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Microsoft Great Plains in Agriculture ? implementation highlights

In this small article we'll concentrate on farmers associations and non-profit state-sponsored organizations, dealing with subsidized state and federal programs distribution and management ? loans to farmers and rural communities. As we realized this is relatively narrow market niche and it is almost ignored by software developers. In the typical case you should take generic ERP application, such as Microsoft Great Plains and integrate it with legacy systems or create custom piece in Great Plains to serve your association needs.

? Loan Tracking System. Your customers ? farmers are customers in Microsoft Great Plains Accounts Receivables (AR) module, however the association doesn't have the loan on its balance ? it is managing the program for the fee. This is why Loan Tracking system is usually custom application. It is often written in Microsoft Access. You need a link from Great Plains Customer Maintenance screen to the customer loan record in the MS Access. This could be realized via smart tag.

? Loan marketing. You can improve your results by analyzing loans by farmers segments and offer related and associated financial products to farmers community. This is excellent field for Crystal Reports designer

? State regulation. As the association you need to file numerous state-dependent reports, related to your financial activity. The reporting is based on Microsoft Great Plains company database as well as your custom made loan tracking system/database. In MS SQL Server you should create linked server and heterogeneous SQL queries and stored procedures

? Non-profit chart of accounts. Great Plains handles non-profit accounting. Chart of accounts is flexible from Microsoft Great Plains side ? the often case is implementing the same chart of accounts as you have in your legacy accounting application.

? Customization & Integration. Association service loan programs and dealing with numerous banks. Expect EFT and bank transactions integration, which should be considered individually with each specific case. Portion of the above mentioned loan system logic you may bring to Great Plains. Good candidate would be interest calculation and AR interest and principal reimbursement invoices automatic creation ? SQL stored procedures with Great Plains Dexterity setup screen will do the job. In this case you can verify statements from the bank and match them with your own calculations in Great Plains.

We encourage you to analyze your alternatives. You can always appeal to our help, give us a call: 1-866-528-0577 or 1-630-961-5918,

Andrew Karasev is Chief Technology Officer at Alba Spectrum Technologies ( ), serving Microsoft Great Plains, CRM, Navision to mid-size and large clients in California, Illinois, New York, Georgia, Florida, Texas, Arizona, Washington, Minnesota, Ohio, Michigan

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