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Microsoft Manufacturing Software: AX 2012 & Solutions for All

Microsoft Manufacturing Software

Checking out various software products is critical to get the right ERP solution for yourMicrosoft Manufacturing Software organization. Microsoft, one of the top software developers for mid-sized and large enterprises, puts at your disposal four different intelligent business solutions under the Dynamics ERP range: GP, NAV, SL and AX. To help you choose the best Microsoft manufacturing software alternative for your MRO organization, the current post presents a succinct comparison of these systems.

Dynamics GP

Equipped with strong, extensive functionality, Dynamics GP is a wonderful solution for an organization struggling to meet requirements for light distribution and financial reporting. GP can help you:

  • create and customize manufacturing, purchasing and financial statements
  • access data remotely and share it via Web-based interfaces
  • expand system capabilities by creating real-time connections with other Microsoft manufacturing software applications
  • address different areas of finance, including analytical accounting, budgeting, cash-flow management, fixed asset management, general ledger and many others
  • streamline order, distribution, sales, purchase and inventory processes  
  • manage preventive and ad-hoc maintenance
  • connect activities with timelines and budgets to ensure on-time and within-budget project completion
  • get control over stock costs, material flows, inventory levels and other areas relating to production  
  • build employee records that include personal profiles, promotion opportunities, and training, attendance, salary and benefit tracking

Dynamics NAV

Although this Microsoft manufacturing software product provides ERP functionality suited to organizations operating in any industry, it includes advanced functions especially created for distributors and manufacturers. With Dynamics NAV, you're able to:

  • reduce inventory levels, while offering your customers superior service; this is valid especially if you run assemble-to-stock and assemble-to-order processes  
  • gain enhanced visibility into the actual costs of projects, operations, products and departments, while forecasting short-term cash flow
  • use two special reporting functions (Excel Add-In and Excel Integration) to boost productivity and get better control over different business areas
  • access graphical views of inventory levels for specific items
  • optimize supply planning to avoid backorders and stockouts
  • integrate manufacturing with warehouse and service activities in order to track inventory more accurately and reduce stock levels; this will help you free up more cash for possible investments

Dynamics SL

Dynamics SL was created for project-oriented organizations. By combining strong project management features with financial management tools, this Microsoft manufacturing software solution provides:

  • special financial management functions that have the role to assess profitability based on the projects you intend to complete
  • export features for transferring data from SL to Excel sheets
  • special upload tools, which you can use to attach documents to SL records
  • accurate cost and budgeting forecasts, so important for your overall activity
  • reporting functions enhanced with robust query tools, which give you the possibility to create custom views
  • tight integration with different order and inventory management applications

Dynamics AX

Considering that Microsoft has invested more money into Dynamics AX than into the aforementioned Microsoft manufacturing software alternatives, there’s no wonder that this solution stands out from the others. Dynamics AX 2012 allows you to:

  • update data and share real-time information with staff, business partners and clients
  • efficiently schedule jobs and resources at multiple locations
  • adjust production flows to reduce delivery lead times
  • improve supply chain management across your organization
  • place orders in a productive way, while managing mass changes and smart routing
  • create financial reports that you can share with business partners and legal entities
  • use financial information to manage expenditures and achieve better control of procurement
  • plan operations based on your employees’ availability, knowledge and skill set
  • help employees work more efficiently by enabling them to complete specific tasks online
  • manage human capital through task lists, reports and alerts pertinent to certain job functions
  • develop staff spending and approval policies at a granular level
  • follow up on customer collections and service
  • leverage and fine-tune your system architecture to increase productivity 
  • develop multi-year budgeting for any project
  • manage particular workflow items relating to year-end processing
  • create and manage projects to meet tight time and budget limits
  • create product and master definitions for sets of products to maintain centralized product repository control across your organization

Although all Microsoft manufacturing software solutions are great products, Dynamics AX is by far the most complex system you can get for your MRO organization. That’s simply because it’s the only one that addresses a wide variety of business areas, including manufacturing, service, supply chain, distribution, financials, accounting, sales, marketing, project management, procurement and sourcing.

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