Once upon a time, decades before we had television networks dedicated to animals that amuse our kids for eleven hours a day, we had a single program for learning about animals. We would tune in weekly (usually with a pair of pliers and a set of rabbit ears; ask your parents or grandparents if you do not know what all that means) to watch Mutual of Omaha’s ‘Wild Kingdom’. Host, Marlin Perkins, would regale us with a vivid description of the lives of the animals while his assistant Jim Fowler would actually be busy trying to keep from being eaten, bitten, stabbed, stampeded, or crushed by whatever dangerous animal Perkins was introducing to us.
One creature left out of the series in its long run was the Accountant. We never learned of the habits, defenses, and daily life of this amazing creature. Worst of all, the non-accountant world never learned of the native environment of this office or cubicle denizen. Because of this, an entire generation of software developers never discovered where the accountant finds and keeps what is most important to them. But times are changing, and accountants are now benefiting from the “natural habitat” movement.
The developers of Microsoft Dynamics® GP (http://kraftenterprise.com/php/microsoftdynamicsgp.php) and the many third-party add on products have caught on to the habit of the accountant to stick with his or her spreadsheets. For a thousand computer years (about 20 in human years), accountants were being told that their spreadsheet environment was old fashioned and they needed to stick to just using the environment being created by the very creative developers. Accountants showed their fangs when told to abandon the wild fields and forests of their ancient (relative term) Lotus and Excel spreadsheets. Many consultants and developers bear the wounds and scars of having to deal with an accountant drug from the safety and sanctity of their home.
Accountants using Microsoft Dynamics GP have lots of tools at their disposal. Accountants can take his or her spreadsheets of payables invoices, closing journal entries, budgets, or timesheets and import them into their ERP system for further processing or reporting. Users of the SmartConnect tool from eOne do not even have to interpret the spreadsheet into the ancient .txt or .csv dialect before importing Excel spreadsheets into Microsoft Dynamics GP. The data can be integrated straight from the xls file itself, allowing the user to even specify which tab they want brought in. Further, these integrations can be scheduled so the accountant does not even have to lift a finger to share his bounty with the ERP world.
But there is more in store for the accountant when they enter the Microsoft Dynamics GP sanctuary. He or she can also get data from GP and use it in the comforting spreadsheet format. GP allows the export of any of its native reports in a text format that can be brought into Microsoft Excel. Accountants familiar with the Smartlist module can throw together an ad-hoc report of columnar data and hit the Excel button to have it instantly transported to his or her world of choice. From there, they can pivot, filter, subtotal, and format to their hearts’ desire. Additionally, with the Excel Report Builder module, accountants without any help from the IT park ranger, can create and publish spreadsheets with data links that will automatically populate themselves with data from just about anywhere in GP and other SQL based systems on the same server. All an accountant has to do is open a normal looking Excel file and it will automatically retrieve the needed data. The viewing accountant does not even have to be a user in GP to see this information in his world.
Kraft Enterprise Systems (http://kraftenterprise.com) would love to help you see your data the way you most like it. Our decades of combined experience allow us to work in both the modern systems world and the traditional world of the accountant. Call us at 1-866-960-5890 for more information.
By Jeff Frye, Microsoft Dynamics GP Consultant at Kraft Enterprise Systems