Wow! I never thought I'd have an opportunity to jump between Polino and Musgrave in a squabble but I just can't resist any longer. Maybe they'll break out the sumo suits at Tech Conference this year and they can settle this debate once and for all.
I think Dave is just trying to get a rise out of Mark but I'll chime in anyway. Like most, I lean towards the school of thought that Dynamics GP RW should NOT even be up for consideration as a the best in the world. BUT, that's not to say it can't be great.
You can pretty much do anything you want with GP Report Writer as along as you have 1) intimate knowledge of the inner workings of GP and 2) know how to customize reports using VBA. Dave demonstrates some of the advanced capabilities in his latest post on how Dynamics GP Report Writer is the greatest Report Writer in the World. The problem is, there aren't many that would have come up with such a solution.
One cannot be a great Report Writer these days unless just about anyone can write reports with it. Just about everyone is willing to stipulate that you cannot expect canned reports from any ERP system to meet all of your company's reporting and analytics requirements. That said, the first question asked by most GP prospects about reporting capabilities is; "How difficult is it for ME to write new reports to my specifications?". If not for SQL Server Reporting Services, and even Crystal Reports, this would be a much harder sell relying on Dyanmics GP RW alone. Additionally, existing reports often rely heavily on temporary Dexterity tables that can make even seemingly simple changes to existing reports a challenge.
Finally, Dynamics GP has evolved so that RW is meant to be only one of many report writers available to GP customers. GP does ship with a vast library of canned RW reports that most find to be extremely valuable in addition to a growing library of SSRS Reports. Some companies hardly have to customize reports at all or develop new ones from scratch. But, when you need to you can do so with RW or you can look to other widely available and commonly known tools such as SSRS and/or Crystal among others.
You can voice your opinion on the subject in Mark's latest Facebook poll.
We should celebrate the fact that we deliver and work with a system in Dynamics GP that ships with world class reports "out of the box" and a variety of common tools that enable you to customize or develop new reports from scratch on your own.