Azure Solves the Supply Chain for IT Hardware
May17

Azure Solves the Supply Chain for IT Hardware

Photo by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash Guest Author:  Kirk Evans [this post first appeared on pavliks.com] Keep your business moving forward instead of being stuck in neutral waiting for bottlenecks in the Supply Chain to open. There are many things I miss about owning my own business.  The freedom to decide on what opportunities to pursue.  Decisions on how you will perform and present yourself as…...

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New NaviPayroll Feature: Pay Stub Emails
May04

New NaviPayroll Feature: Pay Stub Emails

Photo by John McArthur on Unsplash The latest version of Serenic NaviPayroll incorporates dozens of new features and enhancements, but the most exciting is generating pay stub emails. This feature automatically sends an electronic version of the pay stub as part of the batch processing for each pay period. You can individually configure employees to receive pay stub emails, or use filters to… Continue Reading noreply@blogger.com...

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6 Top Web Portal Scenarios
Apr25

6 Top Web Portal Scenarios

  Top Portal Types Businesses, schools, governments and nonprofits use web portals in many ways.  The Portal Connector has identified 6 of the most popular scenarios that require web portals: Sales. Customer portals can make it easier to add new products and conduct sales activities with fewer communications.  They offer 24×7 access even when this would not be practical for sales staff. Consider… Continue...

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Essential Guide to Nonprofit Accounting Software
Apr13

Essential Guide to Nonprofit Accounting Software

Although the most popular accounting software products, from QuickBooks to SAP, handle the needs of businesses in many industries, nonprofits have a business model and therefore accounting standards that are different from those of manufacturers, retailers, healthcare and other commercial sectors.   What makes nonprofits so special that their accounting tools must be different?  How can you…...

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Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare
Apr13

Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare

The Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare is one of Microsoft’s cloud offerings geared toward a particular industry.  The creation of industry-specific cloud offerings allows Microsoft and its product and implementation partners to better serve unique requirements of industry segments such as government, nonprofits, and healthcare. For instance, healthcare providers are subject to security and privacy… Continue Reading...

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Software Review Sites
Mar31

Software Review Sites

If you have searched for software lately, you may have noticed that the first page of Google is full of listings not from the software companies themselves but instead from software review sites.  Review sites can be handy to find a list of products for a particular segment.  The reviews themselves can also be helpful, although the quality of listings and reviews is mixed. Here are some of the… Continue Reading...

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Your CRM Cannot Be More Successful than its User Adoption
Mar25

Your CRM Cannot Be More Successful than its User Adoption

For sales force automation, the best customer relationship management system is the one that makes users successful.  For that to happen, users must adopt the CRM.  It doesn’t do much good to have a brilliant design for a system that salespeople do not use. This means that you must measure adoption both in quantity and in quality of usage.  How often does your sales team access CRM? Do they use… Continue...

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Our Top 5 Favorite Features: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Spring Release 2022
Mar01

Our Top 5 Favorite Features: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Spring Release 2022

This is my guest blog post on pavliks.com The number of new features is nearly overwhelming! Spring is nearly here, and in April the first wave of the 2022 release of Dynamics 365 will arrive.  The release contains hundreds of new features for Dynamics 365 applications, including Marketing, Sales, Customer Service, Field Service, Finance, Supply Chain Management, Supply Chain Insights, Human… Continue Reading...

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CRM Concepts: One Opportunity or Many?
Feb28

CRM Concepts: One Opportunity or Many?

If you track your sales in a customer relationship system (CRM) such as Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics 365, the most important thing to track are arguably sales opportunities. Opportunities happen in the sales cycle when you can match up a person (contact) or organization (account) that may purchase something.  This seems simple so far, but there are some business decisions to make about how… Continue Reading...

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Agile Marketing: Software Tools
Jan31

Agile Marketing: Software Tools

With the ascendance of digital marketing, managing marketing initiatives has become more and more like managing software products, making Agile techniques attractive for your marketing department as well as your information technology department. I have found that Microsoft Teams is useful for managing marketing activities.  It provides all these capabilities at a reasonable cost: Task… Continue Reading noreply@blogger.com...

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Keep It Simple in CRM: Five Reasons Why
Jan26

Keep It Simple in CRM: Five Reasons Why

Simplicity is one of the keys to successful sales force automation.  This is one of the lessons of implementing customer relationship management (CRM) that is good that I must keep learning it again and again.   Here are my top reasons why it’s better to keep it simple than to chase perfection: Sales people need to stay focused on sales.  The simpler your sales process and your tracking… Continue...

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Common Finance System for Dioceses and Archdioceses
Dec22

Common Finance System for Dioceses and Archdioceses

The Roman Catholic Church is organized into dioceses around the world.  Dioceses ruled by an archbishop are commonly referred to as archdioceses. In the Washington, DC area, there are more than 655,000 Catholics, 139 parishes, and 92 Catholic schools under the The Archdiocese of Washington.  This structure means that diocesan finances are complex, and can involve dozens or hundreds of...

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What's New in Serenic Employee Central
Dec02

What's New in Serenic Employee Central

The latest (November 2021) version of Serenic Employee Central includes several enhancements such as: Ability for Payroll Admins to view another employee’s informationAbility to submit Leave Requests from Employee CentralAbility to filter leave requests by statusAbility to sort leave request by request dateAddition of Profile, Location, Hire, and Termination date to the User Profile grid to… Continue Reading...

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What's New in Serenic Navigator Fall 2021
Nov10

What's New in Serenic Navigator Fall 2021

  Highlights of Serenic Navigator 18 Improvements The latest release of Serenic Navigator includes several small but impactful enhancements. Improvements to the User InterfaceFocus mode allows you to expand areas on certain pages (e.g., the Lines FastTab on a purchase document), allowing for easier data entry. See the Key Terms for the User Interface article for more information (link...

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Sylogist Acquires pavliks.com and The Portal Connector
Oct22

Sylogist Acquires pavliks.com and The Portal Connector

This week my company Sylogist announced the acquisition of pavliks.com and The Portal Connector.  I’m excited about this news, because I have known about pavliks.com for a long time and InfoStrat is a partner for The Portal Connector.  Yes, you are reading correctly that Sylogist has closed two new acquisitions in the space of a week.  pavliks.com has been in business for 52 years.  You can… Continue...

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Sylogist Acquires Mission CRM — Dynamics 365 for Nonprofit Fundraising & Engagement
Oct11

Sylogist Acquires Mission CRM — Dynamics 365 for Nonprofit Fundraising & Engagement

Last week our company Sylogist announced the acquisition of Mission CRM, a leader in Microsoft Dynamics 365 / Power Apps solutions for nonprofits.  This is big news for us and for the nonprofit sector.  Mission CRM is built a SaaS fundraising and engagement platform architecture and mindset.  They were one of the first to embrace the vision of Microsoft’s Tech for Social Impact organization…...

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Switching from Microsoft Dynamics GP to Dynamics 365 Business Central
Sep10

Switching from Microsoft Dynamics GP to Dynamics 365 Business Central

Source: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics-gp/terms/lifecycle This year Microsoft announced a date for the end of mainstream support for Dynamics 365 GP 2018 accounting software.  This spurred some blogs and customers to think that they must switch from Dynamics GP to another product by January 10, 2023 when mainstream support ends. It turns out that this announcement does not cover the… Continue Reading...

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My Favorite Microsoft Power Apps Bloggers and their Blogs
Sep07

My Favorite Microsoft Power Apps Bloggers and their Blogs

  Microsoft Power Apps is one of my favorite subjects, and I enjoy reading blog posts from members of this thriving technical community.  Here are some of my favorite bloggers and their blogs: The Official Microsoft Power Apps Blog  I have to start with the official Microsoft Power Apps blog.  It has many contributors, largely Microsoft program manager, including frequent posters Denise...

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Microsoft Dynamics 365 Solutions for Education
Sep01

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Solutions for Education

Student Portal For over three years, Microsoft has released solution accelerators based on Dynamics 365 for industries including healthcare, automotive, manufacturing, finance, nonprofits and education.  Each year we are seeing new solutions and updates to solutions based on Dynamics 365, Power Apps and the Common Data Model. In August 2021 Microsoft released the Higher Education component in… Continue Reading...

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Microsoft Power App Price Cuts
Jul16

Microsoft Power App Price Cuts

This month Microsoft announced major price cuts for Power Apps.  Starting October 1, 2021, the per user plan will be priced at $20/user/month, a fifty percent reduction from the previous price.  The Power Apps per app plan will also be slashed in half to $5/user/app/month. There are no license minimums for these subscriptions.  The Power Apps portal price has also been reduced for high volume… Continue Reading...

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Understanding Software for Fund Accounting
Jul13

Understanding Software for Fund Accounting

Many organizations such as nonprofits, non-governmental agencies, K-12 school districts, state, and local government agencies depend on grants to fund some of, or in many cases, their entire operations.  In the United States alone there are over 1.5 million nonprofit organizations[1].  Winning grants can be difficult, especially for competitive programs, so managing the grants that your… Continue Reading...

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Microsoft Power Apps and Oracle
May24

Microsoft Power Apps and Oracle

Recently I was demonstrating a Microsoft Power Apps solution and I was asked what options are available for handling data in Oracle along with Power Apps. Can Oracle be migrated to Power Apps and Dataverse? Can Power Apps access data stored in Oracle?  Can I use Power Apps to replace Oracle Forms? Like Oracle, Power Apps offers both a front end user interface and a database (Dataverse).  This… Continue Reading...

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Welcoming Wen-GAGE to the Sylogist Corporate Family
May13

Welcoming Wen-GAGE to the Sylogist Corporate Family

  In March 2021, InfoStrat’s parent company Sylogist acquired Municipal Accounting Systems Inc. (MAS), a provider of student information systems and accounting solutions to K-12 public school districts. MAS was founded in 1985 and has grown to serve nearly 85% of the Oklahoma K-12 public education market with its integrated Wen-GAGE platform. This SaaS solution includes budgeting and… Continue Reading noreply@blogger.com...

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Using Analytics Software to Ask Different Questions
Apr30

Using Analytics Software to Ask Different Questions

Analytics is one of the fastest growing categories of software.  Sales of products like Microsoft Power BI, Tableau, Qlik and Splunk are growing rapidly and analytics is being placed in the hands of more users than ever before.  Analytics tools make it easier to visualize and understand your data, but there is still plenty of work for us as analytics end users.  Now that we have analytics, what… Continue Reading...

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Microsoft 365 for Nonprofits: Software Grants
Apr09

Microsoft 365 for Nonprofits: Software Grants

Microsoft makes it easy for nonprofits to get the software they need for office productivity through grants of Microsoft 365 to eligible organizations.   Microsoft 365 is a suite which includes Windows and Office 365.  It is available in Basic, Standard, and Premium editions which contain different products: Microsoft 365 Business Basic — Free up to 300 usersMicrosoft 365 Business Standard –… Continue...

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Microsoft Power Apps Community Plan
Apr07

Microsoft Power Apps Community Plan

  If you follow this blog or have attended any webinars or other events where I present, you know that Microsoft Power Apps is growing like gangbusters and that many people are turning to Power Apps for their line of business solutions. But where should you start?  For some organizations, the best way is to choose a Dynamics 365 app such as Dynamics 365 Sales Enterprise or Customer Service and… Continue Reading...

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Meet Power Fx: The Language of Microsoft Power Apps Canvas Apps
Mar09

Meet Power Fx: The Language of Microsoft Power Apps Canvas Apps

Last week Microsoft made many announcements on Power Apps.  One of the most important was naming Power Fx, the unified language used in Power Apps Canvas Apps and other Power Platform products. This announcement is more than just naming a language because it unveils a long-term plan for standardizing the Power Platform stack of development tools.  April Dunnam of Microsoft provides a concise… Continue Reading...

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Low Code Software Tradeoffs
Mar02

Low Code Software Tradeoffs

Recently I wrote on The Enduring Appeal of Low Code Software Development and 6 Reasons to Choose Microsoft for your Low Code Application Platform which explain why low code development is popular and why Microsoft is especially successful among the low code application development platforms.  Like many decisions, moving to low code software involves tradeoffs, so this post is devoted to some… Continue Reading...

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More Microsoft Clouds for Industries, Including Nonprofits
Feb24

More Microsoft Clouds for Industries, Including Nonprofits

Today Microsoft announced three new industry computing clouds for financial, manufacturing and nonprofit.  The new clouds join the healthcare and retail clouds.  Based on Azure, Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power Platform and other Microsoft services, the industry clouds consolidate components, tools, solutions, and data models that are geared toward industry needs and standards.  Since my focus… Continue...

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Multi-Channel Customer Support
Jan29

Multi-Channel Customer Support

Customer service automation is evolving rapidly, and I experienced this myself this week.  Here is an example of excellent use of multi-channel customer service from SiriusXM Satellite radio.  The entire transaction when smoothly even though it switched between four channels. Channel 1: Mail I received a letter telling me that my SiriusXM Satellite Radio subscription was up for renewal, and my… Continue Reading...

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More on Microsoft Power Apps: Model-driven Apps, Canvas Apps and Portals
Jan20

More on Microsoft Power Apps: Model-driven Apps, Canvas Apps and Portals

  As I have written elsewhere in this blog, Microsoft is one of the leading providers of low code software development platforms with its Power Apps family including Power Automate, Power BI and much more. One of your key design decisions is when to use model-driven apps, canvas apps and portals. One place to start is with your database.  The most low code approach is to use model-driven apps… Continue Reading...

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The Enduring Appeal of Low Code Software Development
Dec31

The Enduring Appeal of Low Code Software Development

  As we bid farewell to 2020, we can look back on the tech trends that shaped the world response to the COVID crisis.  The shock of COVID and resulting lockdowns accelerated existing trends such as digital transformation, remote work, and even software development methodologies and tools.  For decades, organizations could only choose between off-the-shelf products and custom software… Continue Reading...

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My Debt to SharePoint
Dec14

My Debt to SharePoint

Microsoft Corporate Vice President Jeff Teper announced last week that SharePoint is now reaching 200 million cloud users worldwide. This is an impressive milestone by any standard, even the high adoption normal for Microsoft.  This announcement made me realize that I owe a professional debt to SharePoint.  Back in 1999, my company InfoStrat was one of the first Microsoft Gold Partners to… Continue Reading...

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6 Reasons to Choose Microsoft for your Low Code Application Platform
Dec09

6 Reasons to Choose Microsoft for your Low Code Application Platform

  Low code software development has been in the news in 2020.  The COVID crisis has disrupted many businesses, and they have been forced to transform themselves rapidly.  We have never seen so much digital transformation since that term was coined in 2012.  Low code development platforms have been chosen for many of these efforts because they can bring software solutions to fruition more… Continue Reading...

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Governing the Dataverse: Peaceful Living with Microsoft Power Apps
Dec04

Governing the Dataverse: Peaceful Living with Microsoft Power Apps

Microsoft has created a business software platform which not only includes complete commercial products such as accounting and CRM, but also development tools which may be used by professional software developers and power users.  Microsoft is enpowering power users, sometimes called citizen developers, with tools that require less coding and more configuration through templates and… Continue Reading noreply@blogger.com...

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Understanding Microsoft Unified Support
Nov30

Understanding Microsoft Unified Support

Microsoft has recently added a new support option for its enterprise customers: Microsoft Unified Support.  This offering is in addition to the Microsoft Premier service offering which may be familiar to large organizations that rely on Microsoft software. Microsoft Unified Support is designed to reduce downtime through on demand risk assessments, improve productivity through enhanced user… Continue Reading...

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Microsoft Power Apps for Nonprofits and the Dynamics 365 Nonprofit Accelerator
Nov23

Microsoft Power Apps for Nonprofits and the Dynamics 365 Nonprofit Accelerator

Microsoft Power Apps and Dynamics 365 provide prebuilt apps and a framework for building custom apps for a wide range of the software needs of nonprofits. Dynamics 365 is a family of products which include accounting, enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management software. Power Apps was derived from Dynamics 365 and offers a framework for building standalone web apps… Continue Reading...

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Managing Grants through Microsoft Power Apps Portals
Oct26

Managing Grants through Microsoft Power Apps Portals

Microsoft has overhauled the portal capabilities of the Dynamics Portal product which was formerly available as an add-on component for Dynamics 365 apps such Sales and Customer Service,  now making these capabilities available as Power Apps portal.  Power Apps portals allows you to build websites with static pages and content as well as, more importantly, forms and views to display data from… Continue Reading...

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Microsoft Power Apps and Power Platform: Build Apps without Limits
Oct15

Microsoft Power Apps and Power Platform: Build Apps without Limits

 Microsoft is not only a leader in packaged software products for business productivity, operating systems and accounting, but also in providing the development platforms for creating custom solutions.   The Microsoft Power Platform is a family of products that are seeing rapid growth.  The Power Platform includes Power Apps, Power Automate, Power BI and Power Virtual agents.  It features… Continue...

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Constant Change: The Hidden Cost of Cloud Computing
Oct07

Constant Change: The Hidden Cost of Cloud Computing

The benefits of cloud computing are widely known, and most organizations have moved or are planning to move from their on premises data centers to cloud facilities hosted by Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Google or other providers.  One of the cloud computing benefits is that the cloud provider is responsible for continuously improving the environment that hosts, and that these updates and… Continue Reading...

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Azure Stream Analytics for Real-Time Fraud Detection
Sep28

Azure Stream Analytics for Real-Time Fraud Detection

 The following is a guest blog post by Dmitri Riz from the InfoStrat Tech Blog.  Microsoft Azure Logic Apps is a service that allows you to design and build scalable solutions for app integration, data integration, system integration, enterprise application integration (EAI), and business-to-business (B2B) communication, whether in the cloud, on premises, or both. One of the features I wanted to… Continue Reading...

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Solicitations for Cloud Computing Need to Reflect Cloud Reality
Sep22

Solicitations for Cloud Computing Need to Reflect Cloud Reality

  For several years the information technology industry has been migrating from traditional on premises deployment of software in the data center to cloud computing hosted by industry leaders such as Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.  Solicitations for new software often fail to reflect the reality of cloud computing. Here are some of the ways that solicitations (also called tenders and… Continue Reading...

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Personalize Your Sales Process with CRM
Sep10

Personalize Your Sales Process with CRM

Sales force automation is one of the most popular apps of customer relationship management (CRM).  Whether you choose Microsoft Dynamics 365, Salesforce, or another CRM product, sales is likely near the top of your priorities.What makes a sales organization successful, however, varies significantly from one company to another based on the targeted sales segments and the position of the company… Continue Reading...

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Energize your Intranet with Microsoft Power Apps and Customer Voice
Sep09

Energize your Intranet with Microsoft Power Apps and Customer Voice

This is a followup to my earlier post “Replacing Microsoft InfoPath with Power Apps” which discussed the discontinuation of the InfoPath form tool which was previously used in conjunction with SharePoint for many internal corporate applications typical on an intranet. Since then, Microsoft renamed the Forms Pro product Dynamics 365 Customer Voice. This is not to be confused with Microsoft’s… Continue...

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InfoStrat Wins SAVIN Contract with State of Iowa
Aug31

InfoStrat Wins SAVIN Contract with State of Iowa

InfoStrat, a division of Serenic Software, is pleased to announce that it has entered into a contract with the State of Iowa Department of Justice, specifically its Crime Victim Assistance Division (“Iowa”), to implement and fully support its SAVIN 360 victim notification solution. The contract lasts through June 2024, and may be extended for up to two additional three-year terms at Iowa’s… Continue...

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Grant Management Implications of New Accounting Requirements for GAAP – ASU No. 2018-08
Jul27

Grant Management Implications of New Accounting Requirements for GAAP – ASU No. 2018-08

While grant management may seem like a simple, mature process to the outsider, it is constantly changing to meet new regulatory requirements. Nonprofit organizations are implementing changes to Generally Acceptable Accounting Practices (GAAP) for gifts and donations which were originally released in June 2018 by the Financial Accounting Standards Board as Accounting Standards Update (ASU)… Continue Reading...

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Microsoft Introduces Dataflex to improve the Microsoft Power Platform integration with Microsoft Teams
Jul22

Microsoft Introduces Dataflex to improve the Microsoft Power Platform integration with Microsoft Teams

Yesterday at the Inspire event Microsoft announced a new product called Dataflex which is build on the Power Apps Common Data Service.  Dataflex simplifies building and deploying apps and intelligent chatbots in Teams with Microsoft Power Apps and Microsoft Power Virtual Agents.  The Common Data Service has now been renamed to Microsoft Dataflex Pro.  The rapid expansion of remote working… Continue Reading...

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Data and Documents for Grant Management
Jun26

Data and Documents for Grant Management

Managing government and non-profit grants usually requires a combination of structured data along with documents to track all the information required for applications, review, award and post-award reporting.  One of the more important design decisions you can make in implementing grant management software is to determine the proper place for structured data and documents, that is which… Continue Reading noreply@blogger.com...

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Understanding Microsoft Dynamics Products
Jun17

Understanding Microsoft Dynamics Products

One of Microsoft’s growth engines is the Dynamics family of products.  These are business software applications that include enterprise resource planning (ERP), accounting, finance, operations, human resources, customer relationship management (CRM) and even mixed reality and artificial intelligence. In contrast to operating systems and general purpose applications such as Office 365, Word,… Continue Reading...

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CPA Practice Advisor 2020 Review of Serenic Navigator for NPO
Jun16

CPA Practice Advisor 2020 Review of Serenic Navigator for NPO

The latest review of Serenic Navigator for Non-Profit Organizations (NPO) is featured in CPA Practice Advisor. The review describes the modules offered for a range of accounting requirements of non-profit organizations, such as accounts payable, inventory, purchasing and budgeting.  Serenic Navigator includes grant management capabilities to help grantees meet compliance requirements of grant… Continue Reading...

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