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DynamicsCon Preview: Why Dynamics GP users should get to know Power Platform

by Jason Gumpert

MSDW is a media sponsor of DynamicsCon 2022, a virtual event for the Microsoft Dynamics ERP, CRM, and Power Platform communities taking place March 15 to 17.

Microsoft Dynamics GP users should be prime candidates for investment in Power Platform-based solutions. While the challenges of bridging the gap between on-premises ERP and cloud-based applications may seem daunting, Microsoft MVP Mariano Gomez believes turning a GP customer into a Power Platform believer is easier than many think.

The tools and steps required to get a first cloud app or Power Automate flow working with GP should make sense to the typical GP power user, a person familiar with various methods of extending a core application to suit their needs without coding, he says. And once that bridge is built, the possibilities  are nearly unlimited for deploying more mobile-friendly apps, enhancing data access, and working with the public cloud systems.

Gomez spoke with MSDW about his presentation on these topics at DynamicsCon 2022. He explained in an interview that his session, "Bring Dynamics GP into the 21st Century with Power Platform" is for people across the GP spectrum, from developers and admins to more typical users. It's important for all of them to understand how powerful the Power Platform's connectors can be, he says, and the presentation will make the case by both explaining key details and calling on his own experiences building Power Apps that integrate with GP.

MSDW: Why did you want to present this session for DynamicsCon?

Mariano Gomez: I want to bring Microsoft Dynamics GP into the 21st century with Power Platform, continuing along the lines of a blog article I wrote a few months ago for Mekorma on leveraging legacy systems with modern technology. Instead of the considerations behind that, this is more of a hands-on type presentation. I'm intending to cover everything you need to get going with Power Platform and GP. So walking through an explanation of the on premises data gateway, some installation and considerations, how you connect to your on-premises data from the cloud, of course, and then a number of hands on walk throughs and how-tos to the point where we get to build our first app, build our first workflow. I even cover how do you incorporate eConnect into this as part of the larger integration strategy by leveraging Power Platform

Is one of the main ideas that Power Platform becomes part of a larger strategy for maintaining existing systems?

Yeah, so if you have any legacy system, whichever that is, that has the ability to open up in some way to these connectors that Microsoft has, or even custom connectors that you can build, you can definitely go through the process of modernizing and providing modern outlets for your data and your applications.

And then you have some layer that does the whole validation of operations with your ERP. So if you have some sort of API like we do with eConnect [for GP], you can still leverage those APIs to get data into the application and validate the application rules, just like anything else. eConnect is sort of the de facto API in this case, these are API stored procedures that exist at the database level that you can call from your Power Automate workflows or even through some other mechanism through your apps. And those apps can leverage those Power Automate workflows to do data operations.

How have you applied some of these tools in your own work?

As Mekorma, we have now delivered two commercial applications on the Power Platform that leverage these capabilities right now. So first and foremost, we started out with PowerApprovals. That's one of our flagship products that integrates with our desktop application. And it does allow remote approvers to not be necessarily inside a GP and be able to approve their payments before they go out. So that integrates with our system. And now we are actually coming out with an invoice capture application that basically allows you to submit your vendor invoices to an email inbox.

And we will take that [invoice], run it through a series of artificial intelligence components built into the Power Platform, and get data out of that invoice and send it over to Dynamics GP, where we have some other pieces of software that allow you to validate and submit those invoices for approval.

Is your session geared toward a technical audience?

No, it's actually to the contrary, there will be a little bit for everybody because if you think about the concept of Power Platform and its orientation to citizen developers, in my opinion that is just another way of saying your typical power users that know a little bit more and can be a little bit dangerous with Excel or have a little bit of knowledge of data access and these kind of things. That's the type of audience that I'm speaking to. Now can a professional developer take advantage of what I'm going to talk about? Absolutely.

I kind of started by defining the profile of your typical power user, because normally these are the folks that are at the edge of the business user community, where they're developing reports or they're even connecting [systems]. I've seen this at other companies where people just hook up Access databases to SQL Server and create forms that update the data. Although that's not something I would recommend, if you know what you're doing, it's certainly an effective way of doing things. But that's the type of profile user that I'm talking about. And for that type of user, which I've seen at customers every single time I run into these situations, now Power Platform gives them a little bit of an edge. The one thing I'm showing them is how to do data access properly: How to leverage existing APIs as opposed to writing directly to tables, which is never something that I would recommend unless you absolutely know what you do.

Are there lessons in your presentation for organizations that are looking to modernize without migrating away from core legacy systems?

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About Jason Gumpert

As the editor of, Jason oversees all editorial content on the site and at our events, as well as providing site management and strategy. He can be reached at

Prior to co-founding, Jason was a Principal Software Consultant at Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC), where he implemented solutions, trained customers, managed software development, and spent some time in the pre-sales engineering organization. He has also held consulting positions at CSC Consulting and Monitor Group.

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