NetSuite vs. Microsoft Dynamics GP: Truth, Consequences, and Industry Analysis – Oh My!

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NetSuite and Microsoft Dynamics GP have taken aim…at each other.  As a result, there has been a lot of chatter in the ERP software marketplace.  NetSuite says that Great Plains is “Yesterday”.  Microsoft says that “NetSuite was right then…Dynamics is right now”.  So how can you find the truth about which product would be best for your business? 

By looking purely at the facts about both solutions and getting input from independent industry analysts, you can better understand what selecting either solution would mean for your business.

The Truth about NetSuite

NetSuite is a cloud-based, integrated solution covering ERP, CRM, and e-commerce capabilities that are primarily delivered from a single data center.  Its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) delivery model leverages a web interface that makes the application available from any web-enabled hardware and can reduce an organization’s dependence on IT infrastructure and administration, which may result in cost savings.  NetSuite OneWorld supports multi-lingual, multi-national, and multi-subsidiary organizations and is available at an additional cost.

What Does This Mean to You? 

If your business does not have a strong technology infrastructure and does not require one for any reason, then a SaaS ERP solution like NetSuite can help you save on costs with their user-based subscription pricing.  However, if you do select a NetSuite subscription, you are often locked into a one year (if not longer) contract.  If you decide to migrate away from NetSuite at any point, you may not be able to retain or access your historical data.  Additionally, since NetSuite is a multi-tenant environment, they control when and how upgrades take place to their solution, which could result in inconvenient business interruptions for you.  Other business interruptions outside of your control could occur in the event of a disaster affecting NetSuite’s central data center (which is located in an area known for seismic activity). 

The Truth about Microsoft Dynamics GP

Microsoft Dynamics GP offers both an on-premise and partner hosted solution that integrates seamlessly with CRM, Business Intelligence and collaboration tools, and familiar Microsoft programs including Outlook and Excel.  It includes out-of-the-box functionality to manage multiple companies and locations, even across multiple countries. 

What Does This Mean to You?

Microsoft Dynamics GP delivers the power of choice and control.  If you already have invested in IT infrastructure or require an on-premise deployment, that is available to you.  If you do not have those investments or needs, you can opt for a partner hosted delivery method which may result in some cost savings for your business.  If your business requires an end-to-end solution, Dynamics GP and Dynamics CRM are tightly aligned with bi-directional data flow in real-time.  If you don’t have those needs, you won’t be paying for CRM functionality that you aren’t using.  Additionally, you can save on training costs due to the similar user experience that Dynamics GP shares with Office.  Having either an on-premise or a partner hosted solution puts you in control of where your data is stored, how it is recovered in the event of a disaster, and how and when upgrades take place. 

What Independent Analysts Have to Say

In December 2009, The Accounting Library released their findings that Microsoft Dynamics GP met 84% of all accounting and business management requirements while NetSuite only met 52%.  In fact, Microsoft Dynamics GP met more requirements than NetSuite in all 13 major categories.  The greatest disparities between products were in the Fixed Assets and Manufacturing categories.  While Dynamics GP met 72% of Fixed Assets requirements and 84% of Manufacturing requirements, NetSuite only met 2% of the requirements for Fixed Assets and none for Manufacturing. 

Not only has Microsoft Dynamics been proven to be functionally superior to NetSuite in independent research, it has also been proven to be more popular with small and midsized businesses (SMBs).  According to a Panorama Consulting survey, Microsoft Dynamics is the most highly rated ERP vendor by SMBs, receiving 33% of the vote while NetSuite only garnered 6% of the vote.  

The white paper, “Microsoft Dynamics GP versus NetSuite: Key Reasons Microsoft Dynamics GP May Be a Better Fit for Your Business” compares and contrasts the two products based on the four basic factors that many business decision makers use when selecting ERP software:  functionality, flexibility, affordability, and vendor stability.  Download the white paper here!

By Socius, a Microsoft Dynamics GP partner in Ohio

4 thoughts on “NetSuite vs. Microsoft Dynamics GP: Truth, Consequences, and Industry Analysis – Oh My!”

  1. I have been implementing Micorsoft, Sage and NetSuite solutions. The main advantage for the customer is that with NetSuite, they do not need me if they need to develop a report,build a workflow or customise their PDF layouts.

    The customer doesnt need to pay to maintain their server either since NetSuite takes care of that. The updates and upgrades are free and instantenious, so everyone is on the latest version.

    Netsuite manages multi-subsidiary sales force and accounting and is in general easier for me (the IT guy) to implement and train.

    That said, NetSuite is fully cloud, and some will rather pay hundreds of thousands of pounds a year just to have their database where they can see it.

    I'd say Sage, SAP by design and microsoft products are for small businesses. NetSuite is for SME's and SAP is for large multinationals (Over 1500 employee organisations). That said, NetSuite is used by Fairtrade and their 6000 partners. So maybe we should watch this space as NetSuite moves upmarket to fight the likes of Oracle and SAP. But according to me, it wont be for anytime soon.

  2. How can you call this article TRUTH when you are a Microsoft partner. Pure biased advestising so hopefully all who read this "truth" realize the source is biased.

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