With this article, we aim to cover the new features in Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management that were introduced in Wave 1 2022, including inventory and logistics, manufacturing, planning, and a couple of add-ins.
In the inventory and logistics area, we have some enhancements to existing features, which include enhancements to GS1 barcode support, Hazardous materials shipping as well as a new feature for packing work for packing stations.
In the manufacturing area we have enhancements to existing features that include several additional configurations for the production floor execution interface with some new features like register material consumption, new views, and catch weight support on the production floor execution interface.
Finally, in the planning area, we have enhancements to existing features for subcontracting support and new features around centralized calendar maintenance, optimization of existing supply suggestions, and planned orders simplified form.
With inventory visibility, the wave 1 2022 supports WMS-enabled items for your on-hand queries through inventory visibility. In regards to features coming out in this wave, they are available-to-provide (ATP) and inventory allocation.
Then, global inventory accounting – a new service to leverage the Power Platform to value inventory with different currencies and different costing methods. Power BI is now being utilized for insights and analytics into inventory accounting transactions.
Inventory & Logistics
Now, let’s move into more in-depth features review and cover those which are generally available, starting with Inventory & Logistics space, covering enhancements around Hazardous materials as well as the GS1 barcode scanning support.
There is already an existing feature for Hazardous Materials in Dynamics 365 for Supply Chain Management that has been extended with Hazardous Materials Enhancements. The new one can be enabled to get some additional functionality around your master data, like product information management and reporting for shipping documentation.
Master data enhancements include:
- Ability to do a flash point declaration for our goods;
- Expanded stowage description;
- Translations for descriptions.
Reporting area has incremental improvements to all reports (including CMR, VGM, IATA, and more). For example, the CMR report now includes a summary line item for your non-hazardous goods that might be shipping on the same load as your hazardous goods.
Furthermore, usability improvements include all loads, load details, and shipment pages. You now have direct links to the hazardous goods shipping documentation from the action pane on any of the forms.
GS1 barcode scanning
This is another enhancement of an existing feature which is called enhanced parser for GS1 barcodes to extend support for scanning GS1 barcodes on the warehouse mobile application. This includes:
- Following the GS1 General Specification algorithm for parsing (and validation) symbol data;
- Using the longest prefix that matches the configured application identifiers. Previously, you had to specify the maximum length as a configuration field for the application identifier and that is no longer the case;
- You can also now configure decimal application identifiers by using the letter “n” to represent any number of decimal precision;
- There is also a fix for the issue where some encoded data was being incorrectly encoded as field data;
- Most importantly, the parser is now a separate class and thus can be reused providing an extensibility point for manipulating any scanned data before it is input into the workflow fields within the warehouse mobile application.
Packing Work for packing stations is a brand new feature in the inventory and logistics space that delivers a new work order type “Packing” once picking work (i.e. sales order picking) is delivered to a packing station.
The new packing work is linked to the individual load-lines allowing to partially ship any items that we may have packed incompletely. If you have these 12 pieces and you only pack 10 of them into a box – you are actually able to ship out those 10 and leave the remaining 2 on this packing work.
This feature supports the existing “Confirm and Transfer” feature to let open load lines either be transferred or canceled when completed load lines are shipped.
Now, let’s talk about Manufacturing and go over the material consumption and reservations in the production floor execution interface as well as “My Day” view for the production floor execution interface.
Material Consumption and Reservation in Production Floor Execution
There are two features associated with this functionality both of which are still in preview:
Workers can use the production floor execution interface to register material consumption (i.e. post picklist in real-time), batch numbers, and serial numbers. It also lets workers use the reserve materials functionality from the production floor execution interface as needed.
My Day View
Another new feature that was added to production floor execution is the “My Day” view for the production floor execution interface. It shows registrations that the current worker made on a selected date. It also opens showing registrations for the current day and provides a date picker to view other days.
Furthermore, workers are able to check current balances for paid time, paid overtime, absence, and paid absence, which are based on the approval calculations that were run in the time and attendance module.
Finally, the feature shows an overview of the balances within a defined period for selected categories of registrations (such as vacation, standard time, and overtime).
Planning Optimization Adoption
Planning optimization is an add-in service for Dynamics 365 SCM that intends to replace classic master planning. It runs master planning activities on a separate workload with no additional costs.
By running master planning on a separate workload, planning optimization allows companies to run master planning much more quickly and therefore more frequently.
Since planning optimization was introduced, the product team has been working on providing full feature parity with classic MRP in the new service. Currently, it supports most distribution scenarios and as detailed in the release notes for wave 1 of 2022, the majority of remaining scenarios for manufacturing are slated to be completed by October 2022.
It is also important to note that the new features which have been added to the master planning module (such as priority-based planning) are only compatible with new planning optimization and will not be compatible with classic MRP.
When will classic MRP be removed?
Probably the most frequently asked question.
The first step in features being removed from the product is deprecation:
- Distribution scenarios and classic MRP have been deprecated as of April 2022,
- and manufacturing scenarios were deprecated in April 2022.
Each of these dates was announced a year or so in advance of the deprecation. What that means is not that the functionality is removed, but rather that they support of bugs or other support tickets in the functionality is greatly reduced.
Although exceptions are made for bugs and features that have not yet had parity in planning optimization with. If you run classic MRP in your environment you will receive a warning message telling you about deprecation and that you need to move to planning optimization.
The next step after deprecation would be the removal of the functionality from the system. And before anyone starts panicking – removal has not been announced yet, and probably won’t be for a while.
Planning Optimization Implementation
The first thing to do is to run the planning optimization fit analysis in an environment that’s representative of your production configurations. This feature outputs a list of your configurations that are not yet supported in the planning optimization service.
Once you have those results, you should cross-check them with the documentation on the Microsoft Doc site. The fit analysis tool does not capture 100% of the differences between classic MRP and planning optimization, so you would need to make sure you do your research on these details about the differences.
Once you are comfortable with feature parity, you can install the planning optimization add-in via LCS into a nonproduction environment. It is highly recommended to test, i.e. compare classic MRP with planning optimization results.
Finally, you are able to install and enable the add-in in your production environment.