Comparison of the Four Microsoft Dynamics ERP Products

There is much confusion regarding the differences among the four Microsoft Dynamics ERP offerings. As you would imagine, they are aimed at different marketplaces and company sizes. As an independent ERP selection consultant, I would like to clarify.This article will compare features and target companies for Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics SL, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, and Microsoft Dynamics AX.

Microsoft Dynamics GP

Type of business targeted: distribution and manufacturing companies
Ideal For # Of Employees: 1 – 500+
Implementation Cost:         $30K – $500+K
Deployment Timeframe:    3-6 months

Notes: Microsoft Dynamics GP (formerly Great Plains) is solid, easy-to-use, low-cost, and offers well-developed pre-packaged functionality for accounting, e-commerce, and manufacturing. It is a perennial favorite among distribution companies. It does, however, require more customization than Dynamics NAV because it is less configurable, but it is a little less costly and takes a little less time to implement than NAV. It’s known for strong general ledger and human resources (HR) capabilities.

Microsoft Dynamics SL

Type of business targeted: construction, government contracting, professional services, engineering, management consulting, wholesale distribution, and architecture.
Ideal For # Of Employees: 10 – 250+
Implementation Cost:         varies
Deployment Timeframe:    often fewer than six months

Notes: Microsoft Dynamics SL (formerly Solomon) is great for project accounting and project management. It’s quick-to-implement, easy-to-use, and can be deployed in the cloud on Microsoft Azure, hosted by a reseller, or on your servers. SL is fairly easy to learn, but can be inflexible at times. Features include project time and expense entry, project approvals and setup, and project analysis, making it ideal for project-driven industries. It does not require dedicated technical resources to manage the solution – partner-delivered IT capabilities are sufficient.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV

Type of business targeted: manufacturing and distribution companies
Ideal For # Of Employees: 1 – 500+
Implementation Cost:         $30K – $500+K
Deployment Timeframe:    4-6 months

Notes: Microsoft Dynamics NAV (formerly Navision) supports a large number of languages, giving it more global reach. It is highly flexible and modular, offering customers the ability to customize its tools to meet manufacturing and distribution needs. In terms of scalability, however, it is better for local singly-control enterprise firms, rather than centrally-control large-scale enterprise deployments. NAV is more flexible than GP, so less customization is required, but it’s also highly customizable. It’s available in many languages and currencies, and has an impressive international install base. NAV is geared toward small to midsize companies ($5M – $500M) with some international presence. A very important point is that it does not require dedicated technical resources to manage the solution – partner-delivered IT capabilities are sufficient. It is available as hosted, a combination of hosted and on-premises, or cloud-hosted.

Microsoft Dynamics AX

Type of business targeted: manufacturing, distribution, supply chain, and retail industries
Ideal For # Of Employees: 50 – 2,000+
Implementation Cost:         $100K – $1+ Mil
Deployment Timeframe:    6-12+ months
Notes: Microsoft Dynamics AX (formerly Axapta) is the right choice if you need enterprise scalability.

It is highly customizable, offering an “integrated development environment (IDE) and multi-tier architecture”. That translates into easy customization, giving on-site developers the ability to create new features whenever the business growth requires it. AX is available in many languages and currencies, and has an impressive international install base. It is appropriate for one centralized location, or multiple decentralized locations. It was designed for large, enterprise class organizations with a broad international presence, and is better equipped than NAV to address the specific size and scale challenges of enterprise organizations. It is, however, much more complicated than NAV with more complex implementations. Excellent project management is a must, and AX shops often require dedicated technical resources to manage the solution. It provides large manufacturing businesses with visibility to inventory across international locations. AX is available as hosted, a combination of hosted and on-premises, or cloud-hosted.

Visit Enterprise Resource Consulting at http://www.EnterpriseResourceConsulting.com

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s