Dynamics GP or 365 Business Central: Which is right for you?

Microsoft’s Dynamics GP and 365 Business Central are two very similar ERP solutions with overlapping functionality. Whilst both software solutions share a great deal when it comes to managing your finances, there are several key differences that could make one a stronger contender for your business than the other.

So, if you’ve been wondering which solution is better suited to your business, you’re in the right place. Here, we explore the key differences between Dynamics GP and 365 Business Central so that you can make the right decision based on your business’ situation and needs.

The key differences between Dynamics GP and 365 Business Central

When making a decision that will affect your entire business, you need to think about every aspect the solution has to offer. Don’t just ask the questions related to functionality. Think beyond this, not just about how you’ll tackle reporting, budgeting and so on.

Whilst functionality will always be important, you first of all need to consider deployment – is your business geared up for the Cloud or on-premise?

Cloud based vs on-premise

When discussing globalization, it’s important to understand the difference between a global company vs a multi-national company.

How ERP supports globalization

The biggest difference between Dynamics GP and 365 Business Central is the design of each product. Dynamics GP brings a more traditional approach to ERP, developed for on-premise deployment that has since been updated to support some Cloud functionality.

However, 365 Business Central is a newer solution designed specifically for the Cloud. So, what does this mean for your business?

Because 365 Business Central was developed as a Cloud solution, it has no hardware requirements or costs. Instead of having your own server to support an on-premises solution, Microsoft manages the upgrades for you, rolling them out automatically with no installation or downloads needed.

That’s not to say Dynamics GP can’t be hosted in the Cloud. But since it was designed as an on-premise solution, this is where it typically performs best. On top of this, if you do decide to host Dynamics GP in the Cloud, upgrades will need to be scheduled with your software provider or Microsoft themselves. 

Basic vs advanced functionality 

Once you’ve had a think about deployment and which is right for your business, levels of functionality should be compared.

Based on functionality alone, Dynamics GP offers basic financial functions that are suitable to most small to medium-sized businesses. The 365 Business Central offering includes additional features that satisfy more complex financial and operational needs.

To put things into perspective, the base Business Central package (known as Essentials) offers a bit more than GP’s starter pack. In addition to what’s found in the start pack, you benefit from Project Management, Warehouse Management, and Customer Relationship Management capabilities.

Allowing for multi-warehouse management and advanced inventory planning, Business Central’s distribution functionality also outshines that of Dynamics GP.



Like all things business, cost is a huge talking point – and in this debate, there’s no difference.

You can purchase Dynamics GP with a perpetual licence where you pay a one-time fee. This will cover the solution costs upfront, costing USD 5,000 for three full users. After that, you’ll pay an annual maintenance/enhancement fee of around USD 900 to Microsoft.

More information on this topic can be found on the Microsoft Dynamics site here.

Business Central’s pricing works differently and is based on a SaaS model. This means you pay a subscription fee to access the solution on a monthly basis.

The Essentials plan, which we mentioned earlier, is set at USD 70 per month, per user. Whilst the Premium plan costs USD 100, per month, per user.

In short, when exploring prices, you need to consider what model and therefore solution is better suited to your business. Would you prefer to pay an up-front cost for the product, or spread it over the year? Are you happy to cover the costs of a server, or would you prefer things handled in the Cloud?


Should I upgrade from Dynamics GP to 365 Business Central

There are some misconceptions about the Cloud, whether that’s for personal or business use. But migrating to the Cloud with a modern ERP like 365 Business Central has many advantages. So, consider upgrading for the following:

  • Fewer limitations – Deploying your solution to the Cloud reduces potential roadblocks, such as adding users later down the line or expanding the tools you use. You also don’t need to worry about your system aging out of requirements.

  • Lower costs – With 365 Business Central, you eliminate the need to service your on-premise system, pay to upgrade it, or purchase new hardware to meet new requirements.

  • Advanced integrations – Integrations with the likes of BI (Business Intelligence) and CRM (Customer Relationship Management), as well as functions like warehousing and distribution, have advanced levels of functionality with Business Central when compared to Dynamics GP.

  • Enhanced security – Moving to the Cloud with Business Central should be a part of your disaster recovery planning. With important information backed up and securely stored on a regular basis, you can put your mind at ease.

Explore your ERP options with Nolan Business Solutions

Do you need help deciding which is the better ERP for your business? Are you stuck between the choice of Dynamics GP and 365 Business Central? And are you keen on receiving expert advice through your ERP implementation?

Here at Nolan Business Solutions, our expert team have all the knowledge and experience needed to help your business succeed with software. Why not get in touch using our online form today – we’d be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.




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