In the coming months, Microsoft will release a new product, Dynamics 365 Business Central (previously known as codename “Tenerife”). This will be Microsoft’s cloud ERP solution for the SMB market, and will be the ultimate successor to the Dynamics NAV brand.
In October last year, Microsoft changed their ERP direction for Dynamics 365, and removed the branding split between Enterprise Edition and Business Edition.
Microsoft will continue to offer Dynamics 365 Sales, Marketing, Customer Service, and Field Service, which all offer parts of the functionality that was once available in Dynamics CRM. They will also continue to offer Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations, which is a rebranded version of Dynamics AX.
Business Central will offer all the functionality currently available in NAV, including functionality that is currently in the Extended Pack, along with the ability to enhance functionality via ‘Extensions’ or ‘Apps’. Similar to a traditional Dynamics NAV enhancement, an App will change, or add to the existing functionality of the software. However, unlike a traditional enhancement, it will not affect the core code base. This means that as Microsoft roll out monthly updates to the Business Central product, all worldwide users will be on the same code base, and able to update their core application. Apps will enable you to significantly extend the standard functionality of the product but do have some limitations and do not offer the complete capability of a traditional enhancement.
The On-Premise version of Business Central is planned for release in the months following the hosted release. We believe it will offer the ability to do traditional enhancements. The ‘On-Premise’ branding is a little misleading – you will still have the ability to have this version of the software hosted on Azure (as you currently do with NAV) it will just not be true Software as a Service (SaaS) as software upgrades will not automatically apply as they are released from Microsoft. These updates will still need to be applied by a Business Central partner. An active software maintenance plan is required to use your license in a hosted environment such as Azure.
The Roadmap image below gives a good summary of the planned Microsoft direction. As soon as Business Central is released in Australia, Fenwick Software will offer Apps, Implementation and Support services to anyone wishing to implement this product, and with our 20 years’ experience with NAV, will have an expert team to support your Dynamics 365 system.
Contact us to talk with a consultant about Business Central and the future of Dynamics NAV.