Friday, 12 March 2021 19:23

What are Dynamics 365 Business Central and Dynamics 365 CRM ?

Dynamics 365 Business Central is Microsoft’s cloud-based ERP solution for small and midsize organisations. It’s designed to help businesses manage their financials, manufacturing, shipping, projects, services, and more. Business Central includes Relationship Management functionality to support sales efforts.


Dynamics 365 CRM is Microsoft’s robust cloud-based customer relationship management solution comprising several applications. The Dynamics 365 Sales app, one of the most popular, allows businesses to qualify leads, manage sales opportunities, build customer relationships, optimize email marketing campaigns, and more.

Main Benefits


Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Capability Core capability across finance, operations, supply chain, CRM and project managementCore capability across finance, operations, supply chain, CRM and project management Advanced capability across finance, operations, manufacturing and supply chain
  Additional capability is available in service management and manufacturing via the Premium package Additional capability is available across HR, sales, projects, customer service through the wider Dynamics 365 range with the full Dynamics 365 plan
CRM Inbuilt CRM capability, offering Outlook integration with opportunity management and customer service capability No CRM capability but Dynamics 365 for Sales is included with the full Dynamics 365 purchase plan
  Integration with Dynamics 365 for Sales is available for organisation looking for additional CRM capability Dynamics 365 for Sales offers more advanced Sales and CRM capability than you get with Business Central

The CRM Differences

With the above definition out of the way, let’s talk about what makes these applications different. Or in other words, if Business Central includes a lot of CRM functionality, then why would a company choose to also pay for CRM licenses.


Business Central both include the ability to track the following items. Below are a few screenshots to compare some of the screens between the two applications (Business Central is on the left, CRM is on the right)

Accounts (Businesses)

Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Contacts (People)

Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics CRM


Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics CRM


Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics CRM


Business Central

Microsoft Dynamics CRM

As you may expect, Dynamics 365 Business Central includes more robust Finance and Operations functionality than is found in CRM. The list below includes some of the more significant enhancements available in Business Central:


Effective Financial Management – Financial information across accounts, sales, purchases, inventory and customer interactions. Primarily want to manage financials, inventory, and production; only need basic sales management features.


Accurate reporting and analytics – Directly integrated into Excel and display real – time financial performance charts with built – in Power BI Dashboards. With Business you can make your decisions based on full insight.


Use built – in intelligence to predict when and which SKUs to replenish. 


Deliver projects on time and under budget easily creating and tracking customer projects using detailed timesheets

Business Central Pricing

Team Members
AU$11 / Member

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Pricing


Conclusion: Can you use Dynamics 365 Business Central as a CRM solution?

Dynamics 365 Business Central’s Relationship Management capabilities may satisfy some companies’ lead management needs. Its basic management features allow you to manage:


  • Contacts
  • Interactions
  • Segments
  • Sales Opportunities
  • Marketing Campaigns

Business Central lets you enter prospects to turn into customers and enter quotes to turn into orders for completion using supply chain capabilities. For businesses looking for a full-fledged sales and marketing-focused CRM solution, Business Central may not offer enough capabilities.


Finally, when it comes to Financial Management and Operations, Business Central is the best option at this point.


Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central aim to help your business elevate your financial performance with faster reporting, optimised production planning, scheduling, operations and cost management. With Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central you are able to automate your supply chain, improved fulfillment and logistics as well as utilise an adaptable platform that can be tailored to apps you already use.


Business Central’s primary goal is to create business solutions without silos and facilitate efficient and automated tasks. In addition to this Business Central presents you with actionable insights with a complete view of your businesses connected data and analytics along with solutions that can be adapted to your business needs as it grows or changes.