D365 Platform Update 33 Preview: It Does The Math!

The preview release of Platform update 33 for Finance and Operations is now available (general availability is scheduled for March). This is part of a series highlighting features in the new platform update.


It Does The Math!!!

The ability to calculate inside of cells (instead of on external calculators) was a handy feature in AX2012 that we were sad to lose in the great D365 migration to the cloud.

Well put your 10-keys back in your deskdrawers because D365 does the math again!

When entering data into numeric cells, start your entry with the equals sign (=) and let D365 handle the rest.

1+1 = 2

(2×3) + (4×5) = 26


It Even Does The Advanced Math!!!

Dynamics recognizes pi, e, factorials, logarithms and trig functions. A complete list of the supported math expressions can be found here.

5! (5x4x3x2x1) = 120

Cos(pi) + ln(e) = 2


The supported math expressions don’t include imaginary numbers (remember i ?). Fortunately, accountants have been handling imaginary numbers on their own for centuries.

additional reading
What’s New Platform Update 33
Grid Capabilities
Supported Math Symbols

Hotkey Highlight – Win+H

Cortana Dictation – Win+H

This shortcut is admittedly more style than substance, but…

If you are using a PC with Windows 10, you can use Cortana’s speech recognition to dictate instead of type your D365 inputs. More information on how to set up speech recognition in Windows 10 is available here.

  • Win+H will activate the speech recognition bar visible at the top of the screen.
  • Saying “Stop dictation” will remove you from dictation mode.

Cortana Dictation Power User Tip

The Win+H shortcut can be used in conjunction with the Ctrl+/ Navigation Search shortcut to access any D365 form or workspace with minimal keyboard entry. It can also be used with the Ctrl+F Browser Search shortcut to quickly identify objects on a given page.

Demonstration

Hotkey Highlights (and Happy Holidays) – Tips for Efficient Journal Entry

Not sure what to get that special D365 accountant in your life? Waited till the last minute and now you don’t have time to buy a gift? Show your appreciation by passing along this list of journal entry tips. Better yet, send a link to our whole series on shortcuts.

#D365Blogs: the gifts that keeps on giving – even during the holidays.

These example screenshots will be from the general ledger journal form, but are applicable across journal types in D365.

Alt+N – Create a new journal

Alt+N can create a new journal header, and also create new journal lines once the journal lines are opened.

Alt+Down – Open dropdown to select journal name

Once the new journal is created, Alt and the down arrow can be used to open the Journal name dropdown. From there, the up/down arrows can be used to toggle between available journal names and Enter can be used to select the highlighted journal name.

Tab / Shift+Tab – Toggle cell selection Right / Left

Similar to Excel, Tab and Shift+Tab can be used to move the cell selection right and left. The allows a user to update the description field without using the mouse for selection.

Using Shift+Tab, the user can move the selection to the left so that the journal batch number is highlighted. Pressing enter while the journal batch number is highlighted will have the same effect as clicking the link, allowing the user to open the journal lines without clicking their mouse.

Once inside the journal lines, Tab can be used to move horizontally across the cells. Through Personalizations, users can control which of these cells are included or skipped when tabbing.

Selecting Accounts and Financial Dimensions

Keep in mind when selecting accounts and financial dimensions that the field acts as a “begins with” filter on both the Value and the Description fields.

An asterisk can be used as a wildcard search character to override the “begins with” filter. In the example above, “*recei” can be used as a search to return all accounts containing the word “Receivables”

Alt+Shift + Right/Left – Toggle Tabs Right/Left

When it is necessary to update more values that simply what is on the list page, Alt+Shift+ the right and left arrow keys can be used to toggle across the journal’s tabs.

Alt+Delete – Delete

Everyone makes mistakes. That’s why there’s a delete button on the journal lines and header. Alt+Delete can erase that mistake without even the shake of a mouse.

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“Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.”

Hotkey Highlight – Ctrl+Shift+E

Export to Excel – Ctrl+Shift+E

While some D365 data has Open in Excel functionality, allowing users to interact with the data through the Excel Data Connector add-in, every list page in D365 can be exported to excel, creating a static download of the data.

Ctrl+Shift+E gets you that excel export in fewer clicks. As a bonus, this shortcut places the selection on the Download button in the following screen, so you can use the Enter button to execute the download.

Ctrl+Shift+E…Enter for a mouse-free excel export of your data.

Export Selected Rows

Only want to export a few selected rows to Excel? Check the desired rows prior to clicking Export to Excel and only those rows will be included in your data.

Export to Excel Power User Tip

The D365 platform now supports exporting up to one million rows of data to excel. With this great power, exercise great responsibility.

Export progress dialog

Need to export more than a million rows? You should probably look into using a different tool. Excel itself can only handle 1,048,576 rows🙂

Hotkey Highlight – Ctrl+Shift+P

Enter Personalization Mode – Ctrl+Shift+P

On any D365 screen, you can you can enter personalization mode though right-click, select personalize, and then selecting personalize this form. If the options tab is visible, you can also click “Personalize this form” in the Personalize group.

Ctrl+Shift+P is simply a faster way to access the Personalization mode. This can be especially useful when making personalization adjustments for saved views.

Personalization Power User Tips

D365 actually has a full suite of Personalization shortcuts. If you use personalizations frequently, it could be highly beneficial to become acquainted with these. One of my favorite personalization hotkeys is when trying to move the position of a column, I find it much easier to use the arrow keys to move and enter button to set the column than to attempt the adjustment by dragging it with the mouse.

Confirm these shortcuts through the link, as I think this is an experience that will continue to improve.

Hotkey Highlight – Ctrl+/

Navigation Search – Ctrl+/

Ctrl+/ is the hotkey to enter the D365 navigation search located at the top of the page (This used to be the magnifying glass to the right of the legal entity, but in a recent design change the box is not top-center).

The navigation search is helpful if you know the exact name of the form you are looking for. The search functionality here still has room for improvement, so when I’m uncertain about the exact name of the menu item I’m looking for, I tend to favor using browser search (Ctrl+F) to open the desired module and search for the desired menu item.

Navigation Search Power User Tip

The navigation search matches based on the initial letters of each word typed.

Instead of typing “project invoice proposals” to return the Project invoice proposals form, the value “pro inv pro” is sufficent to return the same result. Typing “p i pr” would be an even more efficient way to return this result.

With some experimenting, you should discover a series of truncated search phrases to use in combination with Ctrl+/ that will resolve to your commonly used forms. Your own personal hotkeys!

Hotkey Highlight – Ctrl+F

Browser Search – Ctrl+F

One of the great things about D365 being browser based is that you can also use the browser’s hotkeys. In both Chrome and Edge, Ctrl+F can be used to search a website. I find this is especially useful when searching for menu items buried deep in a module.

Browser Search Power User Tips

  • Crtrl+F to find menu items (or other text on page)
  • Enter toggles to next record
  • Shift+Enter toggles to previous record
  • Ctrl+Enter (in Chrome) clicks link

Hotkey Highlights – Introduction

View Shortcuts

On any D365 form, users have the ability to right-click and “View shortcuts”. This brings up a display of all the shortcuts available for that given form, as well as a link to the full list of D365 Keyboard shortcuts.

It’s faster to navigate computer systems with a keyboard than with a mouse. But while the point-and-click of a mouse is intuitive, keyboard navigation has to be memorized and internalized.

I’ve heard stories of managers ripping out the mouses of new investment bankers, forcing them to learn model building completely through excel hotkeys. But there’s no need to boil the ocean. Picking up a tip here and there can, like compounding interest, lead to significant improvement in the user experience over time. Also like compounding interest, we probably underestimate the cumulative value of all these small improvements.

With that in mind, I’m starting Hotkey Highlights* a series of blog posts on simple keyboard tricks that can improve the D365 navigation experience. I hope you enjoy! Subscribe if that’s content you’re interested in – and let me know you have any favorite navigation tips of your own.


*After some research, I realize that “hotkeys” are actually a very specific type of keyboard shortcut, and most of these shortcut tips will not in fact be “hotkeys” in that sense. I briefly considered renaming this series “Shortcut Showcase”, but after some soul-searching decided I did not love that alliteration as much. If this technicality somehow offends you, feel free to reach out and I will happily refund your blog subscription.