How Do Dynamics 365 On-Premise & Online Compare?

Microsoft Dynamics 365 / CRM

Microsoft has applied a 'cloud first' approach to its Dynamics 365 release cadence for several years and some new capabilities have been introduced as 'cloud-only' putting clear daylight between these editions.

In this post we've listed the main differences between Microsoft Dynamics 365 On-Premise and Online based on the most recent on-premise v9.0.2 and the Online April 2019 update across Customer Engagement applications.

Dynamics 365 On-Prem v9.0.2 was released in Autumn 2018 which largely reflects the capabilities of the earlier Cloud version released in Spring 2018. Consequently, this doesn't include contents of the main October 2018 release and it won't cover the cloud-only April '19 update.

Whereas on-premise versions are released every couple of years, Microsoft applies automatic weekly updates to D365 Online covering fixes, performance improvements and new features. In addition, two major updates are released each year which can be previewed in non-production environments.

If you are using on-premise Dynamics CRM 2011, 2013 or 2016 get in touch to understand how we will help you update to the latest version and leverage the new capabilities.

We'll begin by looking at a selection of new features introduced in recent years which are available in both editions.

Recent updates available for D365 On-Premise + Online

  • Editable Grids - make inline edits from list views and sub grids
  • Outlook App - track emails in Dynamics 365 from Outlook across virtually any device using server side sync
  • Analyze with Power BI - discover new insights by embedding Power BI dashboards in Dynamics 365
  • Field Service module - optimized work order scheduling for on-site service visits including installation, repair and maintenance
  • Universal Resource Scheduling - manage and schedule any resource in Dynamics 365
  • Knowledge Management - share solutions and important information about your products and services
  • Unified Interface - responsive interface providing a consistent experience across browsers, screens and devices
  • Service Level Agreements - define service and support standard and associate to entitlements
  • Word & Excel Templates - single click document creation
  • Theme Records - add business logos and change UI colours
  • Business Rules - define rules based on business process flows
  • Calculated Fields - automated formula calculations
  • Roll-up Fields - shows roll up values from child to parent records
  • Virtual Entities - view data that resides in an external system
  • LinkedIn integration - embedded Sales Navigator capabilities (requires Sales Navigator Pro subscription)
  • Unified Service Desk - configurable framework to build an Agent Desktop application integrated with Dynamics 365
  • Customer field for any entity - configure customer lookup field for any Dynamics 365 record type

Recent Microsoft Dynamics updates that are only available for the Online (Cloud) edition include:

Dynamics 365 Online Capabilities NOT Available with On-Premise

  • Project Service capabilities - end to end project service management
  • Web Portals - integrated self-service portals for customers, partners, employees or communities 
  • Voice of the Customer - integrated survey solution to create and distribute questionnaires and other feedback forms to collect customer opinions, ratings and views
  • Advanced AI Capabilities - including AI apps across Customer Service and Market Insights (previously Microsoft Social Engagement) currently in preview
  • Relationship Insights - AI-driven contextual action cards based on recent contact interactions
  • Organisation Insights Dashboard - review usage stats in the Power Platform admin centre
  • Gamification - apply the concept of fantasy sports to increase user engagement and competition
  • Integrations - Excel Online, Word Online and OneDrive for Business
  • Mobile offline sync
  • Dynamics 365 for Marketing - native marketing automation capabilities
  • Dynamics 365 for Talent - including modules for Attract, On-boarding and Core HR

As noted above, new features and enhancements in the October 2018 release wave, and announced for the April 2019 update, are not available in the latest on-premise edition. These include:

  • Updates to the Unified Interface - including bulk editing, advanced find and merge records
  • Dependent option sets
  • Microsoft Teams integration
  • Embed Canvas PowerApps into model-driven forms
  • Playbooks - repeatable set of sales processes triggered in the event of a defined scenario
  • Self-service scheduling capabilities
  • SLA enhancements - show time remaining / elapsed and business / actual hours

Want to know more? Please get in touch and we'll answer your questions.


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