Oh No! Do We Really Have To? Don’t Panic…Upgrading Microsoft Dynamics NAV (Navision) is Easier Than You Think

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Upgrading your company’s Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System does not have to be complicated or costly. In fact, an upgrade is a fairly uncomplicated process, assuming a company has regularly performed upgrades, has the right tools, and has an experienced Dynamics NAV Partner. Microsoft Dynamics NAV (Navision) is one of the few business management systems available that was designed specifically to be customized without breaking the upgrade path.

The customer’s Dynamics NAV Partner assists the customer throughout the upgrade process, starting with an analysis of the current database. Tools such as The Mergetool from Mergetool.com allow for a thorough database analysis. They perform a three way compare and merge between the old and new version of the software. This includes third-party Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) and any client specific customizations. Analysis tool suites automatically perform approximately 95 percent of the migration of custom code. They are a necessity when upgrading because they aid in code evaluation and minimize the amount of required manual implementation of code.

Once the customer approves an upgrade, a code merge is performed with the test database to bring forward custom code to the latest release. Following the merge process, the database is updated to include any data transformations required.

Once the merge is complete and the data transformations performed, the Partner will deliver the upgraded test database for the customer to validate. The customer will spend approximately thirty days validating that the upgraded database functions properly and that complete and accurate data migration was achieved. The final upgrade occurs once the validation is complete. A typical upgrade scenario would take place over a weekend at the close of business on Friday. The upgraded code is applied, the upgrade data transformations rerun, and the final production database is delivered back on Saturday or Sunday, minimally impacting the operational activities of the company.

Upgrades don’t have to be painful, and if they are, it usually indicates a problem in planning, execution, or client testing. ArcherPoint has performed countless Dynamics NAV upgrades where most of the employees within these companies were not even aware that an upgrade had occurred unless they were utilizing new functionality in the release.

With a solid plan, tools, and assistance, Microsoft Dynamics NAV (Navision) customers can upgrade easily, seamlessly, and with minimal financial or operational impact.

Greg Kaupp is the CEO of ArcherPoint, LLC, a Northern California Microsoft Dynamics NAV (Navision) partner. Greg has been involved in Dynamics NAV implementations for companies throughout the U.S. since 1997.

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