How Free is Management Reporter?

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In this article, I’ll discuss Management Reporter as one of your financial reporting options, specifically regarding what it will cost you to implement and manage the tool, compared to other software. 


Similar to most accounting systems, Microsoft Dynamics has an ecosystem of financial report writing options for their users ranging from built-in reporting functions in AX, GP, NAV, and SL to SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) to Management Reporter (MR).  This article will focus on MR, as a Microsoft product built to tackle financial report writing, with the goal of helping you to assess your particular Business Intelligence (BI) needs in order to understand if MR can help you achieve your goals.

First, let’s learn some MR history.  MR is the successor to Microsoft’s popular FRx, with 100,000 organizations, at one point, using it.  When Microsoft retired FRx, a large population of customers followed (or still plan to follow) the Microsoft brand to MR due to the similarities, like Reporting Trees and Row and Column Tables, which are all part of constructing financial statements.  MR is just like FRx in that it is a reporting tool specifically for General Ledger (GL) statements.  Both softwares are usually utilized by customers to generate financial reports, such as Balance Sheet, Profit & Loss, etc.   It is always my goal to educate Dynamics customers about their software choices to best meet their company- and industry-specific business needs.  Instead of simply defaulting to MR after FRx, let’s explore the pros and cons of this tool, so you can evaluate how well it can actually serve you in your financial analyses.


If you are looking for an upgrade in the financial reporting department, even if you are not currently utilizing FRX, there is a handful of aspects to consider.  An obvious first stop for most of us is probably going to be cost.  We are all generally working with a budget, so it will be important to weigh the price tag with the return on your investment.  Next, you should look at the capabilities, regarding layout and printing, GL versus sub-ledger analytics, charting, available formatting, and how you can access your reports (Excel, web, and/or proprietary interfaces).  Perhaps an obvious priority should be how easy-to-use the product is for business end users, so your team can fully control access, management, and analysis of their own information without IT’s involvement.  You will want to weigh your options for integration, whether you can pull data directly from your ERP or if you will require an online analytical processing (OLAP) cube or data warehouse.  Finally, it could be in your company’s road map to continue adding BI tools, either right away or in the future, so you should look at complete suites of fully integrated BI solutions for a more sound, predictive investment.  Let’s move back into the conversation of cost because that can be a make-or-break jumping off point for most organizations.


To continue learning more about Management Reporter as a financial reporting option, read the rest of this article here.

by Solver, Inc

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