Rolling out code upgrades to ensure compatibility with the most recent Microsoft DynamicsGP 2015 release is always a big project for our team. We anticipate this project well ahead of time as the Microsoft roadmap provides plenty of notice that a new version of DynamicsGP is coming. Once we have their released code, we begin our final processes for releasing compatible code using a target of 90-days from RTM by Microsoft.
This month we are pleased to announce the roll-out of our completed releases of Horizons Manufacturing Suite (HMS) for the latest Microsoft DynamicsGP version. Completing this body of work is very satisfying for our team because each time we do so, we can clearly recognize how much additional functionality we have developed in the time frame since the last major upgrade.
When I look back on all the work our team has accomplished in reaching our code complete points for DynamicsGP 2015 compatibility, it seems appropriate to brag a little about the general capabilities our software solutions deliver:
- Our target customer is a manufacturer who has recognized the need to better control inventory and related costs but wants to ensure that the expense of doing so is not greater than the value of the data developed. They can be a range of sizes and located anywhere in the world, although english should be the preferred language.
- Our solution is particularly useful for a type of manufacturing often called mixed mode. With our solution these manufacturers can easily transition from volume or batch production, like liquid in a kettle or chemicals in a reactor. Then, we support packaging that volume material into individual items like drums of polymers or jars of marinara sauce or bottles of beer. Along the way, the software keeps track of inventory quantities and inventory costs with special emphasis on two aspects, valuation and traceability.
- Highly accurate trace is needed so manufacturers can be responsive to issues in their market places and with those market places going global that need for accurate and fast access to data is growing.
- Valuation is critical because inventory represents a significant asset on the balance sheet and factors like turns can significantly affect cash flow and the ability to stay in operation no matter what global crisis is occuring.
- Not every client is a mixed mode manufacturer. Some of our end users are pure discrete manufacturers making everything from vending machines to medical devices to blade servers for academic and research purposes. For those kind of engineer-to-order or build-to-order manufacturers, we rolled out our Cascading Work Orders functionality over the past few years. This is capability that allows the software to automatically generate all the child work orders required from a parent work order in a single process. The production orders can be scheduled in batches, are linked to each other and can be reported on as a group. MRP (Material Requirements Planning) continues to run and execute to ensure that make to stock or purchased materials are targeted for production in the right time frames.
- Manufacturing organizations need help in their non-manufacturing functions too. We provide targeted solutions for the sales and distribution that can be utilized with or without the inclusion of our manufacuring modules. Complex pricing needs are met with our Item Pricing Matrix. Here we have delivered pricing functionality based on common and uncommon needs such as customer and item but also volume of units on a sales order. For organizations that target delivering unique customer specific products, our Product Configurator provides easy order entry and order fulfillment without always incurring the overhead of bills of material.
- Then, of course, there is Quality Essentials Suite. This product is developed in .NET, which means that we have chosen to sell it in an unlimited user license model. This development platform allows the product to integrate easily with all of the Dynamics products such as GP, Nav and AX, but it also means that the product does not need any Dynamics product to support it’s functionality as a complete quality control solution. Even though it has a broader reach out of the box we still had to dedicate resources on the team for integration to DynamicsGP. This is because, uniquely to DynamicsGP, we provide functions around more advanced lot management and lot attribute capabilities than can be found out of the box with Dynamics GP or even from another Dynamics ISV.
We are grateful to our partners and our customers who work alongside us, bringing us needs for new solutions, patiently working with us to finalize those solutions and bring them to market. Our partners and customers continue to committ their businesses to the care of the functionality we deliver. We hope that our achievement of code complete for our integrating products helps everyone obtain the maximum benefits from their software investment.