“We saw a big gap in the Microsoft Dynamics market,” reveals Wright. The lack of an all-in-one reporting and Office integration functionality created complexity and disruption in business processes, thus raising the cost and directly affecting the ROI on the Dynamics AX system. “We knew that the business users were craving a more flexible reporting solution, that wasn’t over complicated, and would provide the right business data in seconds,” adds Dobson, Co-founder and CQO, Globe Software. While creating a solution that overcame these limitations, little did Wright and Dobson know that it would one day become the leading Office integration software for Microsoft Dynamics AX.
Enter Atlas, the ground-breaking product from Globe Software that harmonizes with one of the most versatile ERP solutions from Microsoft: Microsoft Dynamics AX. Atlas is a highly innovative Office Business Application (OBA) that not only allows customers to easily build their own sophisticated reports and queries but it allows them to write data back data in a secure and real-time fashion.
From its inception, almost 16 years ago, Atlas has achieved high adoption rates worldwide, and has matured into a leading brand for this industry segment. “Atlas is used by over 50,000 users and nearly 3000 Microsoft Dynamics AX customers across 62 countries,” extols Dobson.
The Atlas Advantage
Globe Software’s Atlas solution portfolio is uniquely tailored to cater for the information requirements of any organization. Atlas is an app that integrates the Microsoft Office System with Microsoft Dynamics AX and CRM. “Flexibility is a key component to Atlas’ success. It is designed to be used by people who run the business, who need the information and not technicians from IT. Users can easily get the information they need, in a format they understand with little or no training. This makes Atlas familiar, convenient with the added bonus of being secure and accurate,” assures Wright.
Atlas allows customers to consume the structured information found in their Dynamics system in a manner and format that best suits the task at hand
Acting as an add-on solution, Atlas offers integration and a reporting framework for Microsoft Dynamics that allow customers to consume their business information in a manner and format that best suits the task at hand. Atlas provides optimized, two-way integration connectors through which users can blend information from many data sources like Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, SQL Databases, and SSAS OLAP cubes into one document.
Typically, customers can use its reporting features to generate and manipulate presentations in their productivity tools and then send the results back into their Dynamics AX system as transactional records. Moreover, there is a free format element to Atlas that allows users to construct any report. “It’s an enabling technology that gives users the flexibility they need to build and deliver their own reports and business processes in a familiar and convenient platform,” says Wright. Besides, implementing Atlas allows people to access their data without having to involve a software developer. “Atlas reduces cost and makes reporting a nimble process, controlled by the end user,” says Wright.
In addition, customers can design, build, and share role-based report templates—whether it's a budget variance report in Excel, a project status report in Word, a sales presentation in PowerPoint or an Atlas report Snippet in the body of an email, while delivering real-time contextual access to their enterprise systems. “Reports can be refreshed automatically or on demand,” says Dobson. Reports built and used in the Microsoft Office System can also be deployed to the Cloud and used inside Office 365.
Atlas allows easy upload of journals, timesheets, budgets, forecasts, trade agreements, expense forms, annual leave forms, and more into Microsoft Dynamics AX and for Microsoft Dynamics CRM it can load leads, quotations, and other reference data. Built-in features of Atlas make editing data easy. “Users can amend data inside these enterprise systems, for example, update customers, vendors, projects, items and the like,” affirms Dobson.
Consistent with extending the reach of enterprise systems, Atlas offers a portfolio of apps that allows users to choose the software presentation surface fit for purpose. Users can easily get access to the corporate data they need and use it in a collaborative environment.
“For our customers, Atlas is a high value, low risk productivity booster. It can be applied to many business processes and tasks that would otherwise be costly and time consuming,” extols Dobson. In one instance, Atlas helped a well-known American not-for-profit organization to reduce their two day cost allocation task to a matter of minutes. By using Atlas, the client could dynamically get all the data they needed for the allocation as an Excel report, perform the allocation and then use an Atlas upload template to send the cost allocation back into Microsoft Dynamics AX.
Staying Ahead of the Game
Globe Software actively pursues industry solutions so that customers can be productive with templates suited to their business needs. “Over and above industry specific solutions, there are templates designed to meet departmental needs too. These range from Finance to Operations, Inventory, Purchasing, and so on,” says Dobson. In addition to an extensive knowledge base of how to use the product Globe Software has instigated an invitation only initiative for key Atlas users to put forward their ideas. “We call this the Atlas Inner Circle,” says Wright. “These elements combine to bubble the best features to the surface.”
"Implementing Atlas allows people to access their data without having to involve a software developer
Evolving with the Trends
Globe Software maintains an all-encompassing culture of innovation, with people at the center to deliver solutions to their utmost potential. Continuing on the same theme, the company is investing in social media, online marketing and on developing more industry templates to meet an ever increasing customer demand. “We are competently building new channels through investing in social media and an online marketing presence. I believe this will keep Atlas on top in our target markets,” believes Dobson. Furthermore, the firm is also focused on developing new channels outside of Microsoft Dynamics AX and into CRM. “We want to see Atlas for Microsoft Dynamics CRM flourish in the same way that Atlas for Dynamics AX has done as we believe that it is a massive market and we have plenty to offer in that space,” says Wright. “We look forward to introducing the productivity boosting features of Atlas to Dynamics CRM users worldwide,” adds Dobson.
Despite its large and loyal client base, Atlas is now at the beginning of a new journey for Globe Software. Expanding into new geographical areas and pursuing business diversification, Globe Software is moving beyond the frontiers to South American, Southern Europe, and Asian markets. “The future looks bright, and we look to bring our product and expertise into new markets. It is an exciting time ahead for all of us at Globe,” concludes Wright.