With the release of Dynamics 365 Business Central, Microsoft now offers two ERP based solutions on Dynamics 365 – Dynamics 365 Business Central and Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations.

Dynamics 365

Dynamics 365 Business Central is replacing Dynamics NAV as Microsoft’s all-in-one business platform targeted at SMEs. Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations (formerly known as Dynamics 365 for Operations) is the replacement for Dynamics AX and is Microsoft’s most advanced ERP solution.

Download our comprehensive product guide on Dynamics 365 Business Central

Microsoft describes Dynamics 365 as a modular solution, where you select the modules that you need and tailor the capability to your organisation and this applies to the entire Dynamics 365 range. Dynamics 365 Business Central, on the other hand, is an all-in-one solution that offers integration with the wider modules but is designed to be a standalone solution, how this evolves will be extremely interesting.

The Differences between Dynamics 365 Business Central and Finance and Operations

In our earlier article we explained the differences between the two solutions to help you identify which works best for your organisation. We now have more information so here’s another 4 ways to differentiate between the two solutions.

  1. Number of users
    The number of full users requiring access in your organisation has an impact on not only the access rights but of the scale of your system. Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations has a minimum license requirement of 20 full licenses showing the sort of scale you require to even consider Finance and Operations. Dynamics 365 Business Central doesn’t have a license minimum, so you could pick up just one full license if you are small organisation. Microsoft has reported that the average number of users they are seeing on Business Central is between 10-15 and the largest Business Central implementation is around 60 full users.
  2. Integrations
    Integration is a key differentiator between Business Central and Finance and Operations. Business Central has been designed as an all-in-one business solution. Microsoft has made available out-of-the-box integration with Dynamics 365 for Sales, but this is limited to 20 entities and cannot be customised.
    For Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations this has been built with a modular approach in mind and the solution easily connects with Talent and Retail as part of the unified operations plan. Using the Common Data Model, it is easy to connect Finance and Operations with the rest of the Dynamics 365 range.
    It is possible to connect Business Central to the rest of the range using the common data model and Azure logic apps but this is not something that the solution excels at. Microsoft has said they will be releasing more out-of-the-box connectors starting with Dynamics 365 for Customer Service with more following soon but for organisations looking at the wider Dynamics 365 suite and multiple integrated system, Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations is the solution for you.
  3. Different Tax Locations
    For Global companies operating in multiple regions tax can be a sizable challenge. Luckily both of Microsoft ERP solutions have functionality to support you and can deal with multiple currencies and tax regions. However, the more tax regions your organisation operates in the more likely you will need the more advanced functionality of Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations. Dynamics 365 Business Central is available in 16 countries whereas Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations is available in 30 countries and is better set up to customise tax rules per region.
  4. Number of transactions
    The number of transactions you are putting through your ERP is another key consideration, if you are only processing thousands or tens of thousands of transactions Dynamics 365 Business Central is more than capable of dealing with this and providing the accuracy you need to manage and report on these correctly. When you reach towards hundreds of thousands of transactions or more, Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations is the solution for you. It is very easy to improve the accuracy of reporting including increasing decimal points to more places to improve accuracy.

The key message to take away is that for organisations above a certain scale and complexity it is highly likely that Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations is a better match. For small to mid-sized organisations Dynamics 365 Business Central presents a great alternative. Both solutions come with Office 365 integration, the power platform and a range of AI powered capability to transform your organisation.

Dynamics 365 Business Central or Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations Assessment

To discover which solution best suits your organisation check out our new guide on selecting the right Dynamics 365 ERP for your organisation.

We also offer a 1 Hour Assessment, where one of our Dynamics 365 Consultants will carry out a discovery session and ask you a range of questions and give you a high-level recommendation of the solution that best fits your organisation. For a more detailed report please see our 1 Day Assessment.