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  • Writer's pictureTarana Rana

5 Frequently Asked Questions About NAV to Business Central Upgrades

Ask an expert! Here are the answers to the most asked questions about NAV to Business Central upgrades.

If you're evaluating an upgrade from Dynamics NAV to Business Central either now or in the future, you probably have questions and concerns you'd like to address. We've rounded up the most frequently asked questions here, answered by David Doyle, the Director of Sales & Marketing at Kwixand Solutions.

Dynamics NAV To Business Central: FAQ

How are customizations different in Dynamics 365 Business Central compared to Dynamics NAV?

One of the best things about Dynamics NAV was how customizable the solution was. You were able to create customizations in the solution specific to a company's unique business processes. Developers could make changes to the core program itself. This was a strong reason to select NAV in the first place. However, those customizations have become a stumbling block for NAV clients when considering upgrading to Dynamics 365 Business Central. However, when you had to do a version upgrade, sometimes your customizations would keep working, and sometimes they wouldn't.

Business Central uses a different programming language than NAV. It also uses extensions – which can be thought of as a bridge between Business Central's core program and the developed and deployed customizations. So, when you need to upgrade Business Central (and Microsoft releases a big version update every year in April and November), your customizations do not fail because of how they're attached to Business Central.

Will all my customizations need to be rewritten and redeployed when we move from Dynamics NAV to Business Central?

While many NAV clients might worry about the expense of having to rewrite all their customizations from NAV when they move to Business Central, the answer is that it really depends. The first thing that needs to be considered is whether any of those customizations are now just native functionality in Business Central? Because Business Central has been around since 2018, Microsoft has continued to enhance its capabilities. By now, certain customizations you created in NAV may be already out-of-the-box features in Business Central. So in those cases, we won't need to rewrite the customization.

If the customizations are very specific to your company and industry and are still key to supporting your business, then chances are yes, the customizations will need to be rewritten and redeployed. However, it is also a massive opportunity. Because if those customizations were written for NAV and developed 10 or 15 years ago, that company and its business processes would not be exactly the same as those years ago.

It's the perfect opportunity to enhance those customizations to deliver even more value on the Business Central platform.

Will my add-ons be available if we upgrade to D365 Business Central?

Microsoft gave third-party solution providers and ISVs a reasonable lead time on how Business Central worked before releasing the solution. Now that Business Central has been in the market space for as long as it has, all those ISVs and third-party solution providers who had great solutions for NAV will have already developed and deployed a version for Dynamics 365 Business Central. A good place for NAV clients to look for add-ons is the Microsoft Appsource. Those apps listed there have gone through the Microsoft process, and that should provide a strong level of comfort that the add-on solutions work as they should and fulfill the requirements that it was designed for.

Can I upgrade from Dynamics NAV to Business Central on-premises instead of the cloud version?

One of the interesting things about Dynamics 365 Business Central is that while Microsoft has built it to be a cloud-based solution, they do offer dual licensing so that you could have an on-premises version of Business Central. Your end-users will still access the solution through a web portal, and it has the same interface as the cloud version, but the data is stored on your business servers. So, there is this option. However, if you are current enough on your version of NAV, you may or may not get all the value from Business Central going on-premises to on-premises. It really depends on your business. The thing is, Microsoft has really designed Business Central to be cloud-first right from the beginning. So, it really depends on your business and its specific requirements.

Is it a re-implementation or an upgrade when moving from NAV to Business Central?

This depends on several factors and will vary from company to company. The easiest way to move from on-premises NAV to Business Central cloud is to do a complete deployment or a re-implementation. Especially if your business has changed a lot over the years or if you have a lot of existing customizations that are now standard functionality in Business Central.

A re-implementation is also the way to go if you are on an extremely old version of NAV and will require multiple upgrades. However, if your organization has been static in terms of your business processes and not a lot has changed, an upgrade might be best for you. It ultimately depends on your organization, and there are a lot of factors to consider before you decide which path forward makes the most sense for you.

For more information on this topic, check out our previous blog post, "Upgrade vs. Re-implementation: How to Update Your ERP Solution."

Next Steps

When you decide to upgrade from Dynamics NAV to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, this modern cloud solution will help you decrease dependency on IT, optimize operations and customer experiences, and improve remote access. If you have any questions about the NAV to Business Central upgrade process, talk to our consultants by booking a free consultation.

About Kwixand Solutions

Kwixand Solutions is a Silver Microsoft Partner and a Dynamics 365 Business Central partner based in Vancouver, Canada. We help businesses across North America digitally transform and achieve their goals. For us, successful digital transformation is much more than just implementing an ERP or CRM solution. It's about helping businesses achieve their goals and maximizing their ROI.


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