Microsoft by the Numbers

There are impressive numbers about Microsoft, but unfortunately nothing about Dynamics (except CRM). I hope that this is accidenttaly 🙂

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/bythenumbers/index.html

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NAV2013R2…Coming soon

This is blog about NAV and construction business, but I have great emphasis on word ‘NAV’. This vertical solution will become CfMD for NAV2013 very soon and I must to thinking about NAV new release and impact on this solution. I wrote about new NAV version in few posts on Microsoft Dynamics Community blog, but now we have the latest informations.

I borrowed this text from http://msdynamicsworld.com and this is not my post:

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Microsoft Dynamics NAV R2 will deliver exciting new features to support cash management for our customers and prospects.

What it really means for customers

The bottom line is increased productivity – for all our customers – in almost any segment! The new Cash Management features in Microsoft Dynamics NAV R2 will automate and improve the cash management processes that are vital for all our customers regardless of the business they’re in.

Consider this:

  • New Cash Management functionality includes easy registration of payments to ensure faster business processes with fewer human errors.
  • You can import electronic payment files from banks and use them as basis for payments registrations. (In Denmark for Danish banks out of the box. Other countries will require minor configurations)
  • Bank Reconciliation is possible as both a manual and an automated process, with the option to import bank statements from banks and reconcile automatically. A simple tool can be used to set up automation, handle exceptions and complete the reconciliation process.
  • Bank Statements can be imported from 3rd party providers. The same functionality will allow partners to build their own integration to banks, meaning a free choice of providers.

What features are introduced to enable this?

SEPA CREDIT TRANSFER

A new feature is introduced that enables the user to export payment data to an electronic bank file in SEPA compliant format. This gives the user the possibility to integrate electronically with any bank in the Single European Payment Area and get higher efficiency in the payment process end-to-end.

Also, when payment instructions to the bank are managed directly in the system the user gets better control over the payment process and the ability toenhance cash flow due to SEPA rules about dates.

SEPA DIRECT DEBIT

A new feature called SEPA Direct Debit Collections, which provides an efficient way to handle customer’s payment collections through your preferred bank in the Single European Payment Area (SEPA) with less manual entry of data and effective mandate handling.

The feature allows users to collect money from their customers in a seamless connected way with the invoicing process, minimizing the order to cash lead time and increasing their cash management efficiency.

SCHEMA VIEWER

A new tool that enables partners to import SEPA compliant schemas (ISO 20022) into Microsoft Dynamics NAV and export the desired xml tags in an xmlport ready format. This gives the partner an excellent starting point for building up new xmlport to handle SEPA format variations for its customers.

Also, when handling the xml schema, relevant information about each tag is displayed enabling filtering mandatory tags and attributes.

How and when you can learn more on MSDN

We are working on a number of knowledge articles right now and plan to have these ready for you soon on MSDN

Hear more first-hand at DIRECTIONS!

Don’t miss the upcoming Direction events. Join us to hear how Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 R2 offers new cash management features in a harmonized way across country versions. We will demonstrate the new features and you will learn how you can take it to your markets – enabling you to go for volume by having more application features to offer as standard.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 R2 will add multi-tenancy, Office 365 interoperability, SharePoint deployment

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 R2, formerly known as Sicily, will be released in October 2013, Microsoft announced today. R2 will feature improved interoperability with Office 365, including single sign on, deployment to SharePoint sites (Online and on-premise), as well as multitenant hosting on both Azure and partner-hosted deployments.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 R2 Office 365 Dashboard

Construction Project Management Software

This article is borrowed from Dexter+Chaney blog, because I think it is a great story and it is related with my topics:

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When it comes to project management software, contractors have numerous options, from spreadsheets and generic applications to software designed for the construction industry. I recently read an industry survey on the subject that not only provided some interesting insight, but also confirmed the things I’ve been saying about project management software.

The Benefits

It came as no surprise that ranked in the top five project management software benefits were access to detailed project documents, better collaboration, and faster document approvals. In my opinion, the next generation of project management software will not only provide document storage in a centralized location, it will foster better communication between project team members, resulting in more efficient and profitable projects. In fact, survey participants indicated that specialized software for construction had the best record of helping contractors come in under budget on their projects.

The Results

I know I’ve talked a lot about the potential benefits of construction specific project management software, but you may be wondering, “What about the real results?”Well, according to the survey, participants indicated that by using project management software they saw improved accountability from document control, better financial visibility, and improved collaboration. Considering the fact that these three issues are the ones that come up most often when I speak to project managers about their challenges, I feel pretty good about the role software plays in addressing them.

4 Mistakes to Avoid in Construction Bidding

This article is borrowed from Dexter+Chaney blog, because I think it is a great story and it is related with my topics:

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I’m pleased to introduce Byron Largen, CPA from Mountjoy Chilton Medley LLP (MCM), as this week’s guest blogger. MCM is a CPA firm with a team of accountants dedicated to construction accounting.

Construction markets remain competitive, so it comes as no surprise that construction companies have to be at the top of their game throughout a project. One of the biggest stumbling blocks, though, is often at the beginning of a project – during bidding – but there are key areas to avoid in order to make sure your teams stay on track.

1. Overlooking Your Indirect Costs

With advanced construction software to help you, identifying your direct costs on a job is probably pretty easy. But one area that leads to problems is forgetting the indirect costs — those not directly attributable to the project at hand but still likely to be in play.

For example, if you completely own a piece of equipment, you probably estimate the amount of fuel that it uses on a job, but may not consider including the depreciation, insurance, maintenance, and other costs associated with running it. All of these expenses are important to include for your bid to be accurate.

2. Missing the Mark on Profitability

With an ongoing shortage of construction jobs, it can be tempting to bid at every one that comes along, whether or not they’ll actually earn you a profit. That said, calculating profit margin can be tricky, so be sure you don’t undercut your own profitability as the number start flying. Use historic job performance as a predictor, be sure you have the latest labor rates and material prices, and if the math doesn’t add up to profitable work, be prepared to walk away.

3. Not Keeping Up with Technology and Construction Software

Used correctly, technology can give you a competitive edge For example, bids generally begin with estimates. And how can you improve your estimates? By upgrading your technology.

With the multi-dimensional capabilities of BIM now integrated into many software applications, estimators can see all angles of their work in vastly more detail than before. For instance, an estimator can separate construction components from the overall structure to scrutinize them individually.

4. Ignoring the “Other Guys”

Don’t make the mistake of underestimating your competition. When working on a bid, you’re assessing the project with respect to your company’s capabilities, but if you consider the competition, it may change the way you bid, or even your decision to bid. If two of your main competitors are known for bidding low, you may have to reduce your bid comparatively. Is the job still worth it?

Science Meets Art

Some contractors might say that bidding is a science — you crunch the numbers and stick to them. Others might say that it’s an art — when your gut says a project will be profitable and elevate your visibility in the marketplace, go for it.

The truth probably lies somewhere in between. Now more than ever, you’ve got to do the math and make sure your cash flow can handle the burden of every job. But, at the same time, no one knows your local market and construction company like you do. So your gut certainly deserves a say.