Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Great Plains (GP) are both powerful business management software solutions offered by Microsoft, but they serve different purposes and have distinct characteristics. 

Now, these two share a lot of features, which can make it a bit tricky to figure out which one’s the best match for your crew.  

So, let’s break it down and see how they stack up in terms of what they can do, how easy they are to set up, and where they shine in different industries. 

So, let’s dive in! 

Table of Contents


1) What is Microsoft Dynamics GP (Great Plains)? 

Microsoft Dynamics GP, also known as Great Plains, is a robust enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution designed primarily for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).  

It offers comprehensive features for financial management, supply chain management, human resources, and more, all aimed at streamlining business operations.  

Unlike Microsoft Dynamics 365, which is a cloud-based suite incorporating various business applications, Dynamics GP is typically deployed on-premises or in a private cloud environment.  

While Dynamics GP provides powerful functionality and customization options, Dynamics 365 offers a more integrated and scalable solution with additional modules for CRM, marketing, and customer service, all accessible through the cloud. 

2) What is Microsoft Dynamics 365 in Comparison to GP? 

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is a cloud-based suite of business applications that integrates CRM and ERP functionalities to streamline various aspects of operations, including sales, marketing, finance, and customer service. 

In contrast, Microsoft GP, or Great Plains, is primarily an on-premises or private cloud ERP solution focused on financial management, supply chain operations, and human resources, offering deep customization options for small and medium-sized businesses.  

Dynamics 365 provides scalability, agility, and integration across functions, while GP offers robust functionality and customization for specific business needs. 

If you want to learn more about the migration process, its pricing, features, or other aspects, get in touch with us.


3) What Are the Main Features of Microsoft GP? 

  • Financial Management: Comprehensive tools for managing accounting processes, including general ledger, accounts payable and receivable, cash flow management, and financial reporting. 
  • Supply Chain Management: Inventory management capabilities to track stock levels, manage purchasing and vendor relationships, optimize order fulfilment, and streamline supply chain operations. 
  • Human Resources and Payroll: Functionality for managing employee data, payroll processing, benefits administration, and compliance with regulatory requirements. 
  • Business Intelligence and Reporting: Built-in reporting and analytics tools to generate insights from financial and operational data, enabling informed decision-making. 
  • Customization and Integration: Flexible customization options and integration with other Microsoft products and third-party applications to tailor the system to specific business needs and workflows. 

4) What Are the Main Features of Microsoft Dynamics 365? 

  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM): Tools for managing customer interactions, sales processes, marketing campaigns, and customer service inquiries to enhance customer relationships and drive revenue. 
  • Sales Automation: Automation of sales processes, lead management, opportunity tracking, and quote generation to increase sales efficiency and effectiveness. 
  • Integration and Customization: Seamless integration with other Microsoft products and third-party applications, as well as extensive customization options to tailor the system to specific business needs and workflows. 

5) What are the Key Benefits?

Microsoft Great Plains (GP) 

  • Marketing Automation: Campaign management, email marketing, lead scoring, and customer journey mapping tools to attract, engage, and nurture leads effectively. 
  • Field Service Management: Tools for managing field service operations, including scheduling, dispatching, resource allocation, and mobile workforce management, to improve service delivery and customer satisfaction. 
  • Finance and Operations: Comprehensive ERP functionality for financial management, supply chain management, manufacturing, human resources, and project management to streamline business processes and improve operational efficiency. 
  • Business Intelligence and Analytics: Built-in reporting, analytics, and AI capabilities to generate insights from data, identify trends, and make data-driven decisions across the organization. 
  • Stability and Reliability: Just like a well-built family sedan, GP is known for its stability. It has a long track record of being a reliable solution for businesses, ensuring your operations run smoothly. 
  • Customization to Fit Your Needs: GP offers a high degree of customization. It’s like having a car with numerous optional features – you can tailor it to suit your specific business requirements. This means you’re not locked into a one-size-fits-all approach. 
  • Comprehensive Financial Management: GP excels in financial management. It’s like having a seasoned financial advisor at your side, providing robust tools for managing accounting, budgeting, payroll, and more. 
  • Control Over Your Data: With GP, you have on-premises control over your data. It’s like having your own private garage where you can securely store and manage your business information. 
  • Proven Track Record: GP has a legacy feel, like a classic car, which translates to a well-established and trusted solution in the business world. You’re investing in a system with a history of success. 

Microsoft Dynamics 365: 

  • Scalability and Flexibility: Dynamics 365, like a high-performance sports car, is designed for agility. It’s cloud-based, allowing for easy scaling as your business grows. This means you can adapt to changing needs swiftly and efficiently. 
  • Integrated Suite of Apps: Dynamics 365 is like having a versatile vehicle with interchangeable parts. The suite of applications (Sales, Marketing, Customer Service, etc.) seamlessly work together, providing a unified platform for all your business functions. 
  • Real-Time Insights for Informed Decisions: It’s like having a state-of-the-art dashboard in a sports car. Dynamics 365 leverages data and AI to give you real-time insights. This empowers you to make data-driven decisions on the fly, ensuring you’re always in the driver’s seat. 
  • Always Up-to-Date Technology: With Dynamics 365, you’re driving the latest model. Microsoft provides continuous updates and improvements, keeping you at the forefront of technology. You’ll always have access to the newest features and capabilities. 
  • Anywhere, Anytime Access: Like a sports car that can go anywhere, Dynamics 365 is cloud-based, giving you the freedom to access your business data and applications from anywhere in the world. This enables a modern, mobile way of doing business. 

How Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central ERP Adds Value to Your Business?


6) What Are the Key Differences? 

Microsoft Great Plains (GP): 

Microsoft Great Plains, often referred to as Microsoft Dynamics GP, is like a reliable, traditional family sedan.  

It’s been around for a while, known for its stability and versatility.  

Think of it as the tried-and-true workhorse of business software. 

  • On-Premises Focus: GP is primarily an on-premises solution, which means you have more control over your data and software, but it requires you to manage your own servers and infrastructure. 
  • Functionality: GP provides comprehensive financial and operational management tools. It’s especially robust when it comes to managing finances, accounting, and inventory. 
  • Customization: It offers a high degree of customization, allowing you to tailor the software to your specific business needs. It’s like having a car with countless optional features. 
  • Legacy Feel: While it’s dependable and flexible, it might feel a bit old-school in comparison to cloud-based solutions. It’s like driving a classic car – timeless, but not the most technologically advanced. 

Microsoft Dynamics 365: 

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is like a sleek, high-performance sports car. 

It’s designed for businesses that want agility, scalability, and advanced capabilities. 

It’s all about embracing the latest technology trends. 

  • Cloud-Centric: Dynamics 365 is cloud-based, offering scalability, flexibility, and easy access from anywhere. It’s like having a sports car that can go from 0 to 60 mph in no time. 
  • Suite of Apps: Dynamics 365 consists of various applications (Sales, Marketing, Customer Service, Finance, etc.) that seamlessly integrate with one another. It’s like having a sports car that can transform into a luxury sedan or an off-road vehicle when needed. 
  • Real-Time Insights: It leverages data and AI to provide real-time insights, helping you make data-driven decisions. It’s like having a sports car with a futuristic dashboard that gives you instant performance metrics. 
  • Continuous Updates: Microsoft constantly updates and improves Dynamics 365, ensuring you’re always at the forefront of technology. It’s like getting regular upgrades to your car, keeping it cutting-edge.

7) What is Better Microsoft Great Plains or Dynamics 365? 

Microsoft is gradually retiring older versions of Microsoft GP that were built before 2016, as they fall under the Fixed Lifecycle Policy.  

However, GP 2016 and newer versions fall under the Modern Lifecycle Policy and will continue to receive security updates, bug fixes, and servicing.  

Determining whether Dynamics 365 is better than Microsoft Great Plains depends on the specific needs and preferences of your organization.  

Dynamics 365 offers the advantages of cloud-based accessibility, scalability, and integration across various business functions like CRM and marketing. 

On the other hand, Microsoft Great Plains provides robust on-premises or private cloud ERP functionality with deep customization options, which may be preferred by some businesses with specific requirements or regulatory constraints.  

Ultimately, the choice between the two depends on factors such as deployment preference, feature requirements, and long-term business goals. 

If you want to learn more about the migration process, its pricing, features, or other aspects, get in touch with us.


8) Is Great Plains Part of Microsoft Dynamics? 

Yes, Great Plains is part of Microsoft Dynamics.  

In 2001, Microsoft acquired Great Plains Software and rebranded its products as Microsoft Dynamics GP.  

Microsoft Dynamics GP is a comprehensive enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution for small and medium-sized businesses.  

It provides a wide range of features, including financial management, human resources, manufacturing, supply chain management, and customer relationship management (CRM). 


9) What is Microsoft Replacing Great Plains with? 

Microsoft is not replacing Great Plains directly.  

However, it is promoting Dynamics 365 Business Central as its preferred ERP solution for small and medium-sized businesses.  

Business Central is a cloud-based ERP solution that offers many of the same features as Great Plains, but with a more modern user interface and a focus on cloud scalability. 


10) Is Great Plains the Same as Microsoft Dynamics GP? 

Yes, Great Plains is the same as Microsoft Dynamics GP. The two names are used interchangeably. 

Learn more about what is the best match for your business now! 

If you want to learn more about the migration process, its pricing, features, or other aspects, get in touch with us.