Directions US is an event for Dynamics NAV Partners run by Dynamics NAV Partners.  There are 430 people here. I couldn’t be happier with the level of excitement, engagement, and passion surrounding the Microsoft Dynamics NAV product.   It’s refreshing, energizing and reassuring –  I know that this community are willing and able to do a great job for our existing customers and serve very many more new ones.

We delivered our keynote presentation last night – and are running many more workshops throughout the conference – providing our Partners with early insight into what we have planned.

So what are we here to talk about ?

We’re here to talk about the cloud

At Convergence 2011, we announced that we would deliver Microsoft Dynamics NAV on Azure with the next major release of the solution - Microsoft Dynamics NAV “7”.  Last night we demonstrated Dynamics NAV running on Azure.  The development project is in great shape.  We expect to ship this release in September/October 2012. 

We also announced a very significant addition to the scope of NAV 7.  NAV 7 will ship with a web browser capability – users (whether they are running NAV on premise or in the cloud) will be able to access the product with nothing more than Internet Explorer 9 on their desktop.  This web browser capability, together with the Microsoft SharePoint client we have announced previously,  will provide our SMB (small and mid-sized businesses) customers with lots of flexibility about how they choose to deploy the product and provide their employees with an interface that makes sense and adds value in the context of their job roles.

We’re here to talk about SMB’s

Our SMB customers want to gain greater control, increase their margins and grow their businesses. It is our job to help them do so.  Every day.  By way of example, we recently announced the worldwide availability of Jet Reports Express for Microsoft Dynamics NAV, which gives customers great ad-hoc reporting and self-service analysis capabilities via Microsoft Excel.  It’s available, without charge, to all Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2009 customers who have a current enhancement plan.  We also announced Zetadocs Express for Microsoft Dynamics NAV providing new document management capabilities which makes it easy for customer to deliver, store, share and approve documents online in Microsoft Office 365 directly from Microsoft Dynamics NAV.

We’re here to talk about why businesses don’t replace their legacy ERP products

Many businesses continue to just “get by” – living with ERP systems that no longer support their business needs. Why ?  Because they are concerned about the costs and risk associated with replacing it.  We’re on a mission to drive this cost down and minimize the risk.  We’re looking at ways to automate configuration – to reduce the services days that may be initially required.  We’re also looking at new software licensing options.  The new "Give Me 5" offer is an example of some of our early thinking here - creating a "starter pack" that can help customers replace their systems more affordably than they might think.

As I think about packing my bags and catching a flight home I feel good about the future for the Microsoft Dynamics NAV product.  The success of any ERP product is defined by the number of customers it serves and its ability to support their business as they change and grow. Microsoft Dynamics NAV has a well earned reputation in that regard.  Everything that we’re doing with our Partners will only enhance that.

To learn more about Microsoft Dynamics NAV visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics/erp-nav-overview.aspx or contact a Microsoft Dynamics partner in your local market.