Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

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Solve real-world Dynamics GP problems with over 100 immediately usable and incredibly effective recipes using this Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 book and eBook

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by Mark Polino | July 2010 | Enterprise Articles Microsoft

Dynamics GP provides a number of features to better organize the overall system and improve its usefulness for all users.

In the previous article, by Mark Polino, author of the book Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Cookbook, we saw the following features:

  • Speeding up account entry with Account Aliases
  • Gaining visibility with Horizontal Scroll Arrows
  • Streamlining payables processing by prioritizing vendors
  • Getting clarity with User Defined fields
  • Developing connections with Internet User Defined fields

In this article we will look at:

  • Gaining additional reporting control with Account Rollups
  • Remembering processes with an Ad hoc workflow
  • Improving financial reporting clarity by splitting purchasing accounts
  • Speeding up lookups with Advanced Lookups
  • Going straight to the site with Web Links

(For more resources on Microsoft, see here.)

Gaining additional reporting control with Account Rollups

Microsoft Dynamics GP provides great functionality for analyzing and reviewing individual accounts and sequential groups of accounts. Many users don't know that it also provides impressive functionality for analyzing non-sequential groups of accounts via a feature known as Account Rollup.

Account Rollups are inquiries built to allow users to see different GP accounts rolled up together and to provide drill back capability to the details. Additionally, these queries can include calculations for things such as budget versus actual comparisons and calculations.

FRx Reporter provides similar functionality and Account Rollup allows users to access this functionality without the wait time of starting up FRx. Let's see how to mix up some account rollups in this recipe.

Getting ready

Before using Account Rollups it's important to understand how to set them up.

  1. To set up Account Rollups, select Financial from the Navigation Pane. Then select Account Rollup in the Inquiry section to open the Account Rollup Inquiry Options window.
  2. In the Option ID field enter the name Actual vs. Budget and press Tab. Select Yes to add the option. On the right, set the number of columns to 3.
  3. In the first row type Actual in the Column Heading field and set the Type to Actuals.
  4. In the second row type Budget in the Column Heading field and set the Type to Budget. In the Selection column click on the lookup button (indicated by a magnifying glass) and select BUDGET 2008.
  5. In the third row type Difference in the Column Heading field. Set the Type to Calculated. Click on the blue arrow next to Selection to open up the Account Rollup Inquiry Calculated Column window.
  6. In the Column field select Actual and click on the double arrow (>>). Then click on the minus (-) button. Back in the Column field select Budget and click on the double arrow (>>). Click on OK.
  7. Back on the Account Rollup Inquiry Options window, select the Segment field, and then select Segment2. Use the lookup buttons (indicated by a magnifying glass) in the From and To fields to add account 4130 and click on Insert. Repeat this process to insert 4120 and then 4100 into the Restrictions box below. Click on Save and close the window

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

Notice when looking up these accounts for selection that these numbers are not sequential; there are a number of accounts in between.

How to do it...

Now that we've built an account rollup let's see how to make it work:

  1. Select Account Rollup under Inquiry on the Financial Area Page.
  2. In the Option ID field look up Actual vs. Budget with the help of the lookup button (indicated by a magnifying glass).
  3. The screen will show Actual, Budget, and Difference for each period in this year. The year can be changed at the top and the Display can be changed to show either Net Change or the Period Balance for each period in the year along with a Total at the bottom, using the controls next to the Year. The Difference field is the Actual minus Budget calculation that we created when setting up the rollup:
    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension
  4. Click on a period with an amount in the Actual column and select the blue Actual link at the top. A new window will open with the included accounts and the actual amounts for each account.
  5. On drilling down to the Account Rollup Detail Inquiry Zoom window, Dynamics GP provides a checkbox option to show accounts even if these have zero balance. Additionally, an option at the top controls the printing of Account Rollup information. The rollup can be printed in Summary or in Detail.

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

  6. Selecting a line and clicking on Balance from the Account Rollup Detail Inquiry Zoom window drills back to the detailed transactions behind the balance:

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

How it works...

Account Rollups combine the account totals from disparate accounts for reporting. This is great for tying back multiple accounts that roll up into a single line on the financial statements. Account Rollups also work well for analyzing a single segment, such as a department, across multiple accounts. In the past, I've used this for easy comparisons of Fixed Asset general ledger accounts to the subledger and for rolling up full-time equivalent of unit accounts to get the number of employees across the company with drill back to the employees in each department.

Remembering processes with an Ad hoc workflow

Dynamics GP provides options for robust workflow functionality integrated with Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) or Windows SharePoint Services (WSS). However, for many users this is more functionality than they need. Additionally, many organizations don't feel they are ready for the cost and complexity of MOSS. For users who only need a simple workflow to ensure that they remember the steps for a particular task, a basic workflow can be built using shortcuts and folders.

This process works well for irregular tasks such as month-end or quarter-end processes where tasks are performed infrequently enough, thus making it easy to forget the steps. For this recipe, we'll look at setting up a basic month-end workflow.

Getting ready

The basic steps of this task are to create a folder to hold the workflow and then to add the steps in order to that folder. For our example, we will assume that a month-end financial closing workflow includes posting a Quick Journal, processing a Clearing Entry, and closing the month.

How to do it...

Here are the steps to create a basic Ad hoc workflow:

  1. Click on the Home button from the Navigation Pane on the left. This makes the Shortcut Bar available on the top left.
  2. Right-click on the Shortcut Bar and select Add | Folder to add a folder to the Shortcut Bar that can be used to organize entries. Name the folder Month End and press the Enter key. Now, there is a folder to hold month-end entries.
  3. The next step is to add our three sample entries. Select the Month End folder on the Shortcut Bar. Right-click on the folder and select Add | Add Window:

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

  4. Click on the plus sign (+) next to Microsoft Dynamics GP. Click on the plus sign (+) next to Financial and select the window named Quick Journal Entry. Change the name at the top to 1) Quick Journal Entry. Click on Add. Putting a number in front of the text prevents this shortcut from interfering if the same shortcut appears somewhere else on the Shortcut Bar:

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

  5. Next, select Clearing Entry also under Microsoft Dynamics GP and Financial. Rename it to 2) Clearing Entry in the Name field and click on Add.
  6. Finally, click on the plus sign (+) next to Company under Microsoft Dynamics GP and select Fiscal Periods Setup. Rename this to 3) Close Period and click on Add. Select Done to finish.
  7. These items will now appear on the Shortcut Bar on the left under the Month End folder. Selecting an item with the left mouse button will allow moving of these items around to adjust the order if necessary.

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

How it works...

Ad hoc workflows provide an option to group a set of steps together and make these all available in one place. Clicking on the arrow to the left of the folder closes it up and keeps the steps out of the way until these are needed. Clicking on the arrow again reopens the folder to run the steps. Some common uses include creating a basic set of steps for new users, monthend and quarter-end processes, and any other process where it is important to ensure that all of the steps are followed.

Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Cookbook Solve real-world Dynamics GP problems with over 100 immediately usable and incredibly effective recipes using this Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 book and eBook
Published: July 2010
eBook Price: $35.99
Book Price: $59.99
See more
Select your format and quantity:

(For more resources on Microsoft, see here.)

Improving financial reporting clarity by splitting purchasing accounts

By default, in Dynamics GP, when a payables invoice is fully or partially paid, the payment portion of the transaction doesn't flow through the payables account. This can make it more difficult to trace a transaction as the transaction could skip the payables account altogether by crediting cash and debiting an expense.

GP provides an optional setting to force transactions to flow through the payables account and that's what we'll look at in this recipe.

How to do it...

Setting up GP to pass voucher payments through payables is as easy as following these steps:

  1. Select the Administration button from the Navigation Pane on the left. In the Administration Area Page click on Company under the Setup and Company headers.
  2. Click on the Options button. In the Company Setup Options window scroll down to the setting marked Separate Payment Distributions and select the checkbox next to it:

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

  3. Click on OK to close the window and accept the changes.

How it works...

Let's assume a $100 purchase transaction where $20 is paid in cash and the remaining $80 would go to accounts payable. By default, GP will create a transaction distribution that looks similar to the following screenshot:

Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

After the Separate Payment Distributions checkbox is selected, GP will create a transaction that looks similar to the following screenshot:

Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

Notice that the full $100 is credited to payables and then the $20 payment is debited to reduce accounts payable to the amount due.

Speeding up lookups with Advanced Lookups

Dynamics GP provides a very robust functionality in lookup windows for finding data such as accounts, vendors, customers, items, and more. Various fields can be used for sorting or searching and some additional fields are always provided by default. However, if all of that is not enough, Dynamics GP provides an option for administrators to add additional fields to lookups. This recipe demonstrates how to accomplish that.

Getting ready

Before using Advanced Lookups they need to be set up. Up to four custom lookups can be created for each type in the system. We will do this as follows:

  1. Select Administration on the Navigation Pane, and under the Company heading select Advanced Lookups.
  2. On the Advanced Lookups Setup window use the drop-down menu to select a Lookup Name.
  3. For our example, select Customers. In the first Sort by Field drop-down menu scroll down and select Zip.
  4. Change the Description to Zip Code.
  5. Click on Save to save the lookup and close the window.

These setup steps add a lookup based on zip code to any place where Customers are selected in the system:

Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

How to do it...

Once an advanced lookup has been set up, let's look at how to use it by completing the following steps:

  1. Select Sales from the Navigation Pane on the left. Select Customer on the Sales Area Page.
  2. In the Customer ID field click on the lookup button (indicated by a magnifying glass) and click on the arrow next to Additional Sorts. A predefined set of lookups is shown at the top of the drop-down menu and customer lookups are at the bottom. In the middle is the Zip Code lookup created previously.
  3. Click on Zip Code and the Zip codes will appear on the right-hand side of the window. The search box at the top also changes to allow searching by selected lookup. In this case, will be Zip code:

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

How it works...

Administrators get the chance to set up four extra lookups for each of the lookup options. Lookup options include:

  • Accounts
  • Addresses
  • Customers
  • Employees
  • Items
  • Open documents
  • Open Payables documents
  • Prospects
  • Purchase orders
  • Sales Document Numbers
  • Sales documents
  • Vendor addresses
  • Vendors
  • Vouchers

This provides users with more opportunities to ensure that they are selecting the right information with a minimum amount of work.

Going straight to the site with Web Links

Dynamics GP provides a great feature to tie web page links to specific values in Dynamics GP. For example, when a bank account is selected a link is made available to that bank's website. The link is contextual, meaning that it is tied to the value in the field. In this recipe, we'll look at setting up and using the Custom Link feature.

Getting ready

Before users can benefit from this recipe, an administrator needs to set up the custom links. To set up the links:

  • Select Administration from the Navigation Pane on the left. Then click on Custom Link under the Company heading.
  • Click on New on the bottom left.
  • In the Prompt field select Checkbook. In the Custom Link Label field type Website.
  • In the Field Valuee box click on the lookup button (indicated by a magnifying glass) and select the FIRST BANK checkbook.
  • Type www.firstbank.com into the Internet Address field as the bank's website and then click on Save to save the record.

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

Congratulations, that's all there is to setting up a custom link.

How to do it...

Now we'll see how to use a custom link by completing the following steps:

  • To demonstrate how the custom link works for users, click on Financial on the Navigation Pane. Select Bank Deposits from the Financial Area Page under Transactions.
  • In the Checkbook ID field use the lookup button (indicated by a magnifying glass) to select the checkbook used in the previous setup. Once the checkbook shows in the Checkbook ID field click on the Checkbook ID label.
  • A field will drop down with two options. One, marked Checkbook Maintenance, leads back to the Checkbook Maintenance window. This is the typical behavior if Custom Links have not been set up:

    Organizing Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010: An Extension

  • Select the second link, Website, to open up a web browser and navigate to the website set up in the link.

How it works...

This process associates website links with values in specific fields. This allows contextual drill through to web pages for more information. Custom links can be created for Checkbooks, Credit cards, Currency, Customers, Employees, Exchange Rates, Items, Salespeople, Tracking Numbers, and Vendors providing plenty of options to link to more information on the Internet.

There's more...

A single site can be made available for all of the choices or multiple choices can be applied to a single value.

All field values

Selecting the All field values checkbox means that the website entered will be used for all values in this field. For example, if a single currency website is used for all currencies, selecting the All field values checkbox points all currency values to that one website. This option is available for prompts named:

  • Checkbook
  • Credit Card
  • Currency
  • Exchange Rate
  • Tracking Number

Multiple values

For Custom Links the Prompt field is the key identifier. There can be multiple prompts for a single value, creating more than one link for a value. For example, a bank might have a website used to check balances and a completely different one for processing ACH transactions. By creating two links, one named Balances and one named ACH, both links can be available for a single checkbook.

Summary

This article included recipes that are designed to help administrators get more out of Dynamics GP for their users by changing the way Dynamics GP is organized.


Further resources on this subject:


Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Cookbook Solve real-world Dynamics GP problems with over 100 immediately usable and incredibly effective recipes using this Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 book and eBook
Published: July 2010
eBook Price: $35.99
Book Price: $59.99
See more
Select your format and quantity:

About the Author :


Mark Polino

Mark Polino is a Microsoft MVP for Dynamics GP, a Certified Public Accountant, and a Microsoft Certified Business Management Solutions Professional. He is the author of the premier Dynamics GP related blog, DynamicAccounting.net, and the creator and presenter of the successful series Getting More Out of Microsoft Dynamics GP: 50 Tips in 50 minutes. Mark has worked with Dynamics GP and its predecessor, Great Plains, for more than 10 years.

He works as a Principal Consultant with I.B.I.S., Inc. and spends his days helping clients implement Microsoft Dynamics GP.

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