In our prior post we announced the April 2nd release of the “new NAV” whose name has officially been changed by Microsoft to “Dynamics 365 Business Central.” We noted then a lack of space in a single blog post to parse all the official announcement’s details, so we’ll cover those here in our concluding post wrap-up.
Current NAV users may be asking themselves: What about us? Is our beloved NAV going away, only to be replaced by this new cloud-based incarnation? Of that we can give a resounding ‘No.’ Recall those 160,000 companies out there using NAV, across 2,700,000 users, spread over 195 countries around the world. Microsoft earns an awful lot (even by Microsoft standards!) of revenues from that installed base, and they’re not anxious to disrupt that. Rather, by the D365 Business Central evolution, they are fully intent on building a very large base of next generation customers, but still built upon that core NAV code base in which countless millions have already been invested.
In fact, the new D365 BC has a lot to recommend it. Following are some key highlights:
- A cloud presence supported on Microsoft Azure, among the world’s leading global cloud platforms.
- A deep focus on BI – business intelligence, analytics, big data… call it what you will, but the integration of Dynamics 365 with Office 365 and LinkedIn and the custom applications developed by third parties, ISVs and partners means there is an enormous world of data out there to be mined for business insights and improved decision making, in a way never before available. If there’s a big takeaway, we think it’s about this openness to big data.
- When you realize that instances of D365 BC will also include Azure, Business Intelligence via Power BI, Power Apps, and Microsoft Flow it gives new meaning to the term “all-in-one business management solution.”
- Starting in fall 2019, there will be no “NAV 2019.” Instead, you’ll have Dynamics 365 Business Central on-premise. Just like clients up until now have always enjoyed it. The new cloud implementations are simply an additional, new, future-facing option.
- The product will be robust. With the entire existing NAV code base, users are offered Marketing, Sales, Service, Operations, Supply Chain, Warehouse Management, Discrete Manufacturing, Talent, and of course, Finance. It’s full NAV objects and functionality with D365 branded vertical solutions and ISV cloud embed programs (like PrintVis, already a leading business management solution for the print industry).
- Partners can still do individual client customizations, but we’ll do them via “extensions,” with an option for publishing those extensions in the app store.
- The code will continue to evolve as Visual Studio, but with 44 business APIs available at the announcement, it leaves the product open to all manner of 3rd party apps and extensions in many other environments including C#, Python, Azure, Android Studio and many others.
- Pricing will be three-tiered with choices including: Team Member (similar to the former “lite” user), Essentials (like the former “full” user), and Premium (includes Manufacturing & Service).
This new release of Dynamics 365 Business Central is destined to change the face of the ERP landscape and opens up the product and our customers to a whole new world of data insights, interoperability with other pieces and whole new worlds of functionality. The release is just the first step in the long journey forward to ensure that, by any name, the Microsoft ERP product is destined to be here, in many forms, for a very long time.
We’ll continue to keep you apprised of future Dynamics 365 changes and announcements as always. For now, welcome to the future!