Grid Capabilities in Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations

Have you seen the potential new grid capabilities in Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations? Microsoft has provided a preview release, so it’s important to understand that some of features and functions may change before release. However, I think we have been asking for some of these features for some time and many of us are looking forward to their release.

Let us explore some of what Microsoft has released for preview, shall we? See video below for a demo.

Calculating Totals

Be honest – if you had a nickel for every time you received this request, what year would you have retired? I think we can all agree this should be a nice new feature. When you have a grid view open, the ability to sum columns in the grid has come. When we right click in the grid and select Total this column, these totals will be shown in a footer section at the bottom of the grid.

We must select which columns we wish to total. In my example below, I have totaled the quantity and cost price columns in a movement journal with nearly 60 lines:

Grid CapabilitiesGrid Capabilities

When you enable this feature, it is a one-time setup, similar to when you make changes or personalizations. Your preference for seeing a total for this column is saved.

Grouping Data

This feature seems particularly useful for end users. Oftentimes we need to perform ad-hoc analysis of purchases or sales. With large purchases or sales, and lots of lines, we want to make sure we get everything right! Typically we would squint and study, or export to excel and utilize pivot tables. Now we can utilize Group by this column. Let’s use an easy example – you simply want to make sure you didn’t duplicate any lines. Right click in the Product Number column and select Group by this column, and I can quickly see that I have indeed entered a duplicate line.

Grid Capabilities Grid Capabilities

Simple scenario, but I don’t think we need a complex scenario to understand the benefit this could bring.

Typing Ahead of the System

I have not set up a scenario where I can test this functionality, but I am eager to try this out. For those that are not interested in reading the exciting literature of Microsoft Doc, let me sum up this feature for you. Currently, as users enter data into the system, they can only work on one line at a time. Before a new row or switching to a new row, users must wait for the system catch up and successfully validate any changes. Well, Microsoft has introduced new system behavior to allow users to enter data more quickly. To allow users to enter data more quickly, we now have a new column for the row status added to the right of the row selection in edit mode. It will indicate one of the following statuses:

  • Blank – saved successfully
  • Process pending – not saved yet
  • Invalid state – you entered something wrong – read warning or error message and go fix it. Validation is stopped until fixed.
  • Paused – something stopped validation (see above). Once fixed, validation will continue.

Pasting From Excel

I like this one! Let’s say you have a PO with multiple lines. You just want to start adding items to the grid and you’ll come back and enter other line details because you like to 10 key and arrow down. Well I have a PO with multiple lines. Each line has a quantity of 1. I have an excel sheet open with all my quantity details that I have copied:

Grid Capabilities Grid Capabilities

I now start with my first line and paste into my Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations grid:

Grid Capabilities

How cool is that?

Evaluating Math Expressions

Similar to the AX 2012 days where we were able to utilize some math expressions within the grid, it seems it is making a comeback. I am happy to see it return. For those not familiar, when in the grid, like excel, we can create math expressions to help us enter in a value. Enter the same mathematical equation (=50*.95); tab. New value 47.50

Grid Capabilities Grid Capabilities

I hope you have found this information as exciting as I did. I am looking forward to these features rolling out soon. Check our blog regularly for more Microsoft updates and exciting news! If you have questions about Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, please connect with us.

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