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Choosing Between Microsoft Dynamics GP and Dynamics 365 Business Central

Choosing Between Microsoft Dynamics GP and Dynamics 365 Business Central

If you’re standing at a crossroad, trying to decide whether Microsoft Dynamics GP or Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is the right ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution for your company, you’re not going to use one of those paper fortune tellers that we constructed and played with when we were kids.

Nor would you haul out that dust-covered, long forgotten Ouija Board. Although both of those options would be a trip down memory lane and perhaps a lot of fun.

No, what you need are some clear differentiators between Dynamics GP and Dynamics 365 Business Central. What you need is a short list of features to compare and contrast, that will ultimately help you make a decision which likely includes some subjective and some objective reasoning.

Old vs. New

Or should we say, tried and true versus leading edge and innovative. On the one hand, you have Microsoft Dynamics GP, a mid-market ERP software solution, first released as Great Plains Software in 1995, that boasts more than 80,000 system users globally.

On the other hand, you have Dynamics 365 Business Central, also a mid-market offering, that was released in 2018 (an offshoot of Microsoft Dynamics 365 which was launched in 2016). So let’s say, relatively, quite new. And there are no statistics available yet on the number of users.

So which are you? A company that prefers the tried and true or a company that tends to go with more leading edge and innovative options? Risk-averse versus risk taker?

On-Premise vs. Cloud

While there are hosting options for Microsoft Dynamics GP – and at Tidestone, we even offer our own YourCloud solution for GP – Dynamics GP is generally viewed as an on-premise ERP system, often preferred by those companies that want to keep their software in-house. Or, companies that have to keep their software in-house due to regulatory constraints.

On the other hand, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is what’s called a “true cloud’ solution. It did not begin on-premise only to be adapted for the cloud. It was conceived and released as a cloud business management system.

So which do you prefer? On-premise or cloud?

ERP with Optional CRM Integration vs. ERP with Built-in CRM

On the one hand, you have Microsoft Dynamics GP which can be integrated with Dynamics 365 for Sales (the new name for Microsoft Dynamics CRM). CRM is not built into Dynamics GP. And maybe that’s not a priority for you, or maybe you’re running a separate CRM system like Slaesforce.com, and you want to keep it that way.

On the other hand, you have Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central which is already a fully integrated ERP and CRM solution. What’s more, Business Central offers value by integrating with other Microsoft cloud services, including Office 365, and can be customized or extended for specific industry needs with PowerApps, Microsoft Flow, and Power BI.

So which would you prefer? Optional or built-in CRM integration?

Buy vs. Rent

This one is simple. Either you prefer to win your software, in which case you would want to choose Microsoft Dynamics GP. Or, you’re quite happy to “rent” it, in which case you should subscribe to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central for which you pay a monthly fee.

Neither Right nor Wrong

There is no right or wrong answer. And honestly, Dynamics GP and Dynamics 365 Business Central are both great solutions. There are also many more considerations that would factor into your choice beyond the four that we’ve outlined. At Tidestone, we routinely help companies that are wrestling with this decision.

You can contact us by emailing us at info@tidestonesolutions.com, or pick up the phone and call Tidestone at 207.761.2133.

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