4 Signs It’s Time Your Nonprofit Migrates from GP to Business Central

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While Microsoft continues to support Dynamics GP, the ERP platform many nonprofits have relied on for decades, GP may no longer be the best choice for future-proofing your organization. Migrating from GP to Business Central is worth your serious consideration.

Microsoft recently moved Dynamics GP to the Modern Lifecycle support model, which means they will continue to develop and support GP to keep up with tax and compliance requirements and improve usability. But new features will be limited, and Microsoft has no plans to build a true cloud version of the product. Yes, GP can be adapted to be hosted in the cloud, but it’s not considered a true cloud solution with vendor-managed infrastructure, software maintenance, updates, security and backups. For some organizations, GP may still be the best fit, but now is a good time to ask yourself if it’s time to migrate your organization to the Business Central cloud.

Microsoft has shifted development resources to Dynamics 365 Business Central, a true cloud solution that supports greater integration across your organization’s systems and provides more flexibility for scaling and remote access.

Before you invest in another round of updates for GP, consider whether you should instead migrate to Dynamics 365 Business Central-powered Tangicloud Fundamentals for industry-specific functionality for nonprofits.

Here are four signs it may be time to move from Dynamics GP to Business Central:

No. 1: You have limited internal IT resources

Does your IT team feel overwhelmed, asked to do far more than it can handle? Usually, a nonprofit either has an on-location staff, which maintains hardware and software for on-premises software or outsources that job to an external firm. Security and backups are also dependent on those teams. Microsoft Dynamics GP requires multiple updates a year, as well as the management of licenses.

According to Forrester’s Total Economic Impact of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, on average companies avoid $40,000 in costs compared with previous solutions as a result of migrating to Business Central. Those savings come in the form of license fee and infrastructure reductions, as well as personnel savings.

With Business Central in the cloud, the servers are owned by the contracted provider. You pay on a monthly or annual basis for the use of those servers and related equipment, and that includes maintenance and upgrades, as required. Public clouds like Microsoft Azure have some of the toughest levels of security, and backups are built in.

This releases your limited IT capacity to focus on more value-added activities for your organization. Most IT pros in a non-profit organization recognize that a true cloud-based solution like Business Central is more efficient and cost-effective.

No. 2: You need better support for remote and dispersed teams

Many organizations migrated to Business Central after COVID lockdowns were instituted in early 2020 and they realized their on-premises solution could not easily adapt to a remote workforce and volunteer network. Post-COVID, organizations recognize that remote access can continue to result in saved labor and greater efficiencies, keeping volunteers and team members out in the field. This also makes required reporting from afar more efficient and accurate.

No. 3: You’re paying a third party to generate reports or you’re manually piecing them together

Nonprofits have complex reporting requirements. If you’re producing reports piecemeal, manually putting together information from different areas of the organization, or if your existing analytics and reporting functionality isn’t fully supporting your needs, Business Central's updated Account Schedules now offer color layouts and header controls or Power BI could be a better solution.

The Forrester research found that companies are saving on average $44,000 in third-party reporting spend over three years as a result of migrating to Business Central. In the same report, one of the firms studied said the Dynamics GP solution was “so cumbersome to the organization’s accounting staff” that it paid a third-party firm to generate key reports multiple times a year. With Business Central, the company was able to leverage cloud-based Excel integration, as well as Power BI, to generate its own highly detailed reports. Business Central also broadened the data the company was able to bring in because it breaks down data silos between business functions.

No. 4: You’ve developed workarounds or employ manual processes that are hard to train others on

Tight budgets and limited headcount mean you need to be as productive as possible. Workarounds in GP add up in the form of time spent and increased errors. Software needs to provide greater integration and workflow management to boost productivity. That’s possible with Dynamics 365 Business Central-powered Tangicloud Fundamentals, which also includes industry-specific functionality for nonprofits. That removes the need for you to customize your software for common industry practices.

Forrester found that as a result of implementing Business Central, organizations were able to improve functionality, visibility and access for finance and operations staff, and allowed them to continue growing without needing to hire additional staff. The flow of operations also improved by an average of 8% because of the availability of better tools to execute daily responsibilities. Researchers also found that those organizations used their reclaimed productivity to make other iterative operational improvements.

Why Business Central is a better future-state option for nonprofits

Nonprofit organizations are under stiff scrutiny and pressure to deliver results under constrained budgets. Managing transactions across multiple funding sources can be difficult without the right business solutions to consolidate this information. Business Central-powered Tangicloud Fundamentals streamlines financials, accounting and operations for nonprofits.

Business Central offers a modern intuitive user experience, deployment flexibility, a simple migration and no compromise on functionality. Forrester’s analysis of five current Microsoft customers found that Dynamics 365 Business Central enabled organizations to bolster operational efficiency, avoid costs and comfortably scale their deployments with growth while benefitting from the flexibility in the cloud. Forrester’s analysis demonstrated an ROI of 162% and a payback of less than a year.

Tangicloud Fundamentals, powered by Business Central, is perfect for forward-focused nonprofit organizations that want to move to the Microsoft cloud. Out of the box, access:

  • Fund accounting
  • Advanced General Ledger functionality
  • Advanced purchase and payables
  • Commitment accounting
  • Encumbrance accounting
  • Advanced account schedules
  • ASU 2016-14, presentation of financial statement of not-for-profit entities
  • Multiple trial balance options

Fundamentals offers all of these features and more to meet the needs of your more complex nonprofit organization as well. And now through June 20th we’re offering all GP users a special Fundamentals package at a sale price.

Contact your partner to find out more today or drop us a note and we’ll respond to you as quickly as possible.

By Tangicloud Technologies - ISV for nonprofits and governments

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