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Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012: Approval Options for Journal Entries


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    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 provides two approval options for journal entries. This blog explains the difference between the approval methods and the benefits and drawbacks of using each.

    Approval group

    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 uses the concept of user groups throughout the system. User groups can be set up in the System administration module by creating the user group ID and selecting the user group participants on the Users tab.

    Dynamics AX

    Journal names are created for each type of journal in AX. You can set up multiple journal names for the same journal type to differentiate types of entries. A user can assign different numbering sequences to each journal name. In addition, a user can select different approval methods for each journal name.

    To assign an approval group to a journal name, select the journal name, click the Active checkbox then choose the approval user group on the Journal names form.

    Dynamics AX

    When a general journal entry is created, the user who creates the journal will complete the journal and select ‘Report as ready’ from the Approval drop-down list.

    Dynamics AX

    Any user in the approval group can then review and approve a journal by selecting ‘Approved’ from the Approval drop-down list. Once the journal has been approved by one of the users in the approval user group, the journal can be posted by a user with access to post journals.

    Benefits of approval group

    • Easy to set up and maintain
    • Easy to change users in approval group
    • No need to configure or maintain workflow
    • The ‘Reported as ready’, ‘Approved by’ and ‘Rejected by’ users are recorded on the journal

    Drawbacks of approval group

    • No notifications are sent to inform approvers that the journal has been reported as ready and can be approved. (An alert rule can be created to alert approvers.)
    • No option to use conditions to route a record for approval
    • Only one approver is needed for approval, unable to configure requirement for multiple or majority/percentage of user approval

     

    Approval workflow

    AX has functionality available to configure an approval workflow which can include multiple approval steps. For instance, in the workflow configured below, first the journal is sent to a reviewer for approval. Next, the journal is sent to the submitting user’s manager for approval using managerial hierarchy functionality. You can also use conditional decisions steps to route to certain approvers under certain conditions or automatically approve the record if certain conditions exist.

    Dynamics AX

    Once the approval workflow is configured, it can be assigned on the journal name by enabling the Approval workflow checkbox and selection the workflow ID in the Journal names form.

    Dynamics AX

    When a general journal entry is created, the user who created the journal will complete the journal and then click Submit to submit the record to the workflow for approval.

    Dynamics AX

    The record is processed through the workflow and once it has completed all approval steps, the journal can then be posted by a user with access to post journals.

    Benefits of approval workflow

    • Many approval assignment options available (User, user group, security role, managerial hierarchy)
    • Conditional decisions to route the record to certain approvers under certain conditions or automatically approve the record if certain conditions exist
    • Notifications (pop-ups or email) can be set up to be sent to approvers and the submitting user upon approval or rejection of the record
    • Tracking details on workflow steps and approvers is recorded and available for review in the Workflow history form

    Drawbacks of approval workflow

    • Approval workflow must be configured and maintained
    • Positions and signing limit policies may need to be configured and maintained to enable use of managerial approval routing
    • Stopped workflows must be addressed by a system administrator

    This post was written by Robin Ellsworth, AX Application Consultant at Tridea Partners. Tridea is a leading Microsoft Dynamics provider.

    3 Responses to “Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012: Approval Options for Journal Entries”

    1. Aris says:

      Thank you for this excellent Explanation!

    2. John says:

      Hello,

      Would it be possible for a journal submitter to also be an approver?

      Is there any workflow functionality to prevent this?

      Thanks.

      • Hi John,

        Once a record is submitted to the workflow for approval, it will follow the approval routing specified in the workflow. In an approval step, there is no option which would prevent the scenario you described of the submitting user also being the approver for the same record. You would have to take that requirement (that the submitting user should not be able to approve their own records) into account when you are designing the workflow to address it. If you have any other questions – please contact us at [email protected].

        Thank you,
        Tridea Partners

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