Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2015 – Happy NAV Day!

If October 1st isn’t already officially Microsoft Dynamics NAV day, it should be. For the past three years on October 1st, or at least awfully close to Oct 1st, we’ve been treated to shiny new version of Dynamics NAV, and this year is no exception.

And just like the past few years, the 2015 version promises great new enhancements to Users, Prospects, and Partners alike.

I recently attended Directions, the annual Dynamics NAV conference, which was held in San Diego from September 14th – 16th. It offered a timely opportunity to see what we could expect with Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2015.

Here are some of the highlights.

Power to Support

The Power to Support theme of Dynamics NAV 2015 largely includes new functionality and features like:

  • Improved Cash Management – Improvements have been made specifically around Bank Reconciliation and pushing the use of Webservices to connect with your financial institution. This seems to be focussed on US institutions, but Canadian financial institutions will soon follow.
  • Social Listening – We’ve seen this in Dynamics CRM (where it’s more useful) for some time, but this now brings the links to Microsoft Social Listening and displays information right in the Fact Boxes for both the Customer and Vendor Cards. So while you’re taking an order from a customer, you can gauge whether people are tweeting positively or negatively about your customer.
  • Power BI – The screen shots looked good but details were a little light. It’s based on Query Objects in Dynamics NAV that you publish as ODATA Webservices. The Data Model is then created in PowerPivot. I’m looking forward to learning more about this feature.

 

Easy to Use

  • Tablet Experience – Yup, there’s a Tablet User now. At Directions, they actually demoed the Dynamics NAV Tablet Client natively on an iPad after downloading it from iTunes. Looks like they put a lot of thought into it too. The layout is very clean – not overwhelming. The Navigation functions are situated close to where your thumb normally is when holding a Tablet making it “built for touch”.

Check out the Dynamics NAV app on iTunes!

Dynamics NAV on iTunes

Here’s a sample Dynamics NAV Tablet User home page.

Dynamics NAV interface 2
  • User Experience Enhancements – There is some interesting stuff here. As embarrassing as it is, the most well received new feature of Dynamics NAV 2015 was that Order Totals are now calculated and displayed as you are entering the Order! It’s great to finally have this feature.
Dynamics NAV order totals 3

There is also the ability to create new “Enhanced Queues” and to display them as “Expressive Tiles”. This functionality looks really good when combined with the Tablet User i.e. Dashboards on the Executive tablet.

Dynamics NAV tiles 4

There is also the ability to create new “Enhanced Queues” and to display them as “Expressive Tiles”. This functionality looks really good when combined with the Tablet User i.e. Dashboards on the Executive tablet.

  • Office 365 Integration – You are now able to sign into Dynamics NAV using your O365 Account and simplified email messaging.
  • Document Reporting – OK, this one is pretty cool. While we saw this in limited capacity at the conference this year, what we saw was intriguing.  The new NAV Report Designer is… Word. What this allows users to do is to create Form Type reports (like Invoices, POs, Quotes, etc.) and design them using Word. There is an embedded Word Merge File, thanks to Jet Reports, that then lets users pick and choose pieces of data to present on the form. Once done the format is saved and then can be rendered as PDF when printing the Form from Dynamics NAV. This includes automatically converting it to PDF and attaching it to an email when using the Send By Email function.

 

Quick to Implement

  • There also a little something for the technical folks. Microsoft put in significant effort into beefing up the RapidStart functionality with specific focus on streamlining the upgrade process. Their Object Merge tool is significantly more accurate than the previous tools. Proof will be in the pudding. The Dynamics NAV team at Encore already has a plan in place to start trying this out in the next couple of weeks. Watch for more details soon.

For those of you interested in learning more about the details of Dynamics NAV 2015, check out the What’s New document.

NAV2015Whatsnew

 

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