Microsoft unveiled Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010, an ERP platform for midsize businesses, on April 20. The software includes business intelligence reporting tools, functionality for streamlining approval scenarios for daily workflow, and interoperability with Microsoft Office Unified Communications and other software.
Using the software, a warehouse manager could detect any depletion in supplies and reprovision with a few mouse clicks; in theory, Dynamics GP 2010 would even write the purchase order for the new materials in Word, and then e-mail it to the appropriate vendor. The software includes more than 400 built-in Microsoft SQL Reporting Services, personalized Role Centers and interoperability with Microsoft SharePoint; integration with Excel 2010 allows for additional slicing and dicing of data.
In addition, Dynamics GP 2010 offers 350 integrated Web services, interoperability with Microsoft Office Unified Communications and integration with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
"By combining the power of business applications and productivity applications, we're able to support how people really work in their everyday jobs," Crispin Read, general manager of Microsoft Dynamics ERP, said in an April 20 statement.
"Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 will be available via Microsoft's extensive partner network in Australia, Canada, the Caribbean, the Middle East, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States on May 1. ... French Canadian and Latin American Spanish versions will be available in the second half of the year," Microsoft's announcement said.
Microsoft has been building out its end-to-end platforms for business processes, likely in response to a rapid series of releases from Oracle and other rivals in the same area. Earlier in April, Microsoft released a version of Microsoft Dynamics CRM customized for nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations, with additional tools such as donation and pledge management, basic membership management, basic volunteer tracking, support for online payment solutions, and campaign management.
Oracle's own April moves, including the release of its Oracle Enterprise Performance Management System 11.1.2 and Oracle Hyperion Public Sector Planning and Budgeting, are designed for use both by businesses and in the public sector.
Microsoft is also positioning the online version of its CRM as the alternative to cloud-based competition from the likes of Salesforce.com. As part of that, Microsoft has been offering add-ons and services to its online CRM at no additional cost, as well as a variety of CRM Accelerators designed to help businesses pull information from social networks and Web interaction channels.