Dynamics 365 Business Central Tips and Tricks: Using Copilot AI to Reconcile Bank Accounts

April 4, 2024 Marcelo Borges

In this series of bi-monthly blogs, Western Computer shares our expertise with tips and tricks to help users work more efficiently in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central Cloud. Based on our more than 30 years in business—with 1,250+ solution implementations, including more than 350 in the cloud—we share the expertise we have accumulated to enable users to work as proficiently as possible. You can also subscribe to these blogs in our LinkedIn newsletter. 

One of the big challenges when reconciling bank accounts is mapping line items on bank statements to general ledger entries. It’s something you want to get right every month or else you spend extra time cleaning things up down the road—when it's time to audit your accounting records or get ready to file your taxes.

One way you can take on this challenge is to tap into the power of artificial intelligence (AI), which Microsoft has embedded into Dynamics 365 Business Central Cloud through the Microsoft Copilot bot tool. This blog explains how Copilot will make reconciliations a whole lot easier for you and your accounting team.

Copilot Suggests, You Decide Whether to Agree

The first thing to know is that to get the AI function, you need to be running Dynamics 365 Business Central Cloud with update 23.2 or later. The function does not run in earlier cloud versions and on-premises Dynamics environments. You also need to enable the Copilot bank account reconciliation function on the Feature Management tab.

After you turn on bank account reconciliation with Copilot, you can import a bank statement data file by hitting <Reconcile with Copilot>:

The data file will include line items showing your bank account activity, and the star icons at the top of the page that read <Reconcile with Copilot and transfer to a GL account> let you know you are about to trigger an AI process. Copilot then matches statement payment line items to suggested ledger entries, and deposit line items can be applied to multiple entries.

Note that Copilot never automatically maps statement line items to ledger entries; it simply suggests. You then have the choice to agree with Copilot or discard the suggestion.

AI Learns from Your Feedback

After a reconciliation, you may find lines on a bank statement that do not match bank account ledger entries. If you did not have access to an AI tool like Copilot, you would need to manually transfer these lines to the General Journal and map them accordingly to the right G/L Accounts—either by manually picking an account, or by using a previous text-to-account mapping process. This usually takes some time, going over all the lines and picking the right accounts.

However, with Copilot, you can get some help: Copilot will suggest the best general ledger account in Business Central based on the description of a payment. For example, if the description reads <fuel transaction>, Copilot could identify it as <passenger car costs>. You can then accept or decline the suggestion.

Copilot will do the same for all other unassigned line items based on the description. If they are on target, you check them off and save them for future use, and once you complete the bank account reconciliation process, all the bank account ledger entries match the bank statement lines.

If a suggestion is off, you can decline and enter the right general ledger account. Each time you decline, Copilot learns from your feedback so that in the future, when it sees that description, Business Central can then match it to the right general ledger account.

See AI in ActionAI Powered Bank Reconciliation

To learn how to run bank account reconciliations in Dynamics 365 Business Central Cloud and see Copilot in action, check out my demo. Bank reconciliation driven by Copilot AI is one of the coolest features Microsoft has implemented in Business Central, and you can expect to see many more AI-driven improvements in future Dynamics 365 releases as you continue to benefit from the frequent software updates that the cloud enables.

To Learn More 

Western Computer offers deep expertise across the Microsoft technology stack, particularly in Dynamics 365 Business Central Cloud. Our thought leaders can help you ensure your critical ERP application meets your business needs for today and beyond.

For more information on how to use Copilot AI to reconcile bank accounts in Business Central, or for help in designing, deploying or supporting Microsoft Dynamics 365 solutions, contact Western Computer today

About the Author

Marcelo Borges has been very enthusiastic about ERP systems since the time he first experienced Microsoft Dynamics, back in 2005. He joined Western Computer in 2017 as a consultant focusing on Microsoft Dynamics solutions for customers in the finance, trading, warehousing, and distribution sectors. When advising on technology and designing solutions, Marcelo calls upon his experience of having worked on both sides of the table: as a consultant for known Microsoft Partners, and as an end-user in multiple industries.

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