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Microsoft demonstrates expanded reporting tools in Dynamics 365 for Operations (AX 7), from Entity Store to Power BI

by Wendy Scheuring
Contributing Writer, MSDW

"ERP is all about capturing business data," said Milinda Vitharana, Microsoft principal program manager for Dynamics 365 for Operations, at the AXUG Summit in Tampa, Florida, this week. "But, data itself isn't that interesting. It's what you do with it."

The duo  of Power BI and Dynamics AX- soon to become Dynamics 365 for Operations - renders static reports - and the labor intensive interpretation of them - impractical. Microsoft is stressing to users that with the next generation of AX software they can now work from interactive dashboards and reports that highlight exceptions and predict future trends. Routine or mundane tasks can be automated, enabling the user to take action.

Reporting options

The four current reporting options for Power BI within AX, according to Vitharana, are:  operational experience, documents, financial statements, and data exploration.

  • Operational Experience. These reports can be consumed by office personnel who directly interact with customers, analytics, and real-time transactions.
  • Documents. Includes printed and electronic business documents. Ready-made document designs are available, with easy migration from 2012 to AX7.
  • Financial Statements. Basically, this type of reporting is data exploration using Management Reporter. Self-service reports, which were based on one view with different sets of parameters, will be a thing of the past.
  • Data exploration. Microsoft cognitive services, in the form of algorithms and recommendations, is used in context to immediately contribute to user productivity. Apps are currently under development to create a future rich system.

Workspaces in Dynamics 365 for Operations

The driving force behind Power BI is data, which can be obtained in a variety of ways, including AppSource.

"Think of Power ...

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About Wendy Scheuring

Wendy Scheuring has published hundreds of feature articles and business profiles in local and national publications and on the web. She’s taught the art of writing for nearly 20 years, and is a published co-author, a ghostwriter, and an editor of a variety of books. Her focus is on writing strong, solid, appealing content that will engage your readers. Learn more at: