How to Create Dimensions and Dimension Values in Dynamics NAV

This article and short video explain how to create Dimensions and Dimension Values in Dynamics NAV.

How to Create Shortcut Dimensions

To create Shortcut Dimensions:

  • Go to Departments>Financial Management>Setup>Administration>Dimensions>Dimensions or type “dimensions” in the search box and click on the corresponding result
  • Click on the “New” button in the ribbon and enter the required information about the new Dimension:

Fill out the following fields:

  • Code (mandatory) – the short name of a Dimension
  • Name – the full name of a Dimension
  • Code Caption – how a Dimension name will appear on pages [1]
  • Description – reminds the user of the purpose of this Dimension [2]
  • Blocked – check this check box if you would like to prevent users from using this Dimension [3]

How to Create Dimension Values

To create Dimension Values:

  • Select the Dimension for which you would like to set up Dimension Values and click on the “Dimension Values [4]” button in the ribbon. On the page that opens,
  • Enter a Code – it is preferable that the code is a number rather than a letter because this will allow setting up “End-Total” Dimension Value Type (see below) easier
  • Enter a Name
  • Enter a Dimension Value Type:
    • Standard – any regular Dimension Value
    • Heading – used for convenience only to group certain Dimension Values
    • Total – this field should be used when the fields you want to sum up do not immediately precede the Total line
    • Begin-Total – marks the beginning of a series of Dimension Values to be totalled
    • End-Total – marks the end of a series of Dimension Values to be totalled
    • Totalling – specifies the Dimension Values to be totalled for every “End-Total” and “Total” lines. [5]

It is worth mentioning that while Begin-Total, End-Total, and Total Dimensions Value Types are optional, they can benefit analysis. To understand how exactly this can be beneficial, let us look at an example of how Dimension “Area” and its Dimension Values can be setup:


Please note that “Europe” “Europe North”, and “America” are “Begin-Total” type and “Europe North, Total”, “Europe, Total”, and “America. Total” are “End-Total” type. Using this sample setup, it is possible to conduct financial analysis not only by a particular area (e.g. Europe North (EU), Europe (Non EU), Europe South, etc.), but also by a region (Europe, Europe North, and America). If a company prefers a more detailed analysis in the example above, it is possible to further subdivide the areas by countries, cities, etc. Depending on how complex the analysis needs to be, it would be possible to add

How to Set Up Global Dimensions

Once at least one Shortcut Dimension is set up, it is possible to set up a Global Dimension (only up to 2 Dimensions can be Global).

To set up Global Dimensions:

  • Go to Departments>Financial Management>Setup>Administration>General Ledger Setup or type “general ledger setup” in the search box
  • Go to the “ACTIONS” tab and click on the “Change Global Dimensions” button in the ribbon
  • Select Global Dimensions from the drop-down menus:

While it is possible to change both Shortcut and Global Dimensions at any time, it is preferable to avoid changing them often as it makes the Dimension setup cumbersome.

This article has discussed how to create Dimension and Dimension Values and how to set up Global Dimensions. For more information on Dimensions, please follow the links below:

Dimensions in Microsoft Dynamics NAV

At Encore, Solution Specialists help companies to set up and use Dimensions and Dimension Values in the most efficient and effective way. This article contributes to this objective. The team of Solution Specialists at Encore is happy to answer your questions and to help you and your company to score your ERP goals – phone Encore for a consultation: 1-888-898-4330 or contact us through the Contact form on our website.

[1] Make sure that your Language and Translation settings in NAV are aligned if you are using this field.

[2] This field can be useful if a company uses two similar Dimensions.

[3] Once a Dimensions has been used at least in one posted document, it is impossible to delete it; the only way to prevent a user from using it is to block it. It is possible to block individual Dimension Values rather than the whole Dimension.

[4] Depending on what Profile you are using, this button can be hidden under the “Actions” tab in the ribbon.

[5] Two dots (..) can be used to specify a range of Dimension Values to be totalled; e.g. 20..45 means that Dimension Values 20 through 45 are to be totalled.

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