New and planned for Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management

Microsoft team continues to improve its products with a release of new features through the April-September period. We have already covered how and what is about to be realized for Microsoft 365 Finance (don’t forget to check it out in case you’ve missed one!) – so this one, following the pattern, will shed light on the features planned for D365 Supply Chain Management to further improve organization’s visibility, resiliency, and efficiency of their supply chain management.

Asset Management

Let’s start with the asset management category, which has 4 core improvements:

  1. Work order grouping – the update gives an ability to set specific rules to group work order lines under a single work order. This makes maintenance workers more agile since they can group work orders, for example, per asset type or functional location.
  2. Maintenance work billing – quite a useful feature since it aims to improve the process of creating, billing, and processing maintenance work on customer’s assets. So now, you can connect customers with assets they own; view customer’s assets when you create an order; configure a parent project for each customer, record items/expenses/etc. to create an invoice for a customer afterward; and more.
  3. Maintenance planning – literally helps teams to plan required maintenance of equipment based on accumulated asset counter values. With it, you can configure the system to generate planned maintenance when a certain trigger is triggered (i.e. a machine has been running for 1k hours since the last maintenance).
  1. Asset usage tracking – the feature aims to deliver better tracking capabilities as well as improve productivity, quality, and efficiency of assets on the manufacturing floor. Since it is enhanced with IoT, you can track the health, state, and usage of assets on the floor.

Inventory and logistics

The next set has inventory and logistics improvements, which are as follow:

  1. SPS – small parcel shipping helps to improve communication between organizations and shipping carriers through conjunction with the warehouse, which eventually helps send details about a packed container and receive a rate and tracking number.
  1. Material handling equipment Integration framework – supercharged with automation for warehouse processes, it empowers users to configure outbound subscriptions on certain warehouse events (i.e. work completion). The cool thing about it is that each transaction is user-configurable, meaning, up to 10 fields can be specified to accompany each queue record.
  2. Enterprise-scale inventory performance – is improved to deliver better performance through the ability to archive inventory transactions while maintaining an option to view those which are archived. That being said, without the feature, the inventory transaction table will grow and eventually slow down both team and queries against the table.
  3. Landed cost – aims to increase supply chain visibility while maximizing item profitability through the enhanced process of goods tracking and transition throughout their journey, beginning at the supplier’s warehouse and getting to the destination warehouse. Moreover, organizations can calculate the cost per item associated with procurement and transportation based on a rich set of allocation rules.
  4. Warehouse work creation scheduling – simple yet powerful, warehouse work creation scheduling helps teams to optimize their outbound order processing through warehouse management wave processing.
  5. Cost revaluation process – streamlines to simplify the process of assigning financial dimensions to inventory standard cost revaluation vouchers through the ability to configure the system preferences.
  6. Warehouse execution with scale units in the cloud – enables teams to perform critical manufacturing processes maintaining resilience and compliance at scale. In case there is a connectivity failure, the scale units will work independently avoiding operations disruptions.
  7. Warehouse mobile management – if you are not yet aware of the app, we suggest you check one out since it has an easy-to-use look-and-feel part as well as robust enhancements to core warehouse management logic to streamline processing. The release will improve worker efficiency, ergonomics, new workers ramp-up, as well as alignment with Fluent Design System for better interaction.
  8. Inventory and logistics: saved views – the feature gives you a list of simplified views for inventory and logistics (i.e. all lods, all shipments and etc.) providing a quicker view and smoother work process.
  9. Rebate management – is a module created to better manage contracts, deals, and agreements between your organization and customers and vendors facilitating the process of calculation of rebates, deductions, and royalties. The feature tracks and maintains everything in a central location, where all users with access can participate and manage.
  10. Inventory Visibility – is an Add-in for Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management independent microservice created to empower teams with real-time global inventory visibility through related applications (Power Apps, Power BI Analytics). The microservice can handle a lot of requests from a variety of endpoints.
  11. Vendor-submitted bank details – improves collaboration between your organization and vendors, since they can use a self-service interface to enter the banking information in the vendor-collaboration application. Efficiency is improved.
  12. Global inventory accounting – the last one in this list but not least. Global inventory accounting enables organizations to maintain inventory accounting utilizing multiple cost ledgers and thus supercharging them to comply with different accounting standards and internal management accounting at the same time. Quite useful for organizations with international operations.

Manufacturing

The next on the list is the set of features and updates related to manufacturing:

  1. Asset management: production floor execution interface – organizations can now observe production floor equipment ensuring the preservation, workforce safety, and minimal downtime. Workers can seamlessly head to the Asset Management tab and the state/health of an asset.
  2. ‘Override default production reservation’ – is a new feature that lets teams configure a default reservation principle for each item model group, simplifying allocation of materials that don’t require a physical reservation to begin production/batch order.
  3. Production control: saved views – same as saved views for inventory and logistics provides a quicker view of logistics items – this one gives a collection of simplified views for manufacturing.
  4. Face recognition sign in to provide a seamless identification experience for your workforce. No more badges!
  5. Production floor execution interface – has been improved to provide organizations with new capabilities to the production floor execution interface through a scale unit architecture. Instead of using estimated consumption, it now records actual consumption of consumed materials which improves the accuracy of cost and inventory records.

Product information management

Product information management has got fewer features, however, the amount does not make them less important or useful:

  1. Change management – right from the beginning, when you add a new product, you may throw one into either an ‘engineering product’ or ‘standard product’ bucket. Should you choose the first option, you will be able to keep historical change records or to use strong data management, since engineering change management uses multiple versions to track changes in products as they change throughout their lifecycle. Previously, users could not do that as the designation was permanent.
  2. Variant suggestions page – has a couple of usability as well as performance enhancements for organizations with a high volume of product dimension combinations:
    1. Now, the variant suggestions page won’t provide you with suggestions once you open the page. Now, users must hit the button to generate them;
    2. The interface has been improved so users could select the dimension values for which they are willing to generate product variant suggestions.
  3. Product readiness checks – helps organizations to set up automatic or manual checks on each product ensuring that all the data has been successfully filled before a product starts its journey.
  4. Product information – is now can be shared among all legal entities of an organization (once one has been released) reducing the volume of duplicated product data. Pretty useful for those accounts which have many legal entities and a large product portfolio.

Planning 

Last but not least would be features related to planning:

  1. Planning optimization: coverage time fence support – the feature helps organizations to configure a time fence to limit master planning output to a selected period. This basically helps to omit those planned orders which can wait while enabling planners and purchasers to concentrate on the most relevant ones.
  2. Planning optimization: purchase requisition support – again, simple yet powerful, the feature helps teams to automatically create purchase orders omitting manual workflow.
  3. Planning optimization – reorder margin and issue margin – since now the additional buffer margin can be controlled and handled separately from the lead time, organizations can enjoy a simplified lead time setup for both distribution and production scenarios.
  4. Planned orders: saved views – we have already mentioned production control and inventory and logistics saved views above, which is the same case for planned orders as well, which has got a collection of simplified views.