Blog Post

Dynamics 365 2021 Wave 1 Release Highlights: ERP

Twice a year, Microsoft announce new features and updates across their Dynamics 365 platform. Here, the Tisski team have picked out some new additions to Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) that users should be keeping an eye out for in the 2021 Wave 1 release.

Dynamics 365 Business Central

From April 2021, D365 Business Central will allow organisations to have more control over the dimensions posted with each transaction.

For each of the master data records (customers, vendors, items, resources, etc.), Business Central users will soon be able to specify what dimensions values are allowed to be posted with each respective master data record. For example, should an organisation need to limit which country or area they are permitted to sell their products to, they can have a dimension for area or country and specify at item level which areas or countries can receive those items.

A clear error message will be displayed when attempting to post a transaction for a dimension value that is not allowed.

Dynamics 365 Finance

D365 Finance is introducing the ability for costs and expenditures forecasted within the project management and accounting module to be integrated into the cash flow forecast, providing a more accurate and complete picture of future cash movements.

In addition, Microsoft’s AI-driven Financial Insights application will now feature: customer payment predictions, helping users understand whether invoices will be paid on time; intelligent budget proposals, enabling draft budgets to be created based on financial history; and treasurer workspace, enhancing an organisation’s ability to effectively analyse and manage its cash.

Dynamics 365 Human Resources

Building on its rich benefit functionality, D365 Human Resources will soon allow benefit administrators to add custom fields to forms in this workspace, including plans and eligibility rules, so that details pertinent to the organisation can be recorded in the system against benefit records.

Administrators already have the ability to add custom fields to many other areas of the application and, from April, it will also be possible to select such custom fields from employees, jobs and position records as part of processing benefit eligibility.

Benefit administrators will also gain the ability to notify employees and newly hired workers about key events and enrolments; this builds on the enhancements provided in the 2020 Wave 2 release that enabled views of new hire enrolment and open enrolment progress.

A new benefit summary statement (available for preview in July 2021) will offer benefit administrators a view of total average spend by benefit type to help plan and manage the organisation’s benefit offering.

Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management

In D365 Supply Chain Management (SCM), asset maintenance plans can now consider fluctuating asset usage with maintained orders triggered only when user-defined internals are met. Meanwhile, the core supply chain Internet of Things (IoT) has grown to include the ability to track the health, state and usage of assets, and present this information visually for shop floor/production operatives.

External shipping carrier integration is being introduced to enable the transfer of packaging details, and receive and rate and tracking numbers, meaning the rate can automatically be added to a sales order as a miscellaneous charge. The new landed cost feature will increase an organisation’s supply chain visibility by defining transport legs to inbound shipment processes, providing a more detailed view of stock and also greater clarity for onward sales and customer service processes.

With face recognition being rolled out, users will benefit from a hands-free sign-in experience and organisations will be at lower risk of falling victim to fraud, while clock-in and clock-out support and optimised job lists will improve worker efficiency and user experience.

Dynamics 365 Commerce

‘Shop similar looks’ is coming to D365 Commerce, leveraging AI to discover products that are similar to a primary product using images of a shoppers’ items, increasing customer satisfaction by allowing them to find what they’re looking for more easily.

Enhanced discount logic will provide greater flexibility when offering discounts on certain items (for example, new product promotions or price matches) and native support for metadata is being introduced to e-commerce product pages to simplify the use of existing product search data and drive improved search engine results.

Dynamics 365 Project Operations

For D365 Project Operations, the 2021 Wave 1 release introduces the ability to track and estimate the consumption of non-stock materials on projects, including the tracking of use during the product cycle and the pricing during the sales order cycle, and invoicing non-stock material costs from vendor invoices.

Integrated task-based billing will allow billing to be based on specific project activity, reflecting the variable nature of project billing cycles and patterns throughout the lifecycle. Tasks can soon be associated with project contract lines, ensuring consistent billing across a range of activities and enabling project managers to mark work as chargeable and non-chargeable when creating invoice lines.

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