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Dynamics 365 Business Central vs. NetSuite: Which is Better For Your Business?

Updated: Nov 1, 2023

Discover how the two ERP systems compare to each other and which is better suited for your specific needs.


business central vs netsuite

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution is one of the most important tools for any business. ERP systems provide a seamless flow of information across departments and applications, enabling organizations to streamline financial processes and functions.


As demand for these systems grows, so too does the number of systems available. Currently, two of the most popular cloud-based ERP solutions are Oracle NetSuite and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. But the question still remains: which is the best choice for your business?


The answer ultimately depends on your specific business needs and what you’re looking to get from your system. However, this article covers some key differences between the two that can help you make an informed decision for your organization.


What is NetSuite?

Created by Oracle, NetSuite is a cloud-based ERP solution that tracks business’ financial information, manage inventory, and improve customer relationships. The out-of-the-box functionality provides support for multiple applications on a single platform. Here, users can create customizable dashboards to measure business performance, growth, and progress.


What is Dynamics 365 Business Central?

Similar to NetSuite, Dynamics 365 Business Central is an end-to-end ERP solution that enables users to manage virtually every aspect of their business. From financial management to order processing, the platform is highly flexible and easily customized to any business need.


Top Differentiators of Business Central and NetSuite

Both NetSuite and Business Central are cloud-based ERP solutions that streamline business processes and boost efficiency. However, the key difference between the two platforms is that Business Central has more advanced functionality than that of NetSuite.


Below, we’ll discuss the key differentiators between NetSuite and Business Central to help you find a solution that’s best for your business.


Feature

NetSuite

Dynamics 365 Business Central

Functionality

​Moderate

​Advanced

Customization

​Limited

​Yes

Reporting

​Moderate

​Advanced

Integration

​Yes, for purchase

​Yes, seamless integration with Microsoft tools

Implementation

​2-6 months

​6 weeks

Upgrades

Manual

​Automatic

Security

Moderate

​Advanced

Pricing

Estimated $999 per month

​$70-100 per user, per month


Features and Functionality

Both NetSuite and Business Central have similar features, including financial capabilities, reporting and analytics, inventory, order, and purchase management. However, Business Central goes beyond the basic out-of-the-box functionality, enhancing the use of the tools.


Additionally, while NetSuite does have CRM, warehouse management, manufacturing, demand planning, and assembly features, it requires additional fees to utilize them. Business Central’s seamless integrations with other Microsoft tools provide users with these capabilities at no extra cost.


Customization

Users can easily customize fields and features within Business Central via the platform’s many extensions. These extensions provide access to additional online services and further enhance the platform’s functionality. Additionally, Business Central’s drag-and-drop editor allow for fast, easy personalization.


NetSuite does allow for customization via the SuiteCloud. Users are able to personalize dashboards, reports, and feeds; however, the level of personalization is dependent on particular pricing and licensing.


Reporting

Reporting and analytics capabilities are available in both Business Central and NetSuite. However, Business Central’s reporting capabilities are far more advanced than NetSuite’s. The out-of-the-box functionality make it easy for both technical and non-technical users to drill deep into data using the drag-and-drop interface to create detailed reports. Additionally, by connecting to Power BI, users can drill even deeper into data, perform enhanced data visualizations, and analytic capabilities.


The out-of-the-box reporting features in NetSuite also allows anyone to build reports via the report builder that features drag-and-drop tools. However, data analysis is only available in three dimensions which prevent deep dives into data. Users can integrate with Power BI for additional data analysis at an extra cost.


Integration

Business Central was designed for seamless integration. It’s easily linked to Microsoft tools such as Microsoft 365, Power BI, Azure, and more. These integrations allow users to custom-build a technology stack that enhances functionality in virtually every area and allow your business to scale with ease.


While NetSuite is designed to cover all business needs, many businesses need to integrate third-party applications to meet specific needs. However, the software was meant to be a single solution which makes integration with outside applications more difficult. While these integrations are possible, they may require help from an IT professional.


Netsuite Outlook Integration

An integration of Netsuite and Outlook allows users to attach emails from Outlook to Netsuite records. This popular integration makes customer and billing management easy as you can sync events, tasks, phone calls, contacts, and emails to all live in one consolidated place.


Implementation

Organizations looking to implement software quickly should utilize Business Central. Teams who don’t require additional customization to the out-of-the-box features can have the platform up and running in a few hours. Yet, even complex set ups and customizations can be completed in just a few weeks. Business Central’s easy-to-navigate and intuitive interface translates into a lower learning curve and faster employee adoption.


On average, it takes business teams between 2-6 months to implement the NetSuite platform. The duration can be longer depending on the complexity and specific needs of the business. Additionally, the solution’s UI is less intuitive than Business Central’s, which may require additional training and setup before it’s operational.