Dynamics AX Power Tools – Add Atlas to your Toolkit

Authors: Juanita Schoen & Matt Caffrey, CPA – Tridea Partners

Our clients already enjoy a very rich feature set for financial reporting with the Dynamics Management Reporter module, which is relied upon daily as standard equipment in the overall ERP toolkit.

Expanding upon this strong financial reporting base, Globe software’s Atlas product suite provides users with access to the full AX dataset, integrated with MS Office for self-service report design. Atlas also provides connectivity to multiple data sources for improved analytics connecting the full set of ERP data to key data and metrics stored in other systems.

Atlas can also benefit your Microsoft implementation timeline when leveraged by your partner to reduce development effort associated with programming a typical data migration / cutover and custom reporting.

The most sought-after tools are light-weight, manageable, versatile, and flexible in providing value to their owner. Here are some ways Dynamics AX + Atlas provides that value:

Reporting

The entire AX database can be queried using Atlas, not just financial data (as with Management Reporter). Custom reports can be designed without the help of a developer or database administrator.  Once designed, they can be accessed by the users via an Atlas shortcut and can be easily updated / modified within the tool, again without help from a developer.

Upload Utility

Typically, you’ll need an AX developer to code a customized tool for uploading data into AX. That custom program and upload template are static and require further development effort to update.

Atlas allows you to quickly create, test, and deploy AX upload templates. If updates are needed, you no longer need to call upon that specialized developer. A trained Atlas user assigned the appropriate security permissions can simply update the upload template.

Data Migration

Atlas can reduce time previously needed to have a developer build custom data migration programs to pull data from legacy system(s) into AX. The same Atlas interface used to create upload templates can be leveraged to create the data mapping that feeds your cutover.  Changes can easily be made to the templates to support iterative data migration testing and incremental database updates.

Of course, it is important to find a reporting solution to best fit your own unique business needs. According to Globe Software’s website “56,475 Microsoft Dynamics AX Users Trust Atlas”

Tridea can help you uncover the ways Dynamics AX + Atlas can increase value for your business.

Excel Integration in the New AX (AX 7)

The New Microsoft Dynamics AX (formerly referred to as AX 7) has a better integration with Microsoft Excel. It allows you to export to Excel, as with previous versions, but it also lets you write back changes from Excel to  Dynamics AX much easier than in the past.  The New AX has also expanded the use of entities to make it easier to import and export data.

In any list page in AX, when you click on the Office icon it will give you two options. The option in RED, will export to Excel so you send to another person.  The option in Green, to open in Excel, will allow you to edit the data in excel and push it back to AX.  Those that have used Dynamics AX 2012 know about the excel add-in, that was supposed to give you this functionality as well, but was very finicky to use.  The integration with the New AX has been improved significantly.

The New Dynamics AX

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once you click the open in excel button, a screen pops up to let you save locally, or to SharePoint or OneDrive for business.

After downloading or saving the file, open it and enable edit mode. It will then prompt you sign in, simply use your AX login credentials.  Once the credentials are provided it will load the data into Excel.  From here you can edit any of the data, that is not read only.  Read only fields are noted in red. A key symbol is used to identify key fields.  Finally, an asterisk is used to identify required fields for new records.  Once you’ve made the necessary changes, simply hit publish and the changes are written back to excel.  You can even use Excel to create new records.

NEW Dynamics AX

 

 

 

 

 

 

In addition to the open in excel function from all to the list view pages, you can also access the Excel workbook designer. This is located in the Common module, under Common>Common>Office Integration>Excel Workbook Designer.  The workbook designer gives you access to over 1600 entities that come standard in the New AX.  If you can’t find an entity that meets your needs, you can build your own by using visual studios.  The use of the workbook designer does require you to have Excel 2016.

Using the workbook designer, you can add all the fields you want from the entity, you can view the related form in AX, and you can get a count of all the records associated with the data entity.

NEW Dynamics AX

 

 

 

 

 

Once you’ve selected the fields you want for the workbook, click “create workbook” and it will prompt you to save the workbook. Then you can open, and start editing data or creating new records.

This post was written by Jason Federspiel, AX Functional Consultant at Tridea Partners. Tridea is a leading Microsoft Dynamics provider.

2016 Dynamics Customer Event

Tridea Partners had a successful Dynamics Customer Event at Ballast Point Brewery last week. We wanted to thank our sponsors Avalara, Concur, Solver and everyone who came out to our event! We wanted to share some pictures from our successful event! We will see everyone at the next event!

Microsoft Dynamics CRM and ERP – The Winning Integration Webinar

MICROSOFT DYNAMICS CRM & ERP INTEGRATION

DRIVING PRODUCTIVITY & CUSTOMER SATISFACTION

Join Tridea Partners xRM³ as we host this webinar on why Dynamics CRM and ERP is the Winning Integration!

MICROSOFT DYNAMICS CRM & ERP INTEGRATION

Does your company engage in a highly transactional business with new or repeat customers? Imagine how much better your sales, service and finance teams could operate sharing critical customer data. No more data silos.

Learn how in our 30-minute webinar:

  • Hear how companies are benefiting today from integration of Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Microsoft Dynamics ERP.
  • See what type of data is being shared between departments to increase sales and customer satisfaction.
  • Gain a basic understanding of how sales and finance can automatically share data on orders, shipments and invoices.

Event Details: Wednesday  May 25, 2016 10:00 AM – 10:30 AM (PST) Presenters:  Ken Farmer –  xRM³ &  Andy Collins – Tridea Partners

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The NEW Dynamics AX Webinar

The official release of the New Microsoft Dynamics AX (formerly known as Dynamics AX 7) is available.  Join Tridea as we host this webinar on an overview of the NEW Microsoft Dynamics AX release!

Join us for this webinar, Topics include:

  • Dynamics AX moving to the cloud
  • License changes
  • Deprecated features
  • A demo of the new web based Microsoft Dynamics AX

Date: Tuesday, May 31, 2016  at  10:00 AM to 11:00 PM (PT)

register here