AI Powered Business Process Automation: Streamlining Operations for Success

In today’s fast-paced and competitive business landscape, staying ahead of the curve requires not only innovation but also optimization of processes. Enter Artificial Intelligence (AI), a transformative technology that has paved the way for businesses to streamline their operations and enhance productivity through Business Process Automation (BPA). By seamlessly integrating AI into various workflows, organizations can achieve unprecedented levels of efficiency, accuracy, and cost-effectiveness.

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Why Do I Need a Business Intelligence Solution?

Why Do I Need a Business Intelligence Solution?

With the amount of data stored by companies growing exponentially, business intelligence (BI) grows ever more important as organizations need to translate that data to meaningful insights that will support future growth and strategies.

As BI technology has advanced, deployment, licensing, and support options have made it more accessible for organizations of all sizes. Virtually every business can benefit from BI. Specific issues or scenarios that are good indicators a BI discussion should take place include:

  • The need to integrate data from multiple business applications or data sources
  • Lack of visibility into the company’s operations, finances, and other areas
  • The need to access relevant business data quickly and efficiently
  • Increasing volume of users requiring and accessing information and more end-users requiring analytical capabilities
  • Rapid company growth or a recent or pending merger/acquisition
  • Introduction of new products
  • Upgrades within the IT environment

There are several benefits a BI solution offers to an organization regardless of size:


Share information efficiently and effectively across your organization

BI makes it easy for everyone – from decision-makers to functional teams – to access and analyze up-to-date information anytime, anywhere.  Everyone throughout the company can make better decisions, faster.


Empower your people

Providing employees with access to analytical data that is readily available and understandable allows them to work more effectively and support the overall business strategy.


Simplify collaboration and improve alignment with a single source for accurate financial and operational information

Having a single, central location allows you to monitor your key performance indicators (KPIs), access reports, analyze your data, and share documents. Functional areas can align to articulate strategies, set objectives, and monitor the organization’s performance so you can make better informed and timely strategic decisions.


Deliver meaningful analysis and reporting

Readily track and analyze KPIs against key business goals to gain a better understanding of how your business is performing today and not when it’s too late to impact performance.


Have a solution with the scalability and flexibility to grow and change as your organization does

Most companies still have their valuable data stored in services or massive Excel spreadsheets. While Excel has many useful features it doesn’t scale to your business, but it doesn’t scale to your business and compiling data from multiple, disparate databases is time-consuming and is prone to errors.

With Microsoft’s Power BI – a cloud-based, self-service business intelligence solution – you have a tool that can scale and grow with your business. It allows you to consolidate and analyze data from different sources, combining them into reports and dashboards to illuminate what’s happening in your business.

If you’re familiar with Excel, then the BI learning curve is a snap. Contact us to learn more about Power BI and how it can unlock silos in your business and bring your data together to deliver meaningful insights and drive impactful business decisions.

Benefits of Migrating to Dynamics 365 in the Cloud from On-Premises

Benefits of Migrating to Dynamics 365 in the Cloud from On-Premises

The cloud hardly feels disruptive in an era dominated by AI and big data.

After all, migrating from on-premises hosting to the cloud has been an urgent matter for years—a critical first step in any digital transformation journey.

The pandemic has further solidified the cloud’s place in the IT stack. We’ve seen organizations scramble to meet the needs of newly remote employees, as well as customers looking for better digital products and experiences to cope with the same challenges.

We’re seeing more organizations move on-premises applications into the cloud—in part, due to incentives from legacy software companies like Microsoft to migrate to new, cloud-based versions of old business tools.

In these next few sections, we’ll explain what Microsoft users stand to gain in migrating their Dynamics 365 On-Premises to the cloud.

Why Migrate D365 from On-Premises?

For starters, the cloud is essential for business growth—and survival.

According to IDC’s The Impact of Digital Transformation During Times of Change report, digital transformation initiatives like integrating customer touchpoints, operationalizing data, and gaining a 360-degree view of the customer became top priorities due to the pandemic. All priorities in that report (check out fig. 4) fall apart without the cloud.

An Algorithmia survey also found that 83% of respondents are increasing spending on AI significantly, with 76% reporting that AI/ML is a bigger priority than all other IT initiatives post-pandemic.

The findings also point toward a sense of regret among participants. 43% said AI/ML initiatives matter far more than they initially thought, while nearly a quarter said AI/ML should have been a priority much sooner.

The point is, organizations need cloud services to leverage technologies like AI/ML, IoT, and advanced analytics that help them compete. It’s hard to move fast and make good business decisions when your data lives in different systems—and brands are starting to face the consequences of avoiding the cloud.

 Key Benefits of a Microsoft Dynamics 365 On-Premises to Cloud Migration

Much of what your Dynamics 365 on-premises to online migration is about is remaining competitive and building a more “agile” business. But—if you’re looking to get more specific, here’s a look at some of the biggest benefits of moving to the cloud:

Bring All Data in to One Central Location

Migrating to Dynamics in the cloud provides complete visibility into your business—no matter how many locations are in the mix or whether your teams are working remotely.

With reporting tools that feature Power BI, predictive analytics, and artificial intelligence, organizations get an agility boost—enabling faster, data-driven decision-making.

You’ll have a high-level view of your entire company, your customers, and the competitive and economic forces influencing customer behavior, needs, and expectations.

You can also unlock new business models and improve forecasting efforts. Or optimize project management and inventory planning for cost-savings. The list goes on.

The point is, when you’re working with on-prem solutions, teams can easily end up working with static reports loaded with old, incomplete, or inaccurate data. Which, in turn, undermines the entire business strategy.

It’s also worth noting that, even in cases where teams do have great data in their on-premises systems, they often have trouble accessing and acting on insights fast enough to keep up with competitors. This, of course, becomes a bigger issue when workers are spread across multiple locations or are working remotely.

Cost Savings

Implemented correctly, Dynamics 365 online stands to slash operating costs associated with labor, equipment, warehouse space, admin, deployment, and so on. Instead, it’s on Microsoft to handle updates, security, and routine maintenance.

According to a Forrester Total Economic Impact report organizations that made the move to the cloud were able to:

  • Reduce the TCO by an average of 10.25%
  • Slash deployment costs by 30-50%, on average, compared to on-premises customers
  • Save ~40% on administrative expenses like server backups, storage use, restorations, and software updates
  • Additional savings on disaster recovery costs, hardware, and storage management

Better Security

Microsoft Dynamics 365 offers more robust security than on-prem ERP solutions. The cloud is now much more secure than analog solutions and most on-prem options. Sure, you’ll still find plenty of “hard copy holdouts.” But things have changed since the early days of the cloud.

Part of the reason is that legacy giants like Microsoft, IBM, and Amazon got into the cloud game and built solutions for businesses operating in healthcare, financial services, and the public sector.

Cloud solutions like Microsoft Dynamics make it easier to control where your data is stored, who has access, and what resources your business is using at any given moment.

Migration can reduce the risk of ransomware attacks and data breaches and provide greater data security. Users also benefit from more control over who has access to the system and how sensitive information is processed and stored.

This is critical in a moment where we’re seeing more high-profile hacks targeting private organizations.

We’ve reached a point where it’s become a significant risk for companies to manage cybersecurity on their own–the costs of getting it wrong can be devastating. All it takes is one exposed endpoint or missed update and hackers can get into your system and wreak havoc.

According to the NTT Global Threat Intelligence report, traditional (read: legacy) approaches are inadequate against modern threats. Organizations need to reimagine their cybersecurity strategies and become more proactive and adaptive, rather than reacting to new regulatory requirements and threats. Unfortunately, this isn’t possible without the cloud.

Optimize IT Resources

Existing database administration resources can be reallocated to other areas within your organization–where they’ll be better positioned to focus on new priorities that drive business value.

According to Gartner, CIOs should reevaluate their current use cases to better optimize tech investments and focus on identifying new opportunities to invest in the innovative solutions that will carry them into the future.

Another report from McKinsey provides some suggestions—including identifying new business models unlocked by cloud technologies, looking for ways to improve the customer experience, and reinvesting cost savings into new revenue streams.

For businesses looking to reallocate existing IT resources, it’s important to look beyond available resources and identify opportunities where D365 can save you time—time better spent understanding customers and developing innovative solutions that align with their needs.

Anywhere Access

Arguably the most tangible benefit of migrating to the cloud is the ability to access data/business tools from any device or location/move seamlessly between laptops, tablets, smartphones, and desktops without losing critical data/hours of work.

The cloud is a must-have in the age of remote work, distributed teams, and global partnerships. It’s also important to recognize that even if your organization is a strictly in-person operation, on-prem hosting still won’t cut it.

If you have multiple locations–even multiple buildings on the same campus, external partners, or sales & field service reps that visit clients in-person, cloud-based business tools are essential. They enable collaboration and ensure that every person on your team is working with the same information.

Final Thoughts

Look, some people are motivated by the possibility of a brighter, more profitable future, others act out of fear—it’s a mindset thing.

If the benefits outlined above don’t convince you that it’s time to finally embrace the cloud, maybe the risk of inaction will change your mind. On-prem solutions open the door to security risks, create barriers to insights and collaboration, and waste time with manual, error-prone processes.

The point is you can’t avoid cloud migration forever. Reach out to our experts to begin mapping your journey to Microsoft Dynamics 365.

Dynamics 365 Business Central 2022 Wave 2 Release Highlights

In the 2022 Wave 2 release, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central will now make it possible for you to manage operations in more than 100 countries and regions, which has been achieved through partner-led localization. If you’re not already using the solution, you will find it’s simpler to onboard your users with easier access to the right apps to get them started.

And for those already using Business Central, Microsoft is improving the tool tips and the usability by making it easier to navigate menus.

Here’s a quick rundown of new features and improvements:

Enhanced Software Development

Microsoft has moved Business Central entirely to Visual Studio, which will lower the cost of any developers you work with by increasing their productivity. Microsoft is also adding visual abstractions on top of the Visual Studio code. This will enable more efficient management of code objects across projects and workspaces and more efficient responses to requests from productivity partners. Microsoft is also building new constructs for writing more performant code as well as defining a more flexible and more consistent action pane structure in client device software.

Easier Power Platform Integrations

Microsoft continues to improve the way Business Central integrates with the Power Platform: Power BI, Power Automate, Power Apps, Logic Apps, Power Virtual Agents, and Dataverse. This bridges Business Central with a modern toolset that empowers both your technical and your “citizen” developers to easily connect Business Central to other systems. As an example, to increase automation, the Power Automate feature lets users set up workflows in Business Central to streamline specific business processes.

Streamlined Financial Processes

Business Central continues to improve bank reconciliation—including an enhanced test report and the addition of a statement report with two sections for outstanding reconciliations. You can also automate the process to check ledger entries, and you can reverse entries from posted payment reconciliation journals if you need to recover the books from mistakes. If you use check payments, you can now set up multiple remit addresses for vendors. And to make financial reporting more transparent, Microsoft is renaming account schedules to financial reporting and creating a better overview of available reports.

More Flexible Reporting

When your users run reports in Business Central with an Excel layout, they can now choose the layout in the report’s request page. For example, if a report has several layouts, users can choose the one they want when they run the report. There’s also an API for the finance area that can be consumed in both Excel and Power BI. This lets users create more detailed analysis of data from the general ledger and budgets.

New Governance and Administration Capabilities

Business Central will provide a new set of admin and governance capabilities to help you set up, secure, manage, govern, and monitor your environment. It will also be easier to keep up with service notifications and to automate operational management across multiple business entities. You can also more easily recover any environments that were recently deleted to keep your data safe.

Benefits for Users and Administrators

Whether your Business Central users connect from a desktop app, browser, or mobile device, they will see improved accessibility, performance, and stability in the fall release. And your system administrators will appreciate the improved communication about the health of your Business Central IT environment.

From an e-Commerce standpoint, improved Shopify integrations with finance and supply chain workflows will enable you to more efficiently fulfill customer orders. Microsoft has also improved the efficiency of collaborative business processes in Teams so Business Central users can pin cards inside Teams and the Excel add-in.

To learn more about the 2022 Wave 2 Release, check out Microsoft’s overview of Dynamics 365 Business Central in 2022 Release Wave 2.

Not on Business Central yet?

If you’re currently on a legacy on-prem ERP, have outgrown your accounting software, or are looking to consolidate your systems, Dynamics 365 Business Central is the leading business management solution for SMBs and provides a single unified solution to connect your systems and enhance financial visibility, forecast accuracy, and security. Let us show you how we can quickly move you to Business Central in less than a month for a fixed price.

Reach out for a migration assessment or to learn about our Dynamics 365 services and offerings.

Comparing QuickBooks vs. Dynamics 365 Business Central

If you’re looking for a solution to manage day-to-day financial transactions and accounting for your organization, you’ve probably come across solutions like QuickBooks and Dynamics 365 Business Central.

Both are well-known business management solutions. However, the similarities end there, in this post we’ll examine the strengths and weaknesses of both solutions and how they compare.

QuickBooks at a Glance

The most universal accounting software available in the market, QuickBooks helps small and medium-sized businesses execute basic accounting and financial management tasks like generating invoices, tracking expenses, managing payroll, and receiving payments.

Even without an accounting background, QuickBooks ease of use and different plans to fit different budgets and requirements with increased functionality available while moving up the chain is part of why it is one of the most popular accounting software on the market.

Dynamics 365 Business Central at a Glance

Microsoft’s cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution for small to midsized businesses to automate and streamline business processes, Dynamics 365 Business Central (D365 BC) is designed to adapt to ag rowing company and give organizations the flexibility to customize the application to fit their current business needs.

Much more than just accounting and financial management, Business Central allows organizations to connect sales, services, finance, and operations and manage their entire business from one platform.

Dynamics 365 BC provides companies with comprehensive tools and workflows to:

  • Connect functions across the enterprise
  • Integrate operations
  • Automate supply chains
  • Improve customer interactions
  • Make data-driven decisions to accelerate growth and revenue

QuickBooks vs. Dynamics 365 Business Central


While QuickBooks is solely for accounting, Dynamics 365 BC offers a lot more features and capabilities as it is a full-scale ERP solution. Beyond finance and accounting, there’s modules for managing inventory, projects, customer relationships, HR, and more.


QuickBooks is excellent for smaller businesses but once a company grows – new products/services, more employees, additional companies, etc. – it is unable to handle the complexities of additional business processes.

On the other hand, Dynamics 365 BC can grow with your business to handle business processes such as inventory management, project management, reporting, and forecasting. It’s easily scalable and can be customized to serve any unique business or industry requirements.

Automation & Integration

Compared to Dynamics 365 Business Central, QuickBooks lacks capabilities and connectivity. Being limited to accounting functionality, businesses rely on third-party add-on which increases the cost of the overall solution, requires additional maintenance and training, and further complicates business processes.

With Advanced Integration with other Dynamics 365 or Microsoft/Office 365 solutions, Business Central connects workflows across accounting, sales, purchasing, inventory, and distribution; users can automate the business operations for a streamlined process.

D365 BC also supports third-party integrations through AppSource but those applications – as with all apps in the Microsoft universe – are built on a common data model so businesses are not dealing with compatibility issues, complex configurations, or middleware when non-standard features are needed.

Security & Audit Controls

QuickBooks easy setup also means fewer accounting and audit controls. As more users require access to the system, weak user permissions can limit some users or provide too much access to others. QuickBooks also fails to keep a consistent audit trail of changes to master records or user logins. And with some activities being done outside the system in spreadsheets or other avenues, this can be a huge issue for regulatory compliance.

With Dynamics 365 Business Central, businesses have more granular options to limit functions by permission, groups, dimensions, or accounts. For additional security, organizations can also enable built-in workflows. BC also offers a robust audit trail that tracks changes made to data with a historical log of activities, providing protection against errors and employee mismanagement.

Reporting & Analytics

QuickBooks provides basic reporting and generic insights but requires third-party add-ons to extend its reporting capabilities. With the ability to consolidate date from multiples sources, Dynamics 365 BC with

embedded Power BI has the flexibility and customizability for advanced reporting with dashboards and real-time data visualizations.

Final Thoughts

The main differentiator here is the comprehensive nature of Business Central. QuickBooks is an obvious choice for businesses that are just getting off the ground with only simple accounting requirements, but it may not come as a surprise that many businesses that started with QuickBooks eventually migrate to Dynamics 365 Business Central to scale and manage their business operations within a single platform.

If you’re ready to integrate your financials with the rest of your business and streamlines processes, reach out to our team to learn more about our QuickBooks to Business Central migration process and services.

Tell-tale Signs you’re Outgrowing QuickBooks

A popular entry-level accounting solution, QuickBooks is great for businesses that are just starting out and have basic financial management requirements; however, organizations may begin to experience some growing pains as their business continues to increase in size.

Fast-growing companies require a holistic solution with deeper functionality, more sophisticated reporting, and capabilities to streamline complex business processes.

Here are 5 tell-tale signs that you have outgrown your QuickBooks solution:

  1. Disparate Tools & Data: Are you adding on third-party application to extend functionality – such as inventory management – only to encounter integration and configuration issues which disconnects your data across different systems?
  2. Manual Processes & Spreadsheets: Are you spending countless hours consolidating, importing, and exporting data between systems and correcting data entry errors instead of value-add analysis and activities to grow the business?
  3. Security Concerns: Worried about protecting vital data stored in spreadsheets? Do you need to meet regulation and compliance standards and are lacking reporting and audit controls?
  4. Multiple Entities: Do you find yourself needing centralized data between business units, subsidiaries, divisions, or brands?
  5. Lack of Real-Time Information: With more customers, products, revenue, and sales channels, are you frustrated at being unable to make informed, data-driven decisions?

If any of these challenges sound familiar, the good news is outgrowing QuickBooks is a sign of success for your business and you’re ready for the next step in your growth journey.

Oftentimes companies that have outgrown their QuickBooks solution make the transition to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central – a comprehensive cloud-based ERP solution which offers:

  • Functionality across financial, supply chain, human resource, customer relationship, and project management
  • Advanced Reporting and analytics based on data consolidated from across the enterprise
  • Superior Security and Audit Trails with control over user access to information and functions and historical log that tracks changes made to data
  • Integration with other Dynamics or Microsoft 365 applications or easy third-party integrations via AppSource

Not sure if Microsoft Dynamics 365 BC is the right ERP for your business? Contact us today to schedule a call so we can explore your business’s ERP requirements.