Blunt & Honest Letter by our CEO Reacting to Microsoft’s May 2023 Announcement on Ending Dynamics GP
Optimus Business Transformation 10540 NW 26th St. Suite G-203 Doral, FL 33172 USA (786) 618-2328
May 19, 2023
Dear Microsoft Dynamics GP Client:
With a saddened heart, I am writing this letter. I will not sugarcoat this, just can’t. And trying to feed it as such to the Great Plains community, is being unjust. The bottom line, GP has retired. When any product where a manufacturer from any industry (auto, fashion, computer, etc.) stops sales of it, they are retiring it from circulation. My statement is as plain and simple as you will get from anyone.
I have invested almost 20 years of my professional career in Microsoft Dynamics GP. I am still VERY fond of it. GP has a special place in my heart. And, by the way, it still works well!
I mean no disrespect to Microsoft or anyone in the community. This is my opinion from my almost 30 years of experience in business consulting, Big 4 Consulting Firm, Microsoft, Tectura, ERP, WMS, and in the CRM space. I just want to communicate this as it should be……. in black and white, with no “BS.”
As many have heard, now it is official, Microsoft formally announced - published in writing (i.e., “black and white”) that Dynamics GP is dead. The bottom line for Dynamics GP/Great Plains from Microsoft is:
October 1st, 2023
Microsoft Dynamics GP price will increase. Terms and conditions will exist.
Enhancement Plans, which already increased, could again increase by another 1%.
April 1st, 2025
New licensing for Microsoft Dynamics GP will be Subscription-based only.
This is less than 2 years from now.
Subscription-based Dynamics GP will not be a new cloud version of GP with all the bells and whistles of Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM, Business Central, or Financial & Operations.
My present opinion is that:
The new prices will not be cheap.
It will not be attractive to switch from GP Perpetual (buy users and pay yearly enhancement) to this new subscription model. The model will push companies to move to Dynamics 365 instead.
In the last 10 years, my opinions on Microsoft Dynamics have been 90% plus correct.
April 1st, 2026
Microsoft Dynamics GP’s new client sales will be discontinued.
This is less than 3 years from now.
I expect that Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central and Finance & Operations prices will also go up at the same time.
Current Situation Implications for Existing Customers
Anything can happen in adding new GP users for an existing GP client and its pricing in the future.
You must be current on GP to buy more users. This means pay enhancements on a “dying” product.
One of the few benefits today of yearly enhancements for Dynamics GP is if you plan to upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics 365, you get good credits/rebates/promos towards it.
Basically, for Great Plains/Dynamics GP, all you have is uncertainty with no guarantees.
Microsoft says you can add new users/mods after 2026. Things can change, no guarantees. This means it can be more years, or Microsoft can raise prices even more, or retire the product earlier, or…….
There is a roadmap, but if it follows what happened in Microsoft Dynamics SL and what other ERP vendors do when a product is put in ICU (Intensive Care Unit), this represents very little functionality and hotfixes on a stable old product. In other words, your enhancement primarily goes towards making the product usable on newer Windows/SQL/Office versions. The bottom line, Microsoft provides minor upkeep, not full R&D.
Once already, Microsoft for Dynamics SL moved the support and the R&D to a third-party company. This could happen again.
Silver Lining / Some Positives for Existing Customers
There is a present incredibly attractive promotion to move/upgrade from Dynamics GP to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. Most of the analysis and migrations Optimus has already done for Dynamics GP clients have provided a very fair incentive from Microsoft to them.
You can always use the present official Microsoft transition policy and move to Dynamics 365 Business Central On-premises. Most of our clients who have done this pay 0 dollars plus their yearly enhancement remains the same. This is less preferred for Microsoft; they want you on the cloud. You should do your due diligence, as it sometimes makes sense for certain clients to stay on-premises.
There is a large wave of your peers (i.e., other Dynamics GP Clients) who have moved or are currently moving to Dynamics 365.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central and/or Finance & Operations have A LOT MORE features, functions, and technology in them than Dynamics GP.
The new Microsoft BI, eCommerce, Collaboration, Office 365, CRM, Machine Learning, and AI enhancements are going to Dynamics 365, not Dynamics GP or SL.
Analysts have been raving about Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. See the Addendum to this letter.
The Microsoft Dynamics 365 Cloud versions include more Cyber Security, Disaster Recovery, Telemetry, monthly performance/bug releases, semesterly feature/function minor updates, and other additional services not available with what you already pay in your yearly enhancements.
I am not trying to sell anyone on Microsoft Dynamics 365. I am just communicating our last 4-year experience and client feedback of those who already have gone through this upgrade process.
Some advice I am giving our clients is:
Do not put any more money into Microsoft Dynamics GP for rollouts, users, new developments, new reports, new ISVs, etc. unless you get a 1 year or less ROI for it.
Start evaluating early. Take your time in the process.
Microsoft's current promos will go away. They have already diminished from the first wave which ended in 2022.
The move is not as painful as going to another ERP from another manufacturer.
If you move now, it is also because the new system will give you additional automation and other material benefits.
If you are in an old Microsoft Dynamics GP version, do not upgrade to a new one, just upgrade to a Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central one.
Pay your current Microsoft Dynamics GP enhancement if you plan to move to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.
Optimus has done around 7-8 workshops on “hype-grading” from Microsoft Dynamics GP to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. We also did our whitepaper. See the Addendum section of this letter for some links to these recordings. The whitepaper is only available upon request.
I apologize if I “ruffled any feathers” with this letter. I am just being blunt, transparent, and sincere. I also do not want to paint a “doom and gloom” picture. This is just a reality. The Microsoft Dynamics GP architecture was not built for today’s technologies and digital transformation. It is like trying to put an 8-cylinder motor from a 1975 passenger car into a Tesla. It just does not fit.
PS: And for those of you who said last year that Microsoft Dynamics GP is from “Infinity and Beyond,” and who challenged my keynote at Summit 2022 in Orlando, with the latest news from Microsoft, which now confirms no new client sales, I was right, “there was and is….no infinity”.
Recent Analyst Independent Review/Opinion: According to Forbes, “Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is the best cloud ERP software for small and medium businesses, considering over 25 of the leading providers in the space and narrowed it down to 16, which we evaluated across five key categories and 25 different metrics.”
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