Business Intelligence is simple with Dynamics GP Smartlists

Business Intelligence

With the intention of generating the information required a firm must be satisfied that the data required is being properly and accurately recorded. The auditors and the senior management demand it. This is where the mid-market systems like Microsoft Dynamics GP shine. With full audit trails and unlimited companies and fiscal years a firm can store its data safely and securely both now and into the future. This is fundamental design of the products and they have been tested and meet the requirements for the compliance by the different agencies.

So how do we generate the information required from the data we enter? The most common and probably the best tool is use Excel. It has many significant advantages, it is fast, convenient and most finance professionals have extensive experience with it. This shortens the learning curve and provides information quickly as the users are using a tool that is familiar and little if any training is required to get a new user up to speed. It is Microsoft’s tool of choice for Business Intelligence, and Microsoft is continually expanding the functionality within the Office application suite.

Commonly the data is printed from the ERP system and entered in to Excel in order to turn this to the business Intelligence information required. Microsoft Dynamics GP provides a number of features that allow the user to obtain the required data.

Internal Reports

These reports provide the user access to the data in the ERP system in a printed format. While it can be added to a new document it is time consuming to transfer the data. Imports from this form require parsing of the data and usually reformatting of the data to generate good information. These reports are used primarily for reconciliation and standard reporting (Aged trial balances, GL summary and detail etc.)

Dynamics GP Smarlists

Dynamics GP Smartlists Interface: Look familiar?


A SmartList in GP is an ad hoc query generator that can format and drive data to an Excel worksheet on demand. This is very useful as it provides the user with the raw data at a point in time. This static data is then available to create the information required for the business decision makers

Excel Reports

These are reports written directly in Excel that contain live links to the GP database. This extracts the data each time the sheet is opened or refreshed by the user. Using this extraction the information generated is updated frequently and available quickly for decision makers.

SQL Reporting Services

These reports are a like the internal reports in that they are formatted for direct use as information but they also contain the ability to export the report, formatted and parsed, to excel for further analysis. They can easily be scheduled to run and can be sent to the desired recipient. History for these reports is also stored as required to provide audit and continuity reporting if required.

With over 30 years of experience working with customers in Western Canada, DTM Systems specializes in providing meticulous and practical I.T. solutions for businesses of all sizes and industry. DTM is the only I.T. Service provider in the Lower Mainland that provides expertise in mission critical data, ERP deliverables, consulting, managed services and project management. For more information about Business Intelligence and other Microsoft Dynamics GP Products, fill out a contact form or email and we will get back to you shortly.

Dynamics GP Guru

For over 18 years, Don has led the way in the Business Solutions division at DTM. In business, his expertise lies in masterminding accounting systems, and in his personal time, it’s the game of golf. He brings his natural synergy to both: analysis, critical path thinking, problem solving and integrity. He fundamentally believes in a level playing field, in equity and the improvement of the whole: a philosophy and practice that continually elevates his game on the course, and at DTM. Don has previously written about Canadian Payroll Features and Enterprise Resource Planning.

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