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ERP localizations in Brazil are much more successful than rumor has it

Friday, September 1, 2023

Brazil is one of the most challenging countries when it comes to localizing a standard, international ERP solution. Many companies even choose to eliminate Brazil when rolling out an international ERP project. However, localizations in Brazil are more successful than rumor has it. With 90 percent of the Brazilian market, our partner Fênix Consultoria is an expert in localization and support of Microsoft Dynamics Business Central. Learn more about the specific challenges in the Brazilian market and how to approach them.

International ERP adaptation is never an easy task. A combination of different factors arises when adapting a standard ERP solution to meet the diverse needs and requirements of different countries and regions. Brazil is no exception. Localizing standard ERP to Brazilian culture and compliance is highly challenging. Nevertheless, the key message from Fênix Consultoria, with whom PIPOL has had a close partnership for the past 10 years, is to not give up.

Don’t be afraid of localizing ERP in Brazil
My most important message is that Microsoft Business Central works in Brazil, and international companies should not be afraid. Success may be within reach. However, you should be aware that it takes two to three times more hours to localize the software here compared to most other countries. The reason is that everything works in another way, i.e., sales, production, logistics, etc. Every single data transaction must be communicated to the government as part of the government’s control of businesses. The government knows when you buy a new computer or anything else. All invoicing goes through the government. The structure is very beneficial when doing business in Brazil, but – yes – it does require more work when localizing. Correct logging of data is extremely important, otherwise, the system will not work,” says Christian Andrade, Project Manager, Fênix Consultoria.

Another stumbling block is the Brazilian tax system with up to 100 different taxes that differ from region to region. The Brazilian tax system’s complexity, frequent changes, and diverse regulations present significant challenges for localizing ERP systems to accurately manage taxes and ensure compliance. Businesses operating in Brazil must rely on thorough research, ongoing software updates, and expert guidance to navigate these challenges successfully.

How to approach international ERP projects in Brazil
“If you run an international business, it has major implications for your global data analysis and insight if the Brazilian site is a free-flowing business satellite. You might say that we’ve made it a mission to succeed with ERP localization in Brazil. And we succeed with each case that we embrace. We have not yet turned down an international ERP project from PIPOL, but we advise companies in the health, finance, and public sectors to use tailor-made sector software,” he says.

The way to succeed in Brazil is, according to Fênix Consultoria, based on the following approach:

  1. Translation of the international company’s needs into a Brazilian context
    Both the international company as well as local managers must understand why localization is important, and what it requires. Translation is about making Brazilian culture, business methods and governmental requirements work with you, not against you. You need to find the right cultural fit, organizational fit, business fit, and ERP fit that matches your specific organization.
  2. Communication and change management are very important for success
    Let a local manager explain to the local employees the reasons for adapting to new processes. If employees don’t understand the change, change will never happen. Be aware that going from Brazilian software to international software may require some staff changes. Local people working with local software are not used to the high degree of compliance.
  3. Automatization of processes helps speed up everything
    In a country with complex compliance requirements, you need to make data collection processes as efficient as possible. RPA – Robotic Process Automation – is the answer.

The core model is key for moving to the cloud
Approx. 10 percent of Fênix Consultoria’s localizations are pure cloud, 80 percent are cloud on-premises, and 10 percent are server-based. In a country with a high degree of compliance and frequent changes in regulations, it’s much easier and time-reducing for companies to have a cloud-based solution. Version migrations are eliminated, and all infrastructure is Microsoft and connected to Office 365 in one single app solution.

If the company does not practice PIPOL’s international core model, there is no reason for going to the cloud. We always recommend the core model as it makes international implementation and localization simpler and gives the company many more advantages. We adapt the core model to Brazil before the SaaS migration,” Christian Andrade says.

PIPOL kept us “alive”
The relationship with PIPOL started in 2014 when PIPOL and Fênix Consultoria met at a Microsoft conference. That was before Navision changed to Business Central.

We instantly liked the partner concept and core model of PIPOL and are still grateful that they had faith in us back then. During a couple of years, Microsoft chose not to support NAV customers in Brazil, and PIPOL kept us alive with international projects during those years. We can implement PIPOL customers in every environment and know the core methods of PIPOL to the bone. So, the partnership is still of high value. With BE-terna and Telefónica Tech, the partnership has become even closer as they both operate in Spain and Brazil, which is very beneficial for us,” he says.

Fênix Consultoria does around 40 Microsoft Dynamics Business Central localizations per year and demand is high. Fênix Consultoria takes in external consultants and trains them to be able to solve more and more projects in Brazil.

About Fênix Consultoria

  • Over 20 years of experience, excellence, and competence in the development and improvement of Brazilian localization for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, formerly called Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
  • Headquarters located in the city of Rio de Janeiro with subsidiaries in the States of São Paulo and Salvador as well as in Miami, US.
  • Thorough knowledge of Business Processes and have PMI-certified Project Managers.
  • Maintain the Brazilian localization of ERP Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.

Would you like to know more?

Send a mail to PIPOL’s Partner Manager, Dorthe Glerup to talk about your opportunities as an international partner.

Read more about successful ERP implementations across borders here.


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