There is a lot of confusion and misinformation about the future of Microsoft Dynamics GP, and if all clients should be planning to transition to Microsoft’s new cloud offering Dynamics 365 Business Central? Given the variety of advantages Dynamics 365 Business Central offers (cloud-based, remote compatibility, Office 365 compatibility, etc. ), the decision of whether or not to transition is not an easy or quick one. Although the functionality of the two different solutions is very similar, there are things like Payroll in GP that are not included in Business Central – although payroll is available as an add-on product.
But fret not, as Microsoft Dynamics GP is officially here to stay — so you have time to evaluate whether it makes sense for your organization to transition to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.
As Microsoft recently announced in a blog post, Microsoft is moving forward with its Modern Lifecycle Policy for Dynamics GP. This means that Dynamics GP will continue to be enhanced with ongoing updates, as you have come to expect from this enterprise resource planning solution, including bug fixes, security patches, customer support and tax updates.
Even though Microsoft Dynamics GP was enrolled in the Modern Policy framework in 2019 — as opposed to Fixed Lifecycle, in which support comes to an end by a specific date — Microsoft hadn’t released much official details on Dynamics GP’s lifespan, making some worry about the application’s future. But that’s no longer the case, as Dynamics GP support will continue through at least 2028, as noted on Microsoft’s website.
Regardless of your industry or what tech tools you use, the speed of technological advancement can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, the ability to get more out of a given product enhances productivity and ease of usage. But on the other hand, the need to constantly upgrade or maintain on-premise systems can be challenging, especially when you have your regular job to do while trying to also stay up on new functionality, maintenance releases and current network infrastructure.
Why it may make sense to stay with Dynamics GP
But newer isn’t necessarily always better. No one knows your business better than you do, and if Microsoft Dynamics GP is working for you, you shouldn’t feel compelled to make the switch to Business Central. And Microsoft isn’t forcing you to change for change’s sake.
If you want to embrace the cloud and stay on GP, we also have an option for you. Our partner Njevity offers PowerGP which has a migration tool for existing Dynamics GP customers that want to go to the cloud. Whether you’ve been using Dynamics GP for a year or two, or you have 20+ years worth of GP history, PowerGP Online can migrate all your Dynamics GP data to PowerGP Online allowing you to enjoy the benefits of the cloud today, keep all of your data, and stay with a familiar and reliable solution.
In some ways, any of the options of staying on GP, moving GP to the cloud with Njevity PowerGP, or transitioning to Business Central are good decisions; there is literally no wrong answer once your business requirements and ROI are taken into consideration. Both Dynamics GP and Dynamics 365 Business Central are similar from a functionality and user interface perspective, but they are still two completely different systems. Transitioning to Business Central is not simply an upgrade to GP. This is a new system project with setup decisions to be made, data to be migrated and user training to be conducted before going live on the application.
The cloud may persuade you to switch
Perhaps the biggest difference between Dynamics GP and Dynamics Business Central is the fact that the latter is cloud based. Being a cloud solution, once the client is on Business Central, there are no upgrade projects that need to be conducted moving forward because Microsoft will keep the system current and there will be no need to replace on-premise servers every three years. The convenience and simplicity of the cloud is often the catalyst for those who are on the fence about making the switch.
Either way, The TM Group can transition you to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central or help you get more out of your Dynamics GP. We are happy to offer our insights and evaluate the return on investment of each option to determine what solution makes the most sense for your business. We’ve assisted hundreds of organizations, across many major industries, with this process since our founding. Contact us today to learn more about our consulting and support services. You can also take a look at some of our project profiles, which will give you a better idea of how we help our clients maximize enterprise resource planning software depending on their budget and goals.