Even if you believe your on-premises solution works “just fine,” it could be holding you back.
Upgrading to D365 unlocks a long list of benefits you won’t get from your on-prem solution. We’re talking real-time data, predictive insights, plus cost-savings and an easier way to manage end-to-end operations.
Whether it’s making remote work nearly impossible, you’re having trouble understanding your audience, or your big-picture decisions aren’t delivering the results you had in mind, there are many reasons why it might be time to say goodbye to your legacy system.
Below, we’ll explain why you should upgrade your on-prem solutions to Microsoft Dynamics 365 and look at eight signs that indicate it’s time to make the big move.
1. Your Current Solution is No Longer Supported
Perhaps the most obvious sign it’s time to relocate to the cloud is that Microsoft says so.
Microsoft is ending support for on-premises AX and Dynamics CRM solutions—which also extends to add-ons and apps. It’s also worth noting that if you’re having issues finding a partner that can support your current on-prem system. Or you’re having trouble getting support directly from Microsoft, it’s time for an upgrade.
Many companies are finding themselves in the same boat—facing the decision to migrate ASAP or wait a few more months to start the process. Microsoft will offer some support through 2023, however, this is a temporary solution—AX and Dynamics CRM aren’t coming back.
The idea is to give companies some extra time to plan the migration process, reallocate some resources, and find an implementation partner to ensure everything goes according to plan.
2. Your Server is Outdate or You’re Having Performance Issues
Outdated, unreliable servers can cause several problems including downtime, end-user errors, data corruption, risk of security breaches, and regulatory non-compliance.
It also slows you down, makes it harder to keep up with the competition, hurts team productivity, and provides an outdated user experience. This is far from a comprehensive list of the potential problems caused by server performance issues. But already, we’ve touched on some examples that mean serious trouble for any organization.
Downtime, for example, prevents employees from doing their jobs and generating value for the company. You’re leaving money on the table because you can sell products or bill clients for services. Oh, and it creates an opening for hackers to break into the system and execute a ransomware attack or steal customer data or valuable IP. And that’s just one potential problem.
3. Inability to Realize the Full Potential of Big Data & AI/ML
When you don’t have full visibility into your data ecosystem, you lack the ability to tap into the promise that D365 (and other platforms) provide through accessible AI/ML solutions. What that means for businesses is, it’s really, really hard to put data into action.
“Microsoft Dynamics allows users to take advantage of the platform’s intelligent cloud, data lake, data factory, and the AI/ML technologies embedded into its power platform—right out-of-the-box. You can also access your business data from anywhere with Power BI.” – Sandeep Chaudhury, Consulting Manager
Unfortunately, even comprehensive on-prem solutions don’t offer the speed or prescriptive insights you’ll get from any decent cloud-based ERP/CRM system.
That means your business is likely to face problems like user complaints, wasted resources, human error, duplicate work, churn, and all-around poor performance.
4. You Need to Support Remote Users
If users have issues accessing applications, getting data in or out of the system, or collaborating with colleagues/customers/external stakeholders, it’s time to look toward the cloud.
Project Lead System Administrator, Sasidhar Dhruva says, “for example, if you’re using Dynamics AX, remote users need to use a VPN to dial into that legacy system.”
“Easy access to cloud-based systems enables employees to log on from anywhere using their web browser. With events like COVID and the recent deep freeze in Texas, this accessibility has been a game-changer for organizations forced to quickly move to remote work.” – Jacob Halusic, Account Executive
Whether you’ve been lucky enough to avoid the impact of these recent disasters or not, the point is, we don’t know what the future has in store. And while we don’t necessarily want to sow more fear during turbulent times, we’ve all witnessed the fallout from climate events and COVID shutdowns.
Waiting until something bad happens to make your move is one of the worst things you can do when it comes to ensuring the future success of your business.
Migrating to the cloud provides some insurance against fires, floods, breakdowns, and global pandemics. You no longer need to worry about physical equipment and your team can do their work from any location.
5. You’ve Experienced a Recent Cyberattack
If you’ve recently experienced a data breach, ransomware attack, you’ll want to look for a more secure system–it’s getting harder to get ahead of bad actors (esp. with the ever-expanding threat landscape/rise of AI/ML-driven attacks)
Additionally, if you’ve recently run a security audit and ID-ed risks/vulnerabilities, it’s a good idea to upgrade before the inevitable happens.
Jacob weighs in again, stating that “there are numerous business benefits to moving to the cloud. Security is one of the biggest ones. Users are able to take advantage of a cloud-hosted solution that Microsoft has spent billions of dollars on cybersecurity and regulatory compliance.”
He adds, “Additionally, cloud solutions include all of the backups and disaster recovery a business needs if they do have a situation–ensuring they won’t lose their data or have to shut down while they recover.”
6. Your Legacy System is Getting Too Expensive
Another sign it’s time to switch to a cloud-based solution is that overhead expenses are getting out of control. You might be overspending on hardware, storage, physical space, or power.
Maybe customizations and workarounds are costing you too much time and money—or they’re getting more and more complex.
Or maybe upgrades and updates take too long, require too much preparation, or your team spends too much time fixing problems post-deployment.
7. You Don’t Have the IT Staff Required to Maintain the System
Another sign that it’s time to make your move: you don’t have the people you need to support the on-prem solution. It could be that your current team is too small. Or maybe they’re not able to keep up with routine maintenance since COVID forced them to work remotely.
Worse, it might have more to do with a lack of internal knowledge required to maintain the existing environment.
In any case, if your team can’t keep up with the demands of maintaining your on-premises solution, your organization is vulnerable to several risks including security threats, downtime, errors, bugs, and an inability to address support requests and solve customer problems.
As you might imagine, all these things put your business—and your customers—in a bad spot.
8. Your System Can’t Scale With Your Business
So, one of the key benefits of migrating to Microsoft Dynamics in the cloud is that it enables your organization to become more agile.
You’ll gain access to real-time insights that are hard to come by when you’re working with an on-prem system like MS AX, NAV, or the CRM.
That agility becomes even more important if your business has its sights set on a major acquisition or has big plans to venture into new geographic locations. You know—the kinds of moves that allow you to gain a significant competitive advantage.
You’ll need a system you can scale up or down based on demand and that offers the flexibility to integrate or upgrade solutions as your needs business change.
Ultimately, all eight of these signs point back to the fact that on-prem systems were built for another era—pre-AI/ML, pre-remote work, and pre-big data. AX, NAV, GP, and the rest of the on-prem Dynamics gang were top-tier solutions a few years back.
However, today’s businesses need the latest version of D365 to compete in any meaningful way—or even stick around longer than the next year or two.
Feel like you could benefit from upgrading your current ERP system? Velosio supports many types of ERP systems for different business environments, and our ERP implementation consultants can help find the right one for your operation. Get in touch today.