In just three months, attendees are set to converge in Orlando, Florida from October 15-18th for User Group Summit North America. Among the Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Business Central community, anticipation is already running high for the NAVUG and BCUG event, where a range of pressing matters are up for discussion, including support timeframes, automation, upgrades, and the Microsoft Power Platform.

One veteran of the event, Victor Diercksen, a virtual CIO consultant based in Salt Lake City, spoke with MSDW about the event and the trends he sees within the NAV and Business Central user community.

Planning the event

Until recently, Diercksen was IT Director at MityLite, a leading manufacturer of custom furniture for hotels, restaurants, and conference centers. Leveraging 16 years of past experiences with Dynamics NAV, he now runs CIO/NOW Inc, working as a virtual CIO for small to medium size companies while also supporting MityLite.

MityLite recently hired a new CEO, who is working with the IT department to marry an internal data warehouse and reporting tool with Power BI for greater bottom-up reporting. They are also focused on key integrations and advanced processes.

All of our products are custom to the needs of the customer [at MityLite]. We have a really important integration between NAV and the ExtraLogic configurator. [Our recent] objective is to complete the implementation of the ExtraLogic configurator, pull pricing into NAV and automate manual functions. Once they're done configuring the product, the individual items from that product will flow onto the production order [for notifications].

Guided learning for manufacturers at Summit

According to Diercksen, the variety of industries and use cases among NAV users in past Summit sessions is always a strength. He has served on the programming committee for six years, overseeing the manufacturing track, and is also part of the board of directors.

One thing we do every year is a 101 and 201 for basic and advanced manufacturing and 301 deep-dive on costing. This year, we're doing a fun one where we look at manufacturing add-ons… We have new sessions comparing manufacturing with assembly or kitting, sessions for web services and tablets to get information out on the floor—we expect that will be really popular … The common trend we hear from customers is Customer Service [in the form of Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement and customer service modules in Dynamics 365 Business Central]. Customer service as a department is more important these days and you have to get that group integrated into the product design, production, and logistics groups. We'll have a session on integrating customer service with production, tracking and building reports with Power BI. We're doing a big one this year on the integration between manufacturing and WMS. We have an end user coming in to talk about their experiences integrating those.

Getting a pulse on Business Central

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