Category Archives: Helpful Information

Why Should Retailers Use The Task Recorder In Microsoft Dynamics AX?

In Microsoft Dynamics AX, there is a unique Task Recorder function. This tool allows you to record any process within the POS system or the Back Office. Processes ranging from Adding a ship-to address for a POS transaction to Invoicing a customer account from a service order can be recorded, saved, and referenced in the  future. The Task Recorder not only automatically  generates a video of the process, but also a Word document with each step detailed and screen shots included.


How can this tool help my business?

Training employees can be time consuming and difficult, especially when teaching the ins and outs of a POS or ERP system that a new employee has never used before. Hands on training is valuable, there is no doubt about that. But for new team members who may not have experience using POS system, remembering all of the steps for each function can seem daunting. The Task Recorder makes it easy for new or seasoned employees to view steps for any process at any time.

Standardization is hard to maintain for some retailers when managers have different preferences or ways of doing things. One manager may store information under a customer’s name, while another manager is storing information under the customer’s company title. Recording the process using the Task Recorder will show the standard way to complete the process, thus increasing standardization.

Time Saving activities are something all businesses can benefit from (time is money, right?) Let’s say you have hired a new store manager, and it is her first time completing payroll by herself. You have shown her the process step by step a few times, and have answered any questions that came up. However, while completing the task, she forgets how to do one step. Without the Task Recorder, this manager would either have to look online for solutions, call other managers and hope they are available to help, or push off payroll until another manager comes in the next day. With this recording capability, she can simply look under ‘Payroll” in the Task Recorder, and watch a video that you have recorded on exactly how to complete it, jogging her memory of the step she could not remember.

Specific to Your Business process steps are hard to find online. Sure, employees can Google how to do something within your POS system if they are in a jam, but that online explanation or online training video may show a company in a completely different industry than your business, or with different products and services. Having recorded process steps easily accessible and showing your business’s actual products, services, and customers generates more accurate process completion steps.

This function makes it easy to record and save specific business processes, whether they be complex and long or simple and quick. The records are stored within the Task Recorder itself, and the videos and Word documents can be saved to your computer, shared on your server, emailed to all store locations, etc. To watch the Task Recorder in action, see the video below:

For further information, email our team or call 860-781-6470.



Top 5 POS Tools For Service & Repair Industry Retailers

For retailers in the service industry, keeping track of service order schedules can pose some challenges. Some repairs take hours longer than originally planned for, technicians get overbooked, and when it comes time to invoice the customers some services can be left out. Managing the service or repair processes for your business with verbal communication, pen and paper, or different software systems increases the chance of errors. It also increases labor, which, let’s face it, we could all benefit from having a little less work.

So, you should let your POS system do that extra work for you. With the right tools, service management is a breeze. The following are the top 5 POS tools every retailer in the service or repair industry should use.

Automatic Conflict Checking  First, you should be able to assign specific technicians to jobs. Then, your POS should notify you if the technician you are trying to schedule for a job is already booked for those hours. This makes scheduling easier for you, and allows your employees to see their upcoming scheduled repair jobs.

Service Stages Unique to Your Process  When tracking the progress of a service order, you should be able to see accurate stages that reflect your actual business processes. If your POS system only shows “In Progress” and “Finished”, you do not know why the item is still in repair or when it will be finished. However, if you are able to input your own service stages, then you would know that that item is “Waiting for parts”, which adds time to the process, giving you and your customer a more accurate time estimation.

Ecommerce Integration  To have an item serviced, customers can either call your location to set up a time or can simply walk in. While these methods are effective, most people these days choose to do things online when possible. Ecommerce Integration allows your customers have an online order submission option.

Invoice Creation Right From Service Order  The service order shows all of the details of labor hours, cost of parts, and other expenses associated with the service. If you use a separate system for creating and tracking service orders than you use for accounting and finance, then you will need to manually input the information from the POS system into the financial system. This process not only increases the chance for errors, but also increases labor.

Electronic Supplier Connection  For different items, you may need to order parts to complete the repair. You also probably keep some parts on hand that need to be re-ordered every so often. Connecting electronically to your suppliers though EDI Updaters allows you to see updated inventory levels at all times. That way, if an item needs a certain part, you can see how many you have on hand and then order the part quickly and easily if needed.


With Microsoft Dynamics AX, All of These Tools Are Available

This video shows the ease of creating, processing, and invoicing a service order using Microsoft Dynamics AX.


Microsoft Dynamics AX makes running your service and repair business easy by offering all of the tools listed above.

  • Microsoft Dynamics AX utilizes automatic conflict checking when scheduling technicians to jobs in the Service Management module. That way, you are never overbooking your employees and you can provide customers with accurate time completion estimates.
  • Microsoft Dynamics AX enables you to create and edit the service stage processes in the Service Management module, providing you with service stages unique to your process. This manifests more transparent communication between you and your technicians, and allows you to more accurately determine the length of time needed for jobs.
  • With the Enterprise Portal, ecommerce integration is easy. Not only does it allow you to track sales, customer history, and items left in customer carts, it also allows your customers to submit service requests online.
  • Because Microsoft Dynamics AX is an all in one system, it has Accounting, Finance, Payroll, Accounts Payable, and Accounts Receivable modules built in. With these capabilities, you can create an invoice right from a service order with a few clicks of a mouse.
  • With the Inventory Management module, electronic connection to any supplier is possible with Microsoft Dynamics AX.

To see some more capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics AX, watch our Business Management Overview, Task Recorder, and POS Cash Sale Features videos. You can also view Microsoft Dynamics AX on a mobile device.

If you would like to speak with a sales representative about Microsoft Dynamics AX, please email us or call us at 1-860-781-6045.


Microsoft Dynamics RMS Next Generation – Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail!

Microsoft has released the next generation of Microsoft Dynamics RMS retail software called Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail!

In the coming months or years you may be interested in migrating to the Microsoft Dynamics AX product.

AX offers all the basic retail features of your current RMS point of sale with the addition of many other included features like: Mobility, General Ledger, Financials, Payroll, Merchandising, E-Commerce, Customer Care, Order Management, Warehouse and Distribution Management. These capabilities can be implemented as a comprehensive solution or as individual business functions allowing you to select the best option for you.

Keeping your Microsoft Dynamics BRAP* current will result in reduced license migration costs.

Microsoft is also making Microsoft AX available in a cloud based subscription pricing model!

Currently we are programming the Microsoft AX Supplier / COOP: catalog, ordering, invoicing, POS data, event, promotion, image and other electronic transactions, depending on the Supplier / COOP. Some Suppliers and COOPS are completed already.
Additionally, a new product called RMH (Retail Management Hero) which uses the same database as RMS, will be available this year. This product is appropriate for those retailers purchasing their 1st POS system or those RMS users that want to move from RMS but not to AX, in the years ahead, 2020 and beyond. Supplier / COOP Updaters are already working with this product, as it uses the same database as RMS.

Microsoft Dynamics RMS
• As Microsoft invests in the future, Microsoft Dynamics RMS will continue to function as it does today. Microsoft support for RMS will extend beyond 2020. If you can’t see an improvement in the bottom line by switching to Microsoft AX, there is no current reason to make any changes to your RMS.
• Additional Microsoft RMS POS and HQ Store Licenses can be purchased by existing RMS licensed users as long as their BRAP* is current, the same policy as always.
• Microsoft RMS remains fully customizable and System Solutions will continue to support and create RMS customizations, Add-Ons, extension(s), Supplier / COOP catalog and warehouse integrations, and 3rd party software integrations.

If you would like to speak to someone about this solution, please email us at [email protected].


EMV Integration

Chip-based credit cards chips

EMV Integration has been a big discussion as of late and many have been driven into a state of panic, but there is no need to panic. First let’s discuss what EMV actually is. EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa. The EMV integration is a joint effort thought up by Europay, MasterCard and Visa to ensure the security and global ability of chip-based payment cards. The big to-do concerning this integration is really about the liability shift, which has been defined as either the issuer or merchant, who does not support EMV, assumes liability for counterfeit card transactions.

The changeover is due to the fact that almost half of the world’s credit card fraud occurs in the U.S. and it is thought that this is due to the fact that we are still using magnetic-stripe cards which are much easier to counterfeit than chip-based cards. Banks currently assume liability for fraudulent card charges, but beginning October 2015, if someone pays with a fraudulent card and you (the merchant) are not set up with EMV capable hardware, the banks are no longer liable.

So let’s get things straight:

  • You are liable for fraudulent charges caused by hacks into your own system.
  • You are liable for fraudulent transactions using your swipe and signature hardware if the customer has a chip card.
  • If you have a new terminal, but the bank has not provided a chip and pin card to the customer, the bank is liable.
  • The party, either the issuer or merchant, who does not support EMV, assumes liability for counterfeit card transactions. The term issuer, refers to banks, credit unions, and any other financial institution issuing credit or debit cards.
  • You are NOT required to switch by law. No matter what, there will be a liability shift, so weigh your options. Customers will still be able to swipe and sign using your existing hardware as of Oct. 2015. Depending on your payment processor, you don’t have to implement EMV. Chip-based cards will still have magnetic strips. There are payment processors that do not require you to switch, or to purchase new hardware, so talk to your Partner or do your homework to find out what your options are.

Below are a few reference links on the topic of EMV:

If you would like to speak with someone about EMV capable devices, please click here.

Don’t Forget To Run Your Year-End Reports!

Don’t forget to run your A/R Balance Report and Inventory Value Reports for year-end before the first of January.

Running your A/R Balance report:
Manager>Reports>Customer>Accounts Receivable Summary, then run without filters, click OK, and print.

Running your Inventory Value Report:
Manager>Reports>Items>Value List, then run without any filters, click OK, and print.

You can memorize the report by clicking the disk (save) button and give your report a name. This way next year you can choose the memorized report and easily run it.

If you would like more information like this or are considering a support plan, contact us and we’ll be happy to discuss your needs with you, [email protected].