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Title:To upgrade or not to upgrade Dynamics GP
Description:A client of ours uses Encore's Recurring invoicing in conjunction with Nodus's Credit Card Advantage. They are still on Great Plains 8.0 and are using EFT transactions as well. The need has arisen for customers to use multiple EFT bank accounts for different contracts in Recurring Invoicing. Can't be done in 8.0 but in 10.0 you can have EFT accounts attached to different address ID which can then be used as a billing address on the contract.

My answer to them is you need to upgrade to get that functionality. The accountants response was "What the heck. Why haven't we updated yet?" I would have liked to say "I've tried to get you guys to upgrade for a year or more now" but instead I was diplomatic and said "I think your IT staff is in the process of following some of our recommendations to move up to the new system. You may need to check with them."

Coming from the Partners viewpoint I usually say after one or two service packs you can upgrade whenever you like. That's not always necessary/feasible. The real issue comes as upgrading Dynamics GP (or any software for that matter) comes with certain costs. A few are listed below:
  • Annual maintenance costs from Software vendor- typically a percentage of you system list price

  • New hardware to meet new software recommendations

  • Consulting or in house time to do test upgrade - includes time spent verifying data upgraded successfully, 3rd party application testing, interfacing with end user to verify everything looks ok, etc.

  • Consulting or in house time to do production upgrade software, install clients, update reports, install 3rd party applications, upgrade 3rd party applications, and fix modified reports that don't update, etc.

  • Downtime for current employees during upgrade

  • Training users on new features or procedures

  • Ineffiencies while using/navigating through a new system

  • Increased support costs with Partner after upgrade specifically related to new functions and procedures

So why in the world would anyone volunteer to update their system as it seems like a new version is released every 6 months? I've listed a few reasons to upgrade below:

  • Increased effiencies with new hardware, system performance with updated software

  • Older software is not supported and you have to find a dinosaur that charges $400 per incident to fix anything. (I know the two last dinosaurs that support GPA, man are they old and ornery)

  • New technology only available with new versions of software - Business Portal, eConnect, Sharepoint, SSRS, etc.

  • New versions are being fixed, developed, enhanced so in theory you should have less support calls regarding system bugs

  • Upgrade costs are minimized when system moves to the next version up instead of making a 2, 3, or more step move. See Mariano's blog for upgrade paths.

  • Training usually is less involved as there are not 2 or 3 sets of "What's New" crammed into one training session

  • Newer version of software is typically more developed. If you are still using the first version of CRM, RMS, Analytical Accounting etc., I'd suggest you are akin to gnawing your foot off to get out of a bear trap (Montana metaphors, got to love it).

So what do you think? How do you determine when to upgrade?

What are some of your reasons To Upgrade or Not to Upgrade?

Here are a couple of links to formulate my thinking:

Category:SUPPORT (TECHNICAL): Upgrades
Link Owner:
Date Added:June 17, 2010 02:08:18 AM
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