Updated: Jun 23, 2022
"If you don't have a competitive advantage don't compete." - Jack Welch
Current competitive advantages of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central are different from when this powerhouse ERP was first introduced. One of the signs of good software is the will to evolve by adapting to changing conditions and introducing new and better features/functionality. In fact, Microsoft's cloud ERP adapts so well that it's a permanent fixation on the Gartner Magic Quadrant.
Why are competitive advantages important?
Competitive advantages do a lot more than distinguishing your product from your competitors product. They help to distinguish your entire organization from competitor's organizations, create brand loyalties, and help to increase profit margins. Establishing such a competitive advantage is the goal of every organization. In fact, some organization's have done such a wonderful job that their products eventually became verbs. For example, most people say to Google something instead of saying search on the Google web browser.
Business Central's Competitive Advantages
1) Microsoft Integrations
One of the first things that comes to mind when I think of Business Central is its integration with other Microsoft software. Yes, Business Central's competitors claim they can integrate with Microsoft software and some can, but not to the extent that Business Central can. Maybe it's just me but I'm pretty sure Microsoft has the capability to integrate its software better than their competitors.
Integrations with other Microsoft software are extremely important because most organizations use Microsoft software and they help to increase productivity. The time saved from not switching in between different software to accomplish a task is astronomical.
My favorite Business Central Integrations
Microsoft Power BI
This integration gives you insight into your Business Central data.
View Business Central data in Power BI
View Power BI reports in Business Central
Create reports and dashboards within Power BI that display Business Central data
Three apps available for Power BI and Business Central
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales
By allowing your sales people to view Business Central information while working within Dynamics 365 Sales less errors are made, real time decisions can be made, and things such as quotes become more accurate.
Fully Synchronizing Records
Handling Sales Order Data
Handling Sales Quotes Data
Handling Posted Sales Invoices, Customer Payments, and Statistics
Handling Sales Prices
Collaborate, collaborate, collaborate. Microsoft Teams has become the most popular collaboration software available so it only makes sense that it would integrate with Business Central and allow you and your team members to see into Business Central without leaving Teams.
Look up details of customers, vendors, and other contacts
Share records in conversations
Share links from pages in Business Central to Teams
We all spend an enormous amount of time throughout our day within our email boxes. The Microsoft Outlook integration with Business Central allows you to quickly manage business interactions with customers and vendors.
Contact Insights Outlook Add-in
Creating invoices from your meeting appointments
Quick document lookup
Excel is loved by many and plays an important role with editing information within Business Central.
Open in Excel
Edit in Excel
Business Central Integrations Honorable Mentions
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Marketing
Microsoft Power Apps
2) Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
The second competitive advantage I believe Business Central to have is it's internal CRM. A lot of people think that because Business Central integrates with Dynamics 365 Sales it has no CRM capabilities. This couldn't be further from the truth. Business Central's internal out-of-the-box CRM capabilities are effective and adequate for most organizations.
Business Inbox for Outlook
3) Flexibility: On-premise or Cloud Capabilities
The third competitive advantage I believe Business Central has is its ability to be either a cloud based software, on-premise software, or a hybrid of the two. Most of Microsoft's direct competitors don't have the option to host their software on-premise because it's not the popular choice at the moment. However, there are many organization with the hardware in place that don't have strong internet capabilities because of their location that need an on-premise version. For this, Microsoft just doesn't offer a stripped down version they offer a full feature and functionality version. This way, if you ever decide to make the switch to the cloud nothing is different.
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