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The power of a modern ERP solution delivered in collaboration with Microsoft and Intergen

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems are integral to the smooth running of most organisations so it’s no surprise that many businesses are reluctant to undergo the upheaval that moving to a new ERP solution would require. Some liken it to open heart surgery for the organisation. But, just like open heart surgery, moving to a modern ERP solution can be lifesaving.

Three signs your business needs to modernise its ERP

Three signs your business needs to modernise its ERP

Often, businesses stick with the same ERP platform because it seems easier than switching. They don’t want to introduce risk into the business and they don’t want to allocate resources to a disruptive upgrade project.

However, if your business is showing any of these three signs, then it’s definitely time to modernise:

1. Not fit for purpose. If your business has grown significantly in either size or complexity since first implementing your current ERP solution, and your ERP system hasn’t kept up with that growth, then your existing system is likely no longer fit for purpose. You’ve grown out of your old system and it’s time to modernise.

2. Holding you back. If your current ERP solution is hard to integrate with other solutions, doesn’t offer mobile access, and can’t give you the fast, accurate reporting and predictive analytics you need to make better decisions, then it’s letting you down and holding you back.

3. Ready for transformation. With so many businesses embarking on digital transformation, it’s essential that your ERP solution is ready to support you on that journey. A modern ERP solution will give you a strong core to support your digital transformation initiatives. It will enable you to innovate fast with a focus on engaging your customers; empowering your employees; optimising your operations; and transforming your products and services.

Traditionally, ERP solutions reported what had happened in the past. Business managers would then rely on their own experience and gut-feel to make decisions based on that information. Modern business applications utilise artificial intelligence (AI) to predict the future. These recommendations can allow you to make better decisions that powerfully impact the bottom line maximising revenue and controlling costs.

Microsoft has been investing in AI for over 20 years. Our Cortana Intelligence suite of AI services is very mature and includes, for example, machine learning, speech-to-text, language translator, image analyser and much more. We take these AI services and bake them directly into our business applications, making the solutions increasingly intelligent as each new release introduces new AI capability.

Dynamics 365 Business Central is a highly intelligent, modern ERP solution. In addition to ‘baked in’ AI, it also includes the world’s best business insights solution: Power BI. We embed Power BI directly into your ERP solution, providing a super productive and data-driven experience. This means businesses that are already using Power BI don’t have to learn how to use a whole new reporting tool when they implement their new ERP solution. And, if you’re not already using Power BI, you’ll find it easy to pick up because of its very intuitive interface and the ability to use natural language to ask questions about your data.

What about the cloud?

Microsoft is a cloud-first vendor and Business Central is primarily a cloud ERP solution. However, not every business is ready to move to the cloud, so Business Central is also available as an on-premises solution. It’s your choice.

And, even if you choose to deploy Business Central on-premises, you can still take advantage of cloud-based services such as AI and business insights through the intelligent edge. This provides the link between your on-premises solution and the wealth of insights available through cloud intelligence. We bring the cloud to you. This capability is unique to Microsoft.

Bringing your ERP and productivity tools together

Microsoft is in a unique position to create a connected experience for users across their business applications and productivity tools. With the majority of organisations already using Office 365, Microsoft is working hard to create business processes which span across ERP and productivity, letting business users work in the tool of their choice and enabling greater productivity than ever before.

With this focus on productivity and our ability to leverage experience and familiarity of existing tools such as Office 365, it’s easy to see why so many customers are looking to Microsoft when needing to modernise their ERP solutions.

A proven, reliable solution

Business Central is based on Microsoft Dynamics NAV, a proven, mature mid-market ERP that’s been in the market for 31 years. Since acquiring it in 2002, Microsoft has invested significantly in developing Dynamics NAV. Business Central is the culmination of that experience and investment, providing an incredibly powerful all-in-one business management tool.

Business Central has two flavours. Business Central Essentials includes core financials, project management, supply chain management, sales, inventory and warehouse management. Business Central Premium includes everything in the Essentials license plus manufacturing and service management.

It’s important to remember that Business Central is part of the Dynamics 365 suite of applications, which means that other Dynamics 365 apps can be included to meet the needs of individual organisations. For example, many customers are combining Business Central with Dynamics 365 for Talent, our exciting HCM/HR solution, to create great recruitment and onboarding experiences, plus develop and manage employees. Another example might be an organisation that finds that their sales automation needs are more sophisticated than what Business Central offers “out of the box”. In this case, they may choose to add in Dynamics 365 for Sales in combination with Business Central.

Business Central is ideal for mid-market organisations. For larger, more complex enterprises, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations is the ideal choice.

The right solution delivered in collaboration

Business Central provides your organisation with end-to-end management of business processes that span every aspect of operations and creates a connected user experience.

Often, when customers talk to us, we’re talking about more than an ERP solution. Our conversations span across business applications, productivity (Office 365), cloud, business intelligence, security, identity, AI, IoT and more.

Microsoft is in a unique position as a software vendor to be able to deliver “best of breed” solutions to our customers across all these areas. It’s our partners, like Intergen, who bring it all together for our customers by creating end-to-end solutions. Intergen is a key partner that has real breadth in its business and can operate across the spectrum.

Find out more

This blog is part of a series on Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. To find out more about how Intergen can help you realise the benefits of a modern ERP solution, contact us today.

Posted by: Candice Murray, Sales Specialist, Dynamics 365 at Microsoft (guest contributor) | 15 October 2018

Tags: ERP, Microsoft Dynamics, Business Central, Dynamics 365 Business Central, Enteprise Resource Planning

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