Naming confusion may be compounded by Enterprise and Business names for Dynamics products

We almost settle on one set of names for the realigned Dynamics ERP and CRM products when another set of product names seem to be upon us.

As Steve Endow points out, the CRM community seem to have claimed the “Dynamics 365” moniker for themselves (just see all the twitter activity and company marketing emails for proof), whilst the Dynamics ERP community are left with the scratty end of the deal when it comes to naming.

As the ERP products are migrated and morphed into new cloud & on-premises solutions, new names are certainly required to describe the new shape of offerings. The table below shows product names, previous to June 2017, with “Operations” and “Financials” differentiating the reinvention and re-imagination of what were the traditional Microsoft Dynamics AX and NAV offerings, respectively.

Current Name New name (June 2017)
Dynamics 365 for Operations Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations Enterprise edition
Dynamics 365 for Financials Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations Business edition

 

As the Financials product development has gathered pace, it is now obvious that it will eventually encompass the same (to all intents and purposes) set of functionality as the current NAV on-premise solution does today, thus inventory, warehouse management, manufacturing and more. Obviously this scope breaks far beyond a simple accounting function inferred by the “financials” naming and thus I can understand the need to re-frame the product name.

Enterprise and Business edition

So it is June 2017 it seems in rolls Enterprise and Business edition naming. This is to show the scale difference between the companies that the two solutions are targeted at, whilst attempting to also maintain the marketing message that they belong firmly to the same Dynamics 365 family tree. The name also tells the customer that the solutions will do everything they need, both finance functions and run the company operationally.Whilst the naming is more appropriate I have a small alarm to ring with the choice of Enterprise and Business as words to show scale. Todd McDaniel in the recent Enterprise Software Podcast pointed out that outside the software community Enterprise and Business do not perhaps indicate the scale of a company, as a marketing device this may not work as intended. I have to agree, in the United Kingdom this is even worse.

In the USA smaller to mid size companies are usually referred to as SMB - Small and Midsize Business, you see and hear this term all the time.
In European Union and international organizations such as the World Bank, the United Nations and the World Trade Organization, the term SME is used - Small and Medium Enterprise.

SMB Small and Midsize Business
SME Small and Medium Enterprise

 

SME is the term you hear all the time in the United Kingdom where you would use SMB in the US. Can you see the problem? Indeed Business and don’t Enterprise differentiate the scale of a company in our territory! -Whoops!

Although this is not a show stopper, it does mean companies selling the ERP orientated D365 solutions will have a little extra work cut out for them in other parts of the world as the significance of the meaning for Enterprise and Business will need to be explained to prospective customer CEOs, CFOs in the pre-sales marketing literature and meetings.

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