The simplest explanation of Dimensions within Microsoft Dynamics NAV would be to call them the slice and dice ability within NAV.
Dimensions are what allow you to report on the data within the system, in a way that is meaningful to the company.
Examples of Dimensions
Any of the above are examples of how companies may want to report on sales and costs throughout the system, the benefit of using dimensions however comes from the fact that when a transaction with a dimension occurs (Be it a purchase, sale or adjustment) the dimensions are automatically posted with the transaction
This means that you are able to report from within any area of the Microsoft Dynamics NAV system by the dimensions that have been set up
Some examples of reports that would be possible with the above dimension could be:
Microsoft Dynamics NAV supports unlimited Dimensions
Unlimited dimensions means that any way that you are currently categorizing areas of the business, be it related to the business itself or a product or service you are able to report on the system according to this.
The system also has a “Default Dimensions” for various records in the system, by capturing these default dimension the system will then be able to record the dimension without the user having to capture this information when processing, specifying the dimension of “Electrical” against an item card will have the system automatically post this during any transaction using this product.
This means that there is no additional work required by the users when they are capturing.
As a Microsoft Dynamics NAV Specialist we have also gained a lot of insight into getting the most out of Dimensions so please contact us to assist you in setting up a structure that will provide the most benefit as well as possible other dimensions that may be of benefit to the company’s reporting.
Advanced Topics of Microsoft Dynamics NAV Dimensions:
Dimensions also have additional functionality that can assist in ensuring the best possible reporting.
The dimensions can be built using levels!
In the below example you can see how the areas have been split into Europe & America and within those areas, it has been further divided. Creating a structure from the dimensions allows for subtotaling on reports according to this structure, as well as simplifying the dimensions in the system:
Microsoft Dynamics NAV allows the definition of permissible combinations, this allows you to specify combinations that are not allowed, perhaps item sales out of the HR department or Electrical goods from the Perth office (Who might not do electrical goods) should be disallowed, this functionality prevents users from selecting incorrect combinations
Primary Dimensions and Short Cut Dimensions
Microsoft Dynamics NAV supports unlimited dimensions; however, the first 8 have additional features available:
All dimensions are available to be used to create your own reports using Analysis by Dimension or Account Schedules, these reporting abilities will be covered in a future post.