Jesse is our marketing manager, keeping an eye on the latest news in the market as well as having worked on the GDPR legislation.
Business Central April 19 Release
With Valentine's day this week, we thought we would give you a gift - news on the next round of updates to Business Central! With very little news at the last release, as October was focussed on the change from NAV to Business Central, we are excited by the long list of feature updates coming this April. To save you reading all 315 pages of the Microsoft document for Dynamics 365 and Power Platform release notes for April '19, we have highlighted some of the more exciting updates. All functionality, dates and other information provided is provided as per our understanding at the time of release and does not form the basis of a contractual obligation.
Sales Quote Validity
Sales quotes have always been a great feature in Dynamics 365 Business Central and it's predecessor NAV. However, managing all of the sales quotes can be difficult - you could end up with a massive list of sales quotes that will never be used. Quotes will now have valid until dates, which can be automatically populated by calculation. A batch job is then used to delete quotes that are past their validity; the quotes are archived before deletion in case you wish to restore them at a later date.
Customer dimensions on jobs
If you run projects on Business Central through the jobs functionality, the new dimensions functionality will be welcome news! When a job is created and a customer assigned to the job, default dimension values from the customer are copied to the job. this makes for more consistent reporting.
Merge duplicate customers or vendors
Have you ever had more than one version of the same customer on your system? Manually trying to merge them can be a nightmare. However, with the new merge tool, life is made considerably easier.
SWIFT Code look-up
Bank SWIFT codes can be a source for error as they currently have to be added in free-text fields. As of the April release, Swift codes will be added as a pre-defined list, which will allow users to add them from that list as appropriate.
Configure reports for warehouse documents
Select which documents, such as pick, put-away and shipment, will be printed using an all-new Report Selection feature.
One of the best personalisation features in Dynamics NAV was the ability to save filtered views of lists. Business Central has taken this to the next level, with all of your saved views appearing on a list. This means that you can add multiple filtered views of your list to be accessed easily, as and when you need them.
Document Focus Mode
When editing documents such as quotes and orders that have a line item section, this is the most important part of the window. With the new Document Focus Mode, you will be able to expand this part of the document to make it easier to focus on the lines. Advanced filtering is still available, making it easy to navigate to the content that you require.
For users entering a lot of data into the system, Quick Entry paths can be used. This is a choice of fields that are frequently used, and allows ignoring infrequent fields (such as fax number) and auto-fill fields. As the user inputs the data and tabs, it goes to just the fields in the pre-defined path. They can still click to enter data in the other fields as required.
For a lot of people using the system, keyboard shortcuts have been a very popular way of performing actions and navigating around the system. These are now available for the web client as well as the Windows client, and the list is continuing to grow. Microsoft has provided a handy list in the release notes.
For those used to using modern Office 365 tools with documents stored in the cloud, the concept of autosaving is not new - when you use Business Central data is automatically saved in the database. However, if you are new to the concept, the idea of making changes without hitting the save button can be a little disconcerting! The new Autosave indicator allows users to see that the work that they have done has been saved.
Improvements to scrolling
Business central is fantastic at letting you search and filter in lists to find the record that you want. However, there is always a time where you need to scroll through records, and if it is a lot, it doesn't take long to get tired of seeing the "fetching more rows" message. With this in mind, Microsoft has completely rewritten how rows are displayed in a list, with an improvement on how they fetch data. Users can now scroll unhindered using either the keyboard or scroll bar.
Additional Search Terms
The language of Business Central is very specific, based on a long history of the product. If you do not think in terms of vendors or items, the clever search tools will be of no use... until now! Around 200 new search terms have been added, so when you search for products or suppliers, clients or kits, the system should understand what you are looking for!
See all of the updates
If you would like to read through the full set of updates from Microsoft, please take a look at their release notes. Its a big document, so if you want to go straight to the Business Central content, please check start at page 159.
I find their approach to our relationship very professional whilst being refreshingly realistic. We now consider them to be part of our teamLee Crowhurst, Technical Director