If you deploy Microsoft Great Plains ERP for your company, you may consider the options to contract GP developer or technical consultant to help you with customization logic upgrade, developing, data migration or conversion, complex reporting, integration with external application such as Microsoft Retail Management System (MS RMS), for example
Prior to making your selection decision, you should know GP under laying technologies and programming tools, to be sure that you can ask the right questions. Microsoft Dynamics GP is successor of former Great Plains Software Dynamics and eEnterprise (former name is Dynamics C/S+). In this small article we will walk you through the customization tools:
Microsoft Dexterity, former name is Great Plains Dexterity – this was the heart of Great Plains Dynamics, and it is still the architectural tool. When you look at DYNAMICS.DIC, DYNAMICS.SET, DEX.INI files – these reflects Dex architecture. If you have legacy dex custom logic, developed for you in the past and if you want this logic to be upgraded to new version of your MS Dynamics GP – you probably should seek for the developer, who is familiar and has experience programming Microsoft Dexterity
SQL Stored Procedures. We intentionally emphasize traditional tools, over new ones (such as eConnect or Visual Studio.Net development extensions), expecting that you have legacy integration. Stored Procs were very popular when Great Plains was in transition from Ctree/Btrieve (later on Pervasive SQL Server) to Microsoft SQL Server 6.5, 7.0 and 2000. Stored procs do bulletproof job for all versions of GP and SQL Server (including SQL Server 2005). When you check programmer skills in SQL scripting – you should take into consideration if applicant has GP table structure familiarity: GL00100 – GL Accounts Master, RM00101 RM Customer Master, PM00200 – PM Vendor master are good examples of basic tables – candidate should be at least familiar with these tables
eConnect. Initially developed for eCommerce programmers, eConnect helps you with integrations to GP, however, it is typically good idea that eConnect developer is also familiar with Dexterity tables structure and can potentially extend eConnect with SQL scripting
Reporting. Such tools as SRS (MS SQL Server Reporting Services), Crystal Reports usually need underlying SQL view or stored procedure, where you link multiple GP tables to produce dataset for the report. In report you group the record set and provide parameterization
Legacy Tools. Modifier with VBA and Integration Manager (with VBA scripting). We placed IM here as it is currently under redesign process, where it will be deploying eConnect stored procedures in the future
Andrew Karasev, Alba Spectrum Group, http://email@example.com 1-866-528-0577, 1-630-961-5918, serving GP customer USA and Canada nationwide via remote support. Local service is available in Chicago, IL and Houston, TX areas: Naperville, Aurora, Plainfield, Batavia, Glen Ellyn, Elgin, Romeoville, Oswego, Montgomery, Joliet, Downers Grove, Lisle, Westmont, downtown Chicago and Dallas, Rosenberg, Katy, downtown Houston, Galveston, Sugar Land.