Dynamics AX Coding Projects in MorphX X++ and Customization Deployment for Global Organization

Published: 04th July 2011
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This upper mid-market Corporate ERP application is available in USA, Canada and major countries. This fact makes AX as natural choice for multinational corporation to be implemented in its headquarters and in all of the locations internationally. Very important is to consider the model, when you are hosting all the databases in the same SQL Server in your central office, and outsource ERP localization side to the consulting firm in the countries overseas. We saw unwanted scenarios, where company management delegated overseas Axapta software licenses sale and implementation and as the result numerous facilities worldwide have their own servers and mess in consolidated reporting. Nowadays decent internet connection is available virtually everywhere and due to this nice fact you could open central server to international accounting folks via Citrix or VPN connection. Let’s review some aspects of customization projects in global organization:

1. Local Languages Support and Customization Translation. Current version 2012 and earlier 2009 support virtually every alphabet, including Unicode (this one is typically required for hieroglyph based languages). If your goal is to program something that should be enabled in foreign manufacturing facilities or distribution centers, the coding itself should be translation friendly. In AX architecture you can deploy Label construction and avoid direct String hardcoding in the source X++ code. If you do it that way – Label file could be translated by freelance translator as it has in fact text format (there is no need to contract local programmer, who has experience in X++, C++)

2. Who should be Chosen as Programmer? Let’s take a look at MorphX, Axapta Metadata and X++ language nature. First of all MorphX and Metadata – these two could not be considered as separated from Axapta architecture: tables, forms, queries, views, buttons. X++ programming language is Object Oriented Programming compliant (inheritance, encapsulation, polymorphism). It also have to support three tier architecture, where database layer, application server and end user Windows interface should be addressed in the scripts. By its syntax X++ is very similar to C++, Java, Microsoft C#. If you are very large global organization and you are planning for global customization project, which could last several years – then you might consider hiring AX programmer in IT staff (or train your existing C++ developers). Otherwise we do believe that learning curve is too long to be feasible, especially considering complex Axapta architecture

3. Where should we pick AX Technology Partner? We are in Microsoft Dynamics consulting practice since earlier 1990th. Our experience indicates that the best method is to select somebody who is regionally close to your headquarters and is located in your main office hosting country. If you follow this patters, then executive presentation, proposals preparation and approval cycle are typically smooth. Plus you are protected from the risk of dispersing your Corporate ERP application databases across the international locations

4. Special Consideration to Brazil. From the Microsoft Dynamics ERP family AX and NAV are available (where Navision is localized directly by Microsoft, however other flavors are available and often successful). There might be a situation, when your Brazilian subsidiary in Sao Paulo or Rio de Janeiro are relatively small and AX implementation might be non-proportionally expensive. In these cases we recommend other ERP and MRP brands, localized in Brazil and Worldwide, but addressed to smaller businesses. Consider SAP Business One, for example. We also recommend you to see the demo from locally developed ERP Microsiga

5. China. Here you typically outsource manufacturing: both discrete (consumer goods) and process (food, fish and meat processing). In fact AX is recommended for process manufacturing by Microsoft Business Solutions. So, if your manufacturing facility in China is reasonably scaled for Axapta – we are staying behind this recommendation. In the case of smaller office presence for market observing type of mission – SAP Business One is also localized for China. SAP B1 exports naturally most of its queries and reports to Excel and then they could be used as the base for consolidated financial reporting in FRx or new Microsoft Management Reporter tool (recommended for the release of 2012)

6. Russian Federation. Probably here we have to mention reasonable interest to Oil and Gas (Western Siberia, Arctic) and Mining industries (especially in Siberia, Yakutia, Central Asia, Kazakhstan, Buratia, Tuva). Both require process manufacturing, which is available in Axapta. Russian language is ASCII compliant (one byte alphabet encoding) and AX is localized in RF. Obviously AX is on the top of the list of Corporate ERP candidates. For smaller subsidiaries we recommend to take a look at SAP Business One and locally supported package 1S Bukhgalteria (1S Accounting in Russian translation). 1S Accounting might be advisable in Moscow or St. Petersburg areas, where strong attention from Tax Agency and government audit might be frequent

7. Please call us 1-866-304-3265, 1-269-605-4904 (for international customers, where our representative pick up the phone in St. Joseph, MI call center). help@efaru.com We have local presence in Chicagoland, Southern California, South West Michigan, Houston and Dallas areas of Texas. We serve customers USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil nationwide and internationally via web sessions and phone conferences (Skype is welcomed). Our consultants speak English, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese. Our core expertise is in International Business

Andrew Karasev is Great Plains Certified Master, MVP, help@efaru.com 1-866-304-3265, 1-269-605-4904. He is also the initiator of eFaru project http://www.efaru.com and founder of Alba Spectrum information space

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