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Dynamics AX

Even if you think that you are an expert in Dynamics AX, you probably only know one area like the Financials, or Distribution, or Manufacturing, and only have cursory knowledge of the other modules. Although specialization is good, knowing all of the application is better because it opens up all of your senses to what is going on within the system, and makes everyone just a little more well-rounded.

A while ago I laid down the gauntlet to you all and challenged you all to learn Dynamics AX 2012 by immersing yourself in the application and set up a completely new instance from scratch – which I believe is the only way to learn how all of the machinery behind the scenes of Dynamics AX works – and created the much converted Bare Bones Configuration Privateer certification which you can get if you prove that you have done this. It comes with a real badge and all – I didn’t skimp on the virtual badges.

To do this, all you needed to do was work through the first 10 Bare Bones Configuration guides that I slaved over for 2 years to create.

  • M01 Configuring A Base Dynamics AX 2012 Test System
  • M02 Configuring an Organization within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M03 Configuring the General Ledger within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M04 Configuring Cash and Bank Management within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M05 Configuring Accounts Receivable within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M06 Configuring Accounts Payable within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M07 Configuring Product Information Management within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M08 Configuring Inventory Management within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M09 Configuring Procurement and Sourcing within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M10 Configuring Sales Order Management within Dynamics AX 2012

It’s easy, just start on the first one, follow the step by step instructions with screen shots for each step in case you get lost, load in all of the sample data included with the guides, and before you know it you will have a fully configured Dynamics AX 2012 system that you can take orders with, pick with, pack with, ship with, receive cash with, purchase with, receive with, pay bills with, and the list goes on. Also as a bonus, if your company is a covert spy organization then you will be ready to run all of your operations.

I am so happy to report that one of the people that took up the challenge blew me away when he reported back to me that he had taken up the challenge as a New Year’s resolution, and started the challenge on January 1st, and by the 5th he had worked through all 10 of the guides in order in a record time of 13:35 Hours! He kept a journal of the time, and here is the breakdown.

BARE BONES CONFIGURATION TIMELINE

M01

1.50

M02

0.20

M03

1.50

M04

0.15

M05

1.40

M06

2:00

M07

2:00

M08

1:30

M09

1:45

M10

1:30

TOTAL TIME: 13:35 hrs.

I don’t even think that I have set up a system that quickly.

As a result, Joel H. is the proud member of the elite Bare Bones Configuration Privateers and has the badge on his briefcase to prove it.

What is even more impressive is that he continued on and finished the next five modules in the program as well.

  • M11 Configuring Human Resource Management within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M12 Configuring Project Management and Accounting within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M13 Configuring Production Control within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M14 Configuring Sales and Marketing within Dynamics AX 2012
  • M15 Configuring Service Management within Dynamics AX 2012

These took a little longer because they are a little more involved, but by January 14th he was done.

BARE BONES CONFIGURATION TIMELINE

M11

3:00

M12

5:00

M13

2:00

M14

3:3

M15

4:00

TOTAL TIME: 17:3 hrs.

I don’t have a badge for that right now – but I’m working on it.

Now that the bar has been set, who of you all want to dethrone the current champion?

For more information just go to the Dynamics AX Companions site and check out the Bare Bones Configuration Guide section. Here is a link: http://bit.ly/1ONDmWT

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Having users perform their own reporting has been a dream on both sides of the organization. The IT group don’t particularly like creating reports for the users when they could be spending their time on cooler projects, and users don’t particularly like waiting for IT to create the reports that they need to track the data because it’s never quite what they wanted, and also takes so long to get (because of the first reason) that it’s usually out-of-date. If only there was a solution…

Well there is, because there are so many tools built into Dynamics AX and also the productivity tools like Excel and Word that the users can easily create their own reports themselves without having to get the IT group involved. Everybody wins!

And I am happy to say that I just updated some of my old guides with new content and just made it available to you all as a new Visual Walkthrough Guide called: Self Service Reporting Within Dynamics AX Using Excel and Power BI.

The guide covers:

  • Self Service Reporting Using Excel and Power BI

    The topics that are shown in this chapter are:

    • Using List Pages as User Reports
    • Use Edit in Grid as your Reporting Worksheet
    • Adding Additional Fields to List Page Views
    • Filtering the Data within the List Pages
    • Using the Filter by Selection within List Pages
    • Saving Query As A Filter
    • Creating Autoreports from Data Lists
    • Exporting Dynamics AX List Page Data to Excel
    • Making Excel Exports Refreshable (or Static)
    • Adding Additional Fields to the Excel Query
    • Changing the Filter within the Excel Worksheet
    • Creating Power View Dashboards within Excel
    • Viewing the Query within PowerPivot
    • Adding New Columns to Power Pivot Data Models
    • Switching To Advanced Mode within Power Pivot
    • Configuring Fields to Show as Images in Dashboards
    • Using Images within Power View Dashboards
    • Creating Dashboards Directly from Dynamics AX
    • Saving Power View Reports to SharePoint
    • Exporting Power View Dashboards To PowerPoint
    • Adding Dashboards To Role Centers
  • Self Service Reporting Using Power BI Desktop and Power BI Online

    The topics that are shown in this chapter are:

    • Signing Up for The Fremium Version of Power BI Online
    • Using the Preconfigured Dashboard Packages
    • Downloading The Power BI Desktop Application
    • Getting Your Reporting Data Into Power BI
    • Using The Report View To Create Dashboards
    • Accessing The Query Editor
    • Changing Data’s Data Types Through The Query Editor
    • Accessing The Data Editor
    • Using The Data Editor To Change Data Types
    • Saving The Dashboard Projects
    • Renaming Fields To Make Them More Friendly To The User
    • Viewing The Changes In Query Editor
    • Create More Detailed Dashboards
    • Publishing Dashboards to Power BI on Office365
    • Creating a New Dashboard in Power BI Online
    • Pinning Report Tiles to Your Dashboards
    • Using Q&A to Build Dashboards Just By Asking for the Data
    • Using The Field Explorer To Help Find Data
    • Downloading the Power BI Mobile App
    • Connecting The Power BI Mobile App to Power BI Online

If you are looking for a reference that shows you a lot of the ways that you can create reports directly from Dynamics AX without breaking a sweat and also how to create dashboards using the new Power BI tools then maybe this is something that would be useful. Here is a link – I made it big so that you can’t miss it.

http://bit.ly/1Sx2U9v 

PS. If you are a Premium Subscriber on the Dynamics AX Companions resource page then save your coins, you can actually download this guide directly from the site for free. Here is the landing page: http://bit.ly/1MCXSmy Being a Premium Subscriber does have its perks.

Built into Dynamics AX is a feature for managing the setup of new Vendors which allows users to request for new vendors to be added, for the purchasing group approval process by the way of workflows, and finally automatically create new vendor records.

This process is a great way to streamline the vendor setup process and is also a time saver because people are involved through the workflow process and all activities are tracked.

In this walkthrough we will show how the vendor on-boarding process is handled through the Vendor Requests function within Dynamics AX.

Requesting A New Vendor

The first step in the process it to submit a request for a new vendor to be added to Dynamics AX. You can do this two ways. The first is through the Employee Self Service portal, and the second is to request the vendor to be set up through the Procurement and Sourcing module within the Dynamics AX client itself.

How to Do It…

To request a new vendor to be set up in the system through the Employee Self Service portal, just click on the Vendor Requests menu item within the Order Products group.


To request a vendor to be set up through the Dynamics AX client, click on the Unsolicited Vendors menu item within the Vendor Requests folder of the Common group of the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

When the Unsolicited Vendors maintenance form is displayed, click on the Request Prospective Vendor button in the menu bar.


This will open up the Employee Services portal and take you to the Vendor Requests form. All you need to do is click on the Vendor Request button within the New group of the Requests ribbon bar.


This will open up a New Vendor Request dialog box.

Enter in the Vendor Name, and the First Name and Last Name of the contact that you have for the vendor. When you have done that, click on the Create button.


This will take you to the Edit Vendor Request where you can enter in a little more information for the vendor.


Entering the Contact Information for the Prospective Vendor

Once you have initiated the new vendor request there is a little bit of information that you need to add to the record to help the procurement group find out more information about the Vendor. To start off with you will want to add the address and contact information for the vendor.

How to Do It…

To do this, return to the Edit Vendor Request form and if you like you can maximize the form so that you can see a little more of the information associated with the Vendor and then expand out the Vendor Address Details, and the Vendor Contact Details.

Now we will need to add an address for the vendor. To do this click on the Add button in the Vendor Address Details tab.

This will open up the Add Address dialog box.

Enter in the vendors primary address details and then click on the Save and Close button.


Now you have an address for the prospective vendor.

If you want to add additional contact like the main phone number for the vendor, click on the Add button within the Vendor Contact Details tab.

This will add a new record within the Vendor Contact Details table form.

All you need to do is enter in the Description, set the Type to Phone, enter the phone number into the Contact Number/Address field, set the Primary flag, and then click on the Save icon.

Now we have a primary phone number recorded against the new vendor record.


Entering the Contact Information for the Vendor Person Contact

Once you have the main contact information set up you will also need to specify the primary person contact details for the vendor, including their e-mail address so that they can be notified by the system as they are being set up.

How to Do It…

To do this expand the Contact Person Information, Contact Person Address Details, and Contact Person Contact Details tabs within the Edit Vendor Request form. You will see that the address information has already be defaulted in based off the default address of the Vendor that you just entered.

We need to enter in an e-mail address for the Contact Person though so that we can send them welcome e-mails. To do this, click on the Add button within the Contact Person Contact Details tab.

All you need to do is enter in the Description, set the Type to E-mail Address, enter the email address into the Contact Number/Address field, set the Primary flag, and then click on the Save icon.

Now we have configured the Contact Person details.


Specify the Default Procurement Categories

Also, based on the Procurement Policies we may need to also specify some default Procurement Categories that the vendor will be supplying us with goods and services with. This will help in classifying the vendor and also help procurement approve the classifications.

How to Do It…

To do this expand out the Procurement Details tab and you will see that all of the default Procurement Categories are shown within a tree view.

Select all of the categories that you want to invite the vendor to participate in.


Enter the Business Justification for the Vendor

Finally, we may also need to justify the vendor setup with a set of required questions such as why we need the vendor to be set up, have we looked at other vendors, are they a bid only vendor and more.

How to Do It…

To do this open up the Business Justification tab group. You will see that there are a number of questions that you can answer about the vendor. Based on the Procurement policies some of these will be required.

In this example, all we need to do is specify the Nature of Activity and Justification.

After you have done that you can just click on the Save and Close button to update the information.


Submit the Prospective Vendor for Approval

The strength of this process is the ability to have these approvals routed through workflows to the appropriate people. There are a couple of workflows that will be initiated by this process and the first is to have the prospective vendor approved by the purchasing department as a one that we will want to continue with. This is not approving the vendor and setting it up through – just allowing it to continue on.

How to Do It…

To submit the vendor for approval just click on the Submit button beneath the ribbon bar which is now enabled.


This will open up a Vendor Add Justification Workflow comment box.

If you want to add any additional information then you can enter it into the comments and then click on the Submit button.


After you have done that you can close out of the Employee Services portal.

The Vendor Justification Workflow

This workflow is managed through the Vendor Justification workflow template and we can make this as simple or elaborate as we like.

How to Do It…

To view the workflow, click on the Procurement and Sourcing Workflows menu item within the Setup group of the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

When the Procurement and Sourcing Workflows list page is displayed, double-click on the Vendor Add Justification Workflow item in the list.

This will open up the workflow that is being used for the Vendor Justification approval , which just has a single approval step.


Approving the Vendor Justification

Once the approval workflow is submitted then it will be routed to the appropriate approvers for approval.

How to Do It…

To see this in action open up the Notification List and you will see that you have been assigned a new approval task. Select it and then click on the Go To Origin button within the menu bar.


This will take you to the New Vendor Request with all of the information that was entered through the Vendor Request in the employee portal.

If everything looks good then click on the Actions button within the Workflow bar and select the Approve option.


This will open up a new comment box for the Approval step.

If you want to add any additional comments then just enter them into the Comment field and then click on the Approve button.


Viewing the Workflow History

The workflows are all audited within the system and if we want we can view all of the approvals and comments through the workflow history.

How to Do It…

To do this click on the Actions button and select the View History button. This will show you all of the workflow steps that have been performed.


Viewing the Status of the Vendor Requests

There may be multiple vendors that are being set up at any one time, so being able to see all of the prospective vendors and also their status within the setup process is a good thing to be able to do.

How to Do It…

To do this, click on the Vendor Profile Pending Approval menu item within the Vendor Requests folder of the Common group within the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

This will open up a list of Vendors that are pending approval and you will see the new vendor that you just requested is on the list and is also in a status of Request Rending Complete.


Provisioning the Vendor User Account

If the vendor is going to have on-line access through the Vendor Self Service Portal then they will need to have a username within Dynamics AX. You don’t have to do this by hand through because there is a feature within the vendor on-boarding process that will allow you to have Dynamics AX do all of this in the background for you.

How to Do It…

To do this click on the Prospective Vendor User Requests menu item within the Vendor Requests folder of the Common group within the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

This will open a list of users that need to be set up so that the Vendor will be able to log into the Vendor Self Service Portal. You will see that the user that you entered in the Contact Person Details is here waiting to be approved and configured.

Double click on the user and your will then see the User Request Details. Notice that there is no option to submit this user for provisioning right now because you have not specified a User Alias.

If you enter in a User Alias and then save the record you will be able to submit the user to the User Provisioning Workflow.


The User Provisioning Workflow

This is managed through another workflow that we have set up within Dynamics AX.

How to Do It…

To view the workflow, click on the User Workflows menu item within the Workflow folder of the Setup group of the System Administration area page.

When the User Workflows are displayed, double click on the User Request Workflow record.

This will open up the User Request Workflow designer and you will see that we have an automatic step in this workflow that provisions the user – so we don’t even have an approval step.


Viewing the User Provisioning Workflow History

Just like the other workflow, all of the history of the workflow is tracked and audited just in case you want to see what has been done by each user.

How to Do It…

To do this click on the Actions button and select the View History button. This will show you all of the workflow steps that have been performed.


Viewing the newly Provisioned User

After the workflow has provisioned the user we can take a look at it within the System Administration area.

How to Do It…

To view the user, click on the Users menu item within the Users group of the System Administration area page.

When the list of users are displayed, filter out the users and find the user that you created the alias for.


If you click on the Relations button within the Setup group of the Users ribbon bar you will open up the User Relations form and see that the user relation with the vendor account has been created. After you have seen this then just click on the Close button to exit from the form.


Updating the Prospective Vendor with the Required Codes

Once the user has been provisioned we will move onto the next step in the process which is converting the prospective vendor into a real vendor within Dynamics AX. Before we can do that there are a few required fields that need to be added to the template which will then allow us to submit the vendor for review and approval.

How to Do It…

Click on the Vendor Profile Pending Approval menu item within the Vendor Requests folder of the Common group within the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

This will open up the Vencor Profile Pending Approval list page and you will see that your prospective vendor is there. Now that the required configurations are done with the users and the vendor details when you select the vendor you will have the ability to click on the Update Profile button within the Profile group of the Vendor Request ribbon bar.


This will open up the Prospective Vendor Profile form. Notice that the workflow bar is not allowing you to submit the prospective vendor for conversion into a vendor yet though because there are some required fields that are missing.

Click on the Update Profile button within the Maintain group of the Vendor ribbon bar to enter into edit mode.

Click on the Vendor Group dropdown list and select a Vendor Group.


Then expand out the Payment Information tab and you will see that there are some fields that need to be entered in.

Click on the Currency dropdown list and select a currency – i.e. USD.


Then just to be tidy, click on the Terms of Payment dropdown list and select a Payment Term code – for example Net30.


Now that all of the required fields are updated, when you save the record, the workflow bar will allow you to submit the Prospective Vendor for setup through a workflow.

The Vendor Add Workflow

This workflow can have a number of different steps and approvals associated with it as well.

How to Do It…

To view the workflow, click on the Procurement and Sourcing Workflows menu item within the Setup group of the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

When the Procurement and Sourcing Workflows list page is displayed, double-click on the Vendor Add Justification Workflow item in the list.

When the workflow canvas is displayed you will see that in this example we have a two step process where the Vendor is reviewed and then approved and setup.


Submitting the Prospective Vendor to the Vendor Add Workflow

Once the vendor template is ready we can submit the vendor request to the final workflow which will go through the two stage review and approval process.

How to Do It…

To do this, just click on the Submit button within the workflow bar. This will open up the comments dialog box for the Vendor Add Application Workflow.

If you want to add any comments then type them into the Comments field and then click on the Submit Button.


Reviewing the Vendor Add Request

The first step in the approval workflow that we will perform is just a review by the Procurement group.

How to Do It…

To do this open up the Notification List and you will see that you have been assigned a new approval task. Select it and then click on the Go To Origin button within the menu bar.


This will open up the Prospective Vendor Profile showing you the new vendor request.

If you want to mark that you have reviewed the vendor request then click on the Actions button in the workflow bar and select the Review New Vendor Application Request button.


This will open up the comments dialog box for the Vendor Add Application Workflow Review.

If you want to add any comments then type them into the Comments field and then click on the Review New Vendor Application Request button.


Approving The Prospective Vendor For Conversion To A Vendor

After the request has been approved we can now move to the second step in our workflow which is the approval and creation of the vendor record itself.

How to Do It…

Now that the prospective vendor has been reviewed you can click on the Actions button and you will see that you have different options for approving the vendor. Just click on the Approve button.


This will open up the comments dialog box for the Vendor Add Application Workflow Approval.

If you want to add any comments then type them into the Comments field and then click on the Approve button.


Viewing The Vendor Add Workflow Steps

Again, if we want to track the progress of the vendor approval through the workflow history then we can easily do that.

How to Do It…

To do this click on the Actions button and select the View History button.

This will show you all of the workflow steps that have been performed.


Viewing The New Vendor Record

Once the workflow has completed, it will automatically convert the prospective vendor into a real live vendor within Dynamics AX. If you don’t believe us then just take a look.

How to Do It…

To do this, click on the All Vendors menu button within the Vendors folder of the Common group within the Procurement and Sourcing area page.

When the All Vendors list page is displayed then you will see that there is a new vendor record that was created from the New Vendor Request.


If you open up the Vendor record you will see that all of the information that you configured during the process has been copied to the vendor record.


Summary

The Vendor Onboarding process is a great way to streamline the new vendor setup process and to also add some control over the vendors. Through the use of workflows you can streamline and also automate a lot of the processes that you may be doing manually.

There are additional features that we haven’t talked about in this walkthrough though including the ability for prospective vendors to log into the employee self service portal and update their information themselves before being converted over to a vendor, which creates a tighter relationship with the vendor. You might want to test that out as well.


The AXUG Summit starts in just a couple of days and here are the sessions that I will either be hosting, or sitting in on as a panelist. If you are attending then make sure you mark them down on your dance card and drop on by so that I’m not lonely.

Creating Your Own Product Information Management Processes With Cases and Project Management

Wednesday, October 14 • 11:00am – 12:00pm

Although Dynamics AX is not a complete New Product Development (NPD) and formulation system, as it does not calculate nutritional details or perform least cost formulation, it does allow you to manage all of your product, costs, formulations, nutritional details, and more. Additionally, it has a lot of capabilities to help you streamline management of the NPD/New Product Introduction (NPI) process. In this presentation, we will show an example of how you can use Cases, Workflow, and Projects within Dynamics AX to manage the entire NPD/NPI process.

Using Cases To Do Almost Anything Your Dynamics AX Doesn’t Do

Wednesday, October 14 • 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Step right up and dare to experience for yourself the one, the only, the world’s largest, strongest tool ever! It walks, it talks, it crawls on its belly!!! — We’re talking about Cases within Dynamics AX, of course. They are the ‘Swiss Army knife’ of Dynamics AX functionality, and if there is something you want to track that isn’t tracked already, you can probably do it through Cases. With Cases you can track incidents, record quality results, track projects, and even create custom workflows to track whether Cases are followed up upon in a timely manner. Cases are accessible virtually everywhere within Dynamics AX; you practically can’t open up a screen without seeing them. In this presentation, we will show you how to configure Cases and will walk through a few examples of how you can use them right now within your implementation of Dynamics AX.

Getting The Most Out Of Dynamics AX Data With PowerBI

Thursday, October 15 • 8:00am – 9:00am

Do you think the only thing better than PowerBI within Excel is PowerBI running within Office 365? Come to this session and we’ll show you why everyone needs to use the much simpler PowerBI Designer available within the Office 365-hosted PowerBI portal! PowerBI is a standalone dashboard designing tool that takes all of the great features within Excel like Power Query, Power View, and Power Pivot and puts them in one single place to make all of your reporting a synch. After you have finished building your dashboards, you can publish them to the new hosted Power BI portal, create your own custom dashboards, and even perform Q&A on the data just by typing in the questions you want answered. In this overview, we will look at this new tool and how you can use it to quickly analyze all your Dynamics AX data and blend multiple data feeds into one dashboard to view all the data you need in one place!

Challenge the AX Experts

Thursday, October 15 • 3:15pm – 4:15pm & Friday, October 16 • 1:00pm – 2:00pm

This is the session to get your answers! Join in on the fun in this fast-moving roundtable where the Microsoft Dynamics AX Experts will field all questions from the audience. There has to be at least one question you wanted answered while at Summit – and this the session to do it. No question is out of bounds, regardless of version, function, or technology!

Self Service Reporting Within Dynamics AX

Thursday, October 15 • 4:45pm – 6:00pm

Having Users perform their own reporting has been a dream on both sides of the organization. IT staff do not particularly like creating reports for Users when they could be spending time on cooler projects, and Users don’t particularly like waiting for IT to create reports because it’s not timely or exactly what they wanted.  The solution is found in the many tools built into Dynamics AX and productivity tools such as Excel and Word. In this session, learn how Users can easily create their own reports without having to get the IT group involved; it’s so easy they may not realize they are creating reports. Join this session and learn how everybody can win!

WOW – The 50 Best Tips and Tricks for Dynamics AX 2012

Friday, October 16 • 2:15pm – 3:15pm

Dynamics AX is full of features you can implement at the module level, but the true power of the product comes from the plethora of smaller features built into the User interface.  You can make Dynamics AX even more powerful by taking advantage of the other foundation products such as SharePoint and Office.  The real trick is to know what the capabilities are. Join us for this session. Even the most seasoned Dynamics AX User or Administrator should find a new tip or trick to make them look like a rock star!

Getting Things Done with Office 365

Friday, October 16 • 3:30pm – 4:30pm

In this session we will show you how you can use Microsoft Office tools like Outlook, OneDrive and OneNote to get organized, get things done, and even get your life back. We will show you how to free yourself from your desk because everything you need is also available on your tablet and phone!

Also, I am still on a one-man mission to help all of you learn Dynamics AX by doing. For those of you that don’t think that you can configure Dynamics AX yourself, here is a starter kit for you to get your feet wet, and realize that you can. It will step you through the first 2.25 guides in the Bare Bones Configuration Guides and you will learn how to create your own Dynamics AX learning environment, configure a new organization, and then set up the General Ledger controls. If you like what you see, then you may want to keep on going.

As an extra incentive, anyone who does complete the entire Bare Bones Configuration Series, then you will become a Bare Bones Configuration Privateer, and I am having merit badges created for you all. If that doesn’t make you just rush out and configure Dynamics AX for yourself then I don’t know what will – everyone wants merit badges 😉

If any of you catch me at the AXUG and promise to take up the challenge, then I will have some USB Wafer drives with the guide and also all of the resources that you need to start.

For those of you that are not able to make it to the Summit, for this week only, use this discount code – AXUGSUMMIT15 – and download the digital version for free.

I’m looking forward the Summit, and seeing some of you this week in Reno, NV.

Having users perform their own reporting has been a dream on both sides of the organization. The IT group don’t particularly like creating reports for the users when they could be spending their time on cooler projects, and users don’t particularly like waiting for IT to create the reports that they need to track the data because it’s never quite what they wanted, and also takes so long to get (because of the first reason) that it’s usually out-of-date. If only there was a solution…

Well there is, because there are so many tools built into Dynamics AX and also the productivity tools like Excel and Word that the users can easily create their own reports themselves without having to get the IT group involved. Everybody wins!

In this presentation we will show you how the users can do just that, it’s so easy that they may not even realize that they are creating reports.

Adding Additional Fields to List Page Views

One of the benefits of the list pages within Dynamics AX is that you can add additional fields to the views, so if there is something that you need for reporting and analysis that isn’t currently on the form then all you need to do is add it.

How To Do It…

To do this, just right-mouse-click on the data within the list page, or the heading in the list page and then click on the Personalize option.

This will open up the Personalization form and you will be able to see all of the fields that are currently displayed within the list page. To add a new field all you need to do is click on the Add Fields button.

This will open up the Field Explorer and you will be able to see all of the fields that are associated with the form and also any related tables as well.

If you expand out the Addresses field group then you will see all of the address fields that are related to the Sales Orders.

If you want to report off geographic information then you can click City, State, ZIP/Postal Code and Country/Region fields and then click on the Add button to add them to the form. When you have done selecting your additional fields then just close down the Field Explorer.

When you return to the Personalization form you see that the fields have been added with little green + signs beside them which mean that these are custom fields that have been added to the view. When you are done here you can close down the form by clicking on the Close icon in the top right hand corner of the window.

When you return back to the form you will notice that some of the fields have not been populated yet. Don’t worry. All you need to do here is press F5 to refresh the view.

Now all of the new data will be displayed on the form for you and all of the new fields are displayed on the list page as columns that you can use for your own reporting.

Summary

Not everyone wants the same fields to show up on their forms, and no-one wants the fields that everyone else wants cluttering up their list pages that they use every dat. This is a great way to get information that you need onto your forms without having to do any development and also a very fast way to add additional information that you may only need for a little while and then remove them later on.

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About The Author

Murray Fife is a Technical Solution Professional at Microsoft and Author of over 25 books on Microsoft Dynamics AX including the Bare Bones Configuration Guide Series which contains over 15 books that show novice users host to set up Dynamics AX using visual walkthroughs.  These guides start off with the Financial modules of Dynamics AX and then progress through the Operational, Distribution, and then the more specialized modules like production, service management, and project accounting.  You can find all of his books on Amazon (www.amazon.com/author/murrayfife) and also even more on the independent BSP (www.blindsquirrelpublishing.com) site.

Murray is also the curator of the Dynamics AX Companions (www.dynamicsaxcompanions.com) site which he built from the ground up as a resource for all of the Dynamics AX community where you can find walkthroughs and blueprints that he created since first being introduced to the Dynamics AX product.

Throughout his 25+ years of experience in the software industry he has worked in many different roles during his career, including as a developer, an implementation consultant, a trainer and a demo guy within the partner channel which gives him a great understanding of the requirements for both customers and partners perspective.

He is also a great supporter of the Dynamics AX community and has hosted scores webinars for the AX User Group (www.axug.com) and MS Dynamics World (www.msdynamicsworld.com), and has speaks at Microsoft Convergence and AXUG Summit conferences regularly.

Having users perform their own reporting has been a dream on both sides of the organization. The IT group don’t particularly like creating reports for the users when they could be spending their time on cooler projects, and users don’t particularly like waiting for IT to create the reports that they need to track the data because it’s never quite what they wanted, and also takes so long to get (because of the first reason) that it’s usually out-of-date. If only there was a solution…

Well there is, because there are so many tools built into Dynamics AX and also the productivity tools like Excel and Word that the users can easily create their own reports themselves without having to get the IT group involved. Everybody wins!

In this series we will show you how the users can do just that, it’s so easy that they may not even realize that they are creating reports.

Use Edit in Grid as your Reporting Worksheet

Most of the list pages within Dynamics AX have a second version which is called the Edit in Grid view. This is a great way to have a master reporting form for the users and not clutter up the main list page with the extra fields that they may need to report off.
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Humor me, because I’m sure that this has never happened to you all but, have you ever had a situation where it seemed like your workspace windows within Dynamics AX seemed like they were replicating like Tribbles? And like Kirk, all you wanted to do was just get rid of them all?

If you are one of the few that this has happened to then here is a quick tip that will save you from playing whack-a-mole with the windows and close them all with just a click of the button.

How to do it…

  1. To close all of the windows, all you need to do is click on the Workspaces icon in the top right hand corner of the Dynamics AX client and then select the Close All option.

How it works…

Like magic, all of the windows will close down and you will have a nice clean workspace again.

Summary

The only thing that we can’t guarantee is that they won’t start replicating again, but that is now your fault…

Acknowledgements

I have to thank Deborah Vermillion for this tip – I saw her do this and was mortified that I have been doing this the hard way for… well… forever.