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Microsoft Dynamics Reporting 'Essential' But Tricky, Consultant Group Finds

December 27, 2007

Great Plains service consultants Alba Spectrum (News - Alert) Group found that Microsoft Dynamics GP reporting is "an essential part of GP implementation and post production ERP support," but add that you need to "do your homework" to find the one for you.
 
As for typical mid-size MRP application, Great Plain officials say, "you should expect multiple reporting tools, especially if you think about reports genre," such as "financial reporting, business processes specific reports."
 
When Microsoft (News - Alert) incorporated MS SQL Server Reporting Services or SRS "and kind of recommended it over former tool of the choice, Crystal Reports," GP officials say, "you should do your homework on selecting the reporting tool which will do proposed and expected job."

Great Plains says the ReportWriter, or RW, is incorporated into GP Dexterity environment, "meaning that it works from the GP user interface and within Great Plains security realm. RW is the tools you should look at first when you are customizing something which you call from GP interface: Sales Order Processing invoice form, for example." Do not expect too much from Report Writer, though, as "it has numerous restrictions."
 
And as far as Crystal Reports and SRS goes, these two report design tools compete on the market and are in some features similar. "The advantage of SRS and CR is that you can create really cross-modules and all-nightly report," GP officials say. "However, if you are looking in the creation of pure financial reports such as Profit & Loss Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash Flow," keep looking.
 
A week before Christmas the new version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, formerly code-named Titan, was completed and released to manufacturing.
 
The new version is offered under two product names: Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 for on-premise and partner-hosted deployments and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Live for Microsoft-hosted deployment. It's designed with a single unified-code base for both on-premise and on-demand deployments, and has "the flexibility to change deployment models over time if their needs or preferences change," according to Microsoft officials.
 
Brad Wilson, general manager of Microsoft Dynamics CRM at Microsoft, outlined some new features as an advanced multitenant architecture that supports multiple customers per server, extended global capabilities including user choice of more than 25 languages and pervasive support for multiple currencies an new business intelligence capabilities, including cross-entity views and an end-user ad hoc reporting wizard.
 
There's also an advanced business process automation based on Microsoft Windows Workflow Foundation and new collaboration capabilities with Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007, including real-time presence indicators within the CRM application.
 

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David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

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