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Microsoft Dynamics 365 vs Business Central

By Tara Porter
Updated December 21, 2023
Microsoft Dynamics 365 vs Business Central

In this article, we clear up the differences between Dynamics 365 vs Business Central vs Dynamics CRM.

Feeling confused about Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Dynamics 365 Business Central? ūü§Ē Don't worry, you're not alone. The wording even trips up the pros, and many would love for Microsoft to distinguish between these a little better.

Here's the problem: Dynamics 365 CRM (which is what people are often referring to when they say Dynamics) and Business Central both fall under the Dynamics 365 umbrella.

Dynamics 365 is a suite of cloud-based applications by Microsoft that integrates several business functions such as sales, customer service, finance, and operations into one unified platform.

When someone says "Dynamics 365," they are either referring to this suite of Dynamics applications, or they could be discussing one of these cloud-based applications (for example, CRM or Business Central).

Still with us?

Here's a picture if that helps:

Dynamics 365 CRM vs Business Central

Pretty "suite," right? (#sorrynotsorry)

Let's take a closer look at each of them and their main features:

What is Dynamics 365 CRM?

Dynamics 365 CRM (or customer relationship management) helps your sales and customer service teams work together by providing a centralized place for customer data, task automation, and personalized customer interactions.

The Key Features of Dynamics 365 CRM

  • Nurture Leads:¬†Capture and qualify leads for sales teams,¬†track their journey through your sales pipeline,¬†and convert them into loyal customers.
  • Manage Relationships:¬†Build strong connections with your customers by centralizing all their information,¬†from contact details to interaction history.
  • Automate Marketing:¬†Streamline your marketing campaigns with automated workflows,¬†email campaigns,¬†and social media management tools.
  • Deliver Exceptional Service:¬†Resolve customer issues efficiently with a ticketing system,¬†track service level agreements,¬†and measure customer satisfaction

What is Dynamics 365 Business Central?

Think of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central as the command center of your business operations. This ERP system serves as the single source of truth for all your financial, inventory, and project management needs.

The Best Features of Dynamics 365 Business Central

  • Streamline Finances:¬†Manage your financials with ease,¬†automate accounting tasks,¬†and gain real-time insights into your financial health.
  • Optimize Inventory:¬†Track your inventory levels,¬†automate purchase orders,¬†and ensure you have the right stock at the right time.
  • Manage Projects:¬†Plan and execute projects efficiently,¬†track progress,¬†and collaborate with team members seamlessly.
  • Boost Manufacturing:¬†Optimize production processes,¬†schedule resources effectively,¬†and track costs to maximize efficiency.
  • Enhance Service Management:¬†Manage service contracts,¬†track service tickets,¬†and ensure timely resolution of customer issues.

How Do Dynamics 365 CRM and Business Central Work Together?

While CRM and Business Central focus on different aspects of your business, they can work hand-in-hand through native integrations. Here's how this could look:

  • Convert Leads to Sales Orders:¬†CRM can seamlessly convert qualified leads into sales orders in Business Central,¬†eliminating manual data entry.
  • Track Inventory Levels for Accurate Sales Commitments:¬†Real-time inventory data from Business Central can be accessed within CRM,¬†enabling accurate sales commitments.
  • Provide Customers with Self-Service Options:¬†Integrate CRM with your customer portal to offer self-service options for order tracking,¬†invoices,¬†and support tickets.

Choosing the Right Tool for Your Needs

The ideal solution depends on your specific priorities and business needs. If your primary focus lies in managing customer relationships and sales, Dynamics 365 CRM might be your perfect match. However, if you require a comprehensive ERP solution to manage your entire operations, Business Central is the clear winner.

But remember, you don't have to choose:

  • Start with your core needs:¬†Begin with the solution that addresses your current priorities,¬†be it CRM for customer-centricity or Business Central for operational control.
  • Expand later:¬†As your business evolves,¬†you can seamlessly integrate the other solution.

Dynamics 365 CRM & Business Central Resources

Once you've chosen which tool you'll use, it helps to also have some resources to assist you. Here are some suggestions:

Conclusion

Ultimately, when comparing Microsoft Business Central vs Dynamics 365 CRM, it boils down to their specialized functions. If you prioritize managing customer relationships and sales, CRM is your go-to. On the other hand, for a comprehensive system handling all operational aspects, Business Central wins.

The beauty lies in their compatibility; you can start with one and seamlessly integrate the other as your business grows, maximizing the Dynamics 365 suite's potential.

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