A comparison to standard workflow functionality in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central introduced automated workflow functionality as part of standard functionality. Essentially, these tools provide the ability to minimize errors. They drive transaction velocity and efficiency, and ensure that appropriate parties are notified of “conditional events”.
Business Central has twelve pre-configured, non-editable templates for you to select from, and they can be very helpful. These include:
- Request Approval for Business Central sales order
- Request Approval for Business Central sales quote
- Request Approval for Business Central sales invoice
- Request Approval for Business Central sales credit memo
- Request Approval for Business Central customer
- Request Approval for Business Central purchase order
- Request Approval for Business Central purchase invoice
- Request Approval for Business Central purchase credit memo
- Request Approval for Business Central item
- Request Approval for Business Central vendor
- Request Approval for Business Central general journal batch
- Request Approval for Business Central general journal lines
Once selected, you identify an event condition that will trigger the workflow.
Use Workflow for Business Improvement
The power of agilesWorkflow “kicks it up a notch” in business improvement. Preventing problems that cost time and money to fix, as well as ensuring customer delight and retention, is its forte.
An example is ensuring only valid data is entered in a field. If the data is not valid, the operator isn’t able to proceed. Entering information incorrectly often is the reason for inaccurate shipments, inaccurate pricing, or incorrect customer master record information. Being able to prevent a customer service issue from happening in the first place is a key ingredient in ensuring customer delight.
Another example is having a business rule that prevents the release of a sales order, if its profit margin is below a specified margin in dollars or percentage. Further, this order could be forwarded to the appropriate manager for approval, comment, or declination.
Or, having the ability to set an elapsed time as a trigger for notification. An example is the ability to be notified if an inventory item doesn’t arrive by a specified date, or within a date range.
These are all examples of workflows that are not native to Business Central.
Four features that bring your workflow to the next level
There following are four features of agilesWorklow that bring higher business value than native Business Central workflow:
- Escalation processes – agilesWorkflow has the ability to automate the escalation of issues to the appropriate decision maker. This saves time and ensures accuracy, which prevents costly problem solving down the road.
- Customizable workflows – Although you can “customize” workflow templates that already exist in Business Central, the functionality is limited. It is specifically geared to Sales Orders, Purchase Orders, Items and general journals. But what if you wanted to validate that a customer was entered correctly, or that all fields are filled out on a sales order? All this would have to be developed. And the challenge with native Business Central is the amount of time to create a workflow from scratch (this can take eight hours of development per workflow). agilesWorkflow provides the ability to create any workflow, based on any condition and any trigger, including time durations since an event occurred. This give us the opportunity to optimize ANY workflow that makes sense, not just the workflows Microsoft has prescribed.
- Roles and responsibilities – One of the most effective design components of Business Central is that of the “Role Center”. Microsoft interviewed thousands of companies to identify the typical screens and functionality a business would use for various positions, such as CEO, CFO, COO, Warehouse Manager, Sales, etc. agilesWorkflow gives us the ability to not only leverage these roles in the design of a workflow, we can also identify the responsibilities of this role, thus expanding the capability to zero in on improving efficiency, well beyond the capabilities of native Business Central workflows.
- Timelines on To Do’s – a clear and positive distinction between native Business Central workflow and agilesWorkflow is its ability to trigger an event based on a duration of time. For example, if a sales order needed to be approved, based on special pricing and/or profitability, and hasn’t been attended to within 24 hours, a workflow notification can be enabled to ensure a reminder is sent. These types of time duration triggers are not available in native Business Central, yet are highly valuable in the optimization of workflow within a business.
How can I get agilesWorkflow?
You can get the app directly on Microsoft AppSource or from your partner. agilesWorkflow is available for Business Central. It is also available for Microsoft Dynamics NAV. Don’t have a partner? You can contact one of our partners or also contact us directly.
agilesWorkflow is available on Microsoft AppSource. You can download it directly from there and add it to your tenant.