EDI for Dynamics 365, Dynamics 365 For Operations, Dynamics 365 Business Central

Many companies that currently process EDI transactions using a legacy translator-- and are considering migrating  to a cloud-based ERP solution such as Dynamics 365 for Operations and Business Central-- face a decision. Should they keep their existing EDI solution, or move to a different EDI platform and vendor?

There are many good reasons to want to keep an existing EDI system, including cost and risk reduction associated with EDI system replacement. However, many organizations find that the cost and risk of keeping a legacy translator far exceeds the cost of a replacement.

Other companies move their ERP to the cloud for cost and a variety of business reasons 

This article is intended to provide the most common shortcomings of translators such as Sterling Gentran, Sterling Integrator, Trusted Link Enterprise, Biztalk and many others as they relate to integration with Dynamics 365 in the cloud. 

  1. Cannot support web services or API’s Depositphotos_4384439_l-2015
    Many translators have limited or no support for web services connections, which is best practice for integrating data to and from Dynamics 365. 
  2. Cannot resolve cross references and produce “transaction ready” data packages. 
    Dynamics 365 expects valid transactions with valid information, such as proper customer numbers, item numbers, units of measures, address locations and numerous data elements. Without invasive customizations in Dynamics, transactions will fail until “perfect”. 
  3. Cannot consume error messages 
    When integration errors occur, the API’s in Dynamics will generate error messages that are critical to the business user. Unless there is a means to consume and report these messages back to the user, troubleshooting is difficult if not impossible. 
  4. Translators are passive. 
    D365 customizations are required to export data files back to the translator – a concept that is often provisioned into legacy ERP solutions via customizations. Needless customizations are frowned upon in the Dynamics 365 ecosystem. 
  5. No Turnaround Data.  
    Data is often sent in EDI messages that must accompany the data that is transmitted back to the EDI trading partner. Unless customizations are created in D365 to store and export that EDI data back to the translator, valid documents are impossible to transmit to the partner. 
  6. No Business Rules. 
    Translators are not well suited for handling complex business rules such as mandating 17 Digit Bill of Lading Values on invoices linked to shipments via Motor Carrier. That logic in most systems is handled by the ERP system – again, requiring more customization. 
  7. No Business or Digital Transformation. 
    Companies that make the difficult decision to replace their ERP solution with a cloud-based Dynamics 365 ERP solution often does so to reduce operating costs, complexity and reliance on manual processes such as data entry to keep the ERP system moving forward. Most companies that try to implement EDI with their legacy translators are fortunate to achieve a comparable outcome, not improve business execution by connecting more of the ERP processes to the outside world such as banks, transportation companies, suppliers and many other parts of their “Value Chain."    
  8. EDI Still Resides in IT. 
    Most legacy translators are complex to manage and operate, and often fall under the responsibility of IT. Naturally, keeping the legacy translator does not improve business user access to critical data that would reduce the need for IT to be involved in day-to-day business/data discrepancies. 
  9. No Help with Non-EDI integrations.   
    Most translators are not well suited to non-EDI integrations and require a second integration platform to be employed. 

Today, the definition of EDI integration best practices has evolved and new solutions are simplifying and opening new opportunities for collaboration with partners in an accurate and cost effective manner. Carefully evaluating EDI options when embarking on the journey to Dynamics 365 can save money by accelerating the process and position companies to increase ROI on their investment in Dynamics.   

Read our executive brief, "Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid When Selecting an EDI Solution," to learn even more about what to look out for when preparing for an EDI implementation.

Get the "Top 10 Mistakes When   Selecting an EDI Solution" Brief

Microsoft Dynamics Community, EDI for Dynamics 365, Dynamics 365 For Operations, Summit EMEA, EMEA

Nearly 2,600 IT professionals visited Amsterdam during the last week of March 2019 to learn about the last ERP upgrade they’ll ever need to implement - Microsoft Dynamics 365. Those currently running Dynamics 365 will all be running the same version by the end of 2019. After that date, Microsoft will roll out continuous improvements via periodic updates, thus adding more value to this already impressive ERP platform. This message was communicated during the Microsoft keynote presented by: 

  • Cecilia Flombaum, Worldwide Lead Business Application Partners 
  • Kees Hertogh, Sr. Director, Product Marketing, Business Applications Group 
  • Muhammad Alam, General Manager, Business Applications Group 

The concept of a “final Dynamics 365 upgrade” has numerous benefits and at the same time some challenges. A balanced message was delivered during numerous breakout sessions led by subject matter experts from Microsoft, Microsoft partners, and Dynamics users. Attendees also gained knowledge about technology and solution partners that can solve a wide array of business challenges spread at the exhibition area, sponsored in part by Data Masons. SummitEMEA2019_2

Every company using Dynamics can benefit by upgrading to Microsoft Dynamics 365. In general, some of the key benefits include 

  • Eliminate large periodic upgrade projects. Historically, companies faced Dynamics ERP upgrades every few years because products no longer met their business needs, or to take advantage of new technology that could improve the business. In some cases, ERP upgrades are disruptive, and the costs of recreating or upgrading customizations in a new platform are high. Avoiding heavy lifting could eliminate downtime and costs. In addition, a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform like Dynamics 365 provides businesses with many benefits including improved application management, high availability, lower cost of overall ownership, application mobility, and a modern user experience and improved development environment. 
  • New capabilities with every update. Microsoft is developing software at a rapid pace to add new features and functionality, with the goal of systematically meeting business requirements with standard software. Microsoft’s release schedule is April and October, along with monthly cumulative updates. The April 2019 release touts 350 new capabilities and 6 new applications to complement ERP, CRM, and Power Apps. 
  • Embraces partners. Value Added Resellers (VARs) play a major role helping customers upgrade and keeping them updated.  Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) such as Data Masons can now more readily deliver innovative software capabilities that customers can implement much more quickly than in the past. At the same time, Microsoft is enhancing the partner program to help VARs improve their delivery skills. ISVs now have better integration options to meet customers’ business needs.   

Many companies have already elected to upgrade to Dynamics 365 from earlier versions of Dynamics. These early adopters of Dynamics 365 provided valuable firsthand experience of best practices for upgrades and that information was shared by a variety of speakers.  Some of the messages included the following points: 

  • General readiness. It’s been over a year since Dynamics 365 has been released to production, and there is plenty of feedback for Microsoft to work through. For example, some companies are reluctant to give control” to the Microsoft cloud. Instead, they deploy on premise, which unfortunately keeps some heavy lifting” tasks inhouse. Others had high expectations for standard software to cover the business needs but had to make more customizations than anticipated. Partners and ISVs also encounter bottlenecks in deploying software to the cloud, or degraded ISV/ERP performance in specific business process scenarios.  
  • Business process migrations. Companies have unique processes, and previous Dynamics ERP versions were customized to support the business. Understanding what was previously done, and determining if the customization must be redone, is a typical consulting effort a VAR can perform for a company. The challenge comes in the number of customizations and rewriting the customization in the new Dynamics 365 framework that restricts access to core code but enables the extension thereof. For example, core code extensions need to be submitted to Microsoft to work them into a release. One can conclude that the more customizations historically made, the more time and effort will be required to complete the upgrade. 
  • Speed of change. Partners will need to stay on top of the new software capabilities, quickly determine how customers can benefit from it, and establish a commercial model with customers to support the ongoing changes. It is unlikely that the current slow approach of agreeing changes will lend itself to speed required to deliver benefits to customers. Concurrently, customers will need to become more agile to adopt the changes, and creative on compensating partners that help them. 

The upgrade to update the paradigm shift has benefits and challenges for companies. Microsoft is increasingly demonstrating that it will not stand still in innovating products and removing obstacles for future adopters.  

As a certified Microsoft partner, Data Masons has an established approach that can help customers make this shift faster, starting right now. 

Our approach is simple.  

  • Eliminate all ERP customizations historically required to support EDI or non-EDI integration. 
  • Up to 25% (estimate) of historical customizations can be removed from the upgrade process. 
  • Updates can be made without impacting EDI or non-EDI integration. 
  • Changes required to maintain integration compliance is covered in the subscription fees.
  • Continuously develop capabilities that simplify EDI for the business and its users. 

If you want to know more, please ask for a consultation by clicking the button below, or emailing us at dmsales@datamasons.com.

Contact Larry Velez, General Manager, EMEA

Dynamics AX EDI, Dynamics ERP Integration, EDI for Dynamics 365, Certified for Microsoft Dynamics

Partnership to Benefit Microsoft Dynamics Customers in Automotive, Manufacturing, Food, Distribution and Retail Industries.

Chesterfield, United Kingdom; Amsterdam, Netherlands

eBECS, a Microsoft Gold Partner in Delivering and Managing Microsoft Total Business Solutions and Data Masons, a Microsoft Gold Partner providing Microsoft Certified EDI solutions for Dynamics AX and Dynamics 365, are pleased to announce their strategic partnership for B2B business.

“We share a common goal to address the rapidly changing supply chain needs of our B2B customers. By combining Data Mason’s cutting-edge EDI solution with our skills and industry expertise in ERP, we enable ourselves to offer an all up service to customers in this space. We are very excited about the opportunity this partnership offers.” said Sam Dharmasiri, UK Sales Director, eBECS.

Read the complete press release here.

Dynamics AX EDI, Dynamics GP EDI, Dynamics NAV EDI, Dynamics ERP Integration, Dynamics 365, EDI for Dynamics 365

webinar.jpgIf you missed Summit 2017, or our EDI for Dynamics presentations while you were there, you're in luck. We presented the same content following Summit in webinar format.  Led by our Dynamics EDI experts Glenn McPeak and Brian Lynch, these presentations share EDI integration best practices with Microsoft Dynamics ERP end users.

Top 10 EDI Facts You Wish You Knew for Dynamics 365, AX 2012 and Prior

Learn what makes Dynamics 365/AX a great platform for integrating your business activities with customers, suppliers, 3PL's, carriers, and more. This discussion will cover the top 10 facts which are helpful to know in advance of an EDI implementation, the benefits of electronic integration, and the challenges of doing it the wrong way. Presented by Glenn McPeak. WATCH THE ON-DEMAND WEBINAR

 

EDI Made Simple® for Dynamics GP – Integration Without Customization

Dynamics GP customers have options when it comes to EDI or XML integration solutions, but without the right preparation and expertise, the effort can be expensive and complicated. Knowing the right questions to ask and best practices of successful implementations can help you decide on the right integration path for your company. Join us for this critical information and leave being able to turn EDI and eCommerce into a strategic advantage at your organization. Presented by Brian Lynch. WATCH THE ON-DEMAND WEBINAR

EDI Made Simple® for Dynamics NAV – Integration Without Customization

Dynamics NAV customers have options when it comes to EDI or XML integration solutions, but without the right preparation and expertise, the effort can be expensive and complicated. Knowing the right questions to ask and best practices of successful implementations can help you decide on the right integration path for your company. Join us for this critical information and leave being able to turn EDI and eCommerce into a strategic advantage at your organization. Presented by Glenn McPeak. WATCH THE ON-DEMAND WEBINAR
 

Dynamics 365, EDI for Dynamics 365, Dynamics 365 For Operations, Certified for Microsoft Dynamics, CfMD, Certified EDI for AppSource

EDI and eCommerce Platform Has Met Microsoft’s Highest Standard for Partner-Developed Software Solutions AppSource:

Data Masons Software, LLC., the leading provider of integrated EDI and XML solutions for Microsoft Dynamics customers announced today that Vantage Point EDI, the first EDI and eCommerce platform listed on AppSource, is now also Certified for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations. Certified for Dynamics 365 indicates the solution has met Microsoft Corp.’s highest standard for partner-developed software. By successfully meeting all certification requirements, Vantage Point EDI now carries the distinct Certified for Microsoft Dynamics logo.

The Vantage Point EDI and eCommerce platform delivers an all-in-one solution to EDI for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations without customizations. The platform is available for immediate deployment in one of three possible environments, 1) in the Data Masons’ public cloud, 2) private cloud and 3) on-premise. The flexibility to deploy their EDI in a manner that best suits an organization’s business needs is a great benefit. Coupled with Data Masons’ huge library of existing connections and compliance maps, Data Masons can help Microsoft Dynamics customers quickly turn EDI into a competitive advantage through reduced overhead costs and rapid partner onboarding. 

“The certification of Vantage Point EDI highlights our continued commitment to the Microsoft Dynamics platform which we believe to be the premier cloud ERP solution available. Vantage Point EDI enables Dynamics 365 for Operations’ customers to meet the significant challenges of integrating their entire supply chain activities into Dynamics 365 without invasive ERP customizations,” states Glenn McPeak, Principal. 

Solutions that are Certified for Microsoft Dynamics are those that have demonstrated the highest level of development quality and compliance to best practices with Dynamics 365 for Operations. Additionally, customer evidence of successful implementations of the solution is also required and indicates the certified solution works well in real world environments. These solutions can be found on Microsoft’s AppSource, an online marketplace by Microsoft Corporation for enterprises to find and use SaaS solutions from trusted solution providers those that are Gold Certified with a validated solution.

About Microsoft Dynamics
Microsoft Dynamics is a line of financial, customer-relationship and supply-chain management solutions that helps businesses work more effectively. Delivered through a network of channel partners providing specialized services, these integrated, adaptable business management solutions work with familiar Microsoft software to streamline processes across an entire business.

About Data Masons
Data Masons specializes in EDI Made Simple® for Microsoft Dynamics and Macola customers by offering advanced, turnkey EDI & XML solutions. Certified for Microsoft Dynamics, Vantage Point EDI provides an end-to-end EDI processing platform with seamless integration and predictable ownership costs for cloud or on-premise environments - all without expensive and disruptive ERP platform customization. Data Masons' compliance services, product flexibility, extensive EDI and ERP integration knowledge, and partner-driven experience have made Vantage Point EDI the winning choice for high-performance business document integration at more than 1,500 customers.

Dynamics AX EDI, Dynamics ERP Integration, EDI for Dynamics 365, Dynamics 365 For Operations

Get the answers to your EDI for Dynamics AX and Dynamics 365 for Operations questions!

Microsoft Dynamics AX and Dynamics 365 customers have options when it comes to EDI or XML integration solutions. But without the right preparation and expertise, the effort can be riddled with expensive and complicated errors.

On Thursday, August 10, 2017 at 10am AEST (Australian Eastern Standard Time) join MSDynamicsWorld.com and Data Masons as we help you to understand the right questions to ask to make sure you're heading down the right integration path for your company:

  • Should you customize Dynamics AX/365 or embed custom code to handle your requirements?
  • Do prepackaged external applications work?
  • Is a SaaS or an on-premise solution a better way to go? Can you have both?
  • Do you really have to pay document fees?
  • How do Dynamics updates impact your EDI process?

We'll cover these critical questions and more in this informative session. Come away from the event with information that can turn EDI and eCommerce into a strategic advantage at your organization.

Register for the Webinar   "EDI Made Simple for Dynamics AX/D365"

  

Microsoft Dynamics Community, Dynamics ERP Integration, Dynamics 365, EDI for Dynamics 365, Microsoft Appsource, Dynamics 365 For Operations

Data Masons' Vantage Point EDI Solution for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations is the First Dedicated EDI and eCommerce Integration Solution to be listed on Microsoft AppSource

Data Masons Software, LLC., the leading provider of Integrated EDI and XML solutions for Microsoft Dynamics customers, announces the availability of its Vantage Point EDI for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations solution in Microsoft AppSource, an online marketplace by Microsoft Corporation for enterprises to find and use SaaS solutions from the company and its partners. Data Masons delivers the first dedicated EDI solution for Microsoft Dynamics 365 to be certified on Microsoft AppSource.

“For the past 17 years Data Masons has dedicated our development efforts on supporting the EDI and eCommerce integration needs of companies that utilize the Microsoft Dynamics AX, GP and NAV ERP platforms. Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations is a breakthrough cloud-based ERP platform and we are proud to deliver our next generation EDI processing platform for Dynamics 365. Our long-standing alignment with Microsoft’s go-to market strategy means we have the solution set and expertise to support Dynamics 365 around the clock and around the globe. AppSource is the marketplace for Dynamics 365 and being the first dedicated EDI solution available will certainly help drive new opportunities for our valued partners.  Additionally, we will enable companies running Dynamics AX using customizations to handle EDI inside AX to shed those customizations and accelerate their migration to Dynamics 365 for Operations” stated Glenn McPeak, Principal, Data Masons Software.

The Vantage Point EDI Platform delivers an all-in-one approach to EDI for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations without customizations. Available for deployment in the Data Masons’ public cloud, private cloud and on-premise, our customers have the flexibility to deploy their EDI in a manner that best suits their business needs. Combined with Data Masons’ huge library of existing connections and compliance maps, the company helps Microsoft Dynamics customers worldwide quickly turn EDI into a competitive advantage.

Data Masons offers education on EDI for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations in an Executive Brief, "Dynamics 365 - A Radical Change for AX: Critical Information for Companies Upgrading AX to Dynamics 365 for Operations." In this brief, Data Masons shares the vastly improved integration options that have been introduced in Dynamics 365 and compares them to the legacy technologies that were deprecated from the Dynamics AX era.

About Data Masons

Since 1996, Data Masons has specialized in EDI Made Simple®, offering advanced, turnkey EDI & XML solutions for Microsoft Dynamics 365, AX, GP and NAV. Data Masons' Vantage Point EDI solution provides a complete EDI processing platform that enables users to become more competitive through tight EDI integration and ongoing compliance - all without the need for expensive and disruptive ERP platform customization. Data Masons' compliance services, product flexibility, extensive EDI and ERP integration knowledge and partner-driven experience have made Vantage Point EDI the winning choice for high-performance business document integration at more than 1,500 customers across North America. Additional information about Data Masons and its solutions is available at http://www.datamasons.com and follow the EDI conversation at #EDImadeSimple.

EDI Expert Insights, Dynamics AX EDI, Dynamics AX 2012, Dynamics AX EDI Customers, Dynamics 365, EDI for Dynamics 365

Considering a move to Dynamics 365 for Operations?

If so, are you prepared for the impact on your EDI integration? Data Masons are Certified experts in EDI for Dynamics AX and are best equipped to provide the critical information you need for migrating from Dynamics AX to Dynamics 365 and upgrading your EDI solution.

AX to 365 Migration Webinar Recording-header 650x255px.jpg

During this on-demand webinar, MSDynamicsWorld.com and Glenn McPeak, Principal at Data Masons, discuss:

    • How the elimination of the AIF and public cloud impacts integration.
    • The expanded integration opportunities introduced in the Dynamics 365 for Operations platform.
    • How the Dynamics 365 cloud-based, entity driven integration model fits into the existing Data Masons framework based on the AIF and SQL Views oriented integration model.
    • New cloud deployment options for Vantage Point EDI.
    • The upgrade process, planning and budgeting for Dynamics AX Users running Vantage Point EDI.  

 Watch the webinar at your convenience, then let's discuss your move to Dynamics 365 and how we can help simplify the impact on your EDI application.

Dynamics AX EDI, Dynamics GP EDI, Dynamics NAV EDI, Dynamics ERP Integration, EDI for Dynamics 365

Data Masons Achieves the Microsoft Gold Enterprise Resource Planning Competency

Data Masons Software, LLC., a leading provider of Integrated EDI and XML solutions for Microsoft Dynamics customers, announced today it has attained the Gold Microsoft Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) competency. Microsoft grants this accreditation to the top 1 percent of its partner ecosystem that demonstrate a “best-in-class” ability and commitment to meeting Microsoft customers’ evolving needs in today’s dynamic business environment.

To earn a Microsoft competency, partners must successfully complete exams (resulting in Microsoft Certified Professionals) to prove their level of technology expertise. Partners must also submit customer references that demonstrate successful project implementation and pass technology and/or sales assessments. For gold competency accreditation, partners must also execute an annual customer satisfaction survey and, for many competencies, meet a revenue commitment.

For over 20 years Data Masons has been committed to supporting the EDI integration needs of customers and partners utilizing the Microsoft Dynamics AX, GP and NAV ERPs, and most recently added Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations to its supported platforms. The company’s EDI solutions and services deliver an all-in-one approach to EDI for Microsoft Dynamics and is available both as an on-premise installed software product and as a fully cloud-based service, giving companies the flexibility to deploy EDI as needed. Combined with Data Masons’ compliance management services, the company helps Microsoft Dynamics customers worldwide turn EDI into a competitive advantage.

"Adding the Microsoft Gold competency to our portfolio further assures our Microsoft Dynamics partners and customers that we are dedicated to and invested in supporting Microsoft Dynamics technology,” stated Glenn McPeak, Principal, Data Masons Software. “Our customers’ success is highly-dependent not only on our EDI expertise, but our deep knowledge of the Microsoft Dynamics ERPs, and having that dual level of expertise is a significant differentiator for Data Masons as an EDI provider.”

Data Masons is a sponsor of MSDynamicsworld.com’s Virtual 2017 Innovation Expo on June 14, 2017. During this event, attendees can join one of Data Masons’ live educational sessions: “EDI Made Simple for Dynamics 365/AX” at 9:00am and 4:00pm ET; “EDI Made Simple for Dynamics GP” at 10:00am and 2:00pm ET; and “EDI Made Simple for Dynamics NAV” at 11:00am ET.  Find out more about this event, register for the webinars and learn how you can meet Data Masons’ EDI experts...

 

Read Complete Press Release

Dynamics AX EDI, Dynamics ERP Integration, Dynamics 365, EDI for Dynamics 365

If you're considering a move to Dynamics 365 for Operations, are you prepared for the impact on your EDI integration? Let the Certified experts in EDI for Dynamics AX share critical information companies need to know about migrating from Dynamics AX to Dynamics 365 and upgrading their EDI solution.

Join MSDynamicsWorld.com and Glenn McPeak, Principal at Data Masons,  on Tuesday, June 20, at 11am ET as we discuss:

    • How the elimination of the AIF and public cloud impacts integration.
    • The expanded integration opportunities introduced in the Dynamics 365 for Operations platform.
    • How the Dynamics 365 cloud-based, entity driven integration model fits into the existing Data Masons framework based on the AIF and SQL Views oriented integration model.
    • New cloud deployment options for Vantage Point EDI.
    • The upgrade process, planning and budgeting for Dynamics AX Users running Vantage Point EDI.   

Register for the Dynamics  AX to D365 Migration Webinar