We’ve taken the time to delve deeply into Microsoft’s latest version of Dynamics NAV – Dynamics 365 Business Central – and we are excited to say it is a thing of beauty. It is the best version of NAV ever!
Why do we say that? Here are 6 big reasons:
Number 1: It’s still got all the great functionality we’ve come to know and love in Dynamics NAV but Dynamics 365 Business Central now shines in its elegant simplicity
- With Dynamics 365 Business Central, Microsoft has really excelled in streamlining the screens and actions bars, oh, and there is a beautiful teal colour used throughout
- There are many new and optimised innovative features built-in and the latest extensions from Microsoft partners can be easily integrated
- It uses the brilliantly optimised Web Client – which is quicker, easier to roll out and easier to get into than the Windows Client (which is being phased out by 2020)
- The Web Client offers: well-thought-out cross-column searching; keyboard shortcuts; multiple row selection; easy copy and paste; drag and drop; brick and tile views; filters; personalisation; headlines showing important data so it’s easy to see at a glance; and exporting in and out of Excel is easy and vastly improved (that’s quite a list!)
- It works with Power BI using Artificial Intelligence to effortlessly create many types of Dashboards
Number 2: Dynamics 365 Business Central can be customised for each individual company
- In the past, all developments, add-ons and modules were written in the C/AL language and became integral to the core system. This meant that it was a big job when upgrades were needed as the whole solution needed to be reviewed, unpicked and potentially redeveloped
- With Dynamics NAV 2018 and Dynamics 365 Business Central important changes have been made; the extensions are written in AL as C/AL is no longer used. The core system now remains untouched and all extensions are linked from the outside in little chunks
- The interaction between the core system and the extensions is managed by events which send messages back and forth as required
- This means when it’s time to update or upgrade the core system or any extensions, it will be very easy and cost much less, because the core system (which Microsoft upgrades) hasn’t been touched
- Individual users have the option to click and drag to personalise all sorts of data, making their view their own
- For those in Microsoft’s Public Cloud, companies can build a change into their system via extensions and are not constrained by it being a shared platform
Number 3: It’s available On-Premise, on dedicated hosting, IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) and on Microsoft’s Public Cloud where it is looked after in a shared service
- Each of the above offers various options and will affect what Dynamics 365 Business Central can do, e.g. if you host your Dynamics 365 Business Central system on the Public Cloud you can access extension Apps via AppSource, but this is not possible through On-Premise or IaaS hosted systems
- When it comes to upgrades: On-Premise and the Private Cloud are the same in that you can control when the upgrade is applied; however, with the Public Cloud updates occur automatically every six months
- All mods are now extensions, so upgrades will be easier; and as we have early access to Microsoft’s updates/changes we will keep you informed ahead of time
Number 4: Licencing is changing - the Dynamics NAV brand is being replaced by Dynamics 365 Business Central
Here are some of the many changes:
- Concurrent Users are now to be Named Users in Business Central
- There are three types of Named User – Essentials, Premium and Team Member
- Your current licence and functionality will determine what type of User licence you will get when you upgrade
- The Subscription User model can be deployed via Private Cloud, On-Premise and Microsoft’s Public Cloud
- If you’re on a 2009 database and earlier, you must upgrade your licence by 31 March 2019 if you want to remain on the Concurrent User model. After this date, 365 Business Central with Named User will be your only option
- If you’re on 2013 or later versions, you can upgrade to Dynamics 2018 at any time and remain on Concurrent licencing
If you have plans to upgrade and want to:
- Stay on Concurrency - you might need to hurry up if you are on 2009 or earlier
- Stay on Perpetual - there’s no rush
- Move to subscription - the sooner the better as there is a limited discount period for businesses upgrading
If you have no plans to upgrade:
- Nothing changes - you buy licences and pay BREP
- Keep using your amazing Dynamics NAV system but be mindful of the end dates of mainstream and extended support for your version
Very important! If you’re planning on doing an upgrade:
- You must do the upgrade with the licence as it is
- If you decide to remove something from it like manufacturing or remove a user, your licence gets frozen for 3 years by Microsoft and you can’t upgrade!
- When you upgrade your licence, Microsoft allows a 6-month period in which you need to do the upgrade (or at least be able to demonstrate you are doing an upgrade)
- When you upgrade your licence, your old licence is frozen, so you can’t add objects or users
If you’d like to get an idea of what your licence would look like in the future, we have created ‘The Licence Upgrade Tool’ which can bring your licence into a spreadsheet and do all the calculations. Contact us now and you’ll have an answer very quickly.
Number 5: You don’t have to upgrade to Dynamics 365 Business Central – but why wouldn’t you?
Software doesn’t rust! Rest assured, nobody will force you off your existing Dynamics NAV system and we’ll give you lots of help to keep your system going as it is
If you’re on Dynamics NAV 2013 and beyond, it’s definitely worth doing a technical upgrade – it’s a small amount of work to get the amazing benefits of 365 Business Central
We’ve totally optimised all our nHanced products and made them simpler, faster and modular:
- You can choose the individual modules you want and buy them all on subscription, when and where you want to use them
- Even Classic Dynamics NAV users can have full access to all Dynamics NAV nHancements, run from your system
- See our inspiring range of nHanced products
And finally, number 6: You can bridge your way to Dynamics 365 Business Central!
… But you’ll have to wait for our next article on Functional and Data Bridges, where we’ll go into these options in more detail
We at The NAV | 365 People will continue to support you on any Dynamics NAV version for as long as we can. If you need any further information, we’re happy to help.
Please note: We’re running a series of free seminars early next year and you’re invited! We look forward to seeing you there!