Your business is growing, and you need an ERP system; congratulations!
Chances are, you’ve already looked at dozens of articles on ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solutions (as you are about to do again now), and we’re willing to bet this isn’t the first time you’ve heard about SAP or Microsoft.
Both SAP and Microsoft are heavyweights in the small to medium sized business ERP space, based upon market share and product breadth alone. Yet there is still much confusion when comparing these two software vendors and the software solutions they provide.
This article will provide you with a high-level breakdown of SAP Business One vs. Microsoft Dynamics. This exercise can be a little confusing since within the Dynamics family of products there are multiple ERP systems but we'll do our best to help you understand how to compare SAP Business One to each of them and if you wish to go deeper we've created specific articles outlining the features and pros & cons of each.
Table of Contents:
- SAP Business One vs. Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains
- SAP Business One vs. Microsoft Dynamics NAV
- SAP Business One vs. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central
- SAP Business One vs. Microsoft Dynamics AX & 365 Finance and Operations
SAP Business One vs Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains
Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains was originally developed by Great Plains Software in 1993 and eventually acquired by Microsoft in 2001. The software is finance and accounting focused, with some capability in customer relationship management (CRM) and supply chain management (SCM)
SAP Business One is an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution developed by SAP SE and designed to serve small to medium sized enterprises. SAP acquired the system when it bought out Israeli firm TopManage Financial Systems in 2002. SAP B1 has strong functionality and an excellent fit for select industries. B1 has a large customer base and large network of SAP VAR's and ISV's.
Business One is an important growth area for SAP, SAP B1's product road map shows solid support for continuous innovation and releases as far out as 2023. On the other hand, Dynamics GP appears to be a secondary priority as Microsoft continues make a strong push towards products under the Dynamics 365 umbrella (e.g. 365 Business Central and Finance & Operations). Users looking for a long-term ERP solution may lean towards Business One over Dynamics GP as there continues to be uncertainty around Dynamics GP's future.
Dynamics GP provides solid functionality in terms of financial and inventory management, but it lacks the range of features of a true CRM and field service management tools. Dynamics GP users can get around this by integrating to Microsoft Dynamics CRM and other tools within the Dynamics ecosystem. With SAP Business One, you get financial, supply chain, service and CRM tools wrapped in a single cohesive affordable platform.
SAP Business One vs Microsoft Dynamics NAV
Microsoft Dynamics NAV (formerly Navision) is a full-suite ERP solution for small and midsized companies looking to gain better control of their financials, supply chain, distribution, customer service, and manufacturing. It is the most widely adopted financial solution out of the Dynamics family.
SAP Business One is an ERP solution developed by SAP SE designed to serve small to medium sized companies. SAP B1 has strong functionality and an excellent fit for specialized industries. B1 has a large customer base and large network of SAP VAR's and ISV's.
Both Business One and Dynamics NAV support a wide range of project management features including time sheets, job reporting, purchase orders, and invoicing. However, Business One has these features included whereas Dynamics NAV has these available via an Extended Pack and various paid add-ins.
Like all Microsoft Dynamics products, Dynamics NAV does most of its reporting through Microsoft reporting and analytics tools such as SRSS, Jet Reports Express, and Excel. Conversely, Business One supports in-memory analysis via its HANA RDBMS. If you are already familiar with Microsoft reporting tools you may find Dynamics NAV’s integrations easy to use. However, if you who handle big data and need to generate reports quickly may require a more robust platform like Business One.
SAP Business One vs Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central
Microsoft Dynamics Business Central is Microsoft’s newest ERP product and its first foray into cloud-first ERPs. The platform’s code base was built from the NAV code base.
SAP Business One is an ERP solution developed by SAP SE and designed to serve small to medium enterprises. SAP B1 has strong functionality and an excellent fit for select industries. B1 has a large customer base and large network of SAP VAR's and ISV's.
Dynamics Business Central has a strong focus on UX/UI. In contrast, Business One is a far more robust system but has a more traditional ERP look and feel to it. Casual users may appreciate the intuitive interface of Dynamics Business Central, but more experienced users might find the Business Central platform comparatively light in functionality.
In terms of CRM capabilities, Business One outshines Dynamics Business Central by far. The former provides oversight on the entire customer journey, while the latter lacks “true” CRM capabilities, which Microsoft makes available through Dynamics CRM.
The biggest criticism for Dynamics Business Central is that it is largely unproven (as we might expect for a new product). Only time will tell how reliable it is compared to other ERP solutions. In contrast, Business One has been around for decades, with thousands of happy customers.
SAP Business One vs Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations
Microsoft Dynamics 365 On-Premise (formerly Axapta or Dynamics AX) was acquired by Microsoft in 2012. The software was built with the collaborative efforts of IBM and Danish company, Damgaard Data, that focused on ERP systems for manufacturing and e-businesses. As of 2016, Dynamics AX is referred to as Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations. Still considered an enterprise grade ERP, Finance & Operations is suited for businesses with 250 employees and up.
SAP Business One is an ERP solution developed by SAP SE and designed to serve small to midsized companies. SAP acquired the system when it bought out Israeli firm TopManage Financial Systems in 2002. SAP B1 has strong functionality and is an excellent fit for specialized industries. B1 has a large customer base and large network of SAP VAR's and ISV's. B1 is ideally suited for companies with just a few users to a couple hundred users.
According to online customer reviews implementations prove to be a challenge for the Dynamics for Finance and Operations product. Of the ~2,100 customers subscribed to the platform, less than half are operational. With Business One there are over 60,000 customers and hundreds of partners.
The two solutions are opposites when it comes to features. Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations will allow you to add features from other products within Dynamics 365, while Business One offers all its features from a single platform. The decision comes down to whether you prefer ERP features delivered separately or within a single platform.