Archive for October, 2018

Digital transformation with Dynamics 365,

October 28th, 2018

Microsoft Dynamics 365 business applications enable you to accelerate digital transformation within your organizations.

Join Mike Ehrenberg, Technical Fellow, Microsoft, and Brenda Bown, General Manager, Business Applications Product Marketing, along with leaders from the engineering team, including Muhammad Alam, General Manager, Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations and Laurel Reitman, General Manager, Dynamics 365 for Talent, to get an overview of the latest innovations coming to market in the October 2018 release of Dynamics 365.

This session showcases capabilities that enable you to drive deeper customer relationships, to optimize operations, to engage employees, and to use data and AI to adapt to the changing market and capture new opportunities.

To learn more, contact Synergy Software Systems based in Dubai since 1991, implementing Dynamics solutions for enterprise companies in the Middle East and Africa since 2003.
Synergy Software Systems
Working together
00971 4 3365589.

VAT in Bahrain – Update your Sunsystem financials with Synergy Software Systems

October 23rd, 2018

Bahrain will be the next country to implement five per cent value-added tax (VAT) after the UAE and Saudi Arabia as part of the GCC framework agreed between the six states, according to tax experts. Bahrain’s parliament in an extraordinary session ordered by royal decree. has approved the introduction of 5 percent value-added tax (VAT) in the kingdom from January 1 2019. The move must also be approved by Bahrain’s upper house.

The introduction of VAT will be a big challenge for the local Bahrain market, and businesses now have less than 3 months to be prepared for these changes. This announcement of a definitive date for the tax to become effective means that businesses should accelerate their VAT readiness preparations. Last week, Bahrain announced a fiscal overhaul meant to balance its budget by 2022, backed up by a $10 billion economic support package from Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait. The plan aims to raise $2.1 billion a year as Bahrain looks to curb its debt after years of lower oil prices.

At the start of 2018 VAT was introduced in both K.S.A, and the U.A.E. Synergy Software Systems has extensive experience of VAT implementation in business systems like Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations, Dynamics Ax, and Infor SunSystems in both K.S..A and the U.A.E, across almost 200 customers in varied vertical sectors.

VAT Registration
• The compulsory VAT registration threshold in Bahrain is BHD 37,000 per annum.
• A voluntary registration for businesses below this threshold is permitted, although this has its own minimum threshold of BHD 18,850 per annum.
• There is scope for related businesses to apply for a single, Group VAT registration.
• There is no threshold for non-resident businesses, which must register prior to their first supply. Foreign registrations may be either direct, or via a local Fiscal Representative.

Bahraini VAT rates
Generally, Bahrain follows the terms of the Agreement, including the harmonised standard VAT rate of 5%, but has a wider range of zero and reduced VAT rates to provide subsidies to the less well off in society.

Which goods or services, at what rate?:

% Zero Basic foodstuffs; domestic and international transport; new properties; healthcare; exports of goods and services; high-value metals; oil and gas; education; and medicine and medical equipment.

Exempt: Sale and lease of real estate; and financial services.

5% Standard From 1 January 2019: All other supplies of goods, or services, including imports, in accordance with the Unified VAT Agreement.

Bahraini VAT invoices
VAT invoices must contain the following information as a minimum:
• Date of invoice (and date of supply if different)
• Unique, sequential invoice number
• Tax ID number of the supplier
• Name and address of the supplier and customer
• Description and quantity of the goods supplies; nature of services provided
• Gross, VAT and net values of supply
• VAT rate applied, and explanation where not the standard rate
Invoices must be issued within 15 days following the month of supply of the taxable goods or services.

Bahraini VAT Returns
Registered tax payers must submit their periodic returns each month.
Returns must be filed by the last working day of the month following the reporting period.

Penalties for non-compliance
Timely preparation is critical because VAT is generally a self-assessed tax, and errors are often subject to severe penalties and business disruption.
Businesses that have been operating in a largely non-tax environment should already have started to prepare and to analyze in detail what the implications of the new tax will be for example on: their pricing, contracts and IT systems.
The following penalty regime for non-compliance is in place, with financial penalties and potential prison terms:
• BD10,000 for failure to register for VAT within 60 days of the required date
• Failing to issue a VAT invoice within 15 days of the month following the taxable supply
• Failing to submit a VAT return and/or pay any VAT due by the end of the month following the reporting month,

Transition rules
The following rules will apply to supplies contracted and supplied over the introductory period:
• Where invoices were issued, or payments made, prior to 1 January 2019 for post-implementation supplies, then VAT is still due. In this case, a debit note for the original invoice should be issued with the correct VAT indicated.
• Initially, goods supplied to other GCC states that have also implemented VAT (Saudi Arabia and UAE) will be treated as exports. There are plans to introduce zero-rating with reverse charge supplies to eliminate import VAT, but this is dependent on the introduction of an Electronic Services System transaction reporting platform, which has yet to be developed.
• For pre-January 2019 contracts which are silent on the VAT treatment, then the price will be VAT inclusive. This presents a cash flow risk for the supplier.

Other GCC Countries
The Sultanate of Oman announced that VAT would be introduced in 2019, most likely mid-2019.
The Kuwaiti parliament is yet to vote on the VAT bill which should be introduced in the upcoming session before the year-end. The expected timeline of introduction of VAT in Kuwait is late 2019 or 2020.

EY, estimated that a five per cent VAT rate will produce revenues of over $25 billion per annum for the six GCC countries.

Contact:
Synergy Software Systems: 009714 3365589/ 33734282
Deyafa Systems: 009714 3240066

Dynamics NAV sales extended to 1 April 2019

October 22nd, 2018

Previously, it was communicated that Dynamics NAV 2018 (DPL) would not be available for new customer sales effective January 1, 2019

A recent updated announcement serves as notification that that deadline is extended and effective April 1, 2019, Dynamics NAV 2018, sold via the DPL, will no longer be available for new customers.

Effective April 1, 2019, new customers will have the following purchase options:
• Dynamics 365 Business Central on-premises via DPL
• Dynamics 365 Business Central cloud via Cloud Solution Provider program (CSP)

Existing Dynamics NAV 2018 customers may continue to purchase additional Dynamics NAV 2018 licenses as needed.

Dynamics 365 – Ai and mixed reality apps in October 2018 release

October 21st, 2018

AI and mixed reality business applications for Microsoft Dynamics

Dynamics 365 was introduced two years ago and breaks down the traditional silos of customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP). Microsoft has reimagines business applications to be: modern, unified, intelligent and adaptable solutions that are integrated with Office 365 and natively built on Microsoft Azure. The azure platform has enabled the release of new AI and mixed reality applications, that will deliver out-of-the-box insights by unifying data and infusing it with advanced intelligence to guide decisions and empower organizations to make informed actions:

Dynamics 365 AI for Sales: Helps salespeople prioritize their time to focus on deals that matter most, offers a detailed analysis of the sales pipeline, and surfaces insights that enable smarter coaching of sales teams.

Dynamics 365 AI for Customer Service: Surfaces automated insights that help guide employees to take action and leverage virtual agents to help lower support costs all without writing any code.

Dynamics 365 AI for Market Insights: Helps empower marketing, social media and market research teams to make better decisions.

Machine elarning – Azure cognitive services

October 20th, 2018

Machine learning is used in many applications these days, in fact, you are using Machine learning on a daily basis through a smartwatch or smart devices.

Use Machine learning is to make applications to detect patterns in the input provided Create an algorithm to detect these patterns to end up with the machine learning model.

Azure Cognitive Services
• Ready-made machine learning models that your applications can consume using REST APIs
• Create a learning algorithm, or train the model. Most of this is taken care of by Microsoft.
• APIs are hosted in the Azure Cloud are easily accessible and scalable.
• Cognitive Services come under your Azure subscription, and are consumed on a pay per use basis.

Many available APIs to address business problems.
• Azure Cognitive Services helps to determine the patterns and develop algorithms and to train the use of the data.
• Azure Cognitive Services are REST APIs that expose a machine learning model to the outside world.
• Your application will consume the Cognitive Service API methods to get the desired output.

Train Data:
Use Machine learning to analyze the data for patterns and to develop algorithm that finds the patterns in training data, further analyzes it, and maps these attributes to the correct answers or output.

Learning Algorithm: Learning algorithms find the patterns in the training data from which it can create a training model.

Training Model: The model is an output of the training process. After the model is ‘trained’, it is exposed to the client applications which send the data to the model and to get the desired response /recognized pattern as the output. The entire training process is a black box to the user, and only the ‘trained model’ is exposed to outside applications.

It’s not feasible to explicitly program all scenario and possibilities. Arthur Samuel, one of the pioneers of ML said “Machine Learning is the field of study that gives computers the ability to learn without being explicitly programmed.”.

Gitex 2018 – Synergy Software Systems

October 15th, 2018

A busy first day got Gitex off to a good start. This leading IT event in the MEA region is showcasing new technologies driving the digital revolution Artificial intelligence Is manifested in the form of robots, and a self driving taxi.

Drop by the Globaiis stand to see Filehold document management or catch up with our staff around the main hall or callus to arrange a meeting, 0097143365589

See this short overview video from Microsoft Gulf https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6457257933087522816

Microsoft is the fastest growing vendor in the enterprise Software as a Service (SaaS)

October 14th, 2018

A recent report from Synergy Research Group, indicates that Microsoft is the fastest growing vendor in the enterprise Software as a Service (SaaS) market with annual revenue growth of 45%.

The report, covering the year to Q2 2018, also puts Microsoft at number one in market share with 17% of the global enterprise SaaS market, ahead of: Salesforce, Adobe, Oracle and SAP.

The market for SaaS enterprise business applications: customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP), is still relatively small compared to on-premises software deployment accounts for 85% of total enterprise software spending.

Last quarter, the enterprise SaaS market generated $20 billion in revenues, a figure Synergy forecasts will continue to grow strongly “across all SaaS segments and all geographic regions”.

https://www.srgresearch.com/articles

Dynamics 365 with AI and mixed reality on preview

October 14th, 2018

Microsoft has added intelligent functionality to the Dynamics 365 platform released as previews this month,
This includes,
– three Artificial Intelligence (AI) apps deliver out-of-the-box AI functionality which can be applied, extended and customised without the need of in-house AI experts or writing any –code:.
- two mixed reality apps that use HoloLens.

Dynamics 365 AI for Sales
Dynamics 365 AI for Sales offers detailed insights into the sales pipeline and performance of sales teams. Next-step suggestions guide managers and salespeople to optimal outcomes.

Dynamics 365 AI for Customer Service
Dynamics 365 AI for Customer Service enables service managers to reduce support costs by taking advantage of natural language understanding and virtual agents powered by machine learning.

Dynamics 365 AI for Market Insights
Dynamics 365 AI for Market Insights delivers actionable insights across social media and the internet to enable marketing professionals to identify opportunities and react faster.

Dynamics 365 Remote Assist
Dynamics 365 Remote Assist uses the mixed reality capabilities of Microsoft HoloLens to provide a connection point between first-line workers and remote experts. Service personnel onsite can benefit from the knowledge and guidance of experts anywhere in the world through a holographic interface.

Dynamics 365 Layout
Dynamics 365 Layout allows users wearing HoloLens to walk around and manipulate a physical space overlaid with a holographic representation of design and layout.

Windows 10 and the ‘edge’

October 13th, 2018

Microsoft recently announced in ablog post. “Windows 10 IoT delivers innovation and intelligence at the edge with the October 2018 Update” The Windows 10 October 2018 update will deliver ‘edge’ intelligence with machine learning, industrial strength security, new silicon options, and additional monetization models for distributors and sellers for enterprise Internet of Things (IoT) projects.

The edge” is a theoretical space where a data center resource may be accessed in the minimum amount of time. The edge, in simple terms, is where you generate, collect, and analyze data i.e. where the data is generate. Edge computing technology is applied to smartphones, tablets, sensor-generated input, robotics, automated machines on manufacturing floors, and distributed analytics servers that are used for “on the spot” computing and analytics.

Traditional datacenter architecture is all about central computing powerhouses, from where information is sent and received across globally spread networks. Here, the larger the distance between the endpoint and the datacenter, the higher the response time. In many applications, this incrementally larger time gap is inconsequential. However, in many others, it’s critical. For example:
• when the computation required for rendering the content is carried out close enough to AR and VR devices.
• Autonomous vehicles require near real-time feedback from external networks to make course corrections and avoid collisions
• In IoT, many analytical actions need to be carried out closed to the devices that generate the source data.
• HD video content, if cached closer to large concentrations of people who’re likely to access it, means that providers can avoid large costs of transmission over networks provisioned by third-party carriers.
• Critical infrastructures such as oil and gas facilities require the highest levels of precautions to avoid system failures that could escalate into catastrophes. Edge computing allows for data from temperature and humidity sensors, IP camera, pressure and moisture sensors, and handheld devices. The data is analyzed, processed, and then sent back to users in near real-time, helping them prevent malfunctions.

Edge computing is all about achieving geographical distribution so that computing power can be taken closer to the endpoints that need it most. So, instead of only relying on a dozen giant datacenters, edge computing provides for the cloud to come closer to places/people/devices where there’s a business case for reducing response times even by a few hundred microseconds.

Critical security and safety systems always need to function on premises. You need these systems to operate or fail in a safe state regardless of what happens to the cloud or the connection. The simplest on-premises approach is a big red shut-off button on each machine. Azure IoT Edge enables a more complex safety system.
Example: You monitor the temperature across a range of machines and if the combined temperature gets too high you need to shut down all machines to prevent damage or risk to human operators. A safety system at the level of the individual machine is not enough, because it can’t track combined temperature across multiple machines. Your safety system needs to be one level higher to monitor and control multiple machines, and you can do this with Azure IoT Edge.

• By 2020, it’s expected that there will be more than 5,600 million smart sensors and connected IoT devices across the globe.
• The data generated by these devices will be to the tune of 5,000+ zettabytes.
• The IoT market size is expected to reach $724 billion by the end of 2023.

Most of this data will be generated at enterprise endpoints located on the “edge” — such as sensors, machines, smartphones, wearable devices, etc. We can consider these to be located on the “edge” because they’re far away from the central datacenter of the organization.

This massive data can’t simply be relayed to the central server because it will overwhelm the entire network. Enterprises will implement edge computing so that massive data doesn’t have to be transported to corporate datacenters. Instead, advanced operational analytics will happen at the remote facilities, to enable site managers and individuals to act in real time on the available information.

Microsoft Windows 10 customers can now commercialize devices with new servicing options:
• A Semi-Annual Servicing Channel, offers two feature update releases per year,
• A Long-Term Servicing Channel, provides security and quality updates without any new features over a 10-year period. The long-term model is ideal for commercial IoT devices, including point-of-sale systems, ATMs, and industrial equipment controllers, which all require strong security and fewer feature updates.

A new cloud service subscription, called Windows 10 IoT Core Services, offers companies the services to commercialize a device on Windows 10 IoT Core, including both long-term OS support, and services to manage device updates and assess device health. This will help device manufacturers to lower support costs, and will help distributors create better business models to create customer value.

Microsoft has added the ability to do more work at the edge, including: machine learning, event processing, and image recognition, “Seamless integration with Azure IoT Edge brings cloud intelligence and analytics securely to Windows 10 IoT devices at scale,”

Windows Machine Learning allows developers to use pre-trained machine learning models in their applications, which can be evaluated and adjusted as needed at the edge.

Microsoft also added support for NXP i.MX 6, 7 and 8M series processors to Windows 10 IoT Core.

Windows 10 IoT also includes turnkey support for both Azure IoT Device Management and Microsoft Intune to provide more scalable device management for enterprise IoT deployments.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/microsoft-azure-enables-a-new-wave-of-edge-computing-here-s-how/

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/iot-edge/about-iot-edge

https://www.zdnet.com/article/where-the-edge-is-in-edge-computing-why-it-matters-and-how-we-use-it/

The acatech Industrie 4.0 Maturity Index is a six-stage maturity model that analyses the capabilities in the areas of resources, information systems, culture and organisational structure that are required by companies operating in a digitalised industrial environment.

https://www.acatech.de/Publikation/industrie-4-0-maturity-index-managing-the-digital-transformation-of-companies/

Windows 10 Oct update – pulled.

October 9th, 2018

Microsoft has stopped distributing its latest Windows 10 October 2018 Update.
it was rolling out the update during the company’s Surface event earlier this week, when some Windows 10 users noticed their documents were being deleted. from the C:/Users/[username]/Documents/ folder.
“We have paused the rollout of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809) for all users as we investigate isolated reports of users missing some files after updating,” says Microsoft on its support site for Windows Update.

Microsoft recommends that affected users contact the company directly – , and if you’ve manually downloaded the October update then “please don’t install it and wait until new media is available.”

Other Windows 10 users have complained that the Microsoft Edge browser and other store apps were unable to connect to the internet after the October 2018 Update, and the update was even blocked on certain PCs due to Intel driver incompatibilities.

Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations Enterprise- ask Synergy Software Systems

October 2nd, 2018

With D365 for Finance and Operations, organizations are able to automate their supply chain and make informed decisions while maintaining accuracy throughout financial reporting. Contact the UAE’s oldest Dynamics Partner to find out hpw why Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations can help your organization to making timely, informed, smarter decisions.

D365 for Finance and Operations has many features that improve and streamline business processes, therefore making the lives of accounting and finance professionals’ easier. With outstanding security, there is no reason to worry that your information will not be safe. D365 for Finance and Operations also provides easy integration between other D365 applications like D365 for Talent or D365 for Sales. D365 for Finance and Operations is also available on-premise and cloud based so you can choose what works for your organization. Here’s more information on why Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations is right for you:

Outstanding Security

Running a business can be extremely overwhelming so it’s best to know that your data is safe. With Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations there are a few features that ensure you are as stress-free as possible regarding security. D365 for Finance and Operations includes out-of-box security reports to help manage security roles. D365 for Finance and Operations uses role-based security in which users are assigned individual security roles. Role-based security restricts access for users therefore keeping information safe and reliable.

Effortless Integration

Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations integrates beautifully with Office 365 and other Dynamics 365 applications. For example, with the CRM tracking option in Office 365, you can track the customer data within an email. Also, with a cloud-based solution, you have easy access to information anywhere at any time, making integration as easy as possible.

On-Premise & Cloud Based Options

D365 for Finance and Operations is available with an on-premise option or cloud based option. This way, you can decide what is best for your organization financially. With both options, there are pros and cons so being able to choose what deployment option works best for you is a plus when it comes to D365 for Finance and Operations.

Lots of new features coming in the October 2018 update.

Ask us about:
Synergy Software Systems D365 localised Payroll – already live in the the U.A.E.
Our Advanced Power BI reporting models.

AI why will it make any difference?

October 1st, 2018

For all the talk around the rise of AI, or Artificial Intelligence, the technology isn’t new. We use AI in our daily lives.

Predictive text is the most visible example.Google searches, Word spellcheck are examples. You frequently text a friend to meet at the mall. You type: “Meet me at the …” Your phone suggests “park” or another common place to meet. Over time, your phone learns, and the suggestions start to prioritize “mall” over other words.

A basic case is that AI:
• takes data,
• analyzes it,
• implements a solution (suggesting the next word),
• evaluates the results (recognizing that you almost always type “bar” with that friend),
• and then repeats the process with improved recommendations based on data.
• Over time, the system grows smarter.

Typically ‘triggers’ to execute a ‘script’ were ways to automate processes. A log fiel is mintored and akey word triggers a support ticket, or runs a script.Over time thje system learns and can predict and run checks before the error happens.
Other examples of AI in everyday life include pricing on ridesharing apps, facial recognition in social media and even non-player characters in video games.

Until recently, the technology was available to a few companies with deep pockets. To take advantage of AI, you had to have a big data center, specialized software and data scientists in house. We’ve reached a tipping point. With cloud-based technology, companies of all sizes can more easily plug into AI-infused applications at a much lower entry cost.
AI is the next big disrupter in many industries.

Let’s look at the wholesale trading industry. Here are two ways you can leverage AI to benefit a business:
Optimize where a team spends their time.
- Imagine the ability to direct your Accounts Receivable team to the late-paying customers that are most likely to respond.
– AI can help distributors differentiate between those who aren’t going to pay and need to be turned over to collections, and those who are more likely to pay with just one phone call.
- AI could also direct a call centre team to focus on certain times of day to increase the likelihood someone picks up the phone. Given the importance of cashflow to distributors, this is a powerful application of the technology.
- The same idea goes for a sales team. With which customers should they be spending more time? AI can identify the data points that influence purchasing, such as whether a prospect downloaded a whitepaper, they have an account exec assigned to them, or they have previously purchased related products.

It could even be something you can’t control, like the weather forecast. If it’s going to be 110 degrees, you can expect an uptick in sales of air conditioning units or parts to fix them in certain geographies. AI can identify these opportunities for salespeople. AI then adjusts those recommendations based on how customers respond, and the cycle continues.

Grow sales and margin with existing customers.
When a customer is checking out on a website, via your call center, at the counter or through another channel, how can you engage them more? Enter AI. For example, let’s say that data show that electrical contractor customers of a particular size regularly buy red, green, white and black 10-gauge copper wire at the same time. So when an electrical contractor of that size selects just red, green and white, a salesperson should be prompted to ask: “Are you forgetting black?” Chances are, the customer will add black wire to the basket.

To identify those relationships, however, and to code them into your system is a lot of work. We can do much of this already with BI analysis and on screen prompts.Add to that the evaluation of whether the offers were effective – how often they were accepted, how often they weren’t (and why) – and adjusting for that on the next sale, or updating sales scripts and offers. It becomes increasingly difficult if not impossible to do that manually across thousands of products.
AI can do this far more quickly and effectively than a human can, and can have a big impact on the top line. A foodservice distributor grew sales volume by 5% nearly overnight after turning on an AI-powered cross-sell and upsell recommendation engine on their website.

This is not just about selling online. Sure Distributors use cross-sell/upsell technology to grow share across their channels. However, they can also provide more meaningful, targeted content to make the customer’s selection process smoother and better informed, to draw his attention to designs or offers that are likely to be of interest, and so on. The ROI can be huge, and it requires very little upfront work by humans.

Pricing software is a more mature application of AI-based technology, determining the optimal price for a particular item based on lost sales, historical sales volume, competitor pricing, and potential for up sell or cross sell or repeat sell. and other data points. Hotels and airlines use revenue yield management. If it’s a business trip they may feel you will spend more in their restaurant on an expense account. I may only book when rates are cheap but I might always eat in house use, pay tv, and order wine with my meal and be a more profitable customer. If my rooms for tonight or my airline seats are less than 50% sold then I might discount heavily to ensure I sell enough to cover costs, but once past 80% I may charge a premium price because you may be desperate with little choice and a few high value sales will make up for the one or two I lose.

If a product has excess stock and is nearing the end of its shelf life, or a cinema is going to be half empty then AI can auto trigger instant sms sales promotions or happy hours but can it learn and predict and better tune the films shown in a given cinema, and whether average clothes sizes are trending bigger, or whether some colours and sizes will sell better in one branch than another and how that correlates with other data, How much is spent on marketing, what other sales are happening nearby, are temperatures going to rise, what si te epxcted change on the exchange rate or inflation rate or oil price and will that affect the number of tourist, and will revised parking fees affect who shows where and when?

is this a Big Brother nightmare, or does it mean that we are going to get better service because what we need to buy is going to be in stock even before we realise we need it.

As new younger generation z employees are hired into purchasing roles, they expect the kind of customer experience that AI-powered technology can deliver. This technology is here now. It’s not just a technical decision. There are real business benefits to using AI, including growing average order size, boosting margins and tightening customer relationships.