Business Central

Introduction

The integration between TimeLog and Business Central provides seamless cooperation between the two systems.

Description

From TimeLog to Business Central:

  • Automatic transfer of customers
  • Automatic transfer of contacts
  • Automatic transfer of employees
  • Automatic transfer of invoices
  • Automatic transfer of projects


From Business Central to TimeLog:

  • Importing financial accounts
  • Easy transfer of expenses via Import of project expenses
  • Automatic balancing of invoices when marked as paid in Business Central


The integration brings a lot of advantages.

  • TimeLog is more suited to drawing up invoices based on time data than Business Central.
  • Financial analyses can be carried out in TimeLog with every available dimension (employee, project type, project category, department, etc.) incl. the financial reporting
  • Project managers can retrieve all information related to invoicing in TimeLog and therefore do not need to access Business Central, which saves you money on licences
  • The transfer of invoices to Business Central saves time and provides an increased quality assurance around your invoicing

You start the setup in the system administration -> Integrations & API -> Integrations.


Installation in Business Central

Before you get started with the integration setup, you need a TimeLog site with an Invoicing version. Once this is in place, you can install TimeLog PSA in Business Central.
You find TimeLog PSA as app with our partner Abakion. Please note: You need administrator rights in Business Central to install TimeLog PSA.

  1. Scroll to the bottom and click Get the App on AppSource
  2. Click Free trial version. Once you have accepted Microsoft’s terms and conditions, the app is installed in your Business Central.
  3. Once the app is installed, you open Setup & Extensions -> Assisted Setup
  4. Click Configure TimeLog PSA integration, which opens a new window
  5. Activate Existing user, if you already have a TimeLog site
  6. Click Next, which opens a new window
  7. Click Copy URL address to clipboard
  8. Go to TimeLog and open the System administration -> Integrations and API in a new browser tab
  9. Add Business Central
  10. Click Configure Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central
  11. Insert the copied URL
  12. Add User ID and the corresponding password
  13. Click Connect, and you are ready to set up the integration between Business Central and TimeLog

Check your settings in Business Central

To secure the optimal transfer of data between TimeLog and Business Central, you need to check your setup.

Please note: Business Central has limitations in the number of characters that can be added from TimeLog. You can read more about this in the overview of how fields are linked between TimeLog and Business Central.

Transfer of new customers from TimeLog to Business Central

If you select TimeLog as maser for creation of new customers, it is important that you have a default template for new customers, so TimeLog can create them in Business Central.

Check your top debtor template via the Search icon, where you search for . Then you need to make sure that the following fields have a default selection:

1. Invoicing -> Posting Details

  • Ge. Bus. Posting Group is set to a default selection
  • VAT. Bus. Posting Group is set to a default selection
  • Customer Posting Group is set to a default selection

2. Payments

  • Payment Terms Code is set to the most commonly used payment term, e.g. 1M(8D)
  • It may be beneficial to you to set the Payment Method Code to the most commonly used payment method

The default selections are automatically added by Business Central, when TimeLog transfers a new customer. If you want a different setup, you correct it directly on the customer card in Business Central. The change in Business Central is not transferred to TimeLog.

Export project expenses to Business Central

If you wish to isolate the project expenses transferred from TimeLog to a specific general journal, you create it in Business Central via Finance -> General Journal -> +New.

Import from Business Central version 15 or newer

If your Business Central is version 15 or newer, you should activate Copy Line Desc. to G/L Entry  in the Purchases & Payables Setup. After the activation, Business Central can import the comments on your project expenses to the Comment field. If you do not activate it, the comment is not transferred.

You find the setup in the Manual Setup > Purchases & Payables Setup.


Connection setup

Once you have added the Business Central integration, URL for your Business Central and user login, you need to click Connect. Once the connection is established, the integration is ready for configuration, and you will see a green checkmark next to Connection established.

We recommend that you have an extra license for TimeLog, which you then use to configure the integration to Business Central. In this way, you avoid that the connection is deactivated, if a person changes log in details or is no longer employed in your company. The extra licence must have super user access to be able to create and update customers in Business Central.


Customer setup

To be able to use the integration, you must first link the customer databases in the two systems, and then you need to select how you would like to maintain your customer data.

Linking customer databases

To transfer invoices, the customer listed on the invoice must be available in Business Central. Click Link customers to get started. This change the view to four tabs:

  • One match: Customer pairs which are readily recognisable
  • More matches: Business Central customers with several matches in TimeLog
  • No match: Business Central customers with no matches in TimeLog
  • Ignore customers: Customers in Business Central not needed in TimeLog (you can ignore customers on each tab, which you can read more about below the four scenarios for linking customers)

On all four tabs, it is possible to link the customer information in four ways:

  1. Link and use data from Business Central: This action links customer pairs, overwriting customer data in TimeLog with those of Business Central. Fields left empty in Business Central will not be transferred to TimeLog
  2. Transfer and use data from Business Central: This action links customer pairs, overwriting customer data in Business Central with those of TimeLog. Fields left empty in TimeLog will not be transferred.
  3. Import as a new customer in TimeLog: This action creates a new customer in TimeLog based on Business Central data.
  4. Ignore customer(s): This action ignores customers from Business Central and adds them to their own tab You can import the customer names to TimeLog, if the need arises later on.

Once you have imported the new customers in TimeLog, the customer number from Business Central is added to the customer in TimeLog too. If you wish TimeLog to be master for new customers, we recommend that you correct your customer number series in the System administration -> General settings -> Number series, so the new customers you create in TimeLog get a customer number continuing the series from Business Central. In this way, the customer numbers in the two systems will be the same.

The linking procedure depends on one of the typical scenarios below:

  1. No customer data in Business Central or TimeLog
  2. Customer data in Business Central and none in TimeLog (new TimeLog customer)
  3. Customer data in TimeLog and none in Business Central (new Business Central customer)
  4. Customer data in TimeLog and Business Central

The four scenarios are detailed in the following.

Scenario 1: No customer data in Business Central or TimeLog

In this case, linking customer databases is not necessary, so you can skip this step. Customers will be created continuously in Business Central, by linking with the TimeLog customer database or in connection with invoicing.

Scenario 2: Customer data in Business Central and none in TimeLog

Begin by transferring the relevant Business Central customers to TimeLog. The tabs One match and More matches will be empty, and you can skip these. All Business Central customers are shown in the No match tab. Mark the customers you would like to create in TimeLog and select Import as new customer under Select action and click OK.

The customers are now created in TimeLog and linked to their matches in the Business Central customer database. The new customers in TimeLog get the customer number from Business Central.

Scenario 3: Customer data in TimeLog and none in Business Central

In this case, linking customer databases is not necessary, so you can skip this step. Customers will be created continuously in Business Central, by linking with the TimeLog customer database or in connection with invoicing, if TimeLog is master for new customers.

Scenario 4: Customer data in TimeLog and Business Central

This linking is the most time consuming, as you will need to manually link each customer pair. Luckily, the system helps you find matching customer pairs.

Please note that if you have many customers in Business Central, it may be beneficial for you to link/ignore customer groups to shorten the list.

Once you are done linking the customers, you click Back to integration configuration to continue your setup of the integration.


Ignore customers

You have the option to ignore customers from Business Central, which you not need in TimeLog, in all three tabs with match suggestions for linking customers.

You ignore by marking the customers in the checkboxes to the right and select Ignore customer(s) in the Select action menu.

When you ignore the customers, they are moved to the Ignored customers tab, where you can get a total overview. From here, you have the option to import or link the, if you need them at a later point in time.


Maintenance of customer databases

You have three options to choose from when it comes to the ongoing maintenance of your customer databases.

  1. From TimeLog to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central
  2. From Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central to TimeLog
  3. To/from TimeLog to/from Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

If you select option 2 or 3, you can extend TimeLog’s possibility to automatically link customers when you transfer an invoice. You allow that TimeLog links customers with the same VAT no. in both systems when you transfer an invoice. At the same time, you can also transfer and create contacts that are not already in Business Central.

1. From TimeLog to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

If you select this option, you can transfer your customer manually from TimeLog to Business Central via the lightning on the customer card. Here you select Link customer with integration, which opens a pop-up, where you click the grey dot to make the link.  You can do the same with contacts.

You can remove the linking in the same way by finding the customer or contact in question and using the lightning icon. The opens the same pop-up, where you now have the option to remove the checkmark to break the link. Afterwards, you can check the integration log to see if the action was successful.

New and updated TimeLog customers that are not already linked are created in Business Central when you transfer the first/next invoice.

2. From Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central to TimeLog

When you select this option, your new and updated customers in Business Central are automatically transferred and created in TimeLog

3. To/from TimeLog to/from Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

When you select this option, you can create new and update existing customers in both systems. This option combines the two first ones, and you can freely update data in one of the systems. Your changes are automatically added to the other system.


Importing product numbers

Please note: Product numbers in TimeLog corresponds to financial accounts in Business Central.

Start by clicking the Import product numbers link. A list of active product numbers in Business Central is loaded, and you can mark the product numbers you would like to use in TimeLog. Select the Activate action and click OK.


Configuration of product numbers

An important element in the integration between TimeLog and Business Central is the creation of a product number catalogue in TimeLog. Business Central demands that each invoice line has a product number attached, which decides how the invoice line is booked in relation to the yearly books with VAT and revenue statistics. You cannot book the invoice in TimeLog, if you have not selected a product number for each invoice line, and only booked invoices can be transferred to Business Central.

The product number setup is carried out in TimeLog and consists of the following steps:

  1. Configuring default product numbers for project work and external expenses
  2. Adding product numbers to each of TimeLog’s different data types

The integration may work despite the setup of default standard numbers not being completed. If this is the case, manually select a number for each invoice line when creating an invoice in TimeLog.

We recommend a setup of default product numbers, as you will save a lot of time in your invoicing process, when the right product number is added to the invoice lines already when they are created on the invoice draft. It is especially a big advantage, if you are many people sharing the invoicing responsibility. The setup of default product numbers strengthen the data quality in your reporting and yearly books, and you save time as you do not need to double check each other’s work.

1. Configuring default product numbers for project work and external expenses

To expedite invoicing, you can configure TimeLog to suggest product numbers for invoice lines based on the data to be invoiced. For each data type and settlement form in TimeLog, you can select a principle for default product numbers. You also have the option to select, if product numbers should be selected when invoicing, or you can select a specific product number for each data type in TimeLog.

2. Adding product numbers to each of TimeLog’s different data types

When you have selected the default product numbers, you can move on to selecting which product numbers should suggest which data. After this setup, you have different options under Actions to the right. Click e.g. Add product numbers to hourly rates. In Hourly rates, you will find a new column, Product number. Click the name of an hourly rate, or click Edit and select a product number. The same product number can be used for multiple hourly rates. If you cannot select a single product number for an hourly rate, simply omit it and select a product number on each single invoice line.

When adding a product number to the different data types, you have three options: Select when invoicing, Select dimension or one of the imported product numbers

  1. Select when invoicing: Here the product number is selected on each single invoice line when you build your invoices
  2. Select dimension: Here the selected dimension must be updated in the system administration afterwards
  3. If you select a specific product number: The product number is automatically added to invoice lines containing the data type

If you have e.g. selected Hourly rate for the data type Time & material, you need to add a product number for each of the hourly rates in the System administration -> Finance -> Hourly rates. Click the name of an hourly rate, or click Edit and select a product number. The same product number can be used for multiple hourly rates. If you cannot select a single product number for an hourly rate, simply omit it and select a product number on each single invoice line.

If you have selected Project type, Project category, Expense type or Task type, you do the product number selection in the System administration -> Finance -> Linking product numbers. Here you select the data type in the top filter, and you select a product number per unit in the list.

The same product number can be used for multiple dimension names.

Click Back to integration configuration to return and continue to the next type.


Import expenses from Business Central

You can import expenses from Business Central to TimeLog by flagging specific Business Central accounts. All expenses added to these accounts can be imported to TimeLog via the Import of project expenses page, and you can add them to your projects to get a total overview of your project finances. You thereby get the option to add the imported expenses to the invoice drafts in TimeLog. To optimise the import of expenses, you can add the matching account number from Business Central to all expense types in TimeLog.


Export expenses to Business Central

You have the option to transfer the expenses your employees add in TimeLog, e.g. via our Mobile app, to Business Central. If you enable this function, you need to decide which journal you would like to add the expenses to. To be able to transfer the expenses, you must add the corresponding financial account number from Business Central on each expense type in TimeLog. You do this in the System administration -> Time and expense registrations -> Expense types. Remember to provide access to the transfer of expenses via the role management under Employees.

Please note: You must add the matching account number from Business Central to all expense types in TimeLog to export your expenses.


Configuration of dimensions

You can set up dimensions in TimeLog to match your dimensions in Business Central. Each dimension from Business Central can only be matched with one from TimeLog. Your selection is saved automatically, when you select a dimension. If you do not select a dimension, the data is not transferred from TimeLog to Business Central.


Confirm integration setup

You complete the setup by confirming you have been through and completed all steps in the setup. See it as a checklist to make sure you have done everything. In particular, lacking configurations in linking customers may result in TimeLog creating customers in Business Central which are already there.

Mark the checkboxes, click Activate and the integration is completed. You can now transfer the first invoice.

Last updated 22 Sep 2021