Cues in AX 2012

Cue: “a thing said or done that serves as a signal to an actor or other performer to enter or to begin their speech or performance”

So let’s begin the performance.

Cues are my favourite Role center web-part. Robert Riefstahl in “Demonstrating to Win! The indispensable guide for demonstrating complex products”, has “I love this part of our software” as a demo crime, but with apologies to Bob I’m going to ignore that, and continue.

Your role center is defined by your User profile. Systems administration > Common > Users > User profiles:

Dynamics AX comes with a wide range of standard Role centers. They’re customisable, but I don’t want to get into technical details – so I’m going to assign myself a nice simple Role center, the Purchasing agent. Click on the ‘View role center’ button above and you’ll see:

The cues are those icons that look like good old fashioned in-trays. I’m a big fan of skeuomorphism (it’s OK, go ahead and look it up) – but I’m probably older than most of you.

Back to those cues, they’re links to Dynamics AX forms with a filter applied. If you open your role center in the Dynamics AX client you’ll be taken to the form. If you open your role center in the Enterprise portal, you’ll only be able to click on the cue if there is an Enterprise portal version of the form.

But the really neat feature is that you can create your own cues. You need to be on a form that has direct access from a menu, and you need to be able to write a filter query. Let’s open the sales order form and setup a simple query. Sales and marketing > Common > Sales orders > All sales orders:

The filter drop-list menu gives you the option of saving this filter as a cue:

Click on that option and you’ll see:

Give it a name, and set the other options. Incidentally, if you want to change these options later, go to Organisation > Setup > Role center > Edit cues.

Now back to your Role center:

Click on ‘Add Cue’:

And simply select your Cue from the droplist:

OK and you’re done:

Actually – if you setup the Cue as a personal cue, the system will add it automatically to your role center and you won’t even have to do the last step.

Obviously, one of the uses here is to give the user quick short-cuts to documents that need to be processed (for instance sales order delivery notes that need to be posted to invoice), but another use of cues is as a health check. Setup a cue which you expect to be empty (for example sales order picking lists with a date in the past) – and then when you start your day a quick glance at the cues will show you whether everything is in nice and tidy apple pie order – or if you need to get on the phone and yell at someone.

Let’s pop back to the sales order form for a moment – there are a couple of other things to point out. I setup my filter using ‘Filter by grid’, but of course I could have written a more complex filter using the advanced filter form:

The advanced filter form lets you save your filter as a cue, but you also have the option of saving your filter as a named filter:

Click Save as and a pop-up form lets you give your filter a name:

Click OK to save (obviously).

Now close an open the sales order form again. There are a couple of handy short-cuts to that saved filter. The filter drop-list:

And Right-click in the grid:

Another trick is to set it in your favourites. Back to the menu. Right-click on the menu option:

Add it to your favourites, the Right-click on the Favourites to organise them:

(My sales order menu option is there – but hidden by the menu):

First we’ll rename the menu option:

Just type in a new name and click OK Then click on Edit Query and select your named saved query:

OK again, and close the Organise favourites form. Your favourite should now look like this:

And when you click on it, the form opens with your filter applied:

As I said – I like this function – simple and easy to setup useful prompts and short-cuts. Excuse me, I’m on. “Two households, both alike in dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene ……..”