Having decided upon migrating or else implementing a Business Central based solution, the next obvious decision would be about the hosting – Online or else On-Premises. The main difference between them is of the platform.
A decision on this shall involve multiple considerations one should look at. This blog shall help you to decide whether to adopt Business Central On-Premises or Online.
Here are some key points to be considered:
IT and Infrastructure
The ease of IT and Infrastructure setup of Online Business Central could not be compared with an On-Premises business central setup. While it might take one day for a SAS online setup it could take weeks or months for an On-Premises hosting setup.
Backup and Disaster Recovery
Business Central Online instance is available on Microsoft Azure with an uptime Microsoft SLA of 99.9%. Cloud-based services provide quick data recovery for all kinds of emergency scenarios like natural disasters and power outages etc. The data gets backed up in more than one Azure datacenters – providing quick disaster recovery solutions. On the other hand, backups and disaster recovery setup are at times compromised when done in house and lead into an uncountable business loss in case of an eventuality.
With the online Cloud setup, it’s an all-inclusive SAS pricing which Customer needs to pay.
Moreover, there is no commitment on the number of users, Customer can add or remove anytime. On the other hand, for On-Premises Solution, whether it is GP or Business Central, not only the application license Cost but you need to consider the cost of Server OS, SQL Server, Certificates, Terminal Server, etc.
It might be just a perception that the data is much more secured in case of On-Premises deployment, it’s rather more vulnerable to virus and spam attacks when on a physical server in Premises. In many recent cases, it was found that the Customers with Cloud-based deployment found themselves safe in case of a ransomware attack rather than Customers using On-Premises.
Applying Cumulative Updates and version upgrades
Cloud-based Business Central instance does automatic refresh and update, instead of forcing an IT department to perform a manual update. This saves valuable IT staff time and money spent on IT consultation and you are always on the latest version. On the other hand, applying cumulative updates and version upgrades on an On-Premises Business Central setup is a manual/technical task to be done by a partner and need time and money to be spent.
One should not miss the environments to be maintained for the deployment process. You will always have a Development, Test, UAT environment which would need Server, Licenses, deployment, and management in case of On-premises Solution. While Microsoft provides two Sandbox environments, one for Development and another for Test with Online Cloud setup for Business Central environment without any extra cost.
Ease of Integration with Microsoft solution stack
With an Online instance of Business Central, you will obtain Office 365, a cloud-based service. Also, it provides access to apps such as SharePoint Online, Yammer, OneDrive, Skype for Business, Excel, Power BI, Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook. Close-knit integration of Business Central with Power Platform, Customer engagement and Office 365 allows the business significantly increasing the efficiency. It is very easy and quick for an Online Business Central setup rather than an On-Premises. Moreover, some of the Business Central features don’t work in an On-Premises deployment.
The feature is there in both type of deployments, it requires separate set up in case of an On-Premises hosting, which is out of the box option for users with an Online cloud setup of Business Central.