A Complete Guide to Migrate from Microsoft Dynamics NAV to Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics NAV has been a lifesaver for small and medium-sized businesses, providing a simple yet powerful ERP solution. It enabled businesses to create a centralized operations hub across various departments, including manufacturing, supply chain, sales, and finance.

Collating all the business information into one place allowed enterprises to generate insights and analytics for better productivity and profitability. However, with emerging technologies like cloud computing making inroads into mainstream industries, Nav's solution has become obsolete.

Organizations are keen to migrate NAV to Business Central to maximize the advantages that the robust ERP solution has to offer. Business Central comes with a lot of modern and advanced capabilities, which is attracting quite a few companies to shift to it.

Let’s quickly understand the differences between NAV and Business Central to learn if you should opt for a NAV upgrade.

Why Migrate from Dynamics NAV to Business Central?

Quick Comparison of Dynamics NAV and Microsoft Business Central Features for Migration Decision:

AspectDynamics NAVBusiness Central
User InterfaceClunky UI with a learning curveSimpler UI for easy accessibility
DeploymentOn-prem solution, limited to designated devicesCloud deployment for access anywhere, any device
ScalabilityLimited adaptability to market needsGreater scalability to adapt to changing business ops
IntegrationsSupports only standard integrationsSeamless integrations with AI/ML capabilities
InfrastructureRequires specific operating systems, hardware solutionsBrowser-based platform, reducing operational costs
  • Migration of NAV to Dynamics 365 offers a range of benefits, including:
    • Reduced IT costs
    • Tighter data security
    • Accelerated innovation

Additional Insight:

Both Business Central and NAV are centralized data hubs. However, Dynamics 365 Business Central provides insights across all devices from a single screen.

With Microsoft offering a SaaS model for D365 Business Central, it has become appealing for emerging businesses to save IT costs with advanced functionalities. If you have decided to migrate Navision to Business Central and are worried about the complexity of doing so, here’s a list of simple steps.

Steps to Migrate NAV to Business Central

Follow the easy 9-step process to successfully migrate Dynamics NAV to the Dynamics 365 suite and unlock access to several advanced features.

1. Assess and Plan your Existing NAV Migration

As the very first step, you need to understand your existing ERP usage, limitations, and benefits with Dynamics NAV. You can compare these to the capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics Business Central to get a fair idea of the new platform's scope. It will help you design a strategy to maximize the upgraded ERP version.

2. Identify the Data to Migrate

Get a detailed overview of the existing data in your Dynamics NAV environment like master data, transactional data, and historical records. It will help you prioritize the data that needs to be migrated to Business Central.

3. Ensure the Hygiene of your Data

Once you get an outlay of the data available in the existing ERP system, you need to run a hygiene check through it all. This step is necessary to ensure that no duplicates or errors scrawl into the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central environment. It gives you confidence that the data on the platform is accurate and complete.

4. Have a Full Data Backup during Migration

Even before you begin migration, it is critical that you backup all of your data in your Dynamics NAV database. Securing your business data will soften the damage that may arise from any unexpected disruptions when you migrate NAV to Business Central.

5. Uninstall Unnecessary Extensions or Plugins

Ensure you remove all the unnecessary plugins, as it may complicate your migration process. It is because these plugins may not be compatible with Business Central. You can enhance your experience with Microsoft Dynamics Business Central by eliminating the redundant burden of adding to simple management.

6. Compile NAV Objects

When migrating from Dynamics NAV to Business Central, you must compile NAV objects to ensure their integrity. Compiling the objects allows you to identify and fix underlying errors and mistakes that may crop up during migration.

7. Upgrade your NAV Solution

If you are using an older version of NAV, it may not be compatible with migrating data to Business Central. You will have to upgrade to a more recent Dynamics NAV version for a smooth migration.

8. Test the Migration

To ensure the success of migration, conduct thorough testing of data and functionality once you migrate Dynamics NAV to Business Central.

9. Conduct Training Sessions for Users

The move from one ERP system to another will always lead to confusion and frustration. Having been used to NAV, your team may find it challenging to adapt to Microsoft Business Central initially. To ease the transition, you must provide proper training sessions on capabilities that are available to them, along with timely support.

These 9 simple steps will help you migrate Dynamics Navision to Dynamics 365 without hiccups or bottlenecks. The latest ERP platform will enhance your efficiency once your team gets comfortable with the new features and processes.

Make Migration Seamless with Dynamics Square

The journey to migrate Dynamics NAV to Business Central is simple but can soon turn into a nightmare if not properly executed. You will have to overcome challenges like compiling issues and data duplication, which could become more complicated. Enterprises must ensure that the migration process stays on track despite these roadblocks.

The ideal way to approach migration is to collaborate with a leading Microsoft Solutions Partner like Dynamics Square. With nearly two decades of experience and 150+ Microsoft Certified Professionals, the US-based service provider has catered to the migration requirements of 100s small and medium-sized businesses.

We also provide personalized training sessions to enable your team to utilize new features and processes for improved efficiency.

Our team has wide expertise in the Microsoft Dynamics 365 suite and experience in implementing tailored strategies based on unique business needs. Let Dynamics Square experts help you through your migration process. Contact us today.

Arish Siddiqui

Arish Siddiqui working with Dynamics Square and helps SMB/Enterprises in USA & Canada to use Dynamics 365 ERP/CRM, Power Platform and other Solutions with full of its capabilities which ultimately cut businesses costs and improve efficiency.


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