Microsoft Dynamics 365: Business Central vs Finance & Operations

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With the general availability of Dynamics 365 Business Central on April 2, 2018, clarity is needed on the differences between Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations and Dynamics 365 Business Central for potential users and partners alike.
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Before we dig in to the differences in features and functionalities, it’s important to remember the main goals of a business solution; it should help you execute your everyday tasks while giving your organization the ability to assist with long-term business growth. You need to also consider the capabilities each respective solution provides with regard to your organization’s different financial and operational processes. The solution must be able to adapt to your business needs and should be built on a modern technology platform that allows business process automation, valuable insights, security and scalability. Microsoft technologies available with the Azure business platform fulfill these prerequisites but choosing Dynamics 365 Business Central and Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations depends on each your business needs, goals and requirements.  

Dynamics 365 Business Central 

Dynamics 365 Business Central is replacing Dynamics NAV as Microsoft’s all-in-one business platform targeted at small to mid-sized enterprises. Dynamics 365 Business Central has core capabilities and connects financials, sales, purchase, inventory, projects, service and operations. This offering has brought the full NAV functionality to a SaaS environment and sits as the future of the Microsoft Dynamics NAV roadmap offering cloud, on-premises and hybrid deployment options.  

Positioned as the next level for organizations that have outgrown their entry-level accounting software, the features in Business Central (like in all Microsoft apps) provide users with an intuitive and easy to use experience. Business Central does have manufacturing capabilities but most manufacturing organizations may find their needs best met through Finance and Operations. This app is generally suited for the wholesale industry.  

Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations

Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations is Microsoft’s flagship and complete enterprise resource planning solution for medium to large enterprises. Formerly Microsoft Dynamics AX, Finance and Operations is designed to fuel business growth and transformation on a global scale. It could be the last solution you implement as it is a truly integrated enterprise business platform that not only handles traditional back office processes but links it to CRM and other apps such as HR or Talent, Customer Service, Marketing and more. Microsoft has designed this solution with flexibility and change in mind, so if you are considering Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations, the modular approach allows you to pick only the apps, features or modules that you need now – and you can add on as you grow. This app also boasts extensive production capabilities and is a great option for discrete, lean, and process manufacturing businesses, regardless of size.

Webinar: An Intro to General Navigation and UI of Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations


If you are looking for help exploring the differences between Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations and Dynamics 365 Business Central, please feel free to contact our team. We also invite you to browse through our insights or whitepapers to stay informed on the best fit for you and your team.

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