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April 3, 2005

Microsoft pumps more intelligence into Great Plains

Microsoft's Business Solutions division is planning new business intelligence functionality for its Great Plains business applications suite later this month.

By CBR Staff Writer

Great Plains 8.0 Professional Edition, which the company originally released last June, will get a new foundational BI layer comprising of Excel-based Analysis Cubes for Excel, Reporting Services Report Packs, new performance indicators for its business portal and an enhanced SmartList Builder tool for flexible ad hoc query of data.

The Analysis Cubes are sourced from Webhouse server technology acquired from Microsoft business partner Professional Advantage in February. The Cubes allow users to pull data from SQL Server into Excel for financial tasks like general ledger and accounts receivable/payable.

Microsoft is also introducing eight enhanced reporting templates (customer profitability, open orders, commissions, inventory value, open purchase order by vendor, back-ordered quantities, employee capacity and work center capacity) that are built on top of SQL Server 2000’s Reporting Services technology. The new key performance indicators will be included as part of the MBS Business Portal.

Microsoft expects to ship the new functionality as fully integrated components of its Great Plains suite in mid-April.

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