This is part 3 of the series blogs about the Dynamics Apps for Windows 8. This time I will review the Expense Management features.

Expense management is available in Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012. The functionality was from the initial version accessible from the Employee Self Service portal for reporting the expenses by the employees themselves. Making this functionality available within a Windows App is certainly very attractive. The overview of the expenses is great. Within one view you can see your expense reports and the status. It is very easy to use and I personally like to enter the expense reports. I enjoy it so much that the policies to limits amounts are really needed. :-)

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You can also view the expense reports ordered by date.

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You can look into the details of the already entered expense reports and depending on the approval state, you can make corrections.

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The expense reports can be enriched with copies of the receipt.

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Creating new expense reports

You can create new expense reports when needed. How to use on or more expense reports depends on your organization and the number of expenses. You can e.g. create an expense report per topic (e.g. the Dynamics Convergence) or per period (e.g. per month or per period). In the next sample I will create one for a Dynamics Event.

To create a new expense report, simply click on the ‘New expense report‘ tile.

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You now have a new charm at the right part of your screen where you can enter main details of your report. Click create to finish this task.

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The project, customer and vendor account do have a lookup on possible values.

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This lookup is good when there are not many items to choose from. With a large list of projects this might become unwieldy. It is possible to type the first characters, but the first characters in the code are mostly the same. So this would be not useful in many cases. There is no other way for searching projects.

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Details and additional notes can be added. When the save button is clicked (very right on the screen) it is possible to add the receipts. Just below the field ‘Additional information’ a button becomes active then.

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In a new charm you can choose to take a picture or to upload a file.

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In this sample I will take a picture with help of the webcam in my laptop. It is possible to crop the picture, so only the relevant information will be used for the receipt.

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The receipt is added as picture, but not directly linked to the expense record. To select the appropriate receipt, you have to right click on the receipt for the selection. Then you can add the receipt to the expense.

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Now this expense is complete and you can add additional expenses for the same expense report when applicable.

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Submit expense report for approval

If you want to submit the expense report for approval, you need to navigate to the overview of the expense report and open the menu by using a right click with the mouse.

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Click the button ‘Submit’ and you can add some notes for the workflow in a new charm window.

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Add some notes when needed and submit the expense report. The expense report will now have the status ‘In review’.

 

Conclusion

The Expenses App for Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 is a good and intuitive solution for entering the expense reports. You can have a good overview of all your expenses. Entering expenses is quite easy. In my opinion the lookup on master data like projects need an improvement when companies work with a large number of master records. This would be namely on the searchability of master data. I would prefer to have an option to search on names and descriptions.

 

That’s all for now. Till next time!

 

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