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Thursday, February 7, 2013

OUTGROWING MICROSOFT DYNAMICS GP


Why Companies Move Up to Microsoft Dynamics 365


ARE YOU TOO SUCCESSFUL FOR YOUR CURRENT ERP SYSTEM?

Whether you’re expanding your product lines, offering new services, expanding globally, increasing the number of partners you work with, or acquiring another company, all are harbingers of company growth and success. But there can be a downside: Your business may no longer be aligned with your enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. Often this means you no longer have the control or the visibility you need to manage operations effectively. When this happens, it’s a signal that your company has outgrown its ERP system.

It could have happened so insidiously that you didn’t realize all the ways your outgrown ERP system is hurting your business. For instance, it can seriously impact your ability to meet your growth goals, by slowing your responsiveness and flexibility. Or it can impact your ability to roll out new products and services quickly, causing you to disappoint customers and partners.>

It could have happened so insidiously that you didn’t realize all the ways your outgrown ERP system is hurting your business. For instance, it can seriously impact your ability to meet your growth goals, by slowing your responsiveness and flexibility. Or it can impact your ability to roll out new products and services quickly, causing you to disappoint customers and partners.

That’s why, if you’re using Microsoft Dynamics GP software today and are actively growing or have grown your business, it may be high time to move up to Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations. Named a Leader in Gartner’s ERP Magic Quadrant, Dynamics 365 is Microsoft’s enterprise ERP solution designed for expanding companies like yours. And because it’s the natural next step for expanding companies, the business case for moving to D365 can be extremely compelling.

Read on to find out why Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations is the right choice for upgrading your ERP system, and how Armanino can help you complete a smooth transition using its proven Upgrade Roadmap.

Signs you may be outgrowing your ERP system:

Growth: Your company is growing in revenues, locations, and/or product or service lines.

Global expansion: You’re moving into international markets and need support of multiple currencies, languages and regulatory reporting.

Lack of control and insight: It takes longer to get things done. Managers do not get timely information to make decisions due to increased manual processes.

Increased manual processes: Your staff is relying more on third-party applications, spreadsheets and paper-based processes. Rather than bridge gaps, these offline business processes create new blind spots and silos of information.

M&A activity: There has been, or will be, an acquisition or merger.

Complexity: Products, product lines and pricing have become more complex.

Too slow: You don’t have timely access to critical performance metrics, financial data or other critical information.


THE BUSINESS CASE FOR UPGRADING

When you think about it, an ERP system that is no longer able to help your company thrive and grow is costing you far more than what you pay for software installation and maintenance. Consider the labor and operating costs associated with inefficiency throughout the organization. Costs stemming from excess inventory due to a lack of visibility can hurt your bottom line. An inability to respond in a timely way to customer and management requests may result in lost opportunities or create openings for competitors to get a toehold in your customer base.

So while replacing your accounting/ERP system obviously requires an investment in time and money, the return on that investment can be quite substantial. For instance, by moving to a system such as Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, you gain the capabilities you need for your growing company, including greater scalability, more visibility, and better control across the entire organization.

That’s not all. If your company is using multiple software packages to handle processes covered by the much broader and deeper functional footprint of Dynamics 365, you can consolidate many or all of these systems into one. Your company may end up paying less in license and maintenance fees for a new ERP system than it currently pays for multiple disparate systems. Consolidating systems into one gives you a single source of truth for your business while eliminating duplication of effort, reducing errors, and improving productivity and collaboration across departments.

Another example of consolidation that can benefit your bottom line is when a company is running multiple instances of a small or mid-market ERP system across different divisions or companies. This can make it difficult and time-consuming to maintain master data such as general ledger accounts, inventory items, vendors, customers and more across different databases and systems. There is duplication of effort just to keep records synchronized. Consolidating these systems eliminates data re-entry and gives you better visibility and control across the entire enterprise.

Building the business case for upgrading your ERP can be an eye-opening exercise, shedding light on constraints and workarounds that keep your business from realizing its full potential.

Tangible business benefits for upgrading

  • Greater visibility into inventory, so you can reduce carrying levels and costs
  • More accurate and effective planning, resulting in greater agility and responsiveness
  • More effective production oversight to minimize costs
  • Fewer manual processes, leading to improved productivity
  • Greater control and accuracy to improve decision making and provide insight into key performance metrics
  • Centralized processes to help you leverage economy of scale

Dynamics 365 features

  • Global centralized deployments
  • 41 languages, 36 country localizations
  • Scalable to 5,000 users

TOTAL COST OF OWNERSHIP

THE ADVANTAGES OF MOVING TO MICROSOFT Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations

Total cost of ownership is another important aspect of the business case. When you are deciding whether to upgrade, a major part of that decision is choosing the new ERP system. This decision has a direct impact on your business case since it can dramatically impact your total cost of ownership and return on investment.

You’ll start by evaluating the capabilities you need in the new ERP system. Realizing that the right ERP system can be transformative for your business, you’ll want to insist on one that is designed for growing companies who need support for:

  • More advanced supply chains
  • Expanded use of trading partners
  • Various new service offerings
  • Enhanced business lines
  • Multiple entities and locations
  • Improved compliance and quality

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations delivers all these capabilities and more. Designed for enterprise organizations, Dynamics 365 is purpose-built for manufacturing, distribution, retail, public sector and services organizations. For companies that evolve from a business model centered on manufacturing to one involving distribution, retail and/or professional service offerings, Dynamics 365 can continue to grow with the business. It provides rich, end-to-end business process support, including: finance; supply chain; manufacturing; manufacturing resource planning (MRP); demand planning; customer relationship management (CRM); human resources; and governance, risk and compliance.

While you may be considering other enterprise-class ERP systems that deliver some of these capabilities, it’s important to understand that if you are a Microsoft Dynamics GP customer, there is an extremely compelling business case for moving to Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations:

  • Microsoft investment credit: You can typically apply 100 percent of the license and maintenance fees you paid for Dynamics GP toward your Dynamics 365 investment. This significantly reduces your acquisition costs and your total cost of ownership for Dynamics AX compared to switching to a non-Microsoft ERP system.
  • Same technical skills: Both systems utilize transferrable skill sets around the Microsoft platform, including SharePoint, Office, SQL Server and more, so your IT staff will easily transition to supporting Dynamics 365.
  • Microsoft support: You’ll continue to receive full support for Dynamics GP during your transition.
  • Less risk: With a familiar user interface and the same technical skill set needed, you reduce your risk of project delay and failure.

The final reason why the total cost of ownership and return on investment is definitively better when moving from Dynamics GP to Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, rather than a different enterprise ERP system, is that there is a clear and proven transition path. It’s not a complete rip-and-replace; rather, it’s a progression to expanded capabilities. That means you can move faster, more smoothly, and with less risk.


A PROVEN ROADMAP FROM DYNAMICS GP TO 365

Any software upgrade can cause disruption, but because your ERP system touches many people and processes throughout your organization, it’s even more critical to minimize business interruptions and risk. That’s why Armanino created the Upgrade Roadmap.

The Armanino GP to D365 Upgrade Roadmap helps ensure a smooth transition from your Dynamics GP system to Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations. Based on years of experience helping customers successfully deploy both software packages, the Upgrade Roadmap is a proven methodology for migrating companies who have outgrown their current ERP implementation.

The Upgrade Roadmap includes the following best- practices-based, core components:

Change Management: Armanino manages expectations throughout, explaining benefits and making recommendations to ensure changes are as seamless as possible. Everyone will feel informed and involved in the successful transition.

Budgetary Guidance: We help you gain a clear picture of your existing footprint of ERP and related systems, as well as a clearly defined scope that reduces the chance of surprises during the project.

Process Improvement: We uncover previous limitations and help you improve processes when moving to the new system. We view the transition as the ideal opportunity to apply best practices and lessons learned from our years of industry and Microsoft Dynamics experience, to help you streamline processes and ready your organization for realizing your business strategies now and in the future.

Data Conversion: Armanino utilizes automated data transformation tools and provides guidance to help make the conversion of your data from your previous system to Dynamics 365 as straightforward and painless as possible.

Terminology and Process Translation: Our Dynamics GP and D365 experts translate and compare terminology and processes between the two software packages to help your staff make the switch quickly.

Workshops: We work hand in hand with your teams to ready them for the transition and help them be quickly productive using the new system. Our workshops are designed to build understanding and transfer knowledge from our experts to your staff in a way that eases the pain of change and highlights the benefits to your employees of mastering new capabilities. This is a critical component to ensure adoption and success of your new ERP system.

The Armanino GP to D365 Upgrade Roadmap has helped many companies across many industries to successfully upgrade to Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations as quickly and painlessly as possible.


TURN TO THE MICROSOFT DYNAMICS EXPERTS TO REDUCE RISK AND STREAMLINE YOUR TRANSITION

One of the largest Gold Certified Microsoft Dynamics Implementation Partners in the country, Armanino offers the structure, methodology, resources, experience, training and tools to ensure your company’s success in upgrading to Dynamics 365.

Here’s why clients choose Armanino for their Dynamics GP to Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations upgrades:

  • Master certified on Microsoft Dynamics 365, GP, Power BI and Reporting Tools.
  • Experts in configuration of financial management (multi-currency management, multi-entity consolidations, multi-location international operations), supply chain management, manufacturing, MRP, demand planning, customer relationship management and project accounting.
  • Access to internal Microsoft resources and support not available to smaller Microsoft implementation partners.
  • Proven GP to D365 Upgrade Roadmap helps ensure a smooth transition to Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations.

If your company is starting to show the signs of outgrowing Dynamics GP, look to Armanino for objective guidance on upgrading your ERP to support your growth and enable competitive advantage.


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