Get Instant Access
to This Blueprint

Vendor Management icon

Microsoft Dynamics 365: Understand the Transition to the Cloud

Make informed decisions when migrating your on-premises AX and CRM to the cloud.

  • Your on-premises Dynamics CRM or AX needs updating or replacing, and you’re not sure whether to upgrade or transition to the cloud with the new Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform. You’re also uncertain about what the cost might be or if there are savings to be had with a transition to the cloud for your enterprise resource planning system.
  • The new license model, Apps vs. Plans and Dual Use Rights in the cloud, includes confusing terminology and licensing rules that don’t seem to make sense. This makes it difficult to purchase proper licensing that aligns with your current on-premises setup and to maximize your choices in transition licenses.
  • There are different licensing programs for Dynamics 365 in the cloud. You need to decide on the most cost effective program for your company, for now and for the future.
  • Microsoft is constantly pressuring you to move to the cloud, but you don’t understand the why. You're uncertain if there's real value in such a strategic move right now, or if should you wait awhile.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Focus on what’s best for you. Do a thorough current state assessment of your hardware and software needs and consider what will be required in the near future (one to four years).
  • Educate yourself. You should have a good understanding of your options from staying on-premises vs. an interim hybrid model vs. a lift and shift to the cloud.
  • Consider the overall picture. There might not be hard cost savings to be realized in the near term, given the potential increase in licensing costs over a CapEx to OpEx savings.

Impact and Result

  • Understanding the best time to transition, from a licensing perspective, could save you significant dollars over the next one to four years.
  • Planning and effectively mapping your current licenses to the new cloud user model will maximize your current investment into the cloud and fully leverage all available Microsoft incentives in the process.
  • Gaining the knowledge required to make the most informed transition decision, based on best timing, most appropriate licensing program, and maximized cost savings in the near term.
  • Engaging effectively with Microsoft and a competent Dynamics partner for deployment or licensing needs.

Microsoft Dynamics 365: Understand the Transition to the Cloud Research & Tools

Start here – read the Executive Brief

Read our concise Executive Brief to find out why you should learn about Microsoft Dynamics 365 user-based cloud licensing, review Info-Tech’s methodology, and understand the four ways we can support you in completing this project.

1. Timing

Review to confirm if you are eligible for Microsoft cloud transition discounts and what is your best time to move to the cloud.

3. Cost review

Use your cloud mapping activity as well your eligible discounts to estimate your cloud transition licensing costs.

4. Analyze and decide

Start by summarizing your choice license program, decide on the ideal time, then move on to total cost review.

About Info-Tech

Info-Tech Research Group is the world’s fastest-growing information technology research and advisory company, proudly serving over 30,000 IT professionals.

We produce unbiased and highly relevant research to help CIOs and IT leaders make strategic, timely, and well-informed decisions. We partner closely with IT teams to provide everything they need, from actionable tools to analyst guidance, ensuring they deliver measurable results for their organizations.

What Is a Blueprint?

A blueprint is designed to be a roadmap, containing a methodology and the tools and templates you need to solve your IT problems.

Each blueprint can be accompanied by a Guided Implementation that provides you access to our world-class analysts to help you get through the project.

Need Extra Help?
Speak With An Analyst

Get the help you need in this 4-phase advisory process. You'll receive 6 touchpoints with our researchers, all included in your membership.

Guided Implementation 1: Timing
  • Call 1: Scope requirements, objectives, and your specific challenges.

Guided Implementation 2: Licensing
  • Call 1: Identify and review your current agreements and licenses. Review transition timing options.
  • Call 2: Review and discuss an on-prem to cloud mapping position. Review the cloud’s user- and role- based licensing model.

Guided Implementation 3: Cost review
  • Call 1: Discuss additional transition costs and support. Validate product transition mapping.
  • Call 2: Discuss and review activity results. Validate cost modeler.

Guided Implementation 4: Analyze and decide
  • Call 1: Summarize your decision and discuss partner options. Review your executive summary deck (if applicable).


Ted Walker


  • Dave Cooper, Business Process Specialist, CRM Dynamics
  • Tom Amerongen, National Practice Lead, MS Dynamics, Sierra Systems
  • Mazin Abou-Seido, Certified Dynamics 365 consultant, IBS Inc.
  • Five anonymous contributors
Visit our Exponential IT Research Center
Over 100 analysts waiting to take your call right now: 1-519-432-3550 x2019