The "back door" to Item, Customer, and Vendor Templates in Dynamics 365 Business Central that is worth another look

July 22 2020

Are recent changes in how you work forcing you to take a second look at the tools and controls you use to ensure accuracy in master data setup? Do you find yourself constantly tracking down the source of entries posted to the wrong general ledger account because the posting groups are not properly defined on newly created Items, Customers or Vendors? Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central Configuration Templates, if implemented properly, may provide the answer. 

Maybe you tried to use “Save as Template” and “Apply Template” but stopped because you found it lacking due to the limited number of fields in these templates. Well, let me share a little-known secret. There is a “back door” that allows you to turbo boost template functionality!

The setup I am going to show you 1) does not require a developer, 2) takes minimal setup, 3) does not require you to be super technical, and 4) is a change you can make today. Word of caution - since master data impacts multiple functional areas (sales, purchasing, finance, warehousing, etc.), I strongly recommend you coordinate your templates with everyone that uses these records.

Let’s set up an item template as an example.

1. Begin by determining how you might classify the different types of items in your system. For example, you may have items you purchase and make, inventory and non-inventory, or finally domestic and imported. I think you get the idea. Often how you classify your items may directly correlate to the Item Category or Service Item Group, or maybe it is more financial and correlates to the Inventory Posting Group, General Product Posting Group or a specific set of Dimensions assigned. Regardless, determine if more than one item classification exists, and thus, more than one item configuration template may be needed.

About Cynthia Priebe

Cynthia is a Senior Trainer and Consultant with New View Strategies, the go-to source for actionable training and process efficiency in Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. Cynthia is recognized for her ability to look at operational and reporting challenges with a fresh take and propose solutions using core features and functionality. Focused for the past 15 years on Dynamics NAV and now D365 Business Central, she adores helping clients and partners with solving problems and enhancing productivity. She is a regular presenter at industry conferences, a Dynamics Communities Academy instructor, Co-Leader of the BCUG/NAVUG Great Lakes Chapter, and a Dynamics Advanced Credentialed Professional. You can reach Cynthia on Twitter and on LinkedIn.

At New View Strategies, all our experts have “been there, done that” – we are experienced, former users who have walked in your shoes. We know how to improve the utilization of your Dynamics NAV / D365 BC system, thereby increasing cash flow, facilitating growth, and creating a better experience for your users. We can help with your business processes, drive real change via a custom class delivered at your site, or choose from over 40 online and in-person classes at

More about Cynthia Priebe


genns's picture

Thanks for sharing this valuable tool with the community!
One important thing that is worth mentioning...It's important that if you have multiple templates for a table, you want to be sure the same fields are set in each template.
Here's why:
Sometimes users apply the wrong template, realize their mistake, and then apply the correct template. If the first template puts a value in a field but the 2nd template expects to leave that field blank, then that field will be left with the "bad" value from the 1st template.

You can't currently use a template to blank a field, so I added a tiny mod so that when a template was applied, if a field had data in it, and the template was blank/zero, then the template would overwrite the data to blank/zero.
We also have a report which makes sure that every template has the same fields listed. That way we either set a value or we blank/zero the same fields--regardless of which template is selected. I highly recommend doing this too.
If you like this idea, please vote for it here:

If you are in BC14 or earlier you can make the change yourself by commenting out row 21 in Codeunit 8617.

Cpriebe's picture

This is an excellent point Greg. Thank you for sharing!