The recent Directions EMEA conference was the UK’s first opportunity to get some proper insight into Microsoft’s plans for the Dynamics NAV platform. The announcements were split into two halves, with update announcements for both Dynamics NAV and Dynamics 365 Tenerife product lines.
Dynamics 365 “Tenerife” launches next year
For many businesses, the most exciting announcements were to do with the new Dynamics 365 release. Codenamed “Tenerife”, this new version will run exactly the same codebase as a traditional on-premises NAV installation. The shared codebase ensures complete consistency between both on-premise and cloud versions. It also means that users should be able to transition between on-premises and Cloud versions with ease. This gives business a simpler decision to make – do they wish to have the ultimate control with an on-premise (or private hosted) solution or the simplicity of a true SaaS based solution.
The new Cloud-based version will also include a range of additional applications to cover even more business functions. Marketing, Sales, Finance, Operations, Service and HR will all gain tools to help them function more efficiently – a complete end-to-end solution for your entire organisation. Tenerife is further evidence of Microsoft’s “Cloud first” strategy, intended to help businesses of all sizes take full advantage of the limitless scalability of Cloud technologies. Microsoft has also promised that Tenerife subscribers will receive updates and enhancements before on-premises NAV users.
Importantly, existing Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations Business Edition users will automatically transfer to Tenerife once it goes live later next year. The terms “Business Edition” and “Enterprise Edition” are no more. Microsoft are focusing on the right level of functionality required by the client, rather than an arbitrary split based on employee numbers. There will also be a change to the licensing structure, with the system being billed per named user, per month.
Dynamics NAV 2018 is nearly here
Arriving much sooner will be Dynamics NAV 2018, slated for delivery on 1st December 2017. This is the new annual version of the existing platform. Microsoft have promised more than 400 new enhancements, all designed to help business do more with their ERP investment. They will also benefit from the ability to use NAV extensions, allowing them to add custom functionality to meet their operational needs – using the future development process to allow migration to the cloud at the right time.
Repeatable developments using these extensions will be deployed into the Microsoft platform – AppSource. The on-premises version will receive an R2 update at the same time as the Tenerife version goes live in the Cloud. Although some CTOs may be tempted to delay upgrading until next year, doing so will mean missing out on the many new features available to them now. Indeed, delay could mean missing out on new operational efficiencies and data-driven insights that allow them to establish a competitive advantage.
To learn more about Dynamics NAV, Dynamics 365 Tenerife, and how both will affect your ERP strategy moving forward, please get in touch.