples of integrations that we have built to MES systems include updates to production order statuses, recording consumption of raw materials (picklist journals) on production orders, recording report as finished journals on production orders, and updating of batch attributes. In addition to saving the time of having to manually record this data, there is a significant improvement in the accuracy of the data when it flows directly from the machinery that is performing the work or from sensors that read the data pertaining to quantity updates and / or batch attributes. One of the nice aspects of these types of integrations is that they are very repeatable, and thus become a very cost-effective solution for clients.

To learn more about how Tridea Partners can integrate MES systems to your Microsoft Dynamics 365 solution, visit www.trideapartners.com or contact us at info@trideapartners.com.

What Life Sciences can Accomplish in the Cloud

How does moving to the cloud help achieve your goals for growth, innovation, and competitiveness, and what are some of the main outcomes of transitioning to the cloud that you might want to anticipate and plan for?

Predictive maintenance ensures the uptime, productivity, and performance of your infrastructure

For many life sciences companies, evolving legacy systems from condition based to predictive, enabled with data insights from IoT, is an important use case for cloud technologies.  Your analysis of data coming from connected devices, and the IoT, allows for improved communications with your contract manufacturers, 3rd Party Logistics providers or in-house manufacturing team.  This connectivity allows for you to anticipate and avoid poor decisions on R&D and product movements throughout the enterprise.   That intelligence enables you to keep product innovation to occur quickly and/or fulfilment of orders to be as efficient as possible.

People, trading partners and market visibility enables complete, contextual intelligence to help you meet company objectives

In life sciences, the ability to compete as a viable, relevant business depends largely on your ability to understand and control product research and supply chain. This learning offers an avenue to intelligence that overcomes the practical and conceptual boundaries of individuals, who are easily misled by their selective awareness of events and trends. Instead of acquiring the tools and building your own intelligence systems, you can take advantage of the resources available in the cloud today. When you connect your industrial assets or the complex products to the IoT, storing and processing the data in the cloud, they become available to cloud intelligence that can combine with data from your entire operation.

At that point, your insight is not limited to your individual employees. You can surround it with contextual information about R&D, material planning, training and the supply chain. If you want to cast an even wider net, you can also assess customer behaviors, market trends, and competitive threats, and correlate those findings with your R&D and product management.

Collaborative innovation opens additional revenue streams and increases team efficiency

Predictive maintenance is a great achievement that your internal and external customers will appreciate. No need to stop there. Cloud-enabled, intelligence-driven collaboration with your customers can help you understand them much better, strengthen the relationships with them, and maintain your share of their attention and spending. It can also result in product enhancements that you might eventually launch to your entire market.

Within your organization, you can rely on the performance and scalability of cloud resources to enable scientists, partners and rest of the workforce collaborate from anywhere. They can use cloud-based virtual reality modeling to work together on new formulas and products. You save the expense and disruption of business travel by your skilled innovators, and you enable them to collaborate always, not just on special occasions.

Service provider expertise lets you make more strategic use of your own IT department

If your IT department is fully occupied with the day-to-day activities of keeping applications, networks, and infrastructures running and secure, you can move most of these routines to the cloud and let your service provider handle them. Instead, you can use your in-house IT resources to perform custom development and other high-value tasks that help you move forward. Working with a strong cloud service provider, your IT team can efficiently learn the skills of development, provisioning, resource management, and security in the cloud, especially if you maintain a hybrid environment that requires integrations between on-premise and cloud computing. You can draw on your service provider’s specializations, for instance, to enable advanced intelligence, collect and process large volumes of data, or take the complexity out of working in the IoT.

Worldwide resources and networks let you grow at your own pace while being compliant

Leading cloud providers maintain advanced cloud infrastructures in global networks of data centers. They will have a data center close to your headquarters, and, when your company reaches across the globe, they can support you wherever you go. That means you can grow in the cloud at your preferred pace. If you want to take a measured, low-risk approach, you could move just one workload into the cloud – product engineering, for example – to start with, and test the new infrastructure’s performance, reliability, and analytical capabilities. You continue your cloud migration at the right time.

When you’re ready to increase the momentum, you can take advantage of cloud-based ERP and CRM resources with multi-language and multicurrency features to reach customers and markets anywhere. If you’re operating production and distribution facilities in several countries and regions, the cloud offers an efficient way to make corporate systems and information available to them and connect their processes to the entire organization.

Transform your life sciences business in the cloud

Starting now, you can act on the cloud opportunities that offer the highest benefits. Together, Tridea Partners technology and expertise, Microsoft Dynamics 365, and the analytics resources available on the Microsoft Azure cloud can make life sciences business growth in the cloud practical, fast, and affordable. Before, during, and following your move to the cloud, we help you optimize processes, increase efficiencies, and reduce costs. We offer proven, practical solutions and approaches within an affordable subscription model that eliminates distractions and lets you focus on results.

At Tridea, we help our life science customers digitally transform their businesses and improve the value realization of their business application investments. We mitigate the inherent risks associated with implementing, upgrading and replacing legacy ERP systems. We lead our life science customers with best-practice consulting services we have refined over thousands of engagements. We take care of our customers and aspire to keep them for life.

To learn more about how Tridea can help you get the most out of your Microsoft solutions, visit https://www.columbusglobal.com/en-us/resources/landing-pages/us/tridea-lifesciences-erp/life-sciences-ebook  or contact us at info@trideapartners.com