How to integrate Business Central with Dynamics 365 Talent – part 3 (inserting data with LogicApps)

The last days of the previous year, I’ve started with blog series how to integrate Business Central with Dynamics 365 Talent (now Dynamic 365 Human Resources). I wanted to show how to integrate these two solutions without code, using only available services.

I’ve started with the first post, with an overview and then continue with the second one where I explained how to configure both solutions. Now I would like to continue with the third part where I’ll explain integration tools we can use.

Generally, you can use Flow (Power Automation) or Azure Logic Apps. Personally, for this purpose I prefer Logic Apps. There are many reasons for this, and I’ll show the basic comparison between these two solutions:

I don’t want to say Flow is not good solution as I enjoy in using it, but for this purpose (integration) I think Logic Apps is much better choice.

To use Logic Apps, first you must have an Azure subscription. When you open an Azure portal, you can easily find Logic Apps using a search feature. Create a new Logic Apps using Add command.

If you already used Microsoft Flow, you will find that Logic Apps are very similar, but as this is on the first place Azure service, you have to make some basic configuration as a choosing a service Name, what Subscription you want to use, Resource Group and Location for your service.

Then you just need to click on Create and wait a few seconds. If you still don’t see new service, probably you need to hit Refresh and new service will appear. When a new service is created, you need to open it and start creating a flow. System will open Logic Apps Designer and you can start with a Blank Logic App button scrolling little bit down (if this is your first time with Logic Apps, I can recommend to look the introducing video before you start). Do not forget that you need to have already deployed Business Central and Talent and created Talend entities in CDS (check in PowerApps with Data tab).

On the first sight you will see it obviously look like very similar as Microsoft Flow (Power Automation). First you need to start with a trigger, and as there is not trigger for Talent, you need to find ‘Common Data Service’ trigger – ‘When a record is created’. Yes, the first Logic App will be for inserting new data, but to complete this process, minimum necessary will be to make a Logic App for update as well.

Now you need to sign in to create a connection to Common Data Service. You will use credentials you used for Talent and CDS. When you finish with signing in, choose an environment where you have installed Talent and Workers as an entity name. On the end, add Organization as a Scope.

In a new step, you need to make an action. For this purpose, you need to choose Business Central and find ‘Create record’ action. When you sign in, first you need to choose if you want to use Production or some other environment and after that you need to choose a company name and as a Table name choose Employees (this is an API from Business Central).

On the end you just need to connect fields. To do this you need to click on Add new parameter and to choose Business Central fields you want to use for integration. Minimum you have to use are number, givenName and surname. Now you need to connect BC with Talent data i.e. Given Name (from Talent) to First_name, Surname to Last_name…

Click Save and as this is a service, do not forget to click Run. Only now, your Logic App is ready for using.

Be careful here with choosing fields for integration… you can try to integrate more fields here, but it cannot be useful. The answer on your question is when you create new record to the Worker entity in Talent, only a few field will be treated as an insert and the most of them will be treated as an update. Look at the last image where I’ll create new record… only these field you see are treated as an insert.

When you click Hire and add details, all other values you will add will be treated as an update. Because of that, you will see that created new Logic App for updating is absolutely necessary. But I’ll explain more about this in my next post.

But right now, you can create new Worker in Talent and you will see that system created new Employee in Business Central immediately.

How to integrate Business Central with Dynamics 365 Talent – part 1 (Introduction)

When I think about new Business Central features, the first thing in my mind is openness for integrations. As a part of Dynamics 365 family, the main power of this solution is when it can work simultaneously with other. Because of that, I showed these capabilities in a few conferences. As I got lot of requirement to explain it in more details, I’ll write about good example of BC integrations with one other Dynamics 365 solution – with ‘Dynamics 365 Talent’.

‘Dynamics 365 Talent’ is a new Microsoft Dynamics HCM solution (new name ‘Dynamics 365 Human Resources‘). This solution was initially based on AX HRM, but now it is separated solution. As we can use it independently and this solution is really amazing HCM system, I think it can be interesting how we can integrate this solution with Business Central and make them as the powerful tool together… and with no code.

If you are thinking how to make it and how to make it with no code, the answer is using one of the Azure services – Logic Apps. As ‘Dynamics 365 Talent’ has entities on CDS and Logic Apps has connectors for CDS and for ‘Business Central’, only what we need to do is to map entities and fields in both systems and of course, to think abut business logic on the first place. Depends what is the primary reason for integration, we can choose some of the options:

  • integrate HRM core system with HR in Business Central
  • integrate Attract or Onboard apps in Talent with Business Central.

In second option, we will use HR module in Business Central and use only one or two parts from ‘Dynamics 365 Talent’. On the other side, in first option we will use core HR in ‘Dynamics 365 Talent’. In this text, I chose to explain the first option.

In this first text, I’ll just explain some basic concepts and you will find more details in the following texts with this topic.

Basic setup in Business Central

First, as we don’t need all HR capabilities in Business Central (we already have all of them in dedicated HR solution – ‘Dynamics 365 Talent’), we will move only data necessary for other areas in Business Central. In this example I’ll show how to move data to Employee table as this table can be used for example in a Payroll system or you can use this information in Fixed Assets card.

Locate information in Talent

Now when we have the basic configurations, we can continue with integration. First, we need to find where an employee’s data are saved in Talent. To find this we need to open list of CDS entities and we can do it using PowerApps platform.

When we have these basic information, we can continue with technical parts how to do it in a practice.

Sessions from NAV TechDays – day 2

As I’ve promised a few days ago in my previous post, I’m completing the collection of all session from NAV TechDays 2019.

Let’s see what we had in the second day of this amazing NAV/BC event:

Leveraging the power of the cloud

Build, test, deploy and deliver your app by one file

NAV/BC for high demanding environments

{Connect app}²

Business Central with Power Platform – more than ERP solution

…and of course, this is my session where I’ve talked about PowerPlatform with BC together with an MVP Renato Fajdiga… expect feedback here 🙂

The Power Platform for Business Central Techies

If you liked my and Renato session, I’ll highly recommend to continue with this session from Arend-Jan Kauffmann.

Make the most out of Business Central on Docker

Migrate your customers to the cloud, and manage them there

How to make AI work for your Business… Central

Sessions from NAV TechDays – day 1

NAV TechDays 2019 has just finished a few days ago and I can say this was amazing event and again the biggest one – with 1452 attendees. As I promised the last year, I prepared session this time and made it together with an MVP Renato Fajdiga. I hope to see you next year again.

In a meantime, all sessions from the first day are already published and I want to have all of them on the one place. As soon as we have sessions from the second day published, I’ll add them. There are all of them:

Opening Keynote

The road from C/AL to AL

Development Methodologies for the future

How to run faster in SaaS

Unlocking new integration potential for 365 BC with Azure Event Grid and Azure Integration

Give Business Central access to your data files

Control Add in development supercharged

Developing for Modern clients

Using Docker and the ContainerHelper to convert your C/AL solution to an AL solution

#MSDyn365BC new Era of Integration: Intelligent Edge, SmartLists, Azure Service Bus and more!

Dynamics 365 April ’19 Release Notes

Today, the newest release notes for April 2019 has just been published. You can find details regarding all Dynamics 365 solutions, Power Platform and even more.

If you want to read all details, you can do it using the following link: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/business-applications-release-notes/April19/. You can navigate there very easy and find what you are interesting for.

After this first document, you can expect the following until the April and release official announcement:

  • February 1st – Preview will be available
  • February 21st – Update of release notes
  • April 2nd – Virtual launch event
  • April 5th – General availability

For now, read it and enjoy…

Dynamics 365 Business Central Licensing

As we already had insight in Dynamics 365 Business Central and this solution will be available in only three days, it is a moment to get more information about licensing. In this post I’ll show only the basic important topics regarding licensing.

As we already know, there are three licensing types Premium, Essential and Team Members. Premium and Essential will provide full access to solution, but not to the same level of features. Essential has most of the future, but not Manufacturing and Service Management (this is included in Premium package). And very important thing is that we cannot use a mix of these two user types. You must choose what level of features you need and all full users must use the same license type.

D365BC licenses.PNG

As a Team Member, you can do the following:

  • Read anything within Dynamics 365 Business Central
  • Update existing data and entries in Dynamics 365 Business Central – existing data are records like customer, vendor or item records which are already created. Entries means entries on which it is specifically allowed from an accounting perspective to update specific information. (e.g. due date on customer ledger entries)
  • Approve or reject tasks in all workflows assigned to a user
  • Create, edit, delete a quote
  • Create, edit, delete personal information
  • Enter a time sheet for Jobs
  • Use PowerApps for Dynamics 365

And more, it is important to know that the minimum number of full users is 1 and w don’t have a maximum number of users (you can register number of users you need). But keep in mind, we are talking about named users, not concurrent.

And Dynamics 365 Business Central Essential, Dynamics 365 Business Central Premium and Dynamics 365 Business Central Team Members also includes the PowerApps for Dynamics 365 Applications license.

Dynamics 365 Business Central users are not provided with any standalone or general-purpose Power BI license or use rights, but this subscription includes an option to embed Power BI content as a product feature but require users to subscribe to Power BI separately to configure access to this content.

And with a question what we have more included, this is important table:

D365BC environment

Customers who wish to expand beyond the default subscription capacity included in Dynamics 365 Business Central will need to have a separate Azure subscription.

But on the end as very important: please do not use this article as license manual. If you need more details for licensing of real or potential customers, please use an official Dynamics 365 Business central Licensing Guide.

Licensing in Dynamics 365 for Talent

In a last period, I’ve got a lot of questions about how to make a proper licensing for Dynamics 365 for Talent. As it is a new solution, it is understandable. As I’ve already wrote a few articles about this product, I think I can help with some answers.

The first and very important, all users in this solution are named users. And if we speak about HR core part, we have two different user types and you can buy them on two separate ways. We have Full Users with total access to all HR core application and we have Team Members with very limited access (mostly, but not only for read tasks).

As I mentioned Full Users (Talent Users) can be bought on the following ways:

  • as a regular Talent User (you must take minimum 5 users) for 40 USD
  • buying Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, i.e. you will get full Talent Users buying Unified Operation (for 190 USD) or full Dynamics 365 Plan (for 210 USD); in both cases you will get much much more than just Talent, but Talent will be part of your completely system.

TalentLicense.PNG

If we are speaking about Team Members, you can buy them for 8 USD, but again you will not get only access to Talent with them, but also to all other Apps in Dynamics 365 package. As I mentioned, Team Member are not limited only with read rights, because you can use them for example as employee for Employee Self Service.

OK, but this is not the end. Recently, Microsoft announce two additional AI Apps for Talent (Attract and Onboard) and that means if you want to use them, you first must be a regular Talent User. Then, you can subscribe them. Price is 8 USD for each of them separately or if you want both, price will be 12 USD in total.

And again, this is not the end. Actually, it doesn’t mean it must be the end. Why? Because if you want to customize something. As you already know (I hope), this App is full SaaS and you cannot just open a code and change it. If you want to change something on forms and similar, you can do it using PowerApps. In this case person who will make these customizations must have PowerApps Plan 2 (40 USD) license, but other users who will use these forms, have to have minimum PowerApps Plan 1 (7 USD) license. That means, not all users, only these who will use these new features. And just to know, if you are buying some Dynamics Plan, you will get PowerApps for free.

PowerAppsLicense.PNG

And again, it is similar situation if you want to use PowerBI for additional reports or Flow for additional workflows.

I hope I covered all models of licensing here. But just keep in mind, it is possible to be some changed, because it is a new App in Dynamics 365 family and with new releases, it is possible to be some changes. And I didn’t mentioned, but just to be sure: all pries are on monthly basis.