How long does it take to implement Dynamics 365 Business Central?

How long does it take to implement Dynamics 365 Business Central?

Business Central is an integrated ERP solution designed to incorporate your business’s entire operations under one umbrella. This approach means you have one central data source driving your decisions. It is crucial to know how the many components of Business Central integrate and influence each other.

Implementing Dynamics 365 Business Central in a structured way can mean that you could get it running in weeks instead of months, or in some cases – years. While you can do it yourself with the help of the countless videos available on YouTube, it will take you vastly longer, and we don’t recommend it.

What could go wrong in an implementation?

Implementing Business Central yourself can lead to costly omissions and, worse – mistakes that can cost you money later. Most individuals do not fully understand the inner intricacies of working in a department or function that they are unfamiliar with, so what may seem to be a trivial change could be detrimental to the end-user. An example would be the “Tab Order” of a field. Creating a Purchase Order or Invoice can require entering information in a specific order to avoid unnecessary scrolling or tabbing between several data sources multiple times. If you get it wrong, then you’ve added maybe 30 seconds to their workload.

Alternatively, you may find that user adoption tanks and those spreadsheets that soloed data in a place that you had to ask someone to check every time you wanted to know something reappear.

We’ve seen this all before, and we’ll write an article to let you know the top 5 things to look out for when implementing an ERP system later.

Getting implemented right

When most people begin implementing any complex solution, you usually start with the basics and gradually add detail to the process, only to find it’s much too complicated, so you need to scale back. With the hundreds of implementations of Business Central we’ve done over the years, we’re able to simplify the process to deliver 90% of the functionality you need to get going faster.

We’ll perform a scoping exercise to understand your existing business processes and nudge you in one of two directions:

  • Build & Go: From Day 1, we build the system to your requirements. This approach works well for businesses that have never used an ERP before or have standard processes in place.
  • Design & Go: We start by collaboratively documenting an end-to-end solution to your business requirements. This document becomes the blueprint for the system, and we take it from there. The “Design & Go” approach works great for businesses with bespoke legacy systems in place or unique processes due to their industry or other factors.

Don’t worry if you’re unsure which approach works best for you. We can help just in touch and speak to one of our team.

How long will it realistically take to implement Business Central?

Well, this depends on the approach taken and your requirements. We could have you up and running in a couple of weeks, and you’ll be using the out-of-the-box functionality set up how you need it.

Every business is unique, so we like to understand your requirements before saying how long it will take. Realistically, 2-4 months is an adequate timeframe for smaller businesses and 4-10 months for medium-sized companies with added functionality (warehousing/manufacturing, etc.).

Once Business Central is “live”, are we done?

Well, no.

We implement Business Central to make your operations more efficient than your existing ERP system. A business must justify a cost to deliver results above the current baseline.

Let’s assume your business’ turnover is £50 a day. If the price of implementing a solution is £100, you want the investment of the solution to add at least £100 to your existing baseline of £50 and then a “profit” to make the entire endeavour worthwhile. We will dive into the return for such an investment with some use-case examples in a different article. In a nutshell, a correct deployment can save you time, money, materials and deliver a better customer experience. There is a lot to gain here – if you do it right.

Our team have encountered many businesses who spent thousands of £s on bespoke systems or even implementations of Business Central by other Partners to find they are less productive than where they were before implementing a new or upgraded ERP solution.

That said – assuming a Tecvia-delivered implementation – as your business grows, you may wish to explore new functionality or improve existing processes. So it’s best to have a partner on hand to help out with this.

We can regularly run health checks on your system to maximise the return on investment by utilising the latest features or optimising existing processes.

And the cost?

We’d love to give you exact pricing, but that’s not possible. Some Partners have “packaged” solutions, though they aren’t great and often lead to low user adoption. Consultants are often too restricted to stay within a predefined and usually low budget.

Our recommendation is to get in touch with our team, and we’ll give a price after better understanding what you and your business need.

What’s next?

If you want to learn more about Business Central, you can discover more by visiting this page.

Alternatively, for a personalised demonstration to show how effective Business Central could be to help you scale, get in touch.

Picture of Author: Vaseem Ali

Author: Vaseem Ali

Vaseem ("Vas") is the Founder & CEO of Tecvia Ltd. He began his career as a Business Central Consultant over seven years ago.

Since, he's implemented hundreds of solutions across businesses throughout the UK, including many recognised household brands - even featuring in a video case study produced by Microsoft.

To connect with Vas, find him on LinkedIn.

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