Microsoft recently announced the next release for Dynamics GP is dropping early October 2019, and will be called Microsoft Dynamics GP. Simple! No year or version marker at the end. The Dynamics GP October 2019 release also means that Dynamics

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When is the best time to upgrade? Before upgrading, we recommend that you create a timetable of the entire upgrade process. This timetable can include the scheduling of a test upgrade, live upgrade, upgrade training, and implementation. Be sure that

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Microsoft Azure is becoming increasingly popular for businesses looking to move their Dynamics GP system to the Cloud. Azure’s scalability, security and on-demand architecture make it the smart choice for your Microsoft Dynamics GP deployment. The Benefits of Hosting Dynamics GP

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Microsoft is offering Dynamics GP customers with an active enhancement plan the ability to transition to Dynamics 365 Business Central on premises by utilizing a License Migration Transition (LMT) upgrade. Since its launch, Dynamics 365 Business Central has been increasingly

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Since Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is part of the Microsoft Office 365 suite, there are many great features included. One of these features is Edit in Excel. With this Add-in, the option “Edit in Excel” is enabled within Business Central, which

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On May 30, 2019, Canada Revenue Agency announced that there would not be a July 2019 edition of the Payroll Deductions Tables guide (T4032), Payroll Deductions Supplementary Tables guide (T4008) and the Payroll Deductions Formulas guide (T4127) as there are

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Dynamics GP includes the Canadian Payroll module.  There is no limit to the number of employees you can pay with GP. The payroll module can also be used in conjunction with GP’s Human Resources module, making it an excellent tool

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The Rimrock Corporation team is made up of many hard working, talented individuals with interesting stories to tell. In our Employee Spotlight series, you’ll meet some of these people, learn what they do, and how they keep Rimrock exciting and

Read more ›

You may have heard the terms mainstream support and extended support in relation to your version of Dynamics GP, but do you know the difference between the two? Companies that use Dynamics GP for payroll may be aware that the

Read more ›

Data entry errors can be very time consuming to find and correct, and therefore, costly. To combat this problem, there are two easily-configurable functions in GP to help maintain control and keep data entry error-free. These simple controls come with

Read more ›

The Cloud sync offers you the ability to use Business Central 365 without leaving your on-premise solution, allowing you to take advantage of cloud-based tools that display results on your GP Home Page. To take advantage of this functionality, you

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Dynamics GP October 2019 Release Moves to the Modern Lifecycle Policy

Microsoft recently announced the next release for Dynamics GP is dropping early October 2019, and will be called Microsoft Dynamics GP. Simple! No year or version marker at the end. The Dynamics GP October 2019 release also means that Dynamics GP has moved over to the “Modern Lifecycle Policy.”

What is a Modern Lifecycle Policy?

The Modern Lifecycle Policy means that the product is serviced and supported continuously, as long as you maintain your license and keep current with the service terms and system requirements (Modern Lifecycle Policy FAQ). This move is a good thing! It is great to see that Microsoft Dynamics GP is keeping in step with Microsoft and its other products by moving to the modern lifecycle. This means that there is no end date for support for the product and it will continue to be developed. Upgrades and updates will be released more frequently, and on a predictable schedule each year, throughout the year.

The Modern Lifecycle Policy guarantees a few key things for Dynamics GP customers: 

– Microsoft will provide a minimum of 12 months notification prior to ending support if no successor product or service is offered—excluding free services or preview releases.

– For products under existing lifecycle policies (such as the Fixed Lifecycle Policy), Microsoft will continue to provide servicing and support for a fixed amount of time.

– Products that have already launched with existing lifecycle policies will continue to be supported according to the published end of support dates.

Do I Need to Upgrade my GP System?

Technically no but we encourage you to consider it! Your existing lifecycle for your current system is still in place (click here for a roadmap of all Dynamics GP products). But the benefits of upgrading to the MLP include access to guaranteed updates throughout the year, such as mid-year and year-end with a feature release each October.

Here are some of the highlights of the October 2019 release:  

If you are thinking about upgrading, please contact us. Our expert consultants are always available to answer any questions about what an upgrade will mean for you and your business.

DYNAMICS GP UPGRADE FAQS

When is the best time to upgrade?

Before upgrading, we recommend that you create a timetable of the entire upgrade process. This timetable can include the scheduling of a test upgrade, live upgrade, upgrade training, and implementation. Be sure that the scheduled time to upgrade takes place during a time that works best for all Dynamics GP users and for your information technology (IT) staff. You may not want to upgrade before processing payroll checks or closing a year.

During the period of a test upgrade there is typically no “down time” or “outages” expected to your current production environment; but during the live upgrade, you should expect to be hands-off Dynamics GP and any Reporting Tools that access those databases for the duration of the live upgrade. Arrange for alternate staff work during that time. If keeping down time to a minimum is critical, we will work with you to discuss options for upgrading outside of regular business hours.

What impacts upgrade time?

– The number of companies
– The extent of and complexity of customizations
– The more ISV software used, the added time you will need for your upgrade
– The version of your current Dynamics GP instance: Older versions take longer to upgrade as they may need to “hop” to a version or two between the current version and the latest version
– Age and status of your infrastructure: It is recommended to deploy further versions of Dynamics GP in Microsoft Azure for maximum security and scalability

What are the key steps to planning an upgrade?

1. Determine when and how often your business should upgrade.
– It is important to decide which upgrade path suits your business best, based on the new features, and other considerations. You will want to ensure availability of power users and make sure users are able to complete testing and attend training so they can put what they learned to good use.

2. Inquire about a test upgrade.
– A test upgrade, though not always necessary, is recommended if you have multiple add on products, customizations, or integrations. The test environment provides a place to try it with your own data before putting it into your production environment.

3. Evaluate moving to Azure (aka the cloud).
– Since part of the upgrade process usually involves a new server, it’s a good idea to review cloud options like Microsoft Windows Azure. No matter which option is selected, the upgrade process itself mostly stays the same. If you need some guidance on the topic, please contact our experts to walk you through it.

4. Assign a power to manage the project internally.
– Assign a technical resource and power user from your team. These resources should work directly with the Consultants performing the upgrade.

5. Research which new modules and features you want to use.
– Each version offers advancements, improved efficiencies, and new functions and features. If there are features, functions, or modules that have been available for a while that have been on your business wish list, now is a great time to add that to your training list.

6. Make sure your backups are complete and recent.

7. Make sure your hardware/software is compatible.
– This link takes you to the System Requirements published by Microsoft.

What should I do if I am ready to upgrade my version of Microsoft Dynamics GP?

To get your Microsoft Dynamics GP solution upgraded and working smarter for you and your staff, contact us today.

Dynamics GP: Why Microsoft Azure is the Smart Choice

Microsoft Azure is becoming increasingly popular for businesses looking to move their Dynamics GP system to the Cloud. Azure’s scalability, security and on-demand architecture make it the smart choice for your Microsoft Dynamics GP deployment.

The Benefits of Hosting Dynamics GP on Azure

1. Faster deployment

A Dynamics GP installation in the cloud with Azure means you don’t have to worry about setting up an infrastructure or procuring and configuring hardware. As a result, deployment can be completed in a fraction of the time. Upgrades and patches can be applied in less time as well.

2. Cost Effective

Hosting Microsoft Dynamics GP on Azure is an extremely cost effective deployment option. There are no hardware costs to purchase or maintain and Azure’s scalable platform means you only pay for consumption of data and power that you use. The result can mean significant savings for your organization.

3. Little to No Downtime

With Microsoft’s large server architecture, a company’s data is not confined to a single machine. Instead, Azure distributes it across multiple Virtual Machines (VM) for optimum security. In case maintenance needs to be performed on one of the machines, a company’s Dynamics GP deployment can continue to run on other machines. Microsoft Azure promises 99.95% up time meaning that your GP environment will always be available and supported.

4. Flexible Deployment Options

In addition to deploying Dynamics GP in the cloud or on-premise, Microsoft Azure gives the option for hybrid deployment, which enables a user to select some workloads to host on Azure and keep other workloads on-premise or at the data center.

5. Scalability

Microsoft Azure’s infrastructure scales and grows along with your business. Increasing data storage, adding more users, or integrating additional applications with your Dynamics GP deployment are all managed from an online console to accommodate changing needs quickly and seamlessly.

6. Security

Azure has enterprise grade security and is coupled with disaster recovery features that can accommodate complex environments securely with full redundancy while meeting tenant data compliance requirements.

Next Steps

For companies who would like to upgrade Dynamics GP to the cloud, Rimrock can provide a complete end-to-end business solution. For more information on Azure, or to find out which option is the best fit for your business, contact us today. Our consulting team is here to help you every step of the way.

License Migration Transition (LMT) Upgrade From Dynamics GP to Dynamics 365 Business Central On-Premise

Microsoft is offering Dynamics GP customers with an active enhancement plan the ability to transition to Dynamics 365 Business Central on premises by utilizing a License Migration Transition (LMT) upgrade. Since its launch, Dynamics 365 Business Central has been increasingly adopted by organizations looking to digitally transform their work-spaces. 

In October 2018, Business Central became available for on-premises deployments. Dynamics 365 Business Central is available worldwide and localized in a number of countries.

License Migration Transition Upgrade (LMT)

As of July 1, 2019, Dynamics GP customers with an active Enhancement plan can transition to Dynamics 365 Business Central on-premises via an LMT upgrade. However, customers need to meet the eligibility criteria for the LMT Upgrade path.

Learn more about Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

Dynamics 365 Business Central on-premises Upgrade Policy has now been updated to reflect the mapping for Dynamics GP.​

Read how Dynamics GP differs from Business Central.

If you would like more information on transitioning to Dynamics Business Central on-premises via an LMT upgrade, please contact us. Our experienced consultants are always available to help you.

Edit in Excel: The Easiest Way to Modify Data in Business Central

Since Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is part of the Microsoft Office 365 suite, there are many great features included. One of these features is Edit in Excel. With this Add-in, the option “Edit in Excel” is enabled within Business Central, which allows users to export the data in an Excel workbook. Users can then quickly and securely modify the data directly from Excel and re-publish them in their ERP without leaving Excel. There is no need to fuss with an integration tool or labour for hours keying into Business Central.  Edit in Excel is the easiest way to modify your data in Business Central.

Edit in Excel allows you to quickly and easily:

  • Update descriptions on accounts
  • Change customer addresses
  • Load a set of new accounts
  • Add a new group of customers or vendors
  • Import large journal entries 

To implement this function it will be necessary to meet the following requirements:

  • Users will have to authenticate with Azure Active Directory (Azure AD).
  • Enable OData authentication using SSL.
  • Install and configure Business Central Web Server to use SSL (https).
  • If your deployment is multitenant, Business Central Web client must accept host names for tenants.
  • Business Central client computers must have a supported version of Excel.  At present the minimum requirement is Excel 2016.

If you are interested in learning more about the Edit in Excel function, or any other Business Central features, please contact us here. One of our Microsoft Dynamics experts will be happy to help.

Canadian Payroll News: No Mid-Year Tax Update

On May 30, 2019, Canada Revenue Agency announced that there would not be a July 2019 edition of the Payroll Deductions Tables guide (T4032), Payroll Deductions Supplementary Tables guide (T4008) and the Payroll Deductions Formulas guide (T4127) as there are no legislative changes or updates required.

For customers using Dynamics GP Canadian payroll, that means there will be no mid-year tax update! The next update will be at the calendar year end.

Sign up for our newsletter to stay current on Dynamics GP news!

GP Tips: Dynamics GP Canadian Payroll with ePayStub

Dynamics GP includes the Canadian Payroll module.  There is no limit to the number of employees you can pay with GP. The payroll module can also be used in conjunction with GP’s Human Resources module, making it an excellent tool to track basic and more detailed employee information.

Dynamics GP Canadian Payroll allows you to process employee earnings, benefits and deductions. T4s and Records of employment are also generated by the module.  Both the T4 and Record of Employment routines create electronic files to be uploaded to either Canada Revenue Agency or Services Canada. Detailed reports for Workers’ Compensation, Employer Health Tax and Canada Revenue Agency remittances can be generated. When paired with the ePayStub module (separate purchase), employee pay stubs and T4s can be password protected and emailed to each employee. 

Processing payroll with GP will update your general ledger, and thereby financial statements with actual payroll costs. You may choose a very general costing method for payroll; such as separating direct and indirect employee costs. You may also track payroll costs at a more detailed level, perhaps by adding employee departments. This detail will then show on your Income Statement.

Smartlist is an excellent tool to use with payroll as it enables you to export your payroll data to Excel for analysis.

Payroll Area page

Reporting for Remittances

  1. WCB – can be configured to calculate multiple Workers compensation rates
  2. EHT – will calculate Employer Health tax by province where applicable
  3. Receiver General information in Summary or by Employee. Also allows for multiple Business Numbers

Emailing PayStubs

Adding the ePayStub Module, allows you to email Paystubs, T4s, etc.

Cost Allocation

Direct and Indirect costs can be allocated to a departmental level.

Smartlist Views

New views can be added to the standard SmartLists.  These can also be exported to Excel for data analysis.

If you would like to learn more about Dynamics GP functions and features, please contact us. Our experienced consultants are always available to help you streamline your business processes.

Employee Spotlight: Azair Sheikh

The Rimrock Corporation team is made up of many hard working, talented individuals with interesting stories to tell. In our Employee Spotlight series, you’ll meet some of these people, learn what they do, and how they keep Rimrock exciting and fun. This month we shine the light on Azair Sheikh, our Client Services and Operations Manager.

Azair was born in Saudi Arabia but his background is Pakistani. He first visited Canada at the age of 5 and travelled to Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. A few years later his family returned and settled in Kitchener, Ontario. Azair came to Toronto 8 years later, and has been an unsatisfied sports fan ever since (unless the Raptors win it this year!).  Prior to working at Rimrock, Azair worked at another ERP Consulting firm as well as in the accounting industry as a Financial Analyst.

In his free time, Azair likes working out, spending time with family, reading, writing, playing guitar, and gaming.

Read on to learn more about Azair.  

What do you love most about working at Rimrock & how long have you been here? I love the culture that Jonathan has created here, as well as the autonomy and trust to get a task done without micromanagement. In my career, I have always treated the company I’ve worked for as my own – which has not always played out well. Feathers can be ruffled, and toes can be stepped on. However, Rimrock has been the only firm that has fully embraced that. Jonathan has empowered me and all of the Rimrock staff to feel like owners of the business.

What is your favorite place that you have visited and where is your next dream vacation spot? I unfortunately have not traveled much for leisure – but am hoping to change that in the coming years. My favourite place that I have visited so far would have to be Muree, Pakistan. It’s a mountain resort town that is surrounded by incredible natural beauty.

My dream vacation would be having a guided expedition of the Amazon rain forest in Brazil. A close second is an all-inclusive resort anywhere in the Caribbean where I can lay around and revert back to habits I had as a five-year-old in Nova Scotia.

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? I would want to be a stand-up comedian or a professional fighter. Less risk in the former than the latter but both require a lot of courage!

What TV shows/music/apps/Podcasts are you currently obsessed with right now? There are too many to list, but here are a few:

Podcasts: The Tim Ferris Show, The Mindvalley Podcast, Kwik Brain, Consulting Success Podcast, Managing Up, Microsoft Business Applications Podcasts

Apps: Amazon Kindle, RedFlagDeals, Tasker, Microsoft Flow, Duolingo, Headspace, Aware, SkiptheDish and Uber Eats

TV Shows: Arrested Development, Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Kings and American Gods – new season was disappointing.

If you could have a drink with anyone (fictional, alive, dead, famous, non-famous) who would it be and why? I would have a drink with Roger Bannister – first athlete/Olympian to run a sub 4-minute mile, which was considered impossible. After he broke that record, it was broken 46 days later and a sub 4-minute mile is now common among athletes. He is a fantastic example of achieving the “impossible” and how a shift in perspective can completely change your limitations. He was also a very accomplished neurologist and performed tests on Anthony Burgess – the writer of the Clockwork Orange.

GP Lifecycle Support: What’s the Difference Between Mainstream and Extended Support?

You may have heard the terms mainstream support and extended support in relation to your version of Dynamics GP, but do you know the difference between the two?

Companies that use Dynamics GP for payroll may be aware that the most significant difference between mainstream and extended support is that once mainstream support ends, they will no longer receive payroll and tax updates from Microsoft. If you are currently on Dynamics GP 2015, you should be talking to your IT department about upgrading GP in the next few months as this version is approaching the end of the mainstream support phase.  

What else is impacted when mainstream support transitions to extended support? Let’s have a look at what both mainstream support and extended support entail and what changes after the transition.

Mainstream product support includes annual product enhancements (including the tax and payroll updates previously mentioned), security updates, product warranty claims, no charge incident reporting for known issues (including assistance in determining work arounds while resolving the issue) as well as accepting design or new feature requests.  Once mainstream support ends, Microsoft will no longer provide enhancements to Dynamics GP, however security related updates will continue to be available, as long as you maintain a Microsoft support annual plan.  Once extended support ends, security updates and patches will no longer be available for that version of Dynamics GP.

Below is a table of what versions of Dynamics GP are on mainstream and extended support, as well as the dates mainstream and extended support expire.

  Mainstream Support End Date Extended Support End Date
Dynamics GP 2010 10/13/2015 10/13/2020
Dynamics GP 2013 R2 4/10/2018 4/11/2023
Dynamics GP 2015 4/14/2020 4/8/2025
Dynamics GP 2015 R2 4/14/2020 4/8/2025
Dynamics GP 2016 7/13/2021 7/14/2026
Dynamics GP 2016 R2 7/13/2021 7/14/2026
Dynamics GP 2018 1/10/2023 1/11/2028
Dynamics GP 2018 R2 1/10/2023 1/11/2028

 If you have any questions about your current version of Dynamics GP, or if you are considering an upgrade at this time, please do not hesitate to contact us.

2 Functions for Error-Free Data Entry in GP

Data entry errors can be very time consuming to find and correct, and therefore, costly. To combat this problem, there are two easily-configurable functions in GP to help maintain control and keep data entry error-free. These simple controls come with the application and can save you time in correcting mistakes, while reconciling your subledgers.

  1. Eliminate Wrong Account Selection

a. Allow Account Entry

Using this check box can help keep your control accounts in balance with the general ledger. In the chart of account, you can uncheck ‘Allow Account Entry’ for all your control accounts such as your Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, bank accounts or any account that should be only used in a subledger.  Unchecking the box will prevent users from selecting that account in the transaction distribution or using it in a General Journal Entry. The system will default where appropriate based on the Posting Account setup, or Vendor, Customer, Chequebook or Item setup.

Microsoft Dynamics GP

Once the check box is cleared, any attempt to use a GL account that is linked to a bank in an invoice entry the user will get a warning dialog (as displayed below) and the entry will not be allowed. This eliminates the time wasted trying to reconcile the chequebook with the Bank GL account.

Dynamics GP General Ledger

b. Include in Lookup

On the same account screen, you will find the ‘Include in Lookup’ option. This limits the accounts that the users see in each module. For example, all expense accounts can be limited to only be displayed in the payables screens, and all revenue accounts will only show up in the receivables screens.

Include In Lookup GP

If ‘Include in Lookup’ is not set up, the user will see a list of all accounts (see example below), which increases the risk of selecting the wrong account. (See example below when ‘Include in Lookup’ is set up vs not set up) The screen to the right is what the user sees when trying to select an account in a sales transaction.

2. Account Security

This is a step you can take not only to prevent users from using the wrong account, but also to limit which accounts are visible to each user, including the reports and inquiry screen. In order to activate account level security, go to:

Microsoft Dynamics GP >>Tools >>Setup >>Company: Account Security

Dynamics GP Account Security

Go to Tools>>Setup>>System>>Organizational Structure and define the groups as needed:

Microsoft Dynamics GP Organizational Structure Setup

Go to Cards>>System>>Organizational Assignments and select the department to assign accounts to:

  • Select the department that you want to link the accounts to
  • Select the accounts range
  • Click ‘Details’ if you want to exclude accounts from the range you added
  • Click Process
Microsoft Dynamics GP Organizational Assignments

Then assign each user to the respective department.

Dynamics GP Organizational Structure Assignment

Now, each user will only see the accounts assigned to them, not only in the transaction screens, but also in inquiry and reports:

GP Assigned Accounts

Even when printing the trial balance for all the accounts, the user will only see the balances for the accounts assigned:

Microsoft Dynamics GP Assigned Accounts

If you would like to learn more about Dynamics GP functions and features, please contact us. Our experienced consultants are always available to help you streamline your business processes.

Curious about the Intelligent Cloud offering in GP 2018, R2 ?

Business Central- Intelligent Cloud

The Cloud sync offers you the ability to use Business Central 365 without leaving your on-premise solution, allowing you to take advantage of cloud-based tools that display results on your GP Home Page. To take advantage of this functionality, you must have Dynamics GP version 2018 R2.

Dynamics GP Intelligent Cloud- Business Central

On your Home page, open the “Customize this page” and select the new Dynamics 365 Business Central Insights home page.

The Intelligent Cloud allows on-premise implementations of GP to harness the power of Business Central by replicating your data and providing powerful insights back to you on your Home Page using business intelligence and machine learning.  Replicated data brought across includes: GL accounts and balance, Customers and Open Receivable Transactions, Vendors and Open Payables Transactions, Items and Quantity on Hand.  You also have the ability to schedule the replication; daily, weekly, monthly and the time of day.

Business Central does not have a segmented account structure.  The main segment comes across as the account and all additional segments are represented automatically as Dimensions.  Summary balances are not distributed to the Dimensions, rather they are summarized at the account level. 

First, create your free 30-day trial by selecting Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central in the Microsoft Store. 

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

Then, on your new Intelligent Cloud home page, scroll to the bottom and select the “TRY IT OUT” button to create your connection.

Dynamics 365 Business Central Insights

Next, select Business Central. 

Dynamics 365 Business Central

You will be prompted to log in to Business Central. From there, use the Intelligent Cloud Wizard to create your connection from Dynamics GP.  Please note, data will write from GP to Business Central only.  Nothing can or will be written back to GP.  Only a SUPER user has permissions to run the setup wizard.

Intelligent Cloud Setup

Follow the steps within the Wizard to create a secure pipeline between your on-premise Dynamics GP data and the Business Central cloud tenant.  If you have multiple companies in GP, the wizard will create all the companies you need prior to replication.  If you need assistance, reach out and one of our experts will assist you.  Microsoft has created a short YouTube video which may also help get you started: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVEGx1iCvss

Once the replication has finished, your GP home page will benefit from the Intelligent Cloud insights – these insights are available in both GP and Business Central:

In GP:

Intelligent Cloud Insights GP

In Business Central:

Intelligent Cloud Insights Business Central

If you would like more information on the benefits of the Intelligent Cloud, please contact us. Our experienced consultants are always available to help you find a suitable solution for your business.