Microsoft Dynamics AX has been an efficient ERP solution that helped businesses optimize and automate their processes. The new challenges and needs of businesses require the next version of this solution to be both robust and agile.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is a solution that is built for the cloud, making it a “true cloud” solution, as opposed to other solutions that were built for an on-premise environment and then adapted to the cloud hosting. The journey to the cloud has been through multiple versions of Dynamics AX, with each new version taking into account feedback from businesses around the world.


Lifecycle of Dynamics AX

Dynamics AX was originally called IBM Axapta, a collaboration effort between IBM and the ERP company Danish Damgaard Data, in 1998. Axapta was used to streamline accounting process and bring data together from different areas of the business like finance, logistics, sales, inventory, and manufacturing. It was mainly built for an on-premise environment and ran on Windows NT servers, SQL servers, and Oracle databases.

In the year 2000, Damgaard Data merged with Navision and the newly merged company made further improvements to Axapta. Microsoft acquired the merged company in 2002 and added even more functionality and launched the solution in new markets around the globe.

Over the years, the AX solution has seen many versions like the 4.0, 2009, and 2012. Microsoft Dynamics 2012 was released in 25 countries and in 23 languages. After this release, Microsoft realized that the future was in the cloud and focused its energies in that direction.

The result of the cloud-first strategy was the announcement of Microsoft Dynamics 365 at the AXUG summit in 2016. This new solution would not just be the next version of Dynamics AX, but a new approach to ERP and CRM that would help businesses become future-ready.


Dynamics AX vs. Dynamics 365: What’s the difference?

Fundamental approach: When AX was initially developed it was built for the on-premise environment. The software infrastructure is suited for on-premise systems and processes. However, over time it was adapted to function in the cloud. Microsoft Dynamics 365 however was designed with the cloud-first approach. All the new applications that are being built are also native-cloud applications.

Ease of access: Perhaps the biggest benefit of using Microsoft Dynamics 365 is the web-based login access. This feature allows you and your team to work from anywhere and on any device. It gives to secure access to all your data to help you stay connected and updated about what’s happening in your business.

Improved business intelligence with AI: The function of ERP systems has evolved from just providing access to data to generating reliable business intelligence that can aid in decision making. The AI-powered business intelligence in Dynamics 365 helps you stay ahead of the competition.

Integrations evolution: The advantage of a cloud-based solution is that it is easier and faster to integrate with a range of applications and third-party solutions. This empowers your teams to leverage different functionality and set the business up for accelerated growth.

Change in customization: Customization is something that many businesses examine carefully. While adding new customizations for a new functionality solves a problem, this practice over the years has led to a network of complex additions and changes that has the potential to risk the whole system.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 has taken away the challenge of customization. In this new cloud-based solution, you will not be able to alter the core system with new customization. Instead, new customization is added as an extension that won’t risk the system in the future no matter how many extensions you add.

Improved user experience: The user experience is a lot more intuitive in Dynamics 365. It is easier to access your data that is unified from different sources and business entities. The system also allows you to personalize your home screen; this way, you can view the data that is critical to your role right there on the home screen.

Updates in the cloud: With Microsoft Dynamics 365, updates are faster and have limited impact on your day-to-day operations because they happen on the cloud AND you can choose the day and time of when that happens. You will have access to all the latest features without having to go through the lengthy upgrade process that is typical for an on-premise system.
Want to know more about the difference between Dynamics AX and Dynamics 365, and why you should upgrade? Click here to find out now.

Upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics 365 with has been helping businesses with their ERP needs for over 31 years. We have a presence in 25 countries and implementation experience in 80+ countries.

When you discuss upgrading to Dynamics 365, we’ll help you by:

  • Analyzing your existing infrastructure and business needs
  • Charting the path for the upgrade
  • Advising you on Microsoft licensing and offering cost reduction strategies
  • Sharing the upgrade plan and estimating the cost and timelines

Our consultants have an average experience of 14 years and are ready to answer any question you have. You can discuss your needs by scheduling a virtual workshop for your team.