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.
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.
Human Capital Management (HCM) is turning out to be fertile ground for providers to develop use cases for data science. The recent HR Technology conference provided an excellent opportunity for us to learn about the offerings of six HCM providers that are embedding data science in their products and services. We conclude with ideas for future use cases that go beyond managing employee attrition and other early applications.
Big data analytics can be a highly technical subject, but as consumers we come face to face with it every day. Based on our experience as consumers, it is evident that the “big guys” know how to use big data. But what about small to midsize companies? The good news is that business analytics and even big data are becoming more readily available to smaller businesses. This is the result of three big enablers.
Traditional providers of ERP systems typically sought to expand their functional footprint to include complementary applications outside of core ERP. Now cloud ERP vendors are adopting a similar strategy, bringing significant benefits to buyers.
When implementing new enterprise systems, business process improvement should be done in parallel. Doing all of one before the other—whether process improvement first, or system implementation first—will result in failure. This post explains why.
FinancialForce continues to show strong momentum in the cloud ERP market, and it is building out its product capabilities in interesting ways. In this post, we provide an update on FinancialForce, based on interviews we conducted with its executives at Dreamforce, the annual conference for users of Salesforce.com. We also provide recommendations for buyers considering FinancialForce.
Software as a service is more than just another deployment option, another way to consume software. SaaS is a business model. It not only affects the product: it should drive the nature of how the provider does business, from how the product is developed and maintained to how it is sold, implemented, and supported. It should permeate the very culture of the provider’s organization.
Although a requirements template may appear to be a time-saving way to get to a requirements specification, this approach can actually make the project longer and cost more than it should. Moreover, they can actually lead to the wrong ERP system being selected. In this post, we identify the problems with the the use ERP requirements templates and outline a better way for specifying requirements for new ERP systems.