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Dynamics NAV 2015: Empowering remote workers

Microsoft’s ‘Mobile first’ approach has arrived to Dynamics NAV with the release of the Tablet client for the latest release of Dynamics NAV 2015.

I have to say I’m really impressed with Microsoft’s strategy and also what they have delivered. Users will have access to a free Tablet client on Dynamics NAV 2015 with the ability to perform any business process that can be performed in the full client. 

Dynamics NAV tablet client – on your device

The application is available for free download from the Windows Store, App Store or Google Play. You will need your user credentials to connect to a NAV 2015 NAV server, on premise or in the cloud.

The Tablet app, by name, is not designed for phones or devices smaller than seven inches and requires a screen resolution of 960 X 510 pixels. I’ve tested it on my Windows 8.1 Asus Transformer and iPad and have had a similar user experience on both.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV tablet download
Figure 1 Dynamics NAV Tablet Application - on your device

Dynamics NAV Tablet client – one app, many possibilities

Unlike other ERP products - such as Dynamics AX where there are multiple apps, one for each business process - there is only one app for Dynamics NAV, giving the ability to run almost any page from NAV. 

The application is an HTML-based website integrated in an application.

The Tablet application will apply user configuration and security settings from the Windows client. This means that administrators and users can configure exactly what business processes and even which fields are available for users to consume.

While you can use any page in the Tablet application, it doesn’t mean you should. 

Microsoft have included ‘mini pages’ in Dynamics NAV 2015 (I think they were there in previous versions) which are simpler and work slightly better on a touch device. They also include all the information on a single page not requiring you to go to an additional page such as statistics.

As you can see below the comparisons of a standard customer card on the windows client and the ‘mini’ customer card on the tablet client. You’ll notice the statistics on the mini page and further down there is also the ability to show the customer pricing and discounting directly on the page.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV standard customer card
Figure 2 Standard Customer card on Windows client

Microsoft Dynamics NAV mini customer card
Figure 3 Mini page Customer card on Tablet client

Again, through configuration of this page in the Windows client, the user can remove any fields and tabs they don’t want shown to improve the productivity of the screen. Note that most of the out-of-the-box roles don’t use these mini pages but if you are testing the Tablet client if you use the ‘Small business – Tablet’ profile it will use these mini pages by default. Mini pages sit in the 1300 object range.  

Dynamics NAV Tablet client – integration capabilities

As an empowered mobile worker I want to have the ability to do all of my work remotely, not just some of it. The ability to use other Microsoft tools in tandem with the tablet client is great. For telephony I have Skype, Lync or other VOIP systems as a way to use call to click. I’m an avid Skype user so that is my application of choice.

Integration with Outlook for sending documents such as orders and invoices means I can provide customers and suppliers with documents while on site. The ability to export information to Excel and Word, either in Office 365 or Office, means I don’t lose any of the integration capabilities that other users have back in the workplace. 

Microsoft Dynamics NAV click to call
Figure 4 Dynamics NAV Tablet client click to call

And here is an instance of an organisation who took advantage of this new mobility tool to reach new productivity levels:

Overall this is a great addition to the Dynamics NAV solution which brings the number of client options to four with the Windows client, web client, SharePoint client and now the Tablet client.

Posted by: Derek Lamb, Solution Specialist, Dynamics Solutions | 10 November 2014

Tags: Office 365, mobility, Dynamics NAV

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