Book Review: Building Dashboards with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 and Excel 2013

Written By: Eric Gjerdevig

from July 9, 2013

Title:  Building Dashboards with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 and Excel 2013

Author – Mark Polino

ISBN 978-1-84968-906-9

Recently, I read through Building Dashboards with Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 and Excel 2013 by Mark Polino.  Overall, the book is a good step by step guide for any Microsoft Dynamics GP users who have, at minimum, an average competency level with Excel 2013.  It covers how to get detailed information contained within Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013 and present it in an attractive and easy to understand way. 

The book starts out with an overview of all of the reporting tools with Microsoft Dynamics GP.  For new users, chapter 1 is a good overview.  For users familiar with SmartLists, Report Writer, SQL Reporting Services and all of the other tools, a jump to chapter 2 which focuses on security and data connections might be appropriate.  This is an important chapter to understand before going forward and may require some assistance from your administrator. 

From there, each chapter gets slightly more advanced with Excel 2013 but it gives a lot of screenshots to help through the examples.  It is easy to take the examples given and quickly relate the lesson to other scenarios a specific organization may have.  Although I was fairly familiar with all of the content prior, I found the lessons helpful to bring it all together. 

The book covers a whole host of tools available within Excel – it shows how to visualize data using conditional formatting and how to make data interactive with Slicers.  My favorite sections were about PowerPivot and the GP Drillbacks.  I found both of these sections to be helpful and fun to work through.  My only warning to potential readers is that if you have limited knowledge of Excel it may take a while to work through the examples.  Generally speaking, it was a very good read.  

By Eric Gjerdevig, Summit Group Software