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How to Migrate from Microsoft Dynamics AX to Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations

Learn the benefits of migrating to Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations, and how to guarantee a smooth migration process.

Upgrading from Microsoft Dynamics AX (ax2009 & AX2012) to Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations (D365 F&O) provides an organization with many benefits. Some of the main benefits of transitioning to a cloud-based ERP from an on-premise ERP model are increased security models, shifting of physical technology asset debt to the cloud-based vendor, and ongoing maintenance of the technology solution to the vendor. All of these benefit an organization's operations by relieving resource burdens and shifting technology debt, while improving productivity, scalability, and cost to operate.

finance and supply chain

Upgrading to D365 F&O involves a migration process that moves your existing data, configurations, and customizations, where necessary to the new platform. It also can involve moving from an on-premise solution to a cloud-based solution. Microsoft has invested heavily in the D365 Finance and Operations platform and continues to lead the market in this space. While D365 F&O has benefited from a solid GAAP solution for years in the Finance features, the Supply Chain feature set has seen substantial maturing with D365 F&O over its predecessors.

Increased features with D365 F&O include advanced warehouse activities such as complex multi-tired BOMs, improved hand-held device capabilities, more complete logistics capabilities, electronic reporting, a more robust Excel integration, simplified and better control of user roles, privileges, and security, and more user-friendly data migration capabilities.

At a high level, here is a general overview of the upgrade process:

  1. GUIDE Discover - Evaluate your current Dynamics AX environment, including version, customizations, integrations, and any third-party solutions that may be currently in use. We call this a Health Check and is done using our GUIDE Discover tool to accelerate the process and minimize the impact on operational resources.

  2. GUIDE Design - Plan the upgrade by creating a comprehensive upgrade plan that outlines the steps, timelines, and resources required for a successful transition. Consider factors such as data migration, custom code upgrades or removal, required feature sets, change management and user training.

  3. Perform a Test Upgrade - Set up a testing environment and walk through an upgrade. This step helps identify potential issues, such as data inconsistencies, customization conflicts, and possible functionality gaps.

  4. Configuration and Setup - Configure D365 F&O according to your organization's requirements. This includes defining the chart of accounts, organizational structure, security roles, workflows, and other foundational settings. Ensure that all necessary integrations with other systems are properly configured and tested as appropriate.

  5. Data Migration - Develop a strategy for migrating your data from Dynamics AX to D365 F&O. This involves data cleansing, transformation, and mapping exercises. Validating data, ensuring accuracy and integrity, is one of the most important steps in an upgrade project.

  6. Code and Customizations - Evaluate any customizations or modifications in your Dynamics AX environment, looking for any opportunities to remove the customization. Where custom code is required to persist, it may involve redevelopment of certain functionality using updated tools and methodologies.

  7. User Training, Performance Testing, and Change Management - Prepare users for adoption of the new system and in some cases new process, by providing thorough training on new features and functionalities. Utilize a planned and well-executed Change Management approach to communicate benefits of the upgrade and address concerns or resistance to the upgrade. A smooth and successful transition requires active change management and user adoption strategies.

  8. Go-live and Post-upgrade Support - Once the upgrade is complete, all necessary testing and validation have been performed, and users are trained on the new processes, the Go-live should be executed. A post-Go-live support model should run through at least the first full Month End process. During this time the system is closely monitored to address any issues that may arise and provide post-upgrade support to users. A hand-off to the support team also takes place at this time.

It's worth noting that the upgrade process usually varies based on factors such as the version of Dynamics AX currently in use and the complexity of your D365 F&SC implementation scope. It is recommended to engage with a Microsoft-certified partner like JourneyTEAM who specializes in Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations upgrades to ensure a successful transition.

Ready to Get Started?

To elevate your supply chain processes, or your need help with the process mentioned above, contact a Dynamics 365 F&O specialist, today.


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