Upgrading from Microsoft Dynamics NAV to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central
Upgrading is typically not something we want to think about, conjuring thoughts of cost, pain, business disruption, and maybe even limited reward for all the effort. But it’s still something you will have to do, even if your NAV solution is meeting your needs now, because eventually support for your version will end, you’ll have more challenges around integrating with other applications and systems as they advance, and you’ll fall behind the competition because they’re taking advantage of the latest technology has to offer—and you’re not.
Why Upgrade to Business Central?
Upgrading a business-critical system is one of the best possible investments you can make. In addition to the advantages provided by new features, platform (cloud), and performance enhancements, an upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central allows you to take advantage of breakthrough innovations around mobile, business intelligence/AI/machine learning, and unprecedented integration with the entire Microsoft platform (Office 365 and more).
If you’re on the fence or skeptical about the benefits of upgrading, you’re not alone. Let’s address some common reasons why organizations resist upgrading. You’ll see that most of those reasons are the result of either misunderstanding or inaccurate information:
- My NAV database is too customized. There is no such thing with Business Central because of Eventing (the way customizations are handled in BC) and ArcherPoint’s automated processes.
- My NAV database is too large. Again, no such thing. We’ve successfully upgraded extremely large databases and in a shorter time—one 42-day migration was shortened to 4 hours.
- My version of NAV is too old to upgrade. Once again, so such thing. We build upgrade plans to fit the unique characteristics of your current version.
Why Stay with Microsoft…and What to Look for in Your Next ERP
If you’re facing a major upgrade by moving from NAV to Business Central, you might be considering another ERP system altogether. While it’s smart to explore all your options, keep in mind that:
- NAV/Business Central has one of the largest user bases of any ERP in the world.
- You’ll get to stay with tools and interfaces you already know and love.
- Business Central integrates fully with the Microsoft platform, including Office 365.
However, if you decide to look around, know that ERP has changed dramatically, but most ERP systems are comparable when it comes to features and functionality. That means using the traditional RFP/checkbox approach is not the way to go; you need to ask different questions. Here are some questions you should ask:
- Does it have interoperability with our existing applications?
- Does it allow us to connect with whatever we need to digitally transform our organization?
- Does it have a solution marketplace for industry- and business-specific needs?
- Are there tools like PowerApps and Flow that allow us to easily customize it ourselves?
- Does it come with a reporting/analysis tool like Power BI?
- Is it backed by a company with the resources and certifications to protect our data?
- Do we have the option to go either on premises or to the cloud?
- Does it give us accessibility from any device, without a VPN, from anywhere at any time?
Upgrade Costs and Timeline
These are perhaps the two biggest concerns of any company considering an upgrade. They’re also a challenge to answer because every business is different.
The timeline depends on many factors, but in general, this is what you can expect:
- 1-2 months for your partner to convert your database and create/deliver a test database
- 2 months minimum for testing
- 2 days (usually over a weekend) for go-live
Keep in mind that this does not include what’s going on at your end, like upgrading hardware and getting other infrastructure in place.
Eventing and Extensions
Microsoft has changed the way customizations are handled to make upgrading easier, faster, and much more cost effective through Eventing and Extensions. By investing in the initial move to Business Central, you are basically “front-loading” your upgrade costs. Once you are 100% Evented, future upgrades will be extremely fast, less complicated and, as a result, you’ll be amazed at how little it will cost. Every time you upgrade after the initial move, the cost should drop significantly.
That’s all great, but how do you budget for your upgrade? ArcherPoint provides two important services that can help you cut serious dollars off all your upgrades:
- A free upgrade quote with a guaranteed fixed fee price, with no strings attached, and
- A Stay Current Plan
The ArcherPoint Stay Current Plan – A Virtually No-Risk Way to Upgrade
The ArcherPoint Stay Current Plan is a fixed-fee plan that enables you to:
- Get current, stay current
- Have unlimited upgrades
- Get everything in C/AL converted to AL
- Get all your customizations moved to Events
- Have access to a 24/7 Project Team to ensure the quickest turnaround possible
Most importantly, the Plan can cut your upgrade costs in half.
The Plan also includes:
- Unlimited cumulative updates
- ISV-only upgrades
- NAV performance audit
- Help with add-on/ISV conversion/integration
- All services to provide a “turnkey” upgrade of your NAV system
There are more specifics to the Plan, but the result is an opportunity for you to upgrade with virtually no risk. We take on the risk; you pay one price, monthly. In addition, the plan offers a fixed price that spans over the time of the contract (3 years, for example), so you can budget for all upgrades during the life of the subscription.
ArcherPoint Knows Upgrades
The success of an upgrade depends on your partner. ArcherPoint understands this, and our upgrade teams reflect it:
- We understand that upgrades are a collaborative effort, so we work very hard to make sure our team is working in sync with yours.
- We know upgrading is different from typical development, so we have skills, experience, tools, and proven methodology dedicated to successful upgrades.
- We have the largest upgrade teams of any partner in North America
- We have an excellent reputation for smooth execution of upgrades, regardless of industry or complexity.
Stay Up to Date with a Microsoft Dynamics Stay Current Plan
Upgrading helps you stay in compliance with business regulations, increases productivity through the application of advanced software technology, enhances security and protection of your data, and provides opportunities to grow and expand your business. The results are lower costs, more opportunities, and a more competitive position.
Our Stay Current Plan for your Microsoft Dynamics NAV ERP ensures that you stay as current as possible. It provides your company:
- Timely updates and fixes
- Access to new features as they are released
- Advanced knowledge of upgrade costs with fixed fee monthly pricing
- Movement of upgrade expenses from capital expenditures to operating expenses, providing improved financial management
For even more on the benefits of upgrading, please see our blog post about why choosing a stay current plan for upgrades makes sense. To find out exactly what’s available to you, please see ArcherPoint’s Upgrade Subscription Plan.
Make the Upgrade
Whether you’re ready to upgrade or still deciding what you need to do and how to make it happen, talk to ArcherPoint. Our team of professionals will work with you to ensure that your Microsoft Dynamics NAV upgrade is completed thoroughly and efficiently, with your continued success at the forefront of the entire process.
Finding the right team of skilled professionals with a demonstrated combination of expertise and experience will mitigate these factors and facilitate your successful Microsoft Dynamics NAV upgrade. For more information, please read ArcherPoint’s upgrade methodology.