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Technology

Pace of digital transformation accelerates

There is growing evidence that the pace of digital transformation is accelerating. New studies point to the coronavirus crisis acting as a catalyst to remove manual and inefficient processes. There is also evidence that some businesses are keen to adopt emerging technologies to rethink traditional business processes.

A global survey of 700 CIOs in large enterprises with over 1,000 employees, conducted by Vanson Bourne and commissioned by Dynatrace, found that over the past 12 months, the majority of CIOs (89%) say their digital transformation has accelerated, and 58% say it will continue to speed up.

The benchmark, based on a global survey of 4,300 business leaders, conducted in July and August of 2020 by independent research company Vanson Bourne, found that prior to the pandemic, business investments were strongly focused on foundational technologies, rather than emerging technologies.

Adrian McDonald, EMEA president of Dell Technologies, said that the coronavirus pandemic has led to permanent changes in business. “Business models that were successful before Covid-19 became fundamentally more successful after Covid,” he said. “However, companies that had challenging business models prior to Covid have experienced greater challenges.”

Importance of automating IT

From an IT management perspective, analyst Forrester predicted that cloud native technology will continue to power digital transformation strategies. In its Predictions 2021: Cloud computing report, Forrester predicted that by the end of next year, 60% of companies will be using containers on public cloud platforms and 25% of developers will be making use of serverless architectures.

Digital transformation puts greater emphasis on joined up IT systems and the use of new and emerging technologies like augmented reality, the use of AI for predictive analytics and additive manufacturing. As Forrester has found, organisations are increasingly turning to the public cloud, to build cloud-native infrastructure to support new digital transformation initiatives.

Undoubtedly, IT departments are going to be asked to do more to help organisations make the best use of whatever technology can offer, to drive forward business recovery and growth opportunities.

There is a business case for embedding AI-powered automation in IT to manage the extra workload more efficiently. In fact, Dynatrace’s study reported that 93% of CIOs think AI-assistance will be critical to IT’s ability to cope with increasing workloads and deliver maximum value to the business.

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SAP SME ERP SME ERP Technology

Why SAP Business ByDesign is a Better Value than NetSuite

In the increasingly crowded market for cloud-based enterprise resource planning systems that serve SMBs, two offerings typically stand out from the pack. SAP Business ByDesign and Oracle’s NetSuite both consistently top the ratings charts when it comes to cloud ERP tools. What is a business to do when it comes down to choosing between two beloved heavy hitters with a catalog of stellar reviews from the midsized business world?

Perhaps the most important part of choosing an ERP tool is finding a partner to help guide your business through the decision-making process. Each system offers its own unique set of features and benefits, but one system or the other is probably a better fit for your individual business objectives and processes. An effective consultant will become a partner throughout the sales and deployment processes, guiding you toward the best choice to meet your specific needs.

That said, if maximum value from your technology investments is important to your midsized company, SAP Business ByDesign is probably the best fit for you. Investing in an ERP system is a large financial undertaking not matter which system you choose, although bear in mind that you’ll be replacing the capital costs associated with legacy equipment and software with the recurring and predictable operating expenditures of a cloud-based solution. But it still costs.

What Companies Are Using SAP?

So below we’ll examine the structural pricing differences between SAP Business ByDesign and NetSuite, and show you why these two ERP heavyweights are not equal when it comes to cost. Along the way, we’ll include items like discounts, contractual requirements and add-ons. The only real way to determine which tool is a better value for your business is by examining these nuances.

Overall Project Costs

SAP Business ByDesign is packaged as a suite-in-a-box, including all the tools required for running primary business processes as part of the license. There are no surprises with this ERP system, as popular features are made available right out of the gate with no hidden costs.

NetSuite uses a modular licensing approach, on the other hand, charging extra for certain “advanced” business functions like accounts payable scanning and its Excel add-on. Items also may be discounted as part of the initial contract term, but added on at a significantly higher cost upon renewal.

In fact, two of the chief complaints of NetSuite customers is increased costs upon contract renewal, and new expenses when they choose to scale their businesses and add new features. SAP Business ByDesign is inherently scalable out of the box, enabling customers to access all the important features that will support their business processes and growth without later sticker shock.

Ease of Configuration and Deployment

When it comes to configuring the system and learning it, Business ByDesign is the clear winner over Netsuite. The SAP system features built-in configuration based on best practices, enabling the solution to be deployed quickly and efficiently. In fact, SAP touts its Business Configuration as a “hidden gem.”

Conversely, NetSuite uses a template for configuration and any setup complexities beyond that template will typically add time to the consulting and project costs.

SAP Business ByDesign also includes all the key functions and processes required for a growing, mid-sized business right out of the box. This includes a free “sandbox” for testing each new release before it goes live, an important part of any software deployment. NetSuite charges extra for this feature as part of its modular licensing approach.

Support Throughout the Sales and Deployment Cycles

One key difference between SAP Business ByDesign and NetSuite is the level of consultant and company involvement throughout the sales, contract and deployment cycles. SAP has a reputation of working with its consultant partners throughout this process, while NetSuite typically focuses on direct sales and lets its partners sell on their own. So the universe of SAP consultant help is much larger and more robust.

As part of its suite approach to packaging, an SAP Business ByDesign subscription comes bundled with the cost of support, including SAP internal support. NetSuite adds a modular charge for support based on whether it is done by email or telephone. And the company’s support hub is based in the Philippines, which has been problematic for some customers (Mabuhay, Jinky).

Licensing and Contractual Nuances

SAP Business ByDesign licensing is fairly straightforward, with flat subscription and implementation fees based on the number of licenses needed. Depending on the length of the contract, that total cost may be broken up into static monthly charges.

NetSuite’s total licensing cost varies based on the product configuration, add-on modules and the total user count and duration of the contract. The cost is also billed as a subscription model, and the contract may be renewed annually or over a longer period depending on what the customer is looking for. Bear in mind that initial discounts may no longer apply after the contract is renewed.

While SAP Business ByDesign and Oracle Netsuite are both market-leading products, they aren’t both leaders in price. If cost and pricing complexity are a part of your consideration, the choice is relatively clear.

Categories
SAP SME ERP SME ERP Technology

Neutral review ByDesign VS Netsuite

The number of cloud solutions now on offer puts you in a better position than ever before to find what you need – BUT you really are spoiled for choice. For us, at In Cloud Solutions, the key to the success of your ERP project comes down to the partner you decide to work with but in order to help you on your way here are some of the differentiators;  SAP Business ByDesign versus NetSuite ERP.

SAP Business ByDesign

SAP Business ByDesign is a world class enterprise resource planning and business management solution from SAP designed specifically for the cloud. Implemented in over 7,000+ business entities in 120 countries, across 27 industries it allows fast-growing, mid-market businesses to scale and compete from one single system without the complexity and cost of an on-premise solution. Finance, CRM, Project Management, SCM & Procurement all come as standard along with easy to use reporting and analytics. SAP Business ByDesign has also proved its worth as a system to run subsidiaries.

NetSuite ERP

NetSuite is a worldwide provider of cloud-based business management software which was acquired by Oracle in 2016. It manages core business processes via a single, integrated system covering ERP/financials, CRM, ecommerce, inventory and more. More than 12,000 companies and divisions of large enterprises use NetSuite to run more effectively. Like Business ByDesign, NetSuite allows businesses to automate operations, streamline processes and access real-time business information anytime, anywhere.

Target Market

Both companies have targeted their solutions at fast growing midsized businesses as they move from entry level accounting systems to something integrated and more sophisticated which will run all aspects of their core business processes.

Road map and plans

Both Business ByDesign and NetSuite have plans to home in on industry verticals. For example, SAP are encouraging their partner ecosystem to develop industry specific Packaged Solutions which SAP will certify, while NetSuite have a programme called SuiteSuccess, about building packaged editions for different types of companies. Both include built in best practices to maximise value to the customer. SAP use the talents of their partner’s in-house developers to create intellectual property while NetSuite are focusing on industries where they are strong, like midmarket retail.

Price Comparison

It isn’t easy to quote the exact price of ERP software. The overall cost includes the software license, subscription fees, software training cost, customization cost, required hardware, and the cost of maintenance & support and other related services. We suggest approaching your chosen vendor for further information or take contact us for more information.

Features and Functionality

SAP Business ByDesign verus NetSuite ERP? Actually they share many of the same features including Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, Multi-Currency, CRM, Human Resources and Inventory Management Modules.

Some experts have commented that NetSuite product enhancements are sometimes offered as “ADVANCED” features for which there is an extra charge. A Business ByDesign subscription includes access to all new functionality.

SAP Business ByDesign versus Netsuite: Decision time

As you can see there is not much to choose from on paper between these two solutions. We would however advise some in depth research. Here are some pointers. On price – check if initial deals are going to be pegged to those rates or increased at a later date. Ask detailed questions about the countries and currencies you might need to operate in – are they supported as standard? Another area to examine is any additional software you might want to integrate with – and finally get details of support packages and costs.

At the end of the day it comes down to what you want your software to do. Have a clear idea of this and then you are in an excellent position to ask the right questions.

The right Partner

As we have said before – the right partner is paramount. Are you signing up to work with people you like and trust? Get to know your potential partners at the shortlist stage and work only with the ones you know will get the job done with the minimum of fuss. Remember, it is very easy to promise the moon but much harder to deliver it. Look out for a realistic and practical attitude to the project in hand along with the right number or specialists to see the project through. Meet the project managers and get an idea of how long the implementation will take. Those clients who are well prepared have the best experience, in our humble opinion!

While I am sure you are champing at the bit give us a call, it would be wrong to leave you without our opinion of the solution we have put our whole company behind. We run our own company on SAP Business ByDesign and so strongly do we believe that it is the best of its kind, that it is the only solution we sell. We hope you will like it too.

Categories
SAP SME ERP SME ERP Technology

ERP Comparison

As of 2019, around 77 percent of companies in Germany are using ERP systems and that number continues to increase. With ERP moving towards mass adoption the more relevant question is no longer should we use an ERP but instead which ERP should we use. This shift is not only due to the functional scope of the system, but also cost factors. Since implementing an ERP initially requires an investment from the business it is important to make the correct decisions at the beginning and know what different solutions have to offer to best fit your needs.

First off, what is an ERP system?

ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning. An ERP system is an all-inclusive program that supports, controls, and connects different functions within your business into one centralized place that can even be accessible from both on and off-site when utilizing the cloud. It replaces specialized software for individual applications, avoiding the common miscommunications that come with using multiple systems. 

Multiple Business Applications

ERP systems adapt to match your business needs and give you invaluable visibility. They can be used to automatically manage your staff, create notices, invoices, quotes and other documents to save time for your management staff. They also have the ability to directly maneuver the production of goods. It gives you more control over your stock and supply chain to better fulfill order and anticipate demand. 

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Quick comparison of SAP ByD and NetSuite:

The name SAP has long been synonymous with enterprise business software, one of the original pioneers of ERP software developed back in the 1970’s.

In the last eight years SAP has spent billions acquiring cloud-based software companies in an attempt to play catch up in the cloud ERP space. This post will provide a side-by-side comparison of NetSuite ERP to SAP’s cloud-based ERP offering Business ByDesign (ByD).

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AR

AR in Customer Experience

AR technology in Customer Experience is the overlaying of virtual elements onto a physical picture thereby allowing the user to visualise impacts or enhancements through displays such as HoloLens or Google Glass or through the camera view of a smartphone or tablet. Unlike virtual reality that transforms you into a different scenario, AR relies on beautifully produced virtual elements create magical interactions allowing the interweaving of information, designs or that sofa into a physical reality thereby allowing analysis of specifics in a situation.

Although AR is a relative newcomer in customer experience it has been predicted to overtake the use of virtual reality (VR) by 2020. Predictions put VR at $30 billion with AR at $90 billion.

Technological advancements in the use of hands-free AR working now allow the user to work on new processes thereby highlighting problems or irregularities and then to be fixed before implementation through the use of visual models, voice recognition and real-time communication. These extras transfer easily to the consumer technician environment with tools such as Service Technician mobile app by SAP providing exactly that.

The old adage of ‘the customer is always right’ holds true these days and satisfactory customer experience is key in providing that, therefore the integration of VR and AR is at the forefront of the Omnichannel customer experience. Cooperation between communication channels allow the customer to add items to their shopping cart in VR, visualise items in-situ, implement  changes or solutions, all from their smartphone or tablet. The Salesforce Customer Success Platform is one such omnichannel allowing businesses to redefine customer experience across all channels.

Ultimately commercial AR is about the integration of technologies to be easier, convenient and importantly fun, for the customer. No-one is suggesting that we should now live in a world of digital replicas, more that digitalisation can be used as a medium for turning customers experience into a specific and tangible adventure.

Ready for AR?

If you have any questions, do contact us to find out more.