Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central Field Guide
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Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central Field Guide

Your companion to a successful implementation. Tips to get ahead as you venture into the cloud

About the Book

Welcome to the Field Guide for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.

Business Central used to be Dynamics NAV and before that Navision. NAV has always been a partner-driven application. Customers buy the software at a partner, and the partner helps with implementation. A great model that has worked for over a million users across the globe.

Now Business Central is a cloud offering; there’s no longer an installation. You no longer need an IT guy to install it and then a consultant to help you set it up. You can do that yourself. Most customers still chose to get the consultant help to make sure you’re doing it right and to ensure a great start.

This book is written to help customers who venture into Business Central, with or without external help. Written to help understand the system and ensure a great experience starting with Business Central. The book is not written to be read from cover to cover. Instead, it’s meant to be a Field Guide. A companion book to help you through the implementation. And later, when you need information on a specific topic or if you need a bit of inspiration. The documentation from Microsoft is pretty good, and I’ll provide links for deep dive and background information.

The book will be published on a continues schedule on LeanPub, and you buy access to download the book again and again after purchase. I will make regular updates whenever something changes and when Microsoft introduces new versions and functionality.

Business Central covers a vast area of functionality, and the book includes the areas and issues I encounter in my daily work with Business Central customers. I'll add new chapters and details based on my experience and reader feedback.

I’m using an English language layer on my Business Central throughout this book. If your Business Central is not in English, switch temporarily to English in My Settings to more comfortable being able to follow the instructions.

If you cannot find the answer you need in the book, feel free to contact me. I’m always open to suggestions for the next topic.

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    • Management
    • Enterprise Management
    • Business and IT Alignment
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About the Author

Erik Hougaard
Erik Hougaard

Being part of the Microsoft Dynamics NAV community since 1990, Erik Hougaard has worked with every version and visited all corners of the system. Worked with NAV for the biggest companies in Denmark and across numerous industries. Erik has been awarded a Microsoft MVP Award for his Dynamics NAV contributions every year since 2014. Erik developed a 3000 users Dynamics NAV system for A.P.Møller Mærsk (MAERSK) from 1999 to 2013.

As part of the Microsoft ecosystem, Erik has been working with Microsoft .NET ever since the first version in 2002, releasing his first .NET based product in 2003 for E Foqus – a .NET bridge for Dynamics. Erik has been working with most PC based technologies ranging from DOS-based POS system from IBM, covering Microsoft’s ecosystem to open source development based on Linux.

As the primary architect on Glomaris, Erik designed a complete shipping ERP platform, running on Microsoft Azure with distributed services across the globe for the shipping industry.

Personal Interest and hobby projects

Erik Hougaard has been programming anything that looks remotely like a computer since he was a child, it started with programming games on home computers and quickly turned to business computers at an after-school job at a local company where Erik helped with PCs in a big mainframe installation.

Participating in several programming hackathons, winner of the 2013 Microsoft //BUILD/ hackathon in San Francisco.

Participant in the Danish robotics championship for many years – Winner in 2000 and 2001. The competition is about constructing robots that can overcome a course without human interaction. Held at the Technical University of Copenhagen (

Erik has played trumpets, trombones, and tubas since childhood; he played bass trombone at DRAM Big Band, a band within the Danish National Radio and TV for ten years. The band is a not-for-profit orchestra that plays at Koncerthuset in Copenhagen ( Currently playing with the Vancouver based South Van Big Band.

Erik has completed the highest conductor education from DAMU (Danish amateur music union) level 3 and has conducted several Danish brass bands. Erik has completed the leadership education from FDF (one of the largest Christian organizations for children and youth in Denmark)

A combination of interest in 3D printing, music, and programming resulted in the development of – a groundbreaking website that allows people to design brass mouthpieces online and print on personal 3D printers.

Reader Testimonials

Eva Dupont
Eva Dupont

Microsoft Snr. Content PM

Switching to a new system for managing your accounting and other aspects of running a company is not always easy. This book takes you by the hand and walks you through the first few days with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central. I recommend the book to anyone who is new to Dynamics 365 Business Central and wants someone to explain how key processes work.

James Crowter
James Crowter

Dynamics MVP

There is an old saying "there’s no substitute for experience", well now for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central there is, it’s this book. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been using NAV, I’m confident this book will teach you something, elevate yourself to hero status among your fellow users and take control by reading it cover to cover. This might be one fieldcraft book your life doesn’t depend on but your system's health does.

Table of Contents

  • Overview of the Book
  • Introduction
    • About Erik Hougaard
    • Modules in Business Central
    • History of Business Central
    • Relationship to Dynamics NAV
    • Relationship to other Dynamics Products
    • Intelligent Cloud
  • Signing up for Business Central
    • Trial Version
    • Microsoft Partner
    • AAD Account
    • CSP
    • Business Central License Types
    • Office 365
    • Azure
    • Business Central in different countries
  • Deploying Business Central On-Premises
    • The difference between Business Central On-Premises and in the cloud
    • Why would I select the on-premises version
    • On-Premises Installation, Best Practice
    • Migration to the cloud
    • Local Extensions
  • Getting Started With Business Central
    • Admin Center
    • Setting Up Users
    • Navigating the System
    • Shortcut Keys
    • Filters
    • Production vs. Sandbox
    • Phones and Tablets
    • Printing in the cloud
    • Migrating from other systems to Business Central
    • Excel Integration
    • Configuration Packages, aka RapidStart
    • Report Layouts
    • Feature Management
    • Setting up cloud migration
  • The First Company
    • Assisted Setup
    • Setup Overview
    • Chart Of Accounts
    • Dimensions
    • Accounting Periods
    • Budgets
    • How to Number Documents
    • Posting Setup
    • Tax/VAT Setup
    • Opening Balance
    • Bank Integration
    • Exchange Rates
    • Setting up Approvals and Workflow
    • Intercompany Posting
    • Customers and Vendors
    • Sales and Purchase Documents
    • Inventory
  • Copilot in Business Central
    • Copilot Chat
    • Copilot is everywhere
  • Daily Operation
    • Master Data Maintenance
    • Journals, Journals, and more Journals
    • Payments to Vendors
    • Keeping track of your business
    • Inventory Cost Adjustment
    • Updating Exchange Rates
    • Use the Job Queue to automate operations
    • Schedule Reports
    • Deferral Posting
    • Handling expenses and reimbursements
    • What about backups?
    • Time-Saving Tricks
  • Periodic Operations
    • Financial Reporting
    • Data Analysis Mode for List Data
    • Count Inventory
    • Reminders
    • Month End Close
    • Year-End
    • Closing Inventory Periods
    • Calculate and Post Tax Settlement
  • Advanced Features
    • Project Management (Jobs)
    • Projects and Time Sheets
    • Projects monitoring, invoicing and WIP
    • Shopify Integration
    • Working with multiple companies
  • How to Customize Business Central the right way
    • Profiles and role centers - Give your users the right experience
    • Personalizations, the first level of customizations
    • Extensions, using the page designer
    • Report Layouts
    • Extending Business Central with Apps
    • Create your own extension with Visual Studio Code
  • Integrating Business Central with the World
    • Email Integration
    • Dynamics 365 for Sales
    • Expose Web Services to the World
    • Consuming web services
    • Accessing Business Central via APIs
    • Integration with PowerApps
  • Final Words
    • More Business Central Resources
    • Change Log

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