Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Dynamics GP Guru Series: Great Plains Reporting Tools by Andrew Karasev


If you are trying to make your homework and prepare on Microsoft Dynamics GP, formerly Great Plains Dynamics and eEnterprise, reporting options - we are happy to offer you this small publication. In general, you should use the tool, which fits the best to your Report specifications and especially report type: financial reporting, managerial reporting and industry compliance reporting. We will review each tool in brief and you should decide if you need additional exposure to the tool of choice, prior to calling your Dynamics GP Consultant:

1. FRx Financial Reporting: Balance Sheet, P&L, Statement of Cash Flow, as well as consolidated versions of these reports should be considered in FRx. In Great Plains you also have quick financials and advanced financial reporting, however FRx is a way more advanced and it allows you consolidate by Reporting Tree and drill down to transactions. Just one additional argument - if you think that all reports could be designed in Crystal Reports - you are theoretically correct, however in this case you would code in SQL View or Stored Procedure connection to your General Ledger tables: GL00100, GL10000, GL20000, GL30000, etc. This is exactly where the value of FRx is - this work is already done in FRx and all you need to do is to design Row Format, Column Layout, and optionally Reporting Tree. FRx works with Budgets, provides comparison to previous year, has multicurrency functionality, allows links to Excel external worksheets (in Excel in complex cases you could pull info from heterogeneous cross-platform databases: Oracle, MS Access, MySQL - to provide consolidation for entire corporation, if required)

2. GP ReportWriter. Here you have reports, called naturally from Great Plains user interface - good example is Sales Order Processing Blank Invoice Form. You naturally modify this report in RW. Dynamics GP Report Writer gives you reasonable set of Managerial Reports: AR or AP Aging, GL Trial Balance, Fixed Assets Register, Customer Statement, Collection Letters with some restrictions to MS Word, Sales Commission Report

3. Industry Compliance reporting. Good example here is Bill of Lading - you could decide to do it directly in Report Writer, or switch to Crystal Reports. If your version of BOL requires intermediate calculations, please consider Great Plains Dexterity custom add-on, where these calculations could be carried out, or with some restrictions calculations could be done in SQL Stored Procedure (and you can base either Crystal Report or Dexterity custom report on this SP)

4. SSRS. Besides SQL Server Reporting Services templates, please consider custom reports. In our opinion the advantage toward CR is Web Based reporting. For the other aspects this tool is very similar to Crystal Reports, Excel Reporting or Microsoft Access Reporting

5. Feel free to call us: 1-866-528-0577, help@albaspectrum.com

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