These days with nearly any type of Microsoft partner being able to sell Dynamics 365 Business Central, the question arises whether your current or potential Business Central partner should know anything about Microsoft Dynamics NAV, even if you currently aren’t using the system. This is an especially important question as Dynamics 365 Business Central is the new branding for the Dynamics NAV product, which is the most popular mid-market ERP/accounting system in the world.
The simple answer is you will be much better off if your potential Business Central partner knows Microsoft Dynamics NAV intimately. As suggested by the title of this blog, there are three solid reasons why this is important.
If your Business Central partner knows NAV, they know the complexities of a mid-market ERP system
The first reason is that if your partner knows Dynamics NAV it’s guaranteed they are used to working with a mid-market ERP system. Despite rumors to the contrary, QuickBooks and many other entry level systems are not Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and there is much more to Business Central than just being a basic bookkeeping system. An ERP system of any stripe has many threads of complex business logic running throughout it.
The fact that any Microsoft partner now has the ability to sell Business Central means you will come across IT partners who think selling an ERP system is just like selling Office 365. Don’t be fooled by the “Dynamics 365” part of the Business Central name. Dynamics 365 is a family of products with widely differing specialties. It’s not just randomly dropped in like Office 365.
A Business Central partner who knows Dynamics NAV understands Business Central’s application design
The second reason is knowing Dynamics NAV well means your partner understands the application business logic and capability of the Business Central family. Business Central has virtually the same application design and functionality as Dynamics NAV.
Although the technology and development language have changed (more on that below), the feature set available for an end user is nearly identical. The use of a browser interface adds a few changes to the user interaction but the way the system is set up and transactions are recorded is the same. Business Central can be complex, so you will have a better chance of getting the most out of your new Business Central system if your partner actually understands it.
A Business Central partner must be able to manage your system’s unique customizations
The third and final reason your Microsoft partner should be acquainted with Dynamics NAV is both NAV and Business Central were designed to be highly configurable or customized to enable customers to get the most out of their system. With the advent of the cloud offering for Business Central (with its automatic updates twice a year), customers can now have the best of both worlds with a configured system that is never more than six months behind the latest release.
While your organization does not have to customize Business Central to utilize its advanced capability, you may want to take advantage of its ability to match the key processing efficiencies and competitive advantages developed over the years. The ability to easily bring these forward on the automatic upgrades can be a key advantage versus your competitors who may be stuck with legacy and less flexible systems.
The technology and development language has changed, but the features are nearly identical for end users
Even though the development toolkit is substantially different in Business Central compared to Dynamics NAV, it is a major advantage for the technical staff, especially the code developers, to understand how the database is organized and transactions processed – aspects that didn’t change with the move to Business Central.
If you are looking to move to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, it is worth talking to someone who understands the depths of Microsoft Dynamics ERP solutions. With Business Central only being on the market for just over two years, there is no guarantee an IT will know Dynamics NAV inside and out. It is worth checking.
*Are you out of sync with your software partner? Have you not found the right partner relationship your business requires? You need someone fully qualified and experienced to support your system, especially if you’re moving to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. Read our recent blog here on how the right Dynamics NAV or Dynamics 365 Business Central software partner can add value to your business.