Archive for January, 2016

Why Dynamics Ax for 2016 – ask Synergy Software Systems, Dubai

January 31st, 2016

Once it gets started this is a good overview of the new user interface and how to personalise it.

Ask us for a live demonstration.

Ax 2012 R3 CU 10 compatible with SQL 2012 Sp3

January 24th, 2016

Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 Cumulative Update 10 and AX 2012 R2 Cumulative Update 9 are now compatible with SQL Server 2012 SP3.

The Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 System Requirements are updated to reflect this change.

SQL Server 2005 – supports ends April 2016 – are you ready?

January 24th, 2016

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 will reach the end of extended support on April 12, 2016.
With the end of support, security updates and hotfixes will no longer be available from Microsoft
Note also that Windows 2003 support ends in July 2016

Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Manufacturing

January 23rd, 2016

Although there is much excitement about the new Dynamics Ax there is much to be excited about also in the current releases and most of the functionality discussed here works the same at the new release.

Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R2 and R3 Manufacturing- takes look at lean – once the introductions are over (around the 5-6 min mark) you will see some ‘day in the life walk’ through demonstrations this includes: kanbans, cycle times,, agile, time booking, with aspects of mrp, QA, subcontract etc.

Mobile mashups, custom controls and form preview in Dynamics CRM 2016

January 23rd, 2016

Dynamics Ax – food industry – from field to fork and some new Ax scm features

January 23rd, 2016

The new Microsoft Dynamics AX contains the proven business logic of the previous AX 2012 R3 version, and the same embedded conceptual models and business processes. There are changes in the user experience and in AX terminology, and many functional and technical enhancements, as well as some deprecated functionality. The standard menu structure and user-defined favorites provide commonly used approaches for navigation in both options for using AX. However, there are significant changes in the menu structure and in the approach to maintain favorites when using the new Dynamics AX. For example, the menu structure is flatter, a Cost Management menu is introduced, and the topics within the Product Information Management menu now include a broader set of relevant information.

There are many changes in SCM-related functionality for manufacturing and distribution businesses. Major differences include the analysis of delivery alternatives for a sales order line, the approach to calculating demand forecasts, and the introduction of SCM-related workspaces.

Delivery Alternatives for a Sales Order Line
The delivery alternatives for meeting a customer’s requested delivery date and quantity reflect:
– product availability at different ship-from warehouses
- different modes of delivery
- different product variants (such as size or color)

Evaluate these options for a sales line using information on the Delivery Alternatives page, and select the desired option for updating the promised dates, ship-from warehouse and mode of delivery on the sales line.

Opt to ship a smaller quantity than ordered (based on availability) and to ship the remainder at a later date, which results in a delivery schedule for the sales line.

Demand Forecasts based on Historical Usage

The new Dynamics AX uses the Microsoft Azure Machine Learning cloud service. The service performs best match model selection and offers key performance indicators for calculating forecast accuracy. It replaces the previous approach (introduced in AX 2012 R3) where the forecast models in Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Service are used to create predictions

SCM-Related Workspaces

Workspaces represent one of the major changes introduced in the new Microsoft Dynamics AX . This new interface provides a different approach to displaying information, managing business processes, and guiding user activity.

Available workspaces apply to supply chain management topics, such as: item definition, product costing, master scheduling, sales orders, purchase orders, production orders, warehouse management, and configuration technologies.

- Workspaces related to the Definition of Material Items

– Released Product Maintenance Workspace
Identifies items with a stopped flag for sales, purchasing and/or inventory. Removal of the stopped flags represents an approval step in the typical process to define a material item. It identifies recently released products within a user-defined number of days. View all released products and create new ones.

-Product Readiness Workspace
The Product Readiness workspace has two variations – one for discrete manufacturing (using the BOM approach to product structure) and one for process manufacturing (using the Formula approach). Both variations identify items with incomplete information or an expected change. An expected change can reflect a product change case for an item. For a manufactured item, the workspace identifies an expected change related to a BOM version expiring within the item’s lead time, and it identifies the incomplete information about missing an active BOM version.

The links provide access to information about cases and items (including BOMs and routes), and also routing-related details (such as resources, master operations and mass maintenance of resource requirements). Menu items also provide access for defining a new Master BOM or Route, or a new case.

- Cost Administration Workspace
This workspace identifies items with a missing active cost, including standard cost items without an active item cost record. The active cost is typically calculated for manufactured items based on BOM and route information. This workspace covers additional aspects of cost administration, such as identifying production orders with high variances and providing links to reports/inquiries about inventory accounting.

Product Variant Model Definition Workspace
– Identifies the product masters that need to be released, and the ones with a product change case. For product masters with predefined variants, it identifies both those that are not yet assigned the values for predefined variants, and those for which values have been defined but not yet released. The links provide access to information about the variant codes and possible values. Menu items provide access for defining a new product master or a new case.

Workspaces related to Master Planning
Planned Orders.
View existing planned orders, analyze an item’s requirements profile or supply schedule, and firm (or approve) a planned order. You can also edit a planned order or manually create a planned order.
Action Messages.
- View action messages and the action graph and apply the suggested action.

Messages about Calculated Delays.
-Separate sections enable you to identify calculated delays related to sales order lines, and also to the requirement dates for demand forecasts and safety stock.

Run the master scheduling task from the workspace. The links provide access to information about the master plan(s) and coverage groups, and the master planning parameters. The links also display statistics about item requirements and capacity requirements.

The links about production sequencing only apply to planned batch orders (when using the Formula approach to product structure), and the links about intercompany supply and demand only apply to a multi-company supply chain.

Workspaces related to Sales Orders

- Sales Order Processing & Inquiry Workspace
This workspace summarizes several aspects of information about sales orders, and provides information for answering sales price inquiries. It identifies unconfirmed sales orders, orders on hold, delayed order lines, and partially shipped orders. Create a new sales order, sales quotation or a return order, and create a new customer. For price inquiries, you can find the best sales price for a product (for a specified customer, date and quantity) and the associated discount if applicable. The links provide access to related information such as order events.

-Sales Return Processing Workspace
This workspace identifies expired orders and those that will expire within a week. It identifies the returns that have been registered as arrived. It also identifies open replacement orders. The links provide access to related setup information such as RMA disposition codes and return reason codes.

Master Planning Workspace
This workspace identifies the sales order lines with a calculated delay so that you can respond appropriately, such as notifying the customer of the delayed delivery date or expediting the supply.

Workspaces related to Purchase Orders

- Purchase Order Preparation Workspace This workspace identifies purchase orders with a status of “In External Review” or “Approved”, and the order lines without a confirmed delivery date. You can confirm orders and create new purchase orders. The displayed information can be filtered for a selected buyer group. The links provide access to information about planned purchase orders and the RFQ replies from vendors.

Purchase Order Receipt and Follow-up Workspace
– Identifies purchase lines with delayed receipts and with pending receipts, and registered arrivals that still need posting of the product receipt. It also identifies order receipts where the vendor invoice has not yet been entered. The links provide access to information about open purchase order lines, the product receipt journal, and the Direct Delivery form (for coordinating direct delivery orders).

Master Planning Workspace
- Identifies the planned purchase orders, and the action messages and calculated delay messages about purchase orders.

Workspaces related to Production Orders

Production Floor Management Workspace
Supports the production supervisor role and summarizes information about production orders and their related operations (as of a selected date). For example, the production orders to release and the component availability for each order and it supports the release of selected orders.
It helps to prioritize the sequence of jobs for released orders.
It identifies the jobs that need to be completed and the jobs with reported deviations (such as a scrap quantity).
In addition, it summarizes the number of jobs that are not yet started, stopped, and in progress.
Filter the displayed information for a selected resource, resource group and/or production unit.

The links provide access to information about production orders, resources, and the various production journals (such as the picking list journal or job card journal) and provide access to the calculation and approval of time and attendance information reported through the Manufacturing Execution System (MES) capabilities. The labor reporting aspects of these MES capabilities provide the basis for viewing staff attendance.


Cost Administration Workspace
-Identifies production orders with high variances, and the links provide access to reports/inquiries about production variances and postings. Menu items provide access to production orders and batch orders.

Master Planning Workspace
Identifies the planned production orders, and also the action messages and calculated delay messages about production orders.

Workspaces related to Inventory and Warehouse Management

Cost Administration Workspace
Links to key reports/inquiries about inventory accounting, such as inventory value statements, inventory aging, standard cost transactions, and calculation of ABC classifications.

Cost Analysis Workspace
Summarizes inventory turns and inventory accuracy (with drill down to those items with low turns or accuracy) as well as inventory value (with segmentation by item group and also total inventory value over time). The links provide access to key reports/inquiries about inventory accounting, such as inventory value statements, inventory aging, and calculation of ABC classifications.

Outbound Work Planning Workspace
Sumarizes the Advanced WMS approach to sales order picking/shipping as well as transfer order picking/shipping. Perform the periodic task for automatic release of sales orders or transfer orders. The links provide access to related information such as shipments, waves, and work. For a selected warehouse, the workspace identifies shipments not on a wave, and shipment waves that have not been processed or released. It also identifies the open picking work for released waves. If needed, then manually create a new wave and then manually add selected shipments to the wave.

Some of the information applies to the use of replenishment of picking lines, and it identifies the open replenishment work for the selected warehouse. You can also perform the periodic task to create replenishment work via the replenishment calculations or the load demand replenishment calculations.

Outbound Work Monitoring Workspace
For a selected warehouse, it identifies the active replenishment work for shipment waves and the unreleased replenishment work. The links provide access to other types of work orders (such as cycle count work, sales order picking work, transfer order picking work, and inventory movement work), and to information about the shipments (or loads) at a packing station.

Workspaces related to Configuration Technologies
The Product Variant Model Definition workspace
Summarizes several aspects of information about product masters and the three variations of a configuration technology. It identifies the product masters that need to be released, and the product change cases related to them. The nature of additional information differs for the three variations.
Information about Product Configuration Models
The workspace identifies configurable items that have not been assigned a product configuration model, and also the configuration models that have not yet been assigned to a configurable item (aka an approved version of the model). The links provide access to information about product configuration models and the related aspects of attribute types and attributes.
Information about the Bill of Options Approach. The links provide access to the definition of configuration groups to support the bill of options approach.
Information about Predefined Variants. The workspace identifies items that have not yet been assigned the values for predefined variants, and the items where values have been defined but not yet released. The links provide access to information about the variant codes and possible values.

The links provide access to additional information about cases and product masters, including the open product releases. Menu items provide access for defining a new product master or a new case.

Other SCM-Related Workspaces
Some additional SCM-related workspaces cover topics about resources and employee competencies.
Other workspaces covering topics not specifically related to SCM — such as accounting, human resources, system administration, and retail-oriented operations – are not included in this analysis.

Employee Self-Service Workspace for Updating an Employee Competency
The use of employee competencies – such as a certification, skill level, or course – typically applies to production environments that require scheduling of highly skilled people, so that the competency can be defined as one of the resource requirements for a routing operation. This workspace enables an employee to add information about a skill (and skill level) or a certificate type (and the start and end dates), and to view their registered courses.

Resource Lifecycle Management Workspace
Identifies the resources not yet assigned to a resource group, and supports the assignment to a resource group.
The workspace also provides links to related information such as calendars, resource capabilities, and the mass maintenance of resource requirements.

Changes in AX Terminology related to SCM

The terms “futures message” and “futures date” have been changed to “calculated delays message” and “delayed date”.
The “Ship Complete” policy for a sales order line item is changed to the “Prevent Partial Delivery” policy. These changes more accurately indicate the significance of the term, and did not change the software functionality. A comprehensive list of changes in AX terminology has not yet been made available.

Other examples apply to the displayed information, such as replacing a checkbox with a “yes/no switch” and replacing an infolog about warnings and errors with a message bar (for warnings) and a message box (for errors).

Other Minor Changes
Minor changes were introduced for displaying information on the Action Graph and Gantt chart; for displaying material availability information to support decisions about releasing production orders; and for reporting progress on production jobs using the touch-enabled Job Card Device page.

The new Fleet Management capabilities has some support for rental.

Deprecated Functionality related to SCM

A partial list of the deprecated features includes the “old WMS II” capabilities for warehouse management (replaced by the Advanced WMS capabilities), the “product builder” capabilities (replaced by the constraint-based configuration technology); and the shipping carrier interface (partially replaced by the advanced transportation management capabilities).

Microsoft acquires UC Commander product suite for Skype Business

January 21st, 2016

Microsoft acquired technology assets underlying the UC Commander product suite from Event Zero, a leading provider of management software for Skype for Business Online. This acquisition will expand and improve the built-in management tools for Skype for Business, and is the latest example of Microsoft’s commitment to deliver a complete, enterprise-grade communications solution at global scale with Office 365. Event Zero will continue to service its customers and partners.

Customers of the calling and conferencing services can use the Office 365 administration center to acquire and assign phone numbers to their users in minutes, and view reports of audio and video conferencing usage, and quickly access aggregated call quality information using a Call Quality Dashboard.

In the future, the newly acquired technology will add strong diagnostics and troubleshooting capabilities with even more extensive reporting and analytics for online audio, video conferencing and media streams — all within a unified management and admin system.

Partners will be able to more easily connect on-premises deployments they manage with Office 365 services, including hybrid deployments, provisioning of phones and other endpoints.

Oman border crossing for Non-GGC nationals.

January 20th, 2016

The exit fees for land border crossings into Oman has been standardised to Dh35 per person exiting Emirati territory through the Hatta border post.

Non-GCC nationals (expatriates) are no longer allowed to take the direct E44 route between Al Madam and Hatta, which enters Omani territory. Expats will now need to take the Sharjah-Kalba road to Hatta in order to avoid being turned back at Al Madam checkpoint after which checkposts are manned by the Omani authorities.

Expat Route to Hatta :
Turn left at the Al Madam roundabout and get onto the E55 heading to Al Malaiha. Turn into the Sharjah/Kalba road (signpost – Shawka). Turn right towards Hatta onto the E44 after around 25-30 kilometres, thereby avoiding Omani territory and moving on to the Al Wajajah border post.

Time difference The change results in 30 minutes of extra driving which is better when compared to 45 minutes to 2 hours of extra driving when you reach the border and you’re asked to turn back and loop around.

Avoid both Al Madheef checkpoint (Al Ain/Buraimi border) and the Al Hili border – those are only open to GCC nationals.
The Dibba police post requires expats to have a hotel booking for the Golden Tulip hotel or the Six Senses Zighy Bay or a dhow cruise booking to pass through.

Travel to the United States of America

January 20th, 2016

The US Congress has passed a measure, as part of a budget bill, that it will no longer allow citizens of 38 countries – including the UK – who have either travelled to Iraq, Syria, Iran or Sudan in the past five years ,nor those who are dual nationals of these states, to travel to the US without a visa.

U.A.E. Seat belt reminders

January 20th, 2016

Beware – if you don’t value your life then consider your wallet.
UAE law states seat belts must be worn. The guardian of a child under 10 years of age will incur a fine of Dh400 and four traffic points if the child is in the front of the vehicle. Children should be seated in the back and babies should be buckled up in child-safety seats facing the rear of the car

In Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah the fine for violating the seatbelt rule is Dh400 and the violator is penalised with four black points.

If a child under 10 years of age sits in the front seat, a fine of Dh400 and four traffic points will be slapped on the guardian. Children should be seated in the back and babies should be buckled up in child-safety seats facing the rear of the car.

In the first half of 2015, Abu Dhabi Police issued 33,844 fines for failing to wear a seatbelt, Dubai Police issued 107,908 and Sharjah Police issued 16,654.

Dynamics Ax 2016 client user experience.

January 16th, 2016

The all new Microsoft Dynamics AX (without the year tag) is imminent and it comes in with a promise of a completely new browser based client with lots of exciting changes.
This walkthrough using the Edge browser gives a good introduction to the new Microsoft Dynamics AX web client, aligned with a familiar Office 365 interface. Learn about the updated navigation concepts including Workspaces and Task Guides, and how these enhancements help new and experienced users

Revised page Hierarchy
This is revamped and is intuitively logical .Dashboards give esy access to both workspaces and modules .

The Look
The client has a completely Office 365 Visual experience.
So the multitude of information workers using O365 will have no problem getting used to this browser-based application.
Window docking and a refresh based on the parent window data change is also useful and will save time.

Personalization
Even better than previous releases. The familiar options to open in either edit mode or view only, to add fields on the fly, and to change labels , are all still available.
Action Search:
Quickly find actions – a game changer in usability

Responsive Design
Fit changing form factors. Supports layout change using browser zoom functionality

Browser support
IE, Edge, Safari. Chrome support etc. ‘any device- anywhere’

Filter

Quick Filter remains- extended to new places
Column filtering and sorting- On O365 lines
Filter Pane: use multiple fields including not on display
Advanced Filter

Data Entry Experience

– Some new keyboard shortcuts from 2012. The common shortcuts in browsers work.
– Data error and validation is strengthened and there both tool tip and dialogs
– Type ahead capability is nice specially based on value and not number. This has been a long standing pain e.g, searching for a customer by name in the number field is a great productivity booster and type ahead just augments it further.

250 shortcuts added,
Both developers and users can add more , and more to come in future releases.

Help

Wiki- Authenticated users can add content and add to the community.

Task Guides- relevant to open form, extension of task recorder. Great new feature especially for new/ inexperienced users and experienced users alike.
Tool tips and steps on the side is fantastic. Almost works like a guided wizard with interactive experience. Ability to edit and customize task guides

Data Export

Excel, word export works well. With MS Dynamics plugin for office, you can open list data in Excel and have the ability to make changes in the data in Excel and publish back to AX.

Attachments add capability to master records remain and continue from 2012. A previewer is added.

The best of 2012 gets extended and is further improved. Focus on user experience shows.

Under the Hood

Performance on the browser is a key test. With all the filtering and responsiveness, the server side processing will increase. Caching and performance may need to be fine tuned for optimum usage.

Dynamics Ax – increase the speed at which you do business

January 13th, 2016

CPM for a turbulent 2016 – ask Synergy Software Systems

January 12th, 2016

2016 is already off to a bumpy start – the El Nino effect is not only affecting the weather it seems.
Stock woes stemming from China, continually sliding oil prices, regional unrest and political uncertainty, will UK leave the EU?, the impact of changes from the recent climate conference, form the impact of Basel lll bank regulations, tourist perceptions of the Middle East- fire at Burj Khalifa beheadings in KSA, are recent news items , Egypt Sharm EL Sheik resort has seen 90% decline in tourist numbers since a plane was downed last year. Meanwhile governments are announcing cuts in fuel subsidies across the GCC, VAT introduction is now high on the agenda. There is uncertainty on USA and UK interest rate policy and how much more government stimulus will come from the USA, UK, Europe, China and Japan The hotel and retail business and overall Dubai economic growth all fell towards end of 2015. several IT practices have closed.

So what does that mean for business? Your guess is as good as mine. What is clear is the need for timely information.
Month end close needs to be 1 to 2 days not 1 to 2 weeks.
The ability to rebudget, and reforecast and to consider what if scenarios-pessimistic or optimistic is essential , high oil price or low oil price
Cash flow management is increasingly important
More detailed planning is needed particularly detailed manpower budget planning

Synergy Software Systems specialises in financial solutions – and the Microsoft technology stack.

Ask us about Prophix a unified CPM solution – productised for rapid deployment by wizard and configuration, it is built 100% on familiar Microsoft technology and user interface. Plan, budget, forecast, detailed plan, consolidate, mobility, dashboards, kpis, report packs , comprehensive analysis tools, detailed audit trails- take data from multiple business systems. Synergy Software Systems is the Prophix certified implementation and support partner for the Middle East region.
Implementing a CPM solution may seem like a daunting task. But very few of our customers do everything at once. With Prophix you can grow. Start by replacing spreadsheets for your annual budgeting exercise and then use Prophix for the specific needs of your business. Needs that cannot be met by spreadsheets alone.

Dynamics Ax is a comprehensive enterprise erp solution. The depth and breadth of functionality has increased greatly in recent years. It leverages Microsoft’s full technology suite for end to end to end business solution. Synergy Software Systems is a Microsoft managed partner , a member of the President’s club and is the oldest Dynamics Ax partner in the GCC. It is also the Ax Pact member for the Middle East region.

Infor SunSystems is a single ledger fiancé solution with powerful multi currency features, dimensional analysis and an open architecture which lends itself to integration. The financial analysis tool ‘Vision’ is particularly popular with customers. It is widely used across multi verticals = financial and insurance companies, oil and gas sector for JV accounting, and particularly in hotels because of its ease of integrations to pos, pms, and the rapid implementation.

We also offer complementary solutions such as Payroll, and asset management tools.
military strategists often point out that many countries’ strategies are often geared up to refight the last war rather than those that lie ahead.

With a new financial year and new challenges now is a good time to look at the tools and weapons you have to manage the increasingly volatile business world we face in 2066.

Dynamics CRM Data Loader updates Jan 2016

January 11th, 2016

Dynamics Data Loader team completed the rollout of January update.
Data Loader now supports Dynamics CRM 2016 (ARA release) along with Dynamic CRM 2015 Update 1 (Carina)

NEW FEATURES:
• Support for retrying import of failed records from staging to CRM.
• Support for copy data project
o This will enable users to copy data project with all the mappings and point to a different CRM instance.
• “Import to CRM” tab will now display history of all the iterative runs that user had to run for importing their data to CRM.
• UX Performance optimizations

And bug fixes.