In a challenging and fast-paced economic landscape, businesses must consider using technology solutions that will enhance efficiencies, facilitate business analysis and forecasting capabilities, and improve business processes – particularly as the pandemic-induced remote working scenario is likely to remain as part of the new normal.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 is essentially a solution which helps simplify, automate and streamline business processes within one system, so everyone in the organisation is singing from the same hymn sheet. Microsoft Dynamics 365 – or D365 – is a cloud-based, intuitive system that seamlessly integrates all business operations in one, 360-degree view. It is continuously developed for a technologically evolving business world and always offers a single version of the truth. D365 offers a variety of modules, such as Sales, Service and Supply Chain Management, empowering companies of any size to use (and pay for) what is pertinent to their business. It facilitates employees to work in a more efficient way, and make informed decisions to adapt quickly in evolving market conditions.
If you’re not sure what Microsoft Dynamics 365 is or what it can do for your business, read on. In this blog post, we’re focusing on some of the benefits of the D365 Finance and Supply Chain Management modules and in a couple of weeks we’ll be looking at Sales, Service and Marketing, so do come back!
Cloud-based for accessibility, security and reduced maintenance
You may be recording your business data on disparate spreadsheets held on company servers, or multiple software systems which do not integrate with each other. Financial information might be held in one silo, accounts payable in another and purchase orders in another. They may not automatically be saved or each user accessing them may not be working from the latest saved document. Keeping data in different locations or on different systems can really hinder a business. If your system is on premise and requires maintenance, this is also something that can be restrictive and costly for your business.
Microsoft D365 is cloud-based, offers role-based access and workspaces, is highly secure and is automatically updated so you’re always accessing the latest version. Everyone in the organisation is working from the same data. A unified approach to business operations that cannot be emulated in manual systems.
Financial visibility is the key to maximising profits
Microsoft D365’s Finance module automates the processes that can cost a business valuable time, and the biggest of these – which involves manual processes with multiple and often menial tasks – is accounting. Dealing with supplier invoices, managing credit risks and payments, and bank reconciliation are just some of the labour intensive tasks associated with accounting in any organisation. Microsoft D365’s Finance module automates these processes. Submitting invoices and matching supplier invoices to product receipts or purchase orders can be automated, as can the effective management of credit risk and collections – which as well as saving time, improves cash flow. In the case of a subscription-based business, automating recurring billing is a real time-saver, and something that Microsoft D365 Finance takes care of.
Financial visibility comes from effective planning, budgeting and forecasting – all key elements in running a business. These activities rely on data which is accurate and in real-time, and when this data is only available across multiple and disparate siloes, it can greatly lengthen the process of monitoring and analysing data to make informed business decisions. Microsoft D365 Finance holds all data within an integrated system, which means that current and future trends can be identified, enabling businesses to act fast to capitalise on opportunities and manage risk. The Finance module’s intelligent budget proposal feature accesses current and historical data to create robust proposals, reducing time and effort spent on budgeting and provides accurate proposals on which the business can act and adapt quickly. Achieving this using data from various manual systems is a mammoth task.
Reducing risk and maintaining compliancy
Another key consideration for businesses operating in sectors with changing regulatory requirements and financial complexity, such as multi-currency and global transactions, is adapting to meet changing requirements. In Microsoft D365 Finance, there is the capability to create template-based configurable business documents such as invoice and financial statements, which makes adapting to changing requirements fast, easy and inexpensive – as there is no need for code changes. Furthermore, businesses can improve governance, reduce risks and be compliant, as Microsoft D365 Finance offers 43 countries or regions and 48 languages straight out of the box.
Supply Chain Management
Navigate the minefield that is supply chain management
There are so many elements of operating a successful supply chain for those managing production or warehouse environments. Planning stock levels around fluctuating demand, creating operational efficiencies, managing logistics such as transportation and maintaining assets are key areas. Managing these tasks separately in different systems is counter-productive to say the least.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management provides artificial intelligence based demand forecasting – so you’ll never need to worry about overstocking, or not having enough to meet demand, as you’ll know where the peaks are ahead of them happening. And when it comes to inventory management, the in-memory services feature, which helps plan production and distribution in near real-time, will ensure the right stock is in the right place at the right time. The automation of production scheduling and resource allocation helps minimise overtime and improve equipment use. To execute all of these tasks manually in different systems can present a logistical nightmare, particularly in an evolving landscape where customer demand is less predictable. With buying and procuring habits changing all the time, being armed with artificial intelligence-based foresight is a great asset for any business in this sector.
Optimise assets and improve overall equipment effectiveness
For manufacturing businesses, D365 Supply Chain Management’s ability to maximise asset uptime and longevity with the help of predictive, corrective, condition-based and preventative maintenance can transform operations. Throughput and quality can be improved by using Internet of Things (IoT) and mixed reality; all possible within this D365 module. Downtime is the enemy of any manufacturing plant and where equipment may be located across multiple sites, automating resource scheduling for maintenance for optimal efficiency can be done through D365 Field Service.
Implementing solutions such as D365 connects data and processes, creating a centralised information source that facilitates informed decision using real-time financial data. Regardless of sector or organisation type, a future-proof approach to integrating processes and enabling new working practices is an investment no business can afford not to make.
We’ll cover benefits of other modules from the Microsoft Dynamics 365 solution in the next instalment of ‘What is Microsoft Dynamics 365?’. This will include Sales, Marketing and Service. If you can’t wait and want to find out more now about how Microsoft D365 can help your business, get in touch so a member of our expert team can understand your goals, undertake a system health check and prepare you a demo of this powerful, intelligent system.