Confused about Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central? You’re not alone

A lot of attention has been focused on Dynamics 365 Business Central – the fully cloud based ERP solution from Microsoft. The integration to Office 365 and other line of business software make it a great solution for any growing or mid-market business. But users of other Microsoft Dynamics products are often confused as to what Business Central is – and what it is not. Here are a few questions we often are asked:

Is Dynamics 365 Business Central a new product?

In a word – No.  This probably is the number one point of confusion around Business Central, and Microsoft themselves admit they are responsible for this misunderstanding. There was an initial effort to create Dynamics 365 as a brand new ERP product, and version 1 of the software indeed was a new product. Microsoft realized that was a mistake, and in 2017 went back to the drawing table. With the spring 2018 release, the product was branded Dynamics 365 Business Central, and it is a full version of Dynamics NAV. Going forward, Microsoft will be retiring the NAV name.

So to summarize – Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is the cloud based version of an ERP product that has been around for 31 years, and is in use in 195 countries. Business Central has a vast and long track record of success.

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Does Dynamics 365 Business Central have CRM capabilities?

No. And once again – Microsoft has created some perplexity. In 2016, Microsoft Dynamics CRM was brought under the Dynamics 365 “umbrella”, but it is a separate suite of software, and a separate purchase. It will integrate seamlessly with Business Central, and you will be able to navigate easily between your sales and financials in one screen. But you will need to make an additional purchase if you want to combine CRM functionality with Business Central.

Is Business Central the “replacement” for Dynamics GP or Dynamics SL?

Absolutely not. Microsoft has committed to both of GP and SL just as they always have, and they continue to support them both. And while migrating from GP or SL to Business Central can be done easily, there is no “upgrade” path – it is a new implementation.

Switching from GP or SL to Business Central may make sense, and we have successfully done that for many clients. But if you are happy with your current Dynamics ERP, rest assured that both Microsoft and Intellitec will continue to support you.

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