Microsoft Clarifies the Future of Dynamics GP in Recent Summit NA Conference
Microsoft Community Summit North America (Summit NA) took place Oct. 10-13, 2022 in Orlando, FL. It's touted as the “largest independent gathering of Microsoft Dynamics users in the world” and the world was listening. At the conference, Microsoft sounded like they were announcing the end of new releases and features for Dynamics GP (formerly Great Plains). This recent Summit NA announcement created a shock wave across the community of users and partners. Read more to find out what Microsoft intended to announce versus what was actually announced. Since there was some confusion, let's clarify what the real news means to you as a Dynamics GP customer, partner or ISV.
Releases and Feature Development of Dynamics GP Will Continue
When Microsoft made their announcement during the Dynamics general session, many people interpreted what was said that there would be no more releases and no new features for Dynamics GP. Microsoft apparently further ruffled feathers by spending a good portion of their session discussing the migration to Business Central, including showing a demo of the product to the attendees. Some attendees stood up and left the room at this point. Social media feeds were only fueling the fire. Microsoft has been clear that they are focusing investments heavily on the future of the Dynamics 365 Business Central and Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management product lines. Support for Dynamics GP 2018 was extended to January 11, 2028, as it's shown by Microsoft here.
Backlash at the conference quickly ensued, causing Microsoft’s Community leaders to organize a feedback session to hear out their top partners and user community. Microsoft’s presenter posted communications quickly thereafter clarifying the intent of the announcement.
In a LinkedIn post, Microsoft stated it:
- “is fully committed to supporting our Dynamics GP customers. This will include new releases (e.g., 18.6, 18.7, 18.8, …) for the foreseeable future on the same timeline and schedule as we have done in the past several years, as outlined in the GP Modern Support Lifecycle.
- If you are an existing GP customer, you can be confident in using Dynamics GP to run your business for years to come.
- New releases will contain regulatory (tax), security updates, and hotfixes, ensuring GP remains up to date.
- New releases will also include updates in usability, reliability, addressing top customer issues, and other areas that are critical in ensuring businesses run successfully on GP.
- At the Summit, we did make a statement about "new features." This intent was to share that we do not expect significant new capabilities in Dynamics GP, such as new modules. Microsoft’s major investments and innovations will be in other Dynamics 365 offerings.
Upcoming Features and Releases for Dynamics 365
The Finance and Supply Chain (Operations) module of Dynamics 365 will be available in the 2022 Release Wave 2 which is scheduled to roll out starting in Oct. 2022 and concluding in March 2023. Read more about the release here.
Here are some of the Finance and Operations features planned for Dynamics 365 in Wave 2:
Vendor invoice OCR, which automates the reading and recognition of vendor invoices, will continue adding capabilities. Finance includes a Tax Calculation service and extend the Electronic Invoicing service to support new upcoming e-invoice legislations for France, Poland, and Saudi Arabia. Dynamics Finance is truly a global solution.
Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management will get new analytics and support for multiple vendors in Planning Optimization to help organizations optimize sourcing. Inventory Visibility lets organizations track real-time consumption within allocated quantities in support of promotions, special events, and new product introductions. Guided warehouse implementation and configuration experiences enable rapid reconfiguration of supply chains, and process manufacturers can use Planning Optimization to shorten planning cycles.
Dynamics 365 Intelligent Order Management - In the upcoming release, Microsoft is adding support for various order types, including back orders, subscription orders, manual orders, and purchase orders. They’ll also provide the ability to simulate fulfillment so that customers can model and understand the impact of choosing various fulfillment selections. Finally, contextual collaboration features will be added where an order can be shared with multiple stakeholders using embedded Teams will be added.
Dynamics 365 Project Operations will get Project Budgeting and Time-Phased Forecasting, Baselines and Snapshots, and is modernizing application experiences on the web and mobile form factors. For project accountants and back-office personas, you’ll get advanced subcontracting and subscription billing capabilities with an integration to the Tax Calculation Service too.
So What's In Your Future with Dynamics GP
It's true, that thousands of companies using Dynamics GP have no reason to change and will continue to do so for a long time. It's a trusted and reliable solution as long as it still works for your business. However, there will come a day when it's time to migrate to more modern new Dynamics 365 options or consider moving to another solution altogether. Either way, the best thing you can do now is to start evaluating your next path and be prepared when the time comes to make a change. We can also help you evaluate and migrate to a more modern solution when the time is right.
Rely on a Microsoft Expert
Confusion can be scary, but not when you rely on an experienced and trusted Microsoft Partner for your future selection.
If you seek more information about migrating to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central or Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management please contact us now. We can also help you move to another market-leading cloud ERP solution Acumatica. The fact is that no two implementations of the same software are identical. Our Clients First Business Solutions team of experienced consultants has a long history of working with Dynamics GP, AX and NAV customers. We have years of experience migrating customers' older on-premise ERPs to modern cloud-based platforms like Acumatica, Dynamics 365 Business Central and Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management.
Industry Expertise and Experience – Clients First consultants have direct experience in the industries we support. The Clients First Texas office is known for its vertical expertise in manufacturing, job shops, maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) for aviation or heavy equipment organizations. We have completed the upgrade to D365 Finance and Supply Chain for our ProMRO solution and are currently rolling out a global implementation with one of our customers. We have customers in other industries, too, including make-to-order/engineering job shops, project manufacturing, field services, and wholesale distribution.
Nothing replaces a live presentation so please contact us to schedule a demonstration for your business.
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