The future of Microsoft Dynamics GP …. again!


David Meego - Click for blog homepageIt has been just over a year since the last time this old chestnut was raised by someone in the community.

This time the question of Microsoft Dynamics GP’s future has been raised by Mark Brummel, who was a Microsoft MVP (Business Solutions) for the Microsoft Dynamics NAV product, and is based in the Netherlands.

Over the last few days, Mark published a couple of opinion articles about Microsoft Dynamics 365 and the other products in the Microsoft Dynamics ERP range. In these articles he presents his opinions about Microsoft Dynamics GP as facts, which they clearly are not, and this has upset many of us who work with Microsoft Dynamics GP as it just harms the status of the product.

As far as I know (and after looking at his profiles on LinkedIn and MVP Reconnect), Mark does not have any Microsoft Dynamics GP background and is not involved in the Dynamics GP community. I don’t believe he is qualified to talk about the future of Dynamics GP any more than I am to talk about the future of Dynamics NAV. We have enough “Fake News” being spread by our competitors and don’t need any more from inside our community.

Quote 1:

Great Plains and Solomon are retired and in maintenance mode. Sorry guys. There are extension that can help migrate data from GP and SL into BC [Ed: Business Central].

This quote is absolutely not true.

Microsoft Dynamics GP is still being developed with lots of new functionality and features. Every conference shows us a new Product Roadmap with features listed. As the product is mature, it is stable and fully featured. Many of the new features come from customer feedback as the development team focus on what the community wants from the product.

In the More Information section below, I have added a number of articles which explain that the Microsoft Dynamics GP product is well and truly alive and includes comments from the development team in Fargo, ND.

Quote 2:

The Discovery [Ed: He was using a car analogy to refer to Microsoft Dynamics GP] is a poor mans Range Rover. It will still take you anywhere you want. They are not as customizable as Defenders and don’t hold their economic value over a longer period.

This quote is not true.

Microsoft Dynamics GP is extremely customisable with multiple tools including Dexterity, Visual Studio, Modifier, Report Writer and VBA (Visual Basic for Applications). It has a huge ISV community with many vertical and horizontal products.

There is a difference with the design philosophies for customisation between Dynamics NAV and Dynamics AX (I was trained on AX development many years ago). The AX and NAV products allow for the original source code to be edited directly (usually as a copy or in a different layer), this can make it easier to write a customisation in the first place.

However, because Dynamics GP does not allow you to edit the original source code and uses triggers instead, it means that multiple customisations can be applied to the same area of the application without needing to merge code manually AND upgrading customisations is extremely fast and simple. Finally, an ISVs IP (Intellectual Property) is protected as you don’t have access to their source code.

More Information

In this section, I wanted to provide links to many of the articles from my colleagues in the Microsoft Dynamics GP community discussing Mark’s articles and the future of Microsoft Dynamics GP.

Firstly, here is my article from a year ago (which includes links to the response articles written at that time):

Here is the article by Belinda Allen MVP, including comments from Jeff Trosen (Engineering Manager, Microsoft):

This is Ian Grieve MVP’s article. He mentions Project Green. This was a project started after the acquisition of the four ERP systems (Great Plains, Solomon, Navision and Axapta), and was designed to check the feasibility of combining the four products into a single code base. The project was a success according to my friend, Dave Gaboury (Senior Developer for Project Green), as it confirmed that combining the products would not be feasible. Anyhow, here is the article:

Mahmood M Alsaadi MVP from Jordan then posted his thoughts from a Microsoft Dynamics GP partner based outside of English speaking countries:

My friend, fellow developer and co-present, Mariano Gomez then posted an article which includes lots of Product Roadmap slides:

All of these article are excellent reads and provide different view points, but there is one common factor…. Microsoft Dynamics GP is NOT retired and is NOT in maintenance mode.

I will say it again. Microsoft Dynamics GP is a “cash cow” for Microsoft as it has a large and active customer base and partner community. Microsoft would be mad to kill the cash cow. I have invested my future with Microsoft Dynamics GP.

Microsoft is committed to Dynamics GP, and so am I.

#IamDynGP

David

This article was originally posted on http://www.winthropdc.com/blog.

9 thoughts on “The future of Microsoft Dynamics GP …. again!

  1. Question, in the USA, judging from the job postings, there appear to be three times more developer postings for Axapta than Great Plains, so is Axapta leading Great Plains for the large new installs?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. As someone who has been in the GP development world for nearly 20 years and has been trained multiple times in AX development I could not agree more with you… Dynamics GP is a great solution to deliver what clients need without destroying the accounting integrity.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Dave, what is really needed out here is not merely an assertion that GP is still okay. Do you think you could please do a blog with an impartial assessment of the GP and AX programs, from a user/accounting perspective and from a developer perspective? And maybe some broad generalizations of the industries the two packages are best suited for? That would be wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I feel like everyone is arguing about semantics , Dynamics GP will continue to get regulatory updates (tax updates) and some very basic low hanging fruit updates , so Dynamics GP is not on EOL but the Dynamics GP that you see today will be 99.9% the same in 10 years. Microsoft is keeping R%D to about 1% of sales what is just enough to keep up tax updates and 1-2 very low hanging fruit .

    So no Dynamics GP isn’t going away but microsoft isn’t investing much at all into it or even trying to push it.

    I mean their internal development team has continued to shrink and is now down to 4-5 people .

    So is GP going away , probably not anytime soon

    Is microsoft actively developing GP , no they are doing the bare minimum as they don’t want to spend money on the product .

    Like

    • Mike, Dynamics GP is a mature product built on tested architecture. You are not going to see radical changes in it. However, the small development team are working hard on many new features and enhancements. There have been more than 100 new features in each of the releases over the last few years. Development has slowed, but that is also related to the maturity of the product.

      Like

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