02 July 2018

With Microsoft Dynamics, the paperless office should be here

Dropped in Dynamics 365 ERP

James Crowter
Formulated by James Crowter

Since the 1960’s, the dream of a paperless business has remained elusive. We all thought that the computer revolution would solve the issue, instead, the printers began to churn out paper quicker than anybody with a typewriter or pen ever could.

However, paper is now finally becoming a notable oddity in the workplace. It should be, so read on to make sure you’re using all the techniques needed to keep those trees alive and compensate for your CO2 output.

Electronic Documents

The simplest alternative to paper is a straight electronic replacement via sending a file rather than a piece of paper. Sending a PDF document by email rather than in a paper envelope has reached ubiquity now even for business documents like invoices and credits. 

With payback provided by savings in postage and packaging, your Dynamics system can be configured to not just send an invoice automatically, but also to attach terms and conditions or a marketing document as appropriate. If you’re still stuffing envelopes for anything, get in touch and we can show you the eco-friendly alternative.

Scan & Shred

You can’t stop other people sending you paper though right? But you can use a multi-functional copier to scan it in as soon as you receive it. The paperwork then goes straight in the shredding bin. An even better alternative is to get them to email a specific email address with a PDF attachment as you won’t even need to pay for shredding.

Both options send the PDF image to an inbound document queue in Dynamics, which enables an add-on such as Continia Document Capture to send it to a cloud service, so that it can be turned into data and the transaction will automatically be created ready for you to approve.

With the Document Links in Dynamics NAV or Dynamics 365 Business Central option, you can attach the image to the sales order for instance, where it will automatically be transferred to any resulting transactions. In turn, your credit controller is only a click away when there is a later invoice dispute for example. Surely, that is the correct way of filing that no old school filing system can compete with.


The trouble with printing a report on paper is that it’s out of date the moment you create it. Whilst, you may need it that way for auditing purposes (although let’s be honest, how many of those get looked at?) even this is no longer required as Dynamics allows you to produce the key audit report retrospectively when they are asked for. If you want reassurance, you can even schedule and store them within Dynamics NAV on the reports inbox as PDF’s, which still leaves you with no filing to do and no old paper to dispose of.

For management reporting simply use a dashboard. Not only can it be updated the instant it’s looked at, it should allow the viewer to drill down into any number they don’t like the look of and see the gritty details. There are a whole set of tools to choose between, yet native Dynamics provides graphs and dashboards through its views and tables alongside the endless possibilities with account schedules.

In addition, you could even add either Power BI, Jet Professional or Enterprise to the mix and the possibilities are almost endless. Pick your option and build what your business needs, remembering that our Dynamics Learning courses are a cost-efficient way of your people getting the skills they need, and reporting is our most popular topic.

Shop Floor & Warehouse Paperwork

Are you still sending paperwork out to your production areas or warehouse? I’ve just checked on Amazon and the cheapest tablet that will replace your production orders will cost you just £59.

Evidently, it’s not the cost of the equipment that is the issue. When you use the terminal to capture information directly, not only does accuracy improve (the date they enter is checked there and then and they must correct it to proceed) you get a real time overview of what is going on out there.

You will also gain control of the sequence, so that your team will do what you need them to do rather than what they want to do. Finally, your accountability will improve because everyone will register what they have done and if it proves wrong later, you can track it back and make sure your team can improve in the future.

We could go on but tell us what you still use paper for and we’ll tell you the more cost-effective and efficient alternative.

Here’s a challenge for you, if we can’t give you an answer we’ll give you a free system health check to compensate.

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