See continuation of this post here: Finalizing the Role Tailoring of Microsoft Dynamics NAV – Take II
“Dear partner and customer, it’s up to you!” That’s a little bit provocative and not all true, of course, we would very much like your help in completing the story on how to tailor Microsoft Dynamics NAV to any role.
We at HQ can’t complete the story alone because we don’t know exactly how features and functionality are being used in your solutions. This blog post is therefore meant as a repetition of some key concepts of role tailoring and an invitation to collaborate with you on defining remaining relevant role profiles and then to put together two configurations that we will ship as samples. See attached files.
Role tailoring is mainly represented by the 21 out-of-the-box profiles, which each has a specific Role Center with crafted Cues, selected actions and reports, and a navigation pane representing a selection of the Microsoft Dynamics NAV functionality relevant for the user of this profile. The chart part on each Role Center adds KPI capabilities through a selection of chart definitions. The MyCustomers, MyItems, or MyVendors parts and the notification part give overview and powerful short-cut ability. Role Centers can also contain external collaboration parts, such as Outlook and Connect.
The standard placement and visibility of fields on pages and in columns, as well as the selection of promoted actions, reflect historical choices that we made here at HQ. This out-of-the-box selection is a common denominator and represents a consensus reached when developing the functionality.
With configuration, the game has changed! The following outlines some of the new plays that we can make.
Deeper configuration of a profile:
- List places/list parts and columns: Select visible columns and their sequence. For example, an order processor may need other columns than bookkeepers or warehouse workers do.
- List places and Action Panes: Promote actions or related information that is relevant to the profile and remove those that are in the way. Remove also unused actions from the menus.
- Promoted fields on list places and FastTabs: This requires specific knowledge. A best-guess selection was made for NAV 2009, but no changes have been made since.
- Views on list places: Some views were defined along with the Cues, but we must define more.
- Task pages and card pages: The Action Pane can be tailored, and menu items that are not relevant for the company can be removed to make the central functionality more visible.
- The Freeze Pane is not included in all list places out-of-the-box except in list places that are configured. (You can recognize configured list places by their Freeze Pane.)
- Keyboard shortcuts Ctrl+Page Up and Ctrl+Page Down to browse cards are not used by some infrequent users. The mouse alternative, Previous and Next buttons, has therefore been highlighted on some cards.
- Some list places are referenced frequently and some users wants them easily accessible. The “Open in New Window” function that is available on the right-click menu and on the Actions menu has been highlighted on master data list pages, such as Customers, so that it can be quickly accessed with Alt+Tab when working on a quote or a sales order.
Utilize Action Panes and Activities parts to introduce concepts or ideas to inexperienced users.
The sales order page, out-of-the-box, has Action Pane groups beginning with New and ending with Reports. By creating additional groups and organizing the menu items in a usage sequence, the functionality is surfaced in a manner that makes it easier to on-board. See the sales quote page for an alternative on how to sequence menu items in the Action Pane.
Utilize the ability to create “activity centers” on the navigation pane.
The return process, for both purchase and sales, has been utilized to exemplify how all relevant lists needed to complete a specific task (processing returns) are gathered in one “activity center” on the navigation pane. The role centers for the business owners have out-of-the-box similar structure of the navigation pane.
Request for Collaboration
Please implement and test the attached configurations and provide your feedback on the content and the effectiveness of the configurations. We would also appreciate any extra input you can offer, such as:
- Definitions of good views, e.g. Items and Customers list places
- Which combination of application should we modeled in a company to make powerful configurations
- Anything else?
Concerning the Attached Configurations
To import a configuration, save the configuration XML file. In the RoleTailored client, click Departments, click Administration, click Application Setup, click Role Tailored Client, and then click Import Profiles.
The configurations files for Alicia (purchasing agent) and Susan (order processor) assume that the following functionality is used at the sample company:
- Document Approvals. Approval buttons are highlighted on sales quotes and sales orders
- Warehousing. The company is running WMS, therefore:
- Whse. Shipment and Posted Whse. Shipments are highlighted on Related Information menu.
- The Bin Contents shortcut is promoted.
- Service Management is not used (some information on FactBoxes and FastTabs have been removed)
- Blanket orders are not used.
- Foreign Trade, E-Commerce and Prepayment is not used by the company (removed from all configured transaction document)
- Each place, that a list or card page can be called from, represents a new instance of a configuration, even for the same page. A new configuration needs to be done for each case.
The limitation is valid for a view where some fields may be more interesting than others, such as when looking at released order compared to open orders, however, it was the not the intention to duplicate that principle to the Departments page. For example, the Items list page has been referenced at several departments, but each instance needs to be configured. This limitation has been partly handled in the attached configurations except for list places that are views originated from Cues.
- We cannot configure or remove menu items from the Related Information menu.
- We have no way to ensure a tight and consistent UI between PCs. Configuration and personalization can change from one PC to another. We do not have a “company pattern” or similar.
- Navigation pane items generated from Cues are present on Home and cannot be moved to another activity center.