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.
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.
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.
In some enterprise software selection projects, clients are tempted to skip the Request for Information (RFI) stage and go straight to a Request for Proposal (RFP). This is a mistake and often the result of not fully understanding the value of a well-written RFI. This post discusses the difference between an RFI and an RFP and the benefits of developing a simple RFI early in the vendor selection process.
Developing an IT strategy for some organizations can be difficult because of the presence of a legacy system. Legacy systems that are old, out-of-date, and difficult to maintain are a huge obstacle to innovation. As a result, business leaders become increasingly frustrated by their inability to roll out new mobile apps, connect with customers, analyze business performance, or become a digital business.
Today, there is no manufacturing cloud ERP provider with the size or scale of Salesforce.com or Workday. Contrary to popular belief, this is not because the opportunity is small. Manufacturing still comprises a large percentage of US companies and is an enormous opportunity for cloud ERP. This post outlines the challenges that cloud ERP providers face and what it will take for them to dominate the market for manufacturing systems.
Choosing the wrong system will lead to almost certain failure. But choosing the wrong implementation team can also kill project success, even if the right system is chosen. And, contrary to popular believe, many times your software vendor’s professional services team is not the best choice for implementation services. This post outlines the reasons why.
One of the most rapidly growing new entrants to the ERP market is Acumatica. In this post we identify three characteristics of Acumatica that are somewhat novel in the ERP world: its OEM strategy, industry editions, and multiple deployment options. Although Acumatica may be unnecessarily limiting itself to small companies, we think buyers may want to give it a look.
Small business doesn’t always mean simple business. Like larger companies, small and midsize businesses (SMBs) need to reach new markets, develop new products, satisfy customers, and control costs. The main difference is that SMBs need to do these things with fewer resources. In recent years, software vendors have announced new products to address the challenges facing small businesses. This post outlines two of them.