Microsoft Great Plains Accounting/ERP Implementation - Finance Industry Customization Example

Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains is very generic accounting application out of the box and has multiple modules to address specific horizontal or vertical market requirements. At the same time Great Plains, now being moved on MS SQL Server platform allows you to deploy standard tools to customize and fit to these requirements, when you don't need rich custom functionality, just few touches. In this small article let's take a look at finance industry.

Bonds and Loans. If you are issuing these documents - you probably already have production system in place. What is often seen - this loans tracking system is not integrated with accounting application. Another case - loan tracking system may required manual interest recording, especially when client is state agency working in state subsidized programs, such as loans to farmers or small inland townships

? Customer Link. In Microsoft Great Plains borrowers are usually customers in the Accounts Receivables module (RM00101 table - customer master). To link customer with loans you can have simple Dexterity or web application/extension to be opened from customer maintenance screen. This custom application will show you all the loans associated with this borrower/customer

? Interest/Principal invoices. In Great Plains you naturally use Receivables Management invoices for this purpose. The first step would be manual entry, based on the interest/principal portion, recorded in the above tracking system.

? Automatic Interest Calculation. Yes - you could associate loan with repayment schema and program it in the formula. The easiest way is to have this implemented as Stored Procedure in MS SQL Server company database. Using SQL Exec statement you can build formula on the fly, considering multiple case scenarios and calculations.

? Reporting. Reporting could be based on both sources - Microsoft Great Plains customer records and loan tracking database, even if the last one sits in different platform, such as Microsoft Access. You can create so-called linked server to MS Access in MS SQL Server Enterprise Manager and use OPENROWSET construction to pull the data from heterogeneous sources. Feel free to use popular tools, such as Crystal Reports - you usually base your Crystal Report on SQL view or stored procedure (the second one allows you to use parameters and build temp tables in the body of your stored procs). If you are building web-application you can incorporate Crystal Report in it or deploy html publishing directly with your result set.

? Tools. Consider these tools first: direct web publishing from Great Plains Company database - use C# or VB.Net with ADO.Net classes; Great Plains Modifier with VBA - if you are VBA or VB programmer - you can create masterpieces here, if you need GP tables structure - Tools->Resource Description->Tables; direct SQL Programming - you can create custom SQL views or stored procedures in company and DYNAMICS databases; Great Plains Dexterity - this tool requires Dexterity knowledge and you should probably contract consultant or programmer to spec out this customization and do the job.

Good luck with implementation and customization and if you have issues or concerns - we are here to help! If you want us to do the job - give us a call 1-866-528-0577!

Andrew Karasev is Chief Technology Officer in Alba Spectrum Technologies - USA nationwide Great Plains, Microsoft CRM customization company, serving clients in Chicago, California, Texas, Florida, New York, Georgia, Arizona, Minnesota, UK, Australia and having locations in multiple states and internationally ("> ), he is CMA, Great Plains Certified Master, Dexterity, SQL, C#.Net, Crystal Reports and Microsoft CRM SDK developer. You can contact Andrew: