Microsoft Business Solutions — Microsoft Dynamics GP

From the Sept. 2008 Review of Mid-Range Accounting Systems

Microsoft Dynamics GP is one of the premier products in Microsoft’s mid-range accounting line. The vendor has continued its dedication to providing enhancements to this stable and scalable solution for growing businesses.

Ease of Use/Transaction Entry – 5 Stars
Microsoft Dynamics GP’s interface will look familiar to those currently utilizing Microsoft products. Modeled after Microsoft Office 2007, Dynamics GP is easily navigated, intuitive, and customizable, with the ability to customize everything from the Homepage to the terminology used on the data-entry screens.

The main user interface has been adapted for user ease. Some of these features include the ability to post accrual entries with a reversal date attached for automatic reversals.

Incorrect journal entries can now be reversed with the correcting entry completed at the same time. The Recurring Batch feature allows users to set up recurring entries to post automatically each month. Data-entry screens are fully customizable and feature the ability to handle multiple tasks from a single window. Lookup options and navigational tools are available throughout the product.

New in Microsoft Dynamics GP 10.0 are the Action Panes, a graphical command bar feature that allows users to both preview and filter data without the need to open numerous windows. Version 10.0 also provides more advanced search capability, making it easier to find information.

Modules & Notable Features – 5 Stars
Microsoft currently offers two versions of Dynamics GP. The Business Essentials version contains, but is not limited to, System Manager, Integration Tools, Analytical Accounting, Bank Reconciliation, Encumbrance Management, Fixed Asset Management, General Ledger, Multicurrency Management, Payables Management and Receivables Management.

Supply Chain Management modules such as Inventory Management, Invoicing, Landed Cost, and Purchase and Sales Order Management are also included. The Advanced Management version includes, but is not limited to, all of the modules mentioned above, along with the following: Business Intelligence and Reporting, a Business Portal, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Professional Sales, Customer Service, Marketing, and numerous financial modules such as Cash Flow Management, Collections Management, eBanking, Electronic Funds Transfer, Grant Management, Lockbox Processing, and Manufacturing.

Also available are Project Accounting and Project Time & Expenses for Business Portal modules, which are offered in the Advanced Management version. See www.microsoft.com/dynamics/gp/product/editionsandfeatures.mspx for a complete list of functionalities in each edition.

Integration/Import/Export – 5 Stars
Microsoft Dynamics GP easily integrates with all system modules available in both versions of the product, including numerous add-on products. The product also contains numerous features that allow data to be imported from just about any application, regardless of format. The Integration Manager allows you to customize system integration using query support and the Microsoft Visual Basic Scripting tool.

Dynamics GP also integrates with various Microsoft products, including Outlook, Excel and Word, along with Microsoft Dynamics CRM, Microsoft Retail Management Systems (RMS), Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft SQL Express Edition, and Small Business Server.

Reporting – 5 Stars
The product offers terrific reporting options, including more than 75 pre-formatted Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services reports along with over 200 Excel-driven reports that can be refreshed as data is updated. Extensive reporting functionality is also offered through a variety of tools such as the Advanced Financial Analysis function, which allows users to create, modify and customize financial statements and reports, and the Analytical Accounting feature that provides an easy analysis of a company’s financial state based on its chart of accounts. A Report Writer feature is also included, where custom reports can be created. Reports can also be customized using Crystal Reports, and all reports can be exported to Microsoft Word or Excel for further manipulation.

Additional reporting is available through Business Portal and FRx reporting, as well, allowing users to view/access information from a web browser without requiring a Dynamics GP login.

Support/Training/Help – 5 Stars
Microsoft Dynamics GP offers varying levels of support including Business Ready Enhancement Plan, Business Ready Advantage, Business Ready Advantage Plus, and Deluxe Support Services. The Business Ready Enhancement Plan is required of all new users and includes unlimited online training, all software updates, and access to newsgroups and other user tools.

Business Ready Advantage adds six support incidents to all of the benefits listed above. Business Ready Advantage Plus adds unlimited support incidents and a TechNet subscription. The Deluxe Support Services plan includes all of the above and offers a more personalized level of support. Online training classes are available for all new users, and the online Help system guides users through product setup and transaction entry.

Relative Value – 5 Stars
Microsoft Dynamics GP has continued to evolve into a top-shelf product designed for growing businesses that need more than a basic accounting program without sacrificing ease of use along the way. Product pricing varies, with a single-user system running about $2,700 to $4,700 (including software and support plans), depending on the number of users.


2008 Overall Rating: 5 Stars

 

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