When is the best time to upgrade?
Before upgrading, we recommend that you create a timetable of the entire upgrade process. This timetable can include the scheduling of a test upgrade, live upgrade, upgrade training, and implementation. Be sure that the scheduled time to upgrade takes place during a time that works best for all Dynamics GP users and for your information technology (IT) staff. You may not want to upgrade before processing payroll checks or closing a year.
During the period of a test upgrade there is typically no “down time” or “outages” expected to your current production environment; but during the live upgrade, you should expect to be hands-off Dynamics GP and any Reporting Tools that access those databases for the duration of the live upgrade. Arrange for alternate staff work during that time. If keeping down time to a minimum is critical, we will work with you to discuss options for upgrading outside of regular business hours.
What impacts upgrade time?
The number of companies
The extent of and complexity of customizations
The more ISV software used, the added time you will need for your upgrade
The version of your current Dynamics GP instance: Older versions take longer to upgrade as they may need to “hop” to a version or two between the current version and the latest version
Age and status of your infrastructure: It is recommended to deploy further versions of Dynamics GP in Microsoft Azure for maximum security and scalability
What are the key steps to planning an upgrade?
1. Determine when and how often your business should upgrade. It is important to decide which upgrade path suits your business best, based on the new features, and other considerations. You will want to ensure availability of power users and make sure users are able to complete testing and attend training so they can put what they learned to good use.
2. Inquire about a test upgrade. A test upgrade, though not always necessary, is recommended if you have multiple add on products, customizations, or integrations. The test environment provides a place to try it with your own data before putting it into your production environment.
3. Evaluate moving to Azure (aka the cloud). Since part of the upgrade process usually involves a new server, it’s a good idea to review cloud options like Microsoft Windows Azure. No matter which option is selected, the upgrade process itself mostly stays the same. If you need some guidance on the topic, please contact our experts to walk you through it.
4. Assign a power to manage the project internally. Assign a technical resource and power user from your team. These resources should work directly with the Consultants performing the upgrade.
5. Research which new modules and features you want to use. Each version offers advancements, improved efficiencies, and new functions and features. If there are features, functions, or modules that have been available for a while that have been on your business wish list, now is a great time to add that to your training list.
6. Make sure your backups are complete and recent.
7. Make sure your hardware/software is compatible. This link takes you to the System Requirements published by Microsoft.
What should I do if I am ready to upgrade my version of Microsoft Dynamics GP?
To get your Microsoft Dynamics GP solution upgraded and working smarter for you and your staff, contact us today.