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The dictionary definition of productivity is: “the quality of being productive or having the power to produce”.  Some businesses prefer a structured environment while others prefer a flexible environment. But every business strives to be productive, efficient and proactive. The cloud computing movement has allowed businesses to free up time to focus on other aspects of their company.

Examples of ways that cloud computing can improve productivity:

The cloud offers flexibility

Your employees have more time to be productive and creative! No need to contact your IT department for access to different software and applications. You now have the ability to access services through the web on your own.

Improve communication amongst employees

The cloud allows for swift collaboration among your employees for projects. Your employees stay in sync in real time, with everyone having access to the most current and most recently updated versions.

Improve accessibility

Your employees are no longer bound by regular office hours; they can put in time around the clock with full access to the same resources that available during regular business hours.

Reduce spending on technology infrastructure

You have easy access to your information with minimal spending on infrastructure. Also, save money on hardware, software.

Forbes magazine states, “Time for the cloud, a new survey out of Gartner finds. More than one out four of the 1,364 organizations surveyed (27%), in fact, already use or plan to use cloud or software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings to augment their core business intelligence (BI) functions. In addition, 17% indicate that they are even replacing at least some of their on-premises BI systems with cloud offerings.” Cloud computing is drastically changing the way we work and live and how a business can be operated.

Natalie Williams, Marketing Coordinator, WebSan Solutions Inc., a Canadian Certified Microsoft Partner

The last release of Microsoft Office was in 2010, now three years later Microsoft unveils their new “sleek appearance” and features with Office 2013. The new appearance coincides with the Windows 8 look; they’ve added better functional improvement and links to SharePoint and SkyDrive.

There is the option of purchasing the software separately or getting Office 365 for your business. Still questioning if it’s time to upgrade? Here are some features that I’ve done research on that might change your mind.

Do you find that your desktop applications are taking up too much space on your hard drive? Microsoft has introduced SkyDrive Integration with Office 2013. Office 2013 is designed to integrate with the cloud using SkyDrive and SharePoint. That’s a big benefit to SMB if you prefer to store your documents in the cloud. If you're still skeptic about the cloud, you still have the option of saving files on your local drive.

Do you find that you are always on the go and can’t bring your laptop with you all the time? When business is booming you might find yourself all over the place, with no time to sit at a desk. But using Office 2013/Office 365 you will be able to view your documents online using a PC, tablet or WebApps. This feature makes it easier to pick up where you left off working, even if you open the file on a different device than you last used.

Do you have trouble using Excel? Do you need to use Excel to create charts and monitor sales? Excel 2013 has a new feature called Recommended Chart which you select the data to chart and click Insert > Recommended Chart to see options such as line, bar, and pie charts that the program recommends for your data. Click each chart to preview what your data will look like in that form.

Received a PDF that needs to be edited? In the new Word 2013 you can open a PDF file and edit it on the spot. When you’re done editing it you can save it back to a PDF or a Doc.

After everything stated in the above, aren’t you curious to at least try a free trial of Office 2013/365? Let me know what you think by posting a comment below!
Natalie Williams, Marketing Coordinator, WebSan Solutions Inc., a Canadian Certified Microsoft Partner

Microsoft Office 2013

In 2012, the Canadian government announced in their Economic Action Plan that they would phase out the penny due to the cost of producing the penny, relative to their face value. February 4, 2013, was the last day that the penny would be made. One thing to note is that this change does not affect cheques or electronic transactions (e.g. Interac). With this change in effect, it’s estimated that it will save taxpayers $11 million each year.

On Microsoft’s Community Dynamics website, I came across a blog Angela Melhus wrote which is called “Phasing out the Penny in Canada”. For a B2B business, this might not be much of a worry because they would normally deal with cheques and EFT payments. But for some B2C business that have a store and accept cash that might be a problem.

In Angela’s blog, she gives you a step by step process to phase out the penny in your Dynamics GP system. Her instructions are very clear and she provides screenshots of the whole process. By the end of the last step, you should have written off of the penny.

More information about phasing out the penny:

http://www.mint.ca/store/mint/learn/eliminating-the-penny-6900002

Angel Melhus blog post:

https://community.dynamics.com/gp/b/dynamicsgp/archive/2013/02/26/phasing-out-the-penny-in-canada.aspx

Natalie Williams, Marketing Coordinator, WebSan Solutions Inc., a Canadian Certified Microsoft Partner

Thursday, 16 May 2013 12:59

Time Off Requests

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With the May Long Weekend just a couple days away, many friends and coworkers are taking time-off to be with family.  WebSan has recently release a new Time-Off Request module to our TEX (Time & Expense) Management System for Dynamics GP.

The Time-Off Request module is a new optional add-on allowing staff to request paid or unpaid leave for vacation, jury duty, etc.  Non-working days (typically weekends), holidays (i.e. Christmas, Easter) & time-off reasons are configurable by company.  Employees can then send requests to their manager for approval which automatically integrates into their time sheet submission.  A company-wide calendar is maintain for viewing & enhanced time-off reporting is now available with this added functionality.

[caption id="attachment_1159" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Time Off Calendar"]Time Off Calendar[/caption]

For more information about WebSan's TEX Portal or Dynamics GP services, please contact Adam via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Adam MacIntosh is a Senior Project & Account Manager with WebSan Solutions Inc.  A Microsoft Dynamics Silver Partner and a CDN top 100 solution provider for 2012.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013 16:22

Big Data and Business Intelligence (BI)

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Nowadays business professionals have access to a vast variety of technologies and sources of information. Big data is growing fast as organizations devote technology resources to tapping the terabytes of data flowing into their organizations and externally in social media. Thus, a major challenge has come up recently: how to leverage Big Data analytics and improve business performance by using current Business Intelligence (BI) practices?

The current thinking around big data and business intelligence tends to be built around a very simplistic model. You acquire lots of data, in all kind of formats, from a myriad of sources, apply some business intelligence and get your answer to the above question. However, executives thinking that a big data dive is all they need to exploit conclusions are mistaken. While big data might be getting ahead of itself in enterprise promises, you need to think about the skills you have in your company and develop the relevant data skills to adapt to this new model. At the same time, BI kills the need to develop, administer and analyze this huge amount of corporate data. Therefore, big data and BI can be integrated within the business context for better, faster decision making.

Keep in mind, though, big data can make or break a company. Integrating advanced analytics for big data with business intelligence systems is an important step toward gaining full return on investment. That is, BI systems and advanced analytics can be highly complementary; the latter ones can provide the deeper, exploratory perspective on the data, while BI systems provide a more structured user experience. In addition, BI systems’ richness in data visualization and reporting can be vital to making advanced analytics actionable.

The first step to understanding big data is collecting all of your data into powerful, integrated solutions. The second step is to identify correlations with your data to make improvements in your operations and find new opportunities. Microsoft Dynamics GP Business Intelligence (BI) module provides people with the insight they need to take quick action and pursue opportunities. What is more, using a single software solution, like Microsoft Dynamics GP, will make it easier for you to find and use the important business data you need to drive your business forward.  The more efficiently you use this data, the faster you can respond to new opportunities.

At the end of the day, while big data is a hot term, it doesn't mean much unless you can complement them with BI systems and expand their power. Thus, big data can be very helpful if you can wade through it to obtain meaning, i.e. they always have to make sense. It's not enough to gather accurate and timely data. Professionals need powerful and user friendly BI analysis tools to help them understand context and trends. You need to focus on evolving your BI approaches and integrate them with big data analytics to fuel faster and more accurate decision making. In this way, you will be able to gain a competitive advantage by understanding how big data can supplement the outcomes already achieved through “traditional” BI.

For more information on Business Intelligence (BI), you can join our free webinar “Dynamics GP Business Intelligence (BI) & Reporting” on June 20th, 11 am EST and learn how to turn useful insight into action.

Doriana Kote, Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc., a Microsoft Dynamics Silver Partner and a CDN top 100 solution provider for 2012.

Wednesday, 05 June 2013 09:30

Data Security in the Cloud

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The most arguable myth about cloud ERP solutions refers to organizational data not being as secured as in an on-premise solution. In fact, SaaS security and privacy of data has proved to be customers’ biggest concern.

The top 4 most important issues about data security in the cloud are:

1. Your data storage location

This issue is related to the physical location of the data. When it comes to cloud ERP vendors, their data centers are housed in multimillion dollar facilities and have a 24/7 security all year long. After all, most cloud providers are actually better with physical security than an onsite solution vendor because they don’t have a lot of staff hanging around the facility. Thus, they are able to control physical access to various parts of the office space.

2. Who has access to your data and when

Access is critical when considering SaaS. You should be aware of whether or not outsiders can get to the data, for example for auditing purposes. Even if cloud ERP providers have Service – Level Agreements (SLAs) on who has access, it is important to ask if local governments can overrule that agreement and in what ways.

3. What device you are using to access data

Devices have different levels of security. Some devices are harder to log in, while some don’t need any log-in information at all. When accessing your data from an application, keep in mind that data access via a mobile application is different than the regular one from a browser.

4. Usability can sacrifice security

Sometimes businesses complicate the authentication process by providing users with numerous passwords for different scenarios, putting overall data   security in danger, since employees might have to write them down and expose them.

At the end of the day, entrusting private business data to an outside hosting service is still making some organizations skeptical. That is, cloud adoption is shadowed by security concerns. Nevertheless, you should consider that security and privacy issues exist whether an organization decides to subscribe to a cloud ERP Solution or license ERP software and implement it onsite.

WebSan Solutions offers a hosted-enterprise business software solution, leveraging the vast capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics GP. Our Hosted Dynamics GP solution is maintained in our state-of-the-art Tier II data center located in Toronto. Your data is secure and accessible when you need it!

Doriana Kote, Marketing Assistant, WebSan Solutions Inc., a Microsoft Dynamics Silver Partner and a CDN top 100 solution provider for 2012.

Tuesday, 04 June 2013 18:09

Manitoba PST Update

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Effective July 1, 2013, the Manitoba government is increasing the PST rate from 7% to 8%.

After this cutoff date, GP users will have to change the tax setup prior to inputting any Manitoba AR / AP invoices.  This change can be completed by navigating to Administration > Setup > Company Tax Details.  Then, select the appropriate tax detail (generally you will have one for Sales and one for Purchasing) and update the Percentage field from 7% to 8%.

[caption id="attachment_1229" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Tax Setup"]Tax Setup[/caption]

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our support team at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Adam MacIntosh is a Senior Project Implementation Manager at WebSan Solutions Inc, a Microsoft Dynamics GP Silver Partner & 2012 Microsoft Impact Awards Finalist.  Adam can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 416-499-1235 ext 213.