What makes SAP a better enterprize solution for bigger companies rather than Microsoft Dynamics?

I don’t want to say that I believe in this statement but for those who have a say in this matter please contribute.

better is a broad and vague adjective. Each ERP system has advantages and disadvantages.

And it depends on the Company implementing the ERP system on what features (advantages) they must have and what issues (disadvantages) they can live with.

SAP (JDEdvards, SUN, etc) are by no means good systems - but, first, anyone has a budget and ROI to follow, second - as Rashed already said - it depends on what you really need or can live without, and what you can afford… Client is willing to get his bang for the buck, and, if NAV in its present position satisfies his needs, why to spend more $$$$ only for brand name?

PS NAV is a brand name, too [;)]

On many occassions it is purchased in part as a status symbol, in other parts it is part of a localised global roll out where the local office of 20 people have a £8million budget to implement it, and it kills them (although creates a few more new jobs!

Horses for courses, but there are big companies out there not running SAP, and the old adage of scalability is falling away.

I think this is a very interesting question. Especially because my company globally are using both SAP and Dynamics NAV in our subsidiaries.

Dynamics NAV is our corporate “first choice”, but for companies who are either very big (+100000 sales transactions per month) or have many concurrent (+250 concurrent users per legal company), then we recommend them to select SAP.

This is not based upon my personal experience with NAV, but it’s also a question about how big projects we actually want to handle by our special-made CORE NAV version and our limited corporate project team. Personally then I’m convinced that if we just had enough resources to optimize our CORE, then there would not be many reasons left why they would select SAP.

And most of the countries we have who are not using NAV as the national ERP system, but instead SAP or Oracle or similar, they are actually also using Dynamics NAV in one or several of their local subsidiaries. The reason for that is that they always have subsidiaries who cannot handle the inflexibility of those systems and need a lot more flexibility.

…So from what you and the others are saying the choice criteria seems to be based on scalability. In terms of flexibility costs it is known that Navision wins the battle so right now if Microsoft manages to solve the scalabity problem, Navision might be a strong competitor for SAP. This is, of corse, if the product and services price levels remain more or less the same. In my opinion the receipt for Navision to overcome SAP would be:

  • scalability problem solved

  • Microsoft investment on Boosting Dynamics brand image

  • Adding more functionality to the application. Here I think it will be a natural process since the change to .Net will make the NAV developers comunity grow largely and thus its added functionalities.

Don’t think I have anything against SAP but I feel that if their prices are so much higher, they need to be much better. If this is not so true it is more than right that they get a fair competition and there Dynamics has a good chance… In the end companies will benefit from this since they will get to pay less for the an as good solution.

Thanks for the replies,



Pedro what you need to notice is that people here has mostly been talking about SAP vs. Dynamics NAV. Including me.

But if you talk to Microsoft, then they will never put up SAP vs. Dynamics NAV, instead they will position SAP vs. Dynamics AX, which is their “high-end” and “enterprise” ERP solution.

It would be interesting to hear some of our Dynamics AX experts bid on this question…

It is not a question of NAV or AX. MS should find a way to market their products more. Create Awareness and give a broad image.

about NAV. As of Now, the feel in the market is that SAP is for Big companies and NAV for small companies. That image has to be changed

by way of agressive marketing and creation of awareness about NAV.

More users to be trained and as well as more developers to be trained to gain a market share and a leader of the market.

I always say “Why buy SAP/R3 it you have R5 with Dynamics NAV already.”

Here is some scalability issues with NAV

Most big projects run on SQL and MS recommends that. MS out of the box is not optimized for SQL. Granted this can be customized, but I would rather see NAV do it. They have slowly started adding features in 4.0 and and in 5.0 they have changed code, and 6.0 they are going 3 tierd. One thing that is missing is that they need to make some dramatic table structure changes to solve locking issues. Add batch processing of overnight transactions. Add Archiving of GL transactions.

For example Numbering series table is used throughout the system. They could create Numbering series for each Area of Navision.

Use Autoincrement as much possible.

Change the C/AL language to allow more features that allow the data manipulation be done on SQL. For example create a datatype called Queuery. So you can create a queuery the way you want the data be displayed.

All these changes will happen, but first the Native DB has to go. Which is happening with 6.0.

Correct if I’m wrong but I thought Microsoft idea was to merge the two applications Nav and AX and face the market with a unique solution.

You are right. That was in 2002 (maybe 2003) as far as I remember. We have seen a lot since that time. Name changes. Code changes. Behavior changes. Longer time to get any hotfixes. We have seen some good things and some bad things.

But I thing Mircosoft ist light years away to show us a working solution with the combination of NAV and AX. Anyway, you are right by saying it was:

My personal opinion is this will not happen.

Whilst the systems become closer in time they will remain distinct for the near future, lets say 10 years. The reason is you are talking about turning off several revenue streams and combining them into one, when the disctinct streams are only now beginning to have full brand awareness. Also the products do hit distinct geographies, verticals and areas of business. Remove them all it is a difficult hole to fill.

I would also say that as we have progressed from 2002 the volume of statements regarding the merging of all of the MBS offerings has been reduced.

Still I am usually wrong, so expect Microsoft Dynamics Compelete to be released in 2010!

To be honest I guess either way can work fine (fusion between AX and NAV or separated products). I guess it’s more of a marketing strategy. Either strategy has its bad and good sides. I don’t know AX but I think either way Microsoft should work towards the standardization of business processes and development environment. Then It would be more a question of added functionalities and scalabity limitations between the two products.

Mine too. I was speaking about the “visions” Microsoft gave us when they bought Navision A/S.

Exactly. I was thinking about that as well when Navision A/S acquire Damgaard A/S. Never ever we got any answer for the most important questions: What is the position of NAV and AX in the market? Whom do you want to target? And, with Microsoft, it is still not answered.

Hi Walter

Sorry no intention to say this was opposite to your opinion, I was just commenting generally!

It is the “vision” statement that is not as loud as it was say 3 years ago, then they were banging a serious drum to one option to conquer all.

The NAV/AX position in the market used to be clear based upon functionality and license cost. Whilst AX does outstrip NAV in some areas, others NAV is better, and AX is now within 5% of license costs. This means the implementation costs are the dividing factor, the AX projects are usually much more involved (100 parameter settings compared to 5 in Nav).

For the past couple of years Microsoft has been heavily banging the vertical market drum, become the specialist in the this area, and clean up!

As to “who” they want to target I would say as it is Microsoft the answer is simple “everyone” [:D]

I am a bit suprised no one has mentioned this in reference to scalability issue:

SAP can run on UNIX. To my knowledge, SQL Server and or the Native Navision client can’t run on UNIX effectively (in a non emulated enviornment).

At the highest end, a UNIX based (pick your flavor) system can computer faster and better than a windows system.

I would say the db such as oracle and db2 and the hardware has more to do with scalability than the OS.

Also the Dev Language I’m sure is more powerfull than C/AL.

You can’t do any sql queries in NAV. A lot of code is wasted looping through records that can be done with simple sql statements.

OK, i will correct you… this is wrong. [:)]

Basically there was never really a solid “this is hw we do it plan” it was more of a marketing idea to have a “One Size Fits All Product”. This then led to the technical peopel being asked to make it happen. In a bizare twist of fate, even though this was a technical nightmare, in my opinion the real reason for killing the marketing concept known as green, was the fact that MS realized that they had a slew of great products solving cusottmer issues and making money along the way, and that Green was basically killing the goose that laid the golden eggs.