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Upgrading Dynamics CRM On-Premise to Dynamics 365: A Comprehensive Guide for a Seamless Transition

Upgrading Dynamics CRM On-Premise to Dynamics 365: A Comprehensive Guide for a Seamless Transition

Upgrading Dynamics CRM On-Premise to Dynamics 365: Everything You Need to Know

In today’s fast-changing environment, businesses must embrace change and adapt to new technologies to remain competitive. Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a popular customer relationship management (CRM) solution that has been around for over two decades and has helped organizations manage their customer data effectively. While Dynamics CRM has been a successful solution, it has undergone significant changes in recent years with the introduction of Dynamics 365.

Dynamics 365 is a cloud-based all-in-one business solution that combines ERP and CRM capabilities to help businesses manage their operations efficiently. Its main advantage is that it offers a more comprehensive approach to managing customer data, including automation, insights, and analytics.

Many organizations that use Dynamics CRM are now considering upgrading to Dynamics 365, but the process can be intimidating. This article aims to provide a comprehensive guide for businesses looking to upgrade from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365.

What is Dynamics CRM?

Dynamics CRM is a Microsoft customer relationship management software that helps businesses manage customer interactions and data. It provides companies with an integrated CRM system that enables users to access customer information in real-time, track sales leads, and manage customer service activities. Dynamics CRM on-premises is deployed locally on servers owned by the company, making it more secure.

What is Dynamics 365?

Dynamics 365 is a cloud-based business application that combines the functions of both Dynamics CRM and ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning). It offers a range of functionalities such as sales, marketing, customer service, finance, and supply chain management all in one platform. The significant advantage of Dynamics 365 over Dynamics CRM is its cloud-based nature, meaning that data is housed on Microsoft servers, reducing infrastructure costs.

Why should you Upgrade from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365?

There are several reasons why businesses should consider upgrading from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365:

1. Scalability: Dynamics 365 is a scalable solution that is ideal for businesses of all sizes. Upgrading to Dynamics 365 provides organizations with the flexibility to adapt to changing business needs and scale operations accordingly.

2. Enhanced features and functionalities: Dynamics 365 offers advanced features such as AI, automation, analytics, and integration with other Microsoft applications, making it more comprehensive than Dynamics CRM.

3. Cloud-based solution: Dynamics 365 is a cloud-based solution that provides users with the flexibility to access customer data from anywhere at any time. This feature makes it easier for businesses to scale up or down their operations without incurring significant infrastructure costs.

4. Reduced IT and infrastructure costs: Upgrading to Dynamics 365 eliminates the need for costly hardware investments and maintenance costs associated with on-premises software. Cloud-based solutions like Dynamics 365 are hosted on remote servers and offer simple subscription models.

5. Always up-to-date: With Dynamics 365, updates are automatic, so you always get the latest features and functionality. With Dynamics CRM on-premises, updates must be manually installed.

Steps to Upgrade from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365

Step 1: Analyze and Plan

The first step to upgrading from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365 is analyzing your current CRM solution and planning for the upgrade. You should assess your data, processes, customizations, and integrations to determine what will transfer seamlessly to Dynamics 365. You should also evaluate the new features and functionalities offered by Dynamics 365 and identify how they can benefit your organization.

Step 2: Choose a Deployment Model

Once you have analyzed your current CRM solution and planned for the upgrade, you need to choose a deployment model for Dynamics 365. You can either go for a cloud-based or on-premises installation depending on your business needs. Cloud-based solutions offer the benefits of elasticity and scalability, whereas on-premises solutions provide more control and security.

Step 3: Data Migration

The next step is migrating your data from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365. You should clean up your data, removing any duplicates and ensure that all data is migrated correctly into Dynamics 365. Microsoft provides different tools for data migration, including Dynamics 365 Data Loader and Data Migration Assistant.

Step 4: Integration and Customization

After migrating your data to Dynamics 365, you need to integrate any third-party applications and customize the system to fit your unique business needs. Dynamics 365 offers a range of customization options, and you can also develop your customizations if needed.

Step 5: Testing and Training

Before launching the new Dynamics 365 system, you should thoroughly test it to ensure that everything is working correctly. Once you are satisfied with the new system, you should train your employees on how to use it properly.


Upgrading from Dynamics CRM on-premises to Dynamics 365 can be daunting, but it comes with numerous benefits, including scalability, advanced features, and reduced IT costs. The upgrade process requires careful planning, data migration, integration, customization, testing, and training. It is essential to work with an experienced Microsoft partner who will guide you through the entire process and ensure a successful upgrade.

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