Upgrading Dynamics CRM On Premise to Dynamics 365: A Comprehensive Guide
Microsoft’s Dynamics Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a popular choice for businesses looking to streamline their sales, marketing and customer service activities. As an on-premise solution, it has been widely adopted across industries. However, with the launch of Dynamics 365, companies now have the option to move to a cloud-based platform for enhanced flexibility and functionality. This blog post will provide a comprehensive guide on upgrading from Dynamics CRM on-premise to Dynamics 365.
There are several reasons why businesses should consider upgrading to Dynamics 365:
1. Access to Additional Features: Dynamics 365 offers more features than previous versions of Dynamics CRM. For instance, it includes Azure-based services like Power BI and Cortana Intelligence, which enable businesses to leverage data analytics and machine learning capabilities in their operations.
2. Improved Scalability: Dynamics 365 can handle a larger volume of data and users compared to on-premise solutions, making it ideal for businesses experiencing growth.
3. Enhanced Mobility: With Dynamics 365, employees can access the platform from any device, anywhere, anytime, enabling them to work remotely and stay connected to their customers.
4. Cost Savings: In the long run, moving to the cloud can result in significant cost savings for businesses. They no longer need to invest in hardware and infrastructure maintenance, and can benefit from automatic software updates.
Preparing for the Upgrade
Before embarking on the upgrade process, it is important to prep the existing Dynamics CRM on-premise environment. Here are some key considerations:
1. Check Compatibility: Ensure that all third-party applications and customizations are compatible with Dynamics 365.
2. Clean up Data: With the upgrade, businesses should take the opportunity to clean up their data by removing duplicates and outdated records.
3. Identify Roles and Permissions: Review user roles and permissions to identify any changes that need to be made in Dynamics 365.
4. Backup Data: Before starting the upgrade process, it is crucial to backup all data on the existing Dynamics CRM environment to avoid data loss.
The Upgrade Process
The upgrade from Dynamics CRM on-premise to Dynamics 365 involves several steps:
1. Install the Dynamics 365 Migration Tool: The first step is to install the Dynamics 365 Migration Tool which can be downloaded from Microsoft’s website. This tool is required for migrating data from the existing Dynamics CRM environment to Dynamics 365.
2. Prepare the Existing Environment: Before starting the upgrade process, take a backup of the existing environment and perform a test migration to ensure that all data is migrated correctly. It is recommended to perform this test migration on a separate environment to avoid any potential disruption to the production environment.
3. Migrate Data: Once the test migration is successful, migrate all data to the new Dynamics 365 environment using the Migration Tool. This process may take several hours depending on the volume of data.
4. Configure Dynamics 365: After the data migration is complete, configure Dynamics 365 according to the requirements of the business, such as user roles and permissions, customizations, workflows, and integrations with third-party applications.
5. Train Users: Provide training to users on the new Dynamics 365 platform to ensure a smooth transition.
In conclusion, upgrading from Dynamics CRM on-premise to Dynamics 365 provides businesses with access to a wider range of features, improved scalability, enhanced mobility, and cost savings. However, the upgrade process requires careful planning and execution, including compatibility testing, data clean-up, backup of data, installation of the migration tool, data migration, configuration of Dynamics 365, and training of users. By following these steps, businesses can achieve a successful upgrade and benefit from the added functionality and flexibility of Dynamics 365.