Recently I had the opportunity to upgrade my environment to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance PU38 preview. I want to show you how the new features can add more automation to your business processes.
Reconciliation of product receipts with pending invoice lines
This is a feature that we have managed to customize in three different versions of Dynamics ERP: AX 2009, AX 2012 and now Dynamics 365 Finance. And to be fair, the requirement is pretty reasonable from an accounts payable processing perspective. There is no guarantee of receipt of goods until the invoice is sent by the supplier and there must be a mechanism to match receipts with entered invoices. This feature, which uses the process automation framework feature, is quite interesting. It provides a single view of the process execution. Below is an overview of the functionality provided by the Process Automation Framework.
For this particular process, there is a background process which is already created / initialized in my environment and the one highlighted below is the process which matches product receipts to invoice lines. This is available under System administration -> Configuration -> Process automations.
This background process is added to batch jobs with the recurrence you choose, with the name as in the grid.
Here you can see how batch work can be defined for a particular process automation like background process.
You can also see the results by clicking on Show the most recent results.
There are a few settings that would ensure this job would run correctly:
1. Enable invoice matching validation under Accounts Payable Settings -> Invoice Validation: This is an existing setting, which enables match policies, such as three-way match, full match, etc., that you can choose for your organization.
2. Automatically match product receipts to invoice lines and number of reconciliation attempts under Accounts Payable Settings -> Supplier Invoice Automation: These are two newly added parameters. They automatically reconcile product receipts to invoice lines and reconcile receipts with pending invoice lines.
Newly added parameters
Above you can see the number of attempts for each invoice, and like in the settings screenshot, I had only set three attempts.
Now that I’ve explained how process automation works and the prerequisites for getting the job done, let’s take a look at my purchase order, product receipt, and invoice.
After the job has finished running, you can see in the results that the match was successful.
You can see that the invoice has been automatically reconciled upon receipt of the product and the quantity has been updated Product receiving quantity.
This concludes our review of this feature, using an automated process. This gives an idea of the best way to match invoices to receipts, if the invoices arrive before the reception is done at the warehouse level.
Display pre-validation / simulation
Along the same lines, a new button has been added to help AP processors perform validations before attempting to publish. Usually, AP teams would need to fix and try to repost.
Instead, they can post invoices and then process the entry, which gives them additional control and also ensures that all data is entered correctly before attempting to post which would end up coming back in the event of an error. Accountants are do not Usually fans will encounter some errors while posting, so this extra step will make them happy.
A new button, Simulate the publication, appears on the Supplier Invoice List page under the Review tab. Note that this option is only available in the list page view and not in the detail view. The idea is that the AP processor simulates the recording of several invoices simultaneously and saves time.
I put the period on hold, which would usually be taken during the posting process. Even in the case of the simulation post, you can see that this error appears. When you click the Publication simulation results you can see the real error.
Date of receipt of invoice
You may have noticed that there is an invoice receipt date column. This column is available in the Supplier invoice header data entity, which you can use for your integration scenarios. It is populated at today’s date when you manually enter invoices.
Beyond that, analytics and thumbnails are added to the Supplier invoice entry workspace, which gives you specific details about invoices that are not matched correctly, invoices that have not been submitted to the workflow successfully, etc., I cannot demonstrate the analysis due to the limitations of connecting Power BI to my box.
As we have seen, these new features introduced by Microsoft as part of the 2020 Wave 2 version are very useful for AP processors. I’m impressed with the process automation framework and chatted with a few friends about how we can use it for some of the custom processes we’ve created.
See you next time, Happy D365’ing!