One of the key advantages of modern cloud systems is that they often come with rapid development platforms (Platform as a Service, or PaaS) that allow the vendor, partners, and even customers to build extensions and customizations to the system without affecting the underlying code or architecture of the base system. However, as with so many good things in life, PaaS can be used and abused. This post outlines the risk in overreliance on a SaaS vendor’s PaaS.
In selecting and implementing a new enterprise system, business leaders have learned the importance of evaluating business processes. However, they often think that this means they should begin with detailed process mapping of their existing processes. We propose a better way: Begin with an exercise we call business process framing. In this post we provide a definition of process framing, explain the differences between process framing and process mapping, and outline the benefits of beginning with process framing before moving on, selectively, to process mapping.
The traditional advice given to companies is that it is best to standardize on a commercial software vendor for the core of the applications portfolio. Nevertheless, we are now seeing some clients push back against this advice and developing more of their own software in-house.
In this post, we trace the history of the commercial software industry and why the buyers in some cases are rebelling. We conclude by offering new guidelines on when to choose custom development over packaged solutions.
One of the great challenges facing traditional ERP vendors is getting customers to keep up with the latest version. Cloud ERP systems are supposed to solve this problem, by making the vendor responsible for upgrades and keeping all customers on a single version. However, sometimes, even SaaS providers need to make changes that are so significant and potentially disruptive that customers resist the change. This post describes how one such cloud ERP provider is meeting this challenge.
In enterprise technology, digital transformation is a hot topic. But what does it really mean? This post provides a simple definition of digital transformation, breaks down the main types of digital transformation, and recommends an approach for developing a digital transformation strategy.
With so much having changed since CRM systems were introduced in the 1990s, is it time to rethink CRM? This post outlines six ways in which CRM systems must change to meet the needs of today’s businesses. But, only time will tell if software vendors will be able to meet these needs or whether, once again, they will over-design and over-price their CRM offerings.
Microsoft is attempting an ambitious plan to converge a wide swath of business tools under one unified umbrella called Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, a platform that serves as the successor to its Dynamics NAV ERP system. According to Microsoft, it will be offered in the cloud, on-premises, and in hybrid deployments. This post provides an overview of what to expect–and not expect–with the release of Business Central in October 2018.
Oracle currently lags behind Amazon and Microsoft as a cloud infrastructure service provider. But Oracle is about to get a big boost as its NetSuite unit begins a three-phase transition from its own data centers to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) worldwide. This post outlines the benefits, not only to Oracle, but to NetSuite and ultimately to NetSuite’s customers, making it a true win-win-win.
Just as social networking and smartphones took hold first in the consumer world and then moved into business, we can also expect artificial intelligence to begin to move into business applications in a natural way. Nearly every large, and many of the smaller, business software providers are moving in this direction. This post provides three examples of enterprise software providers embedding artificial intelligence in their products, giving organizations a way to benefit without having to invest large sums to develop their own AI systems
A real change management program is not something soft or nebulous. After years of research and real-world experiences, change management professionals have developed many methods and tools that can make change management as tangible and practical as project management. This post describes one such tool.