One of the most dramatic new features in 9.0 is the Home page. The Home page is part of Dynamics GP’s emphasis on Roles Based computing. Similar to when Explorer (now Smartlists) was released, the Home page has pretty good functionality but I hope it will be expanded on in the future. My only concern is that by calling it the Home Page, it will get confusing in conversation. GP changed “Explorer” to “Smartlists” for just this reason. Too many explorers! Now, on to the tour.
The Home page opens when you start GP but View->Home or CTRL+ALT-H will reopen the home page if you close it. The Home page displays different views based on your Role. For example, an AP clerk will see AP related items by default. Also included is a link into Outlook to display your Calendar and Email. Tasks still come from Tasks in GP, not your Outlook Tasks. There are some basic Outlook formatting options available, essentially turning on and off the calendar or email and setting how many calendar days to display.
The basic Home page is a two paned view and similar to the Outlook items, Dynamics Tasks and Reminders can be turned on/off and set up. The Task List is pretty straightforward and the Reminders are a limited set of items from a typical watch list. Things like Overdue Invoices and AP Due. You can turn reminders on and off and set the number of days around the reminder. Finally, you can create custom reminders which are driven off of Smartlists and even limit the records for say the 10 highest overdue accounts. Since it’s easy to create a smart list and easy to build reminders, this looks like a great dashboard tool. Business Alerts have not gone away and don’t seem to be integrated into reminders so now there appears to 2 options for reminding you.
Also available is a Reports option allowing you add a link to a report and it’s associated option. This allows you to fire off common reports right from the home page. One oddity, I had to close and reopen the home page to get my added report to show.
Finally there is the Metrics section. Metrics are presented graphically and include items like Gross Profit, Payables Aging, etc. Unfortunately, you can’t currently create custom metrics and you can only view one metric at a time. You can however, pick several metrics that you want to make available and scroll through the Metrics from the Home Screen.
In addition to all of these options, the Customize This Page link lets you rearrange the locations of items within the home, page, add/remove items and adjust the update timing
All in all, the Home Screen is a great first step and it will be nice to see how it evolves.
Update: Char Gust was kind enough to add some info to this post. “One quick note — Business Alerts can now be set up to show in your Home Page as a reminder. This was a new 9.0 feature. ” – Thanks Char, I missed that one!