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Tectura Business Consulting

Revolutionizing procurement with Azure AI and ChatGPT

In today’s fast-paced business environment, with digital transformations occurring routinely, organizations are always looking for novel ways to increase productivity and cut expenses. In the procurement sector, for example, generative AI (GenAI) technology is revolutionizing supplier management and purchasing processes as businesses leverage tools like Microsoft Copilot and ChatGPT (Generative Pre-trained Transformer) to streamline and optimize their standard processes. In this blog post, we’ll explore precisely how these GenAI tools are transforming the procurement industry and enhancing corporate value for organizations of all sizes.

Understanding the Procurement Processes

Generally speaking, the most critical phases of a standard procurement process include requirement gathering, supplier selection, contract negotiation, purchase order creation, delivery tracking and invoice processing. Below, we describe how GenAI tools are impacting and enhancing these processes.

AI-Powered Demand Forecasting

Accurate demand forecasting is the foundation of efficient procurement. With surprising accuracy, AI algorithms can forecast future demand by analyzing historical data, industry patterns and other pertinent factors. Organizations can even utilize machine learning techniques to automate the demand forecasting process, which will help them reduce stockouts, improve supplier negotiations and optimize inventory levels.

ChatGPT for Intelligent Supplier Sourcing

Finding the best suppliers can take a lot of time, although organizations can now – thanks to ChatGPT – automate supplier sourcing and evaluation. ChatGPT can have intelligent dialogues with potential suppliers to obtain the relevant data, including their qualifications, pricing and delivery terms. Utilizing natural language processing and machine learning, ChatGPT helps procurement managers make educated decisions quickly by analyzing answers, comparing providers and providing suggestions based on established criteria.

Smart Contracting and Negotiations

AI-powered computers can analyze and comprehend complex contracts, assuring compliance and reducing risks. This is known as smart contracting and negotiations. Organizations can automate contract management with the help of AI, extracting essential terms and conditions, spotting potential bottlenecks and accelerating the negotiation process. Using ChatGPT, procurement professionals may simulate talks while getting real-time feedback and strengthening their negotiating position.

Intelligent SRM within Dynamics 365 Finance & Supply Chain Management

Success in procurement depends on effective supplier relationship management (SRM). AI and ChatGPT have the potential to improve SRM capabilities significantly. AI algorithms may identify high-performing suppliers, enable performance reviews, and proactively resolve any issues by analyzing supplier performance data, market trends and feedback from internal stakeholders. Similarly, ChatGPT can serve as a channel for continuous contact, giving suppliers current updates, answering questions and fostering cooperative relationships.

Predictive Analytics for Cost Optimizations

Predictive analytics can be used in conjunction with AI and ChatGPT to reduce and optimize costs throughout the procurement process. AI algorithms can find cost-saving opportunities, suggest alternate suppliers and negotiate favorable terms by examining previous spending patterns, market dynamics, and other pertinent factors. Procurement experts can use ChatGPT to interactively explore multiple cost scenarios and simulate various sourcing techniques to ultimately select the most cost-effective options.

Considerations for Implementation

Helpful hints for organizations wishing to integrate AI, Copilot and ChatGPT into their procurement processes:

  • Data integrity and quality: AI algorithms must be fed correct and clean data to produce the most meaningful and insightful results. Ensure your AI system is connected with your current Dynamics 365 Finance & Supply Chain Management and procurement systems for efficient data interchange.
  • User training and acceptance: To maximize their efficiency and promote acceptance of their findings, your procurement professionals must be thoroughly trained on AI tools, Copilot usage and ChatGPT interactions.
  • Ethical AI: Ensure ethical and legal utilization of AI in your procurement processes, including data privacy, bias reduction and adherence to procurement standards.

The advantages of utilizing AI, Copilot and ChatGPT in procurement processes include improved decision-making, streamlined supplier management and streamlined procurement methods. Businesses must leverage AI and automation tools to gain a competitive edge in the fast-changing procurement landscape. We encourage readers to investigate available AI technologies and incorporate them into procurement workflows.

Conclusion

Not surprisingly, among many other ERPs, Microsoft was among the first to market with a cohesive approach that speaks to generative AI business use cases.

Businesses may embark on a disruptive road that accelerates their procurement operations to new heights by embracing AI and leveraging Microsoft’s complete AI-driven ecosystem. Tectura can be your transformational journey partner. After all, we’ve been an award-winning Microsoft Business Applications partner for two decades. Your procurement process will become more efficient, effective and non-disruptive with Tectura, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management and Artificial Intelligence capabilities. Connect with us to explore the AI-driven potential for procurement and supply chain management processes.

Thinking of migrating from Salesforce to Microsoft Dynamics 365? Here’s what you need to consider before you do.

If you’re considering a switch from Salesforce to Microsoft, you probably have some questions. For instance, what should you consider from a business planning perspective to ensure your transition is as hassle free as possible?

A little planning will go a long way in making your migration to Microsoft Dynamics 365 successful. To help you plan, we’ve put together several big-picture questions that you should ask yourself before you make the switch. The answer to these questions will vary greatly depending on the complexity and size of your current Salesforce implementation, but no matter how small your current system, you need to address each one.

What does your business need?

The fact that you have made (or are on the verge of making) a decision to move from Salesforce to Microsoft Dynamics 365 suggests you have already given a lot of thought to this question. Still, it is such a critical step in a successful migration project that it needs to be revisited many times over the course of a solution implementation. So, if you haven’t already, ensure you have given a lot of thought to the following:

  • What precisely does your Salesforce solution currently do for you? Just as important, what doesn’t it do for you?
  • What precisely do you want Dynamics 365 to do for you — immediately and long-term)? What do you intend to keep outside the scope of Dynamics 365?
  • What gap-fills or process changes need to happen to achieve this?

Yes, this is a daunting set of questions, but we can help pinpoint your needs and fine-tune your answers. We have worked through many successful Salesforce to Dynamics 365 migrations, so it’s unlikely you’ll come across any issues we haven’t already seen and solved.

When is your current Salesforce contract up for renewal?

Salesforce offers some flexibility in their contracts, but they typically run in 12-month cycles. We will need to plan accordingly to avoid losing functionality mid-migration or having to pay for software months after you’ve stopped using it.

When is the best time for your business to go through a systems migration?

It’s hard to imagine that a perfect time exists for migrating your entire technology infrastructure from Salesforce to Microsoft. Making changes to business-critical systems is always going to cause some level of disruption. But don’t worry — we work closely with you every step of the way to keep disruptions to a minimum. And we’ve done these migrations several hundred times, so we are well-versed in minimizing downtimes. Part of that is carefully analyzing how your Salesforce solution is currently being used and, even more importantly, how your Microsoft Dynamics 365 solution will be used going forward, to identify the ideal migration timeline.

Which Dynamics 365 deployment option is right for your organization?

Many long-time users of Salesforce don’t realize that Microsoft Dynamics 365 offers multiple deployment options, including cloud, on-premises and hybrid. While the latest trend is heavily in favor of cloud-based deployments — especially in the last few years, as workforces have become increasingly remote — on-premises and hybrid approaches remain readily available. It just depends on which strategy best suits your business. Our team of experts can help you make that determination.

These may seem like questions with very big answers, but rest assured, the Microsoft Business Applications experts at Tectura are here to help.

Top 5 Microsoft Dynamics 365 Apps for Document Management in 2024

Alongside its native offerings, Microsoft Dynamics 365 also benefits greatly from a range of third-party apps. Specifically considering Microsoft Dynamics 365 apps for document management, you can see they significantly enhance the platform’s native document handling capabilities, offering businesses a comprehensive and secure solution for their document management needs.

This article outlines the top five Dynamics 365 apps for document management. We have selected each app for its ability to integrate seamlessly with Dynamics 365, offering robust features that cater to various aspects of document management – from automation to security compliance.

#1 Dynamics 365 Document Automation

by Microsoft

Automates document generation and management within Dynamics 365, enabling creation, storage, and management of documents using custom workflows and templates. Document automation requires System Customizer permission to install a new package as the solution creates custom entities on your environment.

#2 Dynamics 365 + SharePoint Document Management Suite

All-in-one solution designed to enhance document management capabilities within Dynamics 365. This suite includes four key components:

  • CB Dynamics 365 to SharePoint Permissions Replicator: Ensures that permissions in Dynamics 365 are replicated in SharePoint, maintaining consistent security and access settings across both platforms.
  • SharePoint Structure Creator: Helps organize SharePoint documents for optimal team productivity, following specific organizational rules.
  • CB Dynamics 365 Seamless Attachment Extractor: Prevents attachments from accumulating inside Dynamics 365 by moving them to other storage solutions while keeping them accessible within Dynamics 365.
  • CB Blockchain Seal for SharePoint: Utilizes blockchain technology to ensure document integrity, verifying that files have not been tampered with after being sealed with a timestamped blockchain seal.

This suite aims to increase team productivity, maintain regulatory compliance, and ensure document security.

#3 Lasernet

Lasernet is known for its powerful document formatting and output management capabilities. It integrates with Dynamics 365 and is mostly used to create and deliver reports. You can also use it to create, manage, and distribute any kind of document efficiently.

#4 Document Automation for Microsoft Dynamics 365


Enables business users to create, manage and deliver better documents faster by using data from Dynamics 365 and other sources. It offers features like intuitive template design, automated document flows, and centralized management console, helping businesses to simplify and optimize their document generation processes.

#5 M-Files for Dynamics 365

Integrates with Dynamics 365 to provide advanced document management capabilities. It offers features like AI-powered document categorization, version control, and automated workflow management, helping businesses to efficiently organize and access their documents within the Dynamics 365 environment.

These top 5 apps for Microsoft Dynamics 365 transform the mundane task of document management into a streamlined, efficient process. They’re ready to organize, secure, and streamline your document management process. So, bid farewell to the chaotic world of scattered documents and embrace the era of digital organization with these Dynamics 365 apps.

Contact us at info@tectura.com

Focused on Digital Transformation of Project and Service-Centric Organizations

Microsoft End of Support 2023 — All you need to know

Technology constantly evolves, including software product lifecycles. Microsoft End of Support (EOS) is crucial in this cycle, but what does it truly signify? In simple terms, EOS refers to the point when Microsoft discontinues updates, security patches, and technical assistance for a specific product. This means that if you continue to use the product, you are at risk of security vulnerabilities, compliance issues, and productivity losses.

What happens when a product reaches EOS

If you continue to use the product beyond its end of support, the risks tend to escalate over time. Microsoft releases new versions of its products, and older products may become incompatible with the new versions. This leaves you exposed to compatibility problems, performance issues, and data loss. It’s a critical phase that demands attention and proactive measures to ensure your systems remain secure and resilient.

Why Microsoft ends support for its products

Products become more challenging and costly to maintain as they age. Microsoft creates new products and features all the time. Additionally, it prioritizes customer safety by protecting them from the security risks associated with outdated products.

List of the products that are reaching EOS in 2023

  • Dynamics AX 2012 R3
  • Dynamics NAV 2013
  • Dynamics NAV 2013 R2
  • Dynamics GP 2013
  • Dynamics GP 2013 R2

List of the products moving to Extended Support

  • Dynamics GP 2018
  • Dynamics GP 2018 R2
  • Dynamics NAV 2018
  • Dynamics 365 Business Central on-premise (fixed policy)

Check the Microsoft Support Lifecycle website for complete details on your product’s support milestone dates.

What does this mean for your business?

Continued usage of an outdated Dynamics AX, GP, or NAV can lead to a number of problems, such as:

  • Security vulnerabilities: Organizations that continue to use unsupported versions of Dynamics systems are at increased risk of security vulnerabilities. These vulnerabilities could allow hackers to access sensitive data or even take control of the organization’s systems.
  • Compliance issues: You will be at risk of compliance issues. This is because Microsoft no longer provides security updates or bug fixes for these  versions, which means that they may not be compliant with industry regulations.
  • Integration and compatibility challenges: As newer technologies and systems evolve, unsupported software may become incompatible with other applications and services used within the organization. This can create integration challenges and hinder overall business operations.
  • Missed enhancements and features: Newer versions of Dynamics products often come with valuable features, enhancements, and performance improvements. When you stay with the unsupported versions, you would miss out on opportunities to leverage these advancements, which could lead to reduced efficiency and competitiveness in the long run.
  • Increased maintenance costs: Continued use of unsupported legacy Dynamics ERP systems versions may also incur increased costs. This is because you will need to pay for third-party support or for the development of custom patches.
  • Decreased vendor support: After EOS, the vendor (Microsoft) will no longer provide official support or assistance for the software. This means that organizations will have to rely on internal resources or third-party consultants for any troubleshooting or help they may need.

Each Dynamics NAV version is supported for 10 years. The first 5 years include new features, security, and non-security updates (mainstream support), and the next 5 years only have security updates (extended support). Beyond the End of Support, no updates would be available. This helps customers plan and receive continuous support for their software.

Benefits of upgrading from Dynamics NAV to Dynamics 365 Business Central:

  • Sustained innovation and support: Experience uninterrupted access to progressive product updates, security enhancements, and cutting-edge features.
  • Effortless migration: The migration to Business Central is designed to ensure a smooth transfer of your valuable data, configurations, and customizations.
  • Powered by the Cloud: Embrace the cloud-driven capabilities of Dynamics 365 Business Central, which empowers your organization with enhanced scalability, flexibility, and accessibility.
  • Prolonged Support Lifecycles: Microsoft’s unwavering support for BC is indefinite. It relieves you of any concerns about future budgeting for ERP software upgrades.

Next steps for Dynamics NAV (2013; NAV 2013 R2) and AX 2012 R3 users

Now that mainstream support has ended for Dynamics NAV and AX users, the only option is to migrate to the cloud.

Microsoft partners play an integral role during migration to Dynamics 365 applications. Internal teams within organizations can help achieve the same goal. However, they typically take longer to complete and tax the in-house technical resources.

The Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations Package is designed for enterprise-level organizations and accelerates the implementation of Dynamics 365 F&O. It takes around five months, saving time compared to the typical 9-12 months. This is great for businesses that want a swift adoption of Dynamics 365 F&O. The package includes pre-configuration workshops, go-live assistance, ongoing support, and provides a fast and easy implementation process.

Future-proof your business with Tectura Corporation

Tectura is a Microsoft Gold partner with highly trained professionals who devise perfect solutions for Dynamics 365 implementation, migration, customization, and support. Our on-demand services help you with the best solutions within a cost-efficient framework. You only pay for the time used.

Reach out to our experts to learn about migration to Dynamics 365.