GPUG Amplify 2016 – Day 1 – General Session

Day 1 of the inaugural Amplify 2016 conference started with a general session at 8:30am. The general session followed the familiar format of introductions and general administrative things, followed by Dynamics GP product strategy, roadmap and GP 2016 product demos. I won’t get into details on “breakfast”. The organizers got an earful of feedback on the disappointing breakfast each day so I won’t add on with more on that. Let’s just say thank goodness for the Starbucks beside the meeting rooms! On the bright side, there was a wide selection of tea for me each day! 🙂
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GPUG Amplify 2016 – Pre-Conference

This is the first post of a small series of posts to come this week, outlining some of my thoughts and take-aways from the brand-spanking-new GPUG Amplify 2016 conference.

What is Amplify you ask? It’s a brand new conference, driven by demand from our fantastic Dynamics GP community, for end-users of Dynamics GP. With the transition of Convergence to a new conference called Envision, there was left behind a gap where the only “user” conference left – VAR conferences excepted – was GPUG Summit, where the focus is on peer-to-peer learning, rather than what’s new and upcoming from a Microsoft perspective.
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More Azure – part 1

In early May 2016, we saw the introduction of Microsoft Dynamics GP 2016 and the general availability of the first two Canadian Azure data centres in Toronto and Quebec City. That combination gave me a chance to roll up my sleeves again and work with Azure a little more, as I want to ultimately host any of my own Azure machines in Canada, and of course, play with the last version of Dynamics GP!

One year ago now, I wrapped up a series of posts detailing my adventures with Microsoft Azure, learning about how it works, and what the cost looks like over the first few months of activity. The wrap-up post is here, which has the index of the series I wrote. Reading through those, most of what I wrote is useless now!

I hope to write some updated blog articles on what’s changed in Azure since I wrote about things last year. My experience recently has shown me that nearly everything I thought I knew last year, has changed! There is a new portal, which means deploying resources differently, with different terminology, different locations for finding some things etc.
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Poor man’s dashboard?

A client asked me where they could find out some metric-type information from the last couple of years’ processing in Dynamics GP, such as the number of A/P invoices processed, number of cheques processed etc.; and the same for A/R if possible.

Simple question, not so simple answer. I admit it never occurred to me, this information isn’t particularly easy to get to in GP in aggregate form, or I’m drawing a complete blank on where to get it. There are many inquiry windows but most with this type of thing are at a customer level, not company level.

So, I wrote a couple of quick smartlists – one for A/P, one for A/R, and I thought I’d write it out as this client likely isn’t the first one to ask this question! I’ll call it a poor man’s dashboard… it’s simple, and for those who haven’t delved into dashboards yet or graphs or KPIs, this may suffice for some simple information about what you’re processing in Dynamics GP.
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Re-branding “me” – changing my twitter handle

Quick update: I’ve changed my twitter handle from @kuntzconsulting to @jenkuntzGP.

Why?

Well… it’s something that I’ve thought about for a long time. When I first started my business, I didn’t know what direction my new consulting firm would be heading in: solo consultant for life or start to grow and build a team. Nearly 7 years into my latest self-employment adventure, it’s pretty clear, I love being a solo consultant.
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Mgmt. Reporter Quirk – unposted entries

I have been working with a client recently where the focus is to minimize any manual reporting in Excel and use Management Reporter more, to the extent that they are able to leverage it. They are using Dynamics GP 2013 R2 and of course, Management Reporter (MR) comes with Dynamics GP so it’s theoretically “free”.  It is hard to argue against using a product that comes with your ERP solution right?  Realistically now I see it as a good stepping stone to, perhaps, ultimately a more robust reporting tool in the future.

In this part of the project, the client is booking entries to “last year” (a closed year) to record opening IFRS balance sheet adjustments that they have been doing manually in Excel to produce IFRS statements.  They are also now using an “elimination” company in Dynamics GP to hold entries they don’t want to really book in production, like consolidation entries between their entities, and the odd IFRS reclassification they don’t want permanently in production just for the sake of financial statement presentation.

If the client was using FRx, everything I’ve been trying to do, based on what I have done in the past, would be easy to do and it would be relatively smooth sailing. I was a loyal FRx proponent for years and as much as that product had some warts, my memories of it grow fonder with every day I work with Management Reporter so far.  It’s that frustrating at times.
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Tales of shopping for a new car

So, I’ve been kicking around the idea of getting a new car for a while now. I was (past tense, as I picked up my new car tonight) leasing a Subaru Outback for the past 3 years. The lease was coming up to an end in July, however, I was already 20,000 kms over my lease mileage. Oops. I do love a road trip, apparently too much so to be continuing to lease cars!

I love cars. I’m not an enthusiast in the sense that I keep my cars immaculate and wax them to a shine every weekend… no, I’m not that kind of car lover. I just love new shiny things, and I get bored easily so I tend to flip cars a lot more often than conventional wisdom would say is smart. Oh well. My Subaru was my 10th car, and since I’ve been driving for 31 years, that averages out to a car every 3 years. Yes, that is probably about right, even though I didn’t actually have my own car when I was a new driver.
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New Year’s Resolutions 2016

I’ve heard that as you get older, time seems to fly by more quickly. I’ve certainly found that to be true recently, as 2015 seems to have vanished quite quickly. I’m writing this while sitting on my sofa, with a bowl of fruit and a cup of tea, my Christmas tree still lit up, reflecting on the past year and easing into my day. Before I get too comfy or distracted, here’s my annual post on my resolutions for the new year and how I fared in my resolutions for last year!
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How YTD CPP & EI factor into Tax calcs

This is about something completely boring but perhaps useful to someone who is verifying Dynamics GP Canadian Payroll vs the Canada Revenue Agency’s payroll deductions online calculator.

I’ve always said, I know how the Canadian Payroll module works, but I am not a Payroll expert. I’m an accountant, not a payroll or HR person; there is a wealth of knowledge someone certified in payroll matters knows that I’ll never know!
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