New Business Process Modeler features


Today we released two new features in the Business Process Modeler. Here’s what you need to know:

Remove gaps from a diagram

A common ask we hear from customers is a way to modify a diagram without creating gaps. You can now right-click any gap, and then select Remove gap from the app bar. The item will no longer be tracked as a gap. If you want to bring a gap back, you can just edit the item and a gap will be created again.

We also hope that this will help you model a broader set of business processes that cannot be performed in AX.

We’ve also set lines to no longer be gaps.

 

Open AX 2012 from a diagram

Have you ever been looking at a diagram, then gone and navigated to that form in AX 2012 for a demo or investigation? Now you can do this quicker than ever. Simply right-click a block in the diagram that was generated by task recorder and that corresponds to an AX form, and then select the Open AX 2012 button in the app bar. This will launch a click-once app which will launch the default AX 2012 client, and navigate to the appropriate page.

If you don’t see the button on a particular block, it’s most likely because we’re not sure how to open the form. It may require some data as input that we’re not yet sure how to provide.

 

We hope you enjoy the new functionality, and as always we look forward to your feedback!

Comments (7)

  1. Alex says:

    As per usual….some screenshots would be much appreciated. Thanks

  2. Frank Paaskesen - CGI says:

    Since AX is one of the most flexible and configurable ERP systems in the marketplace, which enables us to fulfill both simple and advanced requirements, we need a configurator or a questionaire based functionality in order to build the customers processes.

    This should also cover if customers has multiple variant of processes exampelwise selling different products and services with or without product configuration.

    In other words its simply not enough to have "one process" for each process in APQC – this doesnt give the flexibility of AX credit.

  3. Jared Lambert says:

    Hi Frank,

    I agree completely that we can't represent all that AX can do with the APQC model. We've got a few thoughts here:

    1. We'll be expanding the libraries provided by Microsoft to include a more representative set for specific areas. This will be an area where we continue to deliver more content.

    2. Today, you can model these extra capabilities yourself. Just add another hierarchy level below the "leaf" node where you had one process before. In each of the leafs below the original node, you can model each of the different ways that you could do that particular process. You can even take APQC and make these customizations if that works better for you.

  4. Jess Pedersen says:

    Hi Jared,

    When you were constructing the business process modeler – did you evaluate other process frameworks? e.g. Supply Chain Operations Reference Model (SCOR) which I belive has a certain set of benefits which is very aligned with AX's capabilities within supply chain and manufacturing.

    Furthermore I have a few suggestions for improving the business process modeler.

    1. Often times a BPM exercise is a combination of business processes, system processes and conceptualizations. It could be great if it is possible to draw in the process diagrams without affecting the datamodel / process model (mainly for overviews and conceptualization or grouping of certain processes)

    2. Differentiate your modelling approach. 1(1) For simple flows model more variations within the same flow. (2) in more complex area (say supply chain planning) try to only model the happy path flows since the complexity will drive for lack of overview. Likewise it could be great to discuss and decide on which levels are the cut-off point between PCF from APQC and AX actual process model.

    3. Not sure if it is possible – but it could be valuable to link to process flows together as main processes and subprocesses and the ability to change between these two swinline diagrams in the LCS BPM tool.

    4. Since AX is being geared towards the enterprise segment – the end-2-end business processes are a mixture of different enterprise IT solutions combined. Therefore make it possible to model not only AX processes, but the ability to indicate if a certain process step / activity / task is say CRM related.

    5. Improvements within reporting and generation of documentation / test script based on the modelled processes would be a great asset for speeding up deployment.

    6. A process driven implementation methodology will often require to being able to scope in / scope out process categories, processes etc. Therefore make it possible to indicate which processes is in/out of scope.

    I know this is only the start of Lifecycle services and really looking forward to the coming release of this highly valuable BPM tool for Dynamics AX.

  5. MansoorInd says:

    Hi Jared,

    I did download the Tech Conf 2014 video on LCS and was interested in the setting up of a test/learn environment for AX 2012 R3 on Azure using LCS. Is this possible at this stage because I could not find the link on LCS webpage from where I could load the Contoso data for AX 2012 R3.

    Thanks

  6. Jared Lambert says:

    Hi MansoorInd,

    The R3 on Azure feature is not yet available to the public. This will go live side by side with the 2012 R3 release on May 1st.

    Jared

  7. MansoorInd says:

    Thank you Jared. Will wait for R3 release date then. Cheers!