At the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in Toronto, in a completely packed room (doors had to be closed and people turned away) the NAV Global Product Management team showcased what the future for NAV will look like – and people were taking pictures like crazy with their phones.
The highly anticipated launch of NAV 2013 promises the first out of the box integration between Sharepoint and the ERP back end system; all based on the NAV Portal Framework (NPF).
Catapult was handed the task of building a prototype that would show the best of both worlds; the rigor, business logic and structure of the transactions-based ERP model combined with Sharepoint’s ability to extract, present, and blend data and documents into a user-friendly application based on the Metro UI theme.
The starting point is the home page for the CFO, shown below with a mix of “live” NAV data, KPI’s and data visualization graphs, entry points to Email and calendar function (Office 365) and Lync (the unified communications platform integrated with outlook), as well as Sharepoint lists and data repositories.From there you can drill down to a workspace that allows the end user easy access to launch the actual ERP application and perform the business transaction that you want.
The solution kicks the door right open for the ERP application; access it from Sharepoint, the web or a mobile application and present it in a way that reflects the latest user-friendly front end look and feel.
Another interesting aspect is the second home page that was created as part of this project, the consultant homepage shown below. The key difference here is the data repository with all sorts of relevant NAV generated reports that can be posted and shared with partners – without giving them direct access to the ERP system.
One could imagine an external consultant helping the client on various business projects, where they would need insight into financial and operational performance – and being able to monitor that on an ongoing basis. No need to email it back and forth with concerns over versioning; the data can be presented in a very friendly and elegant common collaboration platform.
At the same time you can build workflows around a common shared business process, so the client and the consultant can see relevant status updates and track progress.
The most fascinating part is now you are really starting to take advantage of the entire platform, build your solution with different tools that will allow you to create a great looking and intuitive solution, optimize your collaboration capabilities with partners, both external and internal, produce relevant and timely key performance indicator’s – all while your building foundation is “just” your staff performing their daily business transactions.
Catapult ERP is proud to be have been part of this project for NAV 2013 together with Microsoft – and excited about the projects we can see in the horizon with the new capabilities of the product and the platform.