Today, a good reporting tool is a necessity for any organization that is committed to growing into a strong, viable company. This blog entry is about organizing the gamut of capabilities and options, so that picking the right report writer is easier for any finance team or company that is using Microsoft Dynamics GP.
A financial reporting solution generates tailor-made reports utilizing transactional data, whether that be from an online analytical processing (OLAP) cube, a data warehouse, or directly from Microsoft Dynamics GP system. GP has its own native reporting tool, simply called Report Writer, and there’s also the retired Microsoft FRx or its replacement, Management Reporter (MR). However, a number of modern vendor-produced report writers on the market allow companies to create reusable reporting templates that showcase the data corporate decision-makers need to analyze the organization’s status and then, make educated plans to move forward. When searching for a reporting tool to work with Dynamics GP, there are a handful of aspects to consider, from data integration options to what type of platform and the user friendliness of the product, among other things.
Dynamics GP has had its own built-in reporting functionality, but there is tons of internet feedback buzz complaining about its limitations. Additionally, a lot of finance teams have used Microsoft’s FRx, which has been replaced by Management Reporter. Initially free, with additional licensing and consulting fees, FRx and MR are limited to General Ledger reporting that is not Excel or web-based. If an organization is going to invest in licensing, consultants, and/or support, there are several options on the market that are easier to learn than FRx or MR that also offer accounting and business logic, beyond general ledger reporting, live integrations to GP and CRMs, and have reusable templates.
Data access is an important factor to consider when choosing which reporting tool to purchase. It is critical to ask, does the report writer pull data from an OLAP cube, a data warehouse, or some other proprietary staged data source, or does it integrate live from Dynamics GP for real-time analysis? Live integrations translate to data not needing to be routinely uploaded to a separate database, which is an additional cost, whether in development or purchasing a data storage product. However, depending on the number of users running queries in Dynamics to build reports and how big the data queries are, it could slow down the whole network. FRx and MR, as well as Solver’s BI360, Jet Reports, and BizNet are all offering live integrations to Dynamics GP and other systems, while most report writers offer the option to run reports from a separate reporting database or cube. In addition to making a choice regarding live integration versus data storage, it is also important to consider the platform on which the reporting tool functions.
To continue learning more about what to consider when picking the best reporting tool for Dynamics GP, read the rest of this article at
by Solver, Inc.