New NAV2013 video reviewed: Clients First Finance New Features Dimensions

video3Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 Finance New Features DIMENSIONS; Clients First (40:13)  This is one of the only comprehensive videos I’ve seen to date  that covers the redesigned NAV2013 dimensions.  It’s geared toward finance super users as well as developers and discusses in detail why Microsoft made the design changes to dimensions in NAV2013 as well as how the new functionality works. Important new information include the use of SQL for transformation of dimensions from old to new databases instead of the upgrade toolkit, coding changes to the update analysis dimension as well as to the close income statement, and coverage of known issues and work arounds for dimension limitations. The video is presented by Alessandro Vannini, Microsoft Escalation Engineer. The overall pace is pretty slow, but hang in there, the information is worth it! The demo picks up at 22:10 and shows some nice examples of using Ctrl-Alt-F1 to view the dimension sets on the page while still maintaining the end-user view of individual dimensions.

There are a whole lot of very technical NAV2013 videos out there made for programmers and NAV developers.  Videos geared toward the NAV end-user are a bit more difficult to find. I’ve added a new page to the blog so I can add videos I’ve found that I think are helpful. I’ll review each video I find personally and post some comments on each to make it easier for you to decide if you want to spend your time viewing it yourself.

New NAV2013 Videos page added to DynamicsNAVFinancials

There are a whole lot of very technical NAV2013 videos out there made for programmers and NAV developers.  Videos geared toward the NAV end-user are a bit more difficult to find. I’ve added a new page to the blog so I can add videos I’ve found that I think are helpful. I’ll view each video I find personally and post some comments on each to make it easier for you to decide if you want to spend your time viewing it yourself.

I’ve got a pretty big list to start with, and will put a post out there each time I get a new set of videos reviewed and on the page. If you’ve seen some great stuff out there, or if you’re working on something yourself and want me to review it and add to the page, send me a message!

Let’s get started with some short but effective videos from Microsoft MVP Alex Chow.

video4Closing the year in Dynamics NAV 2013 in 2 minutes; Alex Chow (1:51)  Super quick overview of the year-end close process and great for a quick refresher of the steps you need to follow for this once a year routine. Fast, to the point, accurate. Covers closing the year, closing the income statement, what to do with dimensions, posting the journal, and gives some nice examples on using the NAV2013 search feature to find these functions that we do infrequently.

video5Processing vendor 1099 in Dynamics NAV 2013 in 2 minutes; Alex Chow (1:52)  Super quick overview of setting up a vendor for proper 1099 processing.  Also covers how to post your invoices to gather 1099 information properly and how to print out the 1099s directly from NAV2013.  Hidden gem: quick tour of the same information in NAV Classic.

My #1 Objective for NAVUG Forum is…

As a member of the NAVUG programming committee, I’ve got just one goal at NAVUG Forum this year, and that is to find GREAT examples of what NAV users are doing with NAV at their companies and get these companies to do a CUSTOMER SHOWCASE for other NAV users in webinar format later in the year. I’m ready with a list of questions and I will be talking to as many NAV users as possible to ask them:

  • What’s the most amazing thing your company has used NAV to accomplish this last year?
  • What special project have you completed using NAV this year?
  • What thing have you been doing with NAV lately that has saved you a ton of time?
  • What one thing are you doing with NAV at your company that you think other people should know about?
  • What month would be better for you to do a customer showcase webinar, February or March?

I believe the value of sharing real world applied solutions is priceless and want to provide opportunities for users to teach other users the best practices they know and are using in their businesses every day.

The NAVUG makes it very easy to do and provides all the technology needed for you to share your story, but we need YOU to tell it.  If you’re a little shy about public presentation, this is a great time to ask your partner to present this information along with you.

Really, just avoid the hassle of me asking you all those questions.  Send me a message to tell me what you’re proud about doing with NAV at your company. 


It Takes a Village to Collaborate

This article recently ran in the Fall 2013 NAVUG magazine.  Find this article, and lots of other great NAVUG info, at this link.

thCA6300NZBack when she was First Lady, former Senator and Secretary of State Hilary Rodham Clinton wrote a book titled “It Takes a Village”. The book was essentially about how it takes all people in a community, not just the core family, to raise a child. We see similar principles within our own NAVUG community, where it takes a village to continually support each other, nurture our networks, and improve our knowledge base as we all strive to provide our companies with the best possible business solutions using our ERP system of choice, Microsoft Dynamics NAV.

In the five years I’ve been actively involved in this community, I’ve seen some amazing examples of how this village of users collaborate to solve business problems for their companies.

I know two Controllers who met through NAVUG who have bartered knowledge back and forth every year. One year, one Controller taught the other how to use and enhance their account schedules. The next year, the other Controller traded information to the other about intercompany consolidation. The year after that, they exchanged information on budgeting. This tradition has continued every year, with these two users finding ways to enhance their use of NAV by trading information and brainstorming ideas.

Through some sessions at Forum, the annual user group conference held in October, a number of users voiced concerns they were having difficulty in coming up with a suitable business process for correctly using EFT (electronic funds transfer) to pay vendors. This group worked together over the year, exchanging information on how to get it done, and two of those users presented a Customer Showcase showing how they solved it for their companies at the next year’s conference.

Every year, over a hundred volunteers collaborate to provide webinars throughout the year to the user group at large. These webinars include presentations on specific topics as well as interactive discussion formats, allowing the participants multiple opportunities every month to assist each other with business challenges. Time and time again on these webinars I hear examples of users who help each other right then if they can, and if they can’t, they follow-up with each other through email or phone calls, helping the person to make connections until they get an answer to their question.

Recently, the NAVUG has been reaching out internationally, searching for ways to collaborate with users in other countries who use NAV. They made a foray into the international community for the first time in January of this year by going to Rome, Italy, and will be returning to another international event in November. This event will continue the work to expand the user group in other countries, expanding the village to the international community, and creating new ways for us all to exchange the information we need to help each other.

As an active blogger in the Dynamics community, I’m particularly excited to see the launch of the new NAVUG Collaborate tool which has recently been made available to the community. By incorporating social media into a platform that gives us a home base where we can update each other on educational events, answer each other’s questions, and connect and build our networks, the NAVUG has just one more place to make the work of the village possible.

Every person who participates makes the community stronger and with a stronger community, each participant benefits.

So why do they do it? What could possibly possess a group of people who all have full-time jobs of their own and families and lives to invest time to volunteer their time to help other users? I think there are a few reasons:

1)       We’ve all been there.  All the people who volunteer to help the user group can tell a story about when they were new to NAV and felt like they were alone.

2)       We’ve all been helped by other users. Each one of those people can also tell a story about how they had business problems another user helped them with. Every time I hear one of these stories, I’m always so impressed by the heavy feeling of gratitude and relief that comes through in the telling, as people came to realize they didn’t always have to pay someone to help them and how empowered they felt to be able to solve it on their own.

3)       We’ve realized the benefit of this community. Because we’ve been able to help each other out, each and every person has brought value back to their organizations in the form of solved problems, greater knowledge and understanding of our ERP systems, and the type of future preparedness that only comes through staying current on emerging technologies.

4)       We want to give back. Each person who volunteers realizes the advantage this gift of support has been to them and wants to give back to others.

Think these stories don’t apply to you? Think again! If you were able to reach out to a group of informed people who aren’t invested in selling you anything, what would be the quality of information you would receive? These people have real world advice and real world experience with NAV. They use NAV in their job roles every day, just like you do. Whether you are looking for advice on best practices or just an honest opinion on what type of solution to choose, this is the group who can get that to you. If that doesn’t convince you, put together a return on investment analysis. What’s the benefit of being able to support yourself through the network you have developed?

Just this year another strong business leader, Sheryl Sandberg, who is Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, authored a book called “Lean In”. While this book focuses in on gender politics in the workplace, the message she conveys with equal strength is to get involved in what happens at your office and in your community. Don’t hold back. Bring your talents to the table. Speak up and participate.

If you feel the NAVUG has brought some benefit to you, get involved in collaborating, in whatever form may work for you. We are always looking for users to lead webinars, facilitate discussions, lead sessions at the annual conference, engage in social media, blog, and find ways to connect with each other in a meaningful way. I encourage you to set a goal for what you can do to contribute to the effort this community puts forward to continually grow this user group.

If you haven’t yet been actively involved with NAVUG or if you’re brand new to NAV, know that you don’t have to struggle coming up with a solution on your own for what you need. There are other NAV customers out there who have gone through what you’re going through and are ready and willing to help. There is a whole village available to you through NAVUG whose call to action is to support each other through the ability to collaborate.

Kerry Rosvold has been the Corporate Controller at Augsburg Fortress Publishers since 2008, and has been using Microsoft Dynamics NAV as her ERP of choice since 2004. Kerry has been an active member of NAVUG since 2009 and frequently conducts webinars, speaks, and teaches classes on NAV financial topics. She blogs regularly at and also can be found on Twitter @krosvold.