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Spring 2018 Update: Project Lifecycle Management

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Spring 2018 Update: Project Lifecycle Management

As of the spring 2018 release, Microsoft introduced product lifecycle stages for the Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations user. While this feature is not as complex as a system specifically designed to manage PLM (Project Lifecycle Management), it does add an Alternative Item Numbers functionality and it provides some limiting functionality on transactions. This aids in reduced inventory costs in both finished goods and components, as well as a decrease in aged inventory. In this blog, we will walk through this project lifecycle functionality!

Note: Microsoft refers to these product lifecycles as states, so we will use state, stage, and status here interchangeably.

To initiate a state, follow the process below.

1. Add each status as a lifecycle state in Dynamics 365.

  • Product Information Management > Setup > Product lifecycle state.
  • Click New.

project lifecycle

2. Enter the item status in the State field.

3. Enter the Description.

4. Mark whether this is the initial state when a product is released to a legal entity and should therefore be the default.

5. Mark whether at this state the item should be considered for master planning.

Dynamics 365 now provides a tool to create timeframes for when a product should be considered obsolete.

The parameters can be separated into two considerations:

1. Time from Creation Date – when an item is introduced, there can be many reasons for a slow startup. Some of those could be due to depletion of an older models' inventory, introduction to the market, etc. With that, a business might not want to consider obsolescence within a given period – say 2 years from creation date.

2. Time from Last Transaction – this product is more likely to be a candidate to be rendered obsolete when an item has no transactions for a given period.

To set up the change of a lifecycle state to obsolete, you can do this automatically or you can run a report and review prior to change updates. Until the business is extremely comfortable with this process, it is highly recommended to review these results with each run of the report.

1. For setup, navigate to Product Information Management > Periodic Tasks > Change lifecycle state
for obsolete products.

project lifecycle

2. Parameters Fast Tab

  • The first field is the selection of what new product lifecycle state you would like these obsolete items housed. From the prior setups in this example, Inactive would make the most sense. Depending on specific business setups, this can vary.
  • The next selection is whether you would like to run the simulation with or without automatically updating the states. Though this field defaults to "no", it is highly recommended to update this to "yes" to allow for review.
  • Next is the Product Selection Criteria we discussed earlier, based on business requirements.
    • Time from creation date.
    • Time from last transaction.

3. Records to include Fast tab

  • Here you can drill down into distinct product variants if you would like to only run a specific variation.

4. Run in the background Fast tab

  • Batch Processing –this process would be good to review on a regular time interval - we'd suggest on a quarterly or annual basis. Setups can be completed to ensure this job batches and sends out a report by email to the necessary parties.

project lifecycle

5. Define recurrence – how frequent to run the job.

project lifecycle

6. Batch job alerts – any required alerts as the job is processed.

project lifecycle

This covers the Project Lifecycle Management functionality introduced with the spring 2018 release. Want to learn more about this subject and more? Our Spring 2018 Update Webinar Series is an excellent resource for staying up to date on the latest CRM and ERP changes for Dynamics 365. Plus, it's all FREE! Register for one or more sessions now.

Happy Dynamics 365'ing!

Joe CRM
By Kieran Patel

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