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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know which software is right for my business?

In truth there may be several software solutions which will work well within your business. You will have to carry out a search and select process in order to determine which is the most suitable for your business. Your choice might be limited by your budget or your required functionality. Determine in advance which are the main driving factors and set your budget expectations early. Research your shortlist in advance of receiving demonstrations so that you know what the software’s weak points are as well as the strengths. It is important to be realistic with your search. If you find a software product which meets 80% of your requirements then you are doing well.

Is SAP just for big businesses?

SAP has a number of mid-market solutions including, SAP Business One and its cloud based product SAP Business ByDesign. These have been designed to allow smaller companies to harness the power of SAP and take advantage of the end to end built in business processes which exist within SAP software. ByD does have a minimum license number of 20 users so make sure you take this into account before consideration.

Is it true there are lots of hidden costs when it comes to buying NetSuite?

No. Oracle NetSuite is a modular solution so you pay for the software you need but not for the bits you don’t. As a result, one company’s Oracle NetSuite product will be different from another’s and the cost will reflect that. As you might expect, a single user CRM license will be very low cost by comparison to a 50 user MRP with advanced modules. Your partner should understand all your requirements first before suggesting which modules you require and they should negotiate with Oracle NetSuite to get you the best deal for your needs.

How do I know when I need new business software?

There is no hard and fast rule since every company is different. Typically you will be experiencing some pain points within your business. These can include, too much manual effort or duplication of effort, poor business intelligence, profit leakage or outdated software. You should look to build a cost benefit analysis to ensure that you are selecting the right software for the right reasons. Even if there is a desire to acquire some great new software, sometimes companies can operate fine using a series of spreadsheets and basic financial software and anything more might be using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

Would it be better to buy a new ERP solution or to integrate my current systems?

Usually the drive to get ERP is a desire to interconnect all the divisions within one company or companies. This is a rational and sensible decision but can also be achieved through connecting current systems. You need to consider what your systems are, the marginal benefit you gain from each in a stand-alone capacity

How can I best manage my needs just now as well as take into account my future needs?

It is important to consider how you future proof your business. Whilst your issues and needs today absolutely need to be addressed, you have to have a plan for you how intend to grow tomorrow.  Most ERP software has features and functions you won’t need just now and can scarce imagine using in the future. But it’s great to know that the functionality can be “locked and unlocked” based on your current requirements. Some software like SAP ByD comes with all the functionality and you just decide what to implement and what to leave behind. Software like Oracle NetSuite is modular so you can buy extra modules as you require them. Cloud based software is true software as a service (SaaS) which is great for future proofing your business. Consume what you want just now and come back from more later if you need it.

How much does it cost?

Just like you can’t easily answer the question “how much is a house?” it is difficult to answer this without knowing more about your needs. Of course, there is an “average” price for software like SAP ByD and NetSuite but just like your house price will increase or decrease based on the number of bedrooms or the square footage or size of the garden, the software price will come up and down based on things like your usage of the software – functionality or number of licensed users. To get a rough idea please get in touch.

How secure is the cloud?

It’s very secure. Whilst you will always get bad people, trying to do bad things, you are more likely to lose your data due to a disgruntled employee deleting files off your server. You might feel like it’s safer to know your data is in the room next door but you just can’t apply the same business continuity effort and security standards as cloud based software companies like SAP and Oracle NetSuite. They have based their entire business on keeping your data safe. If they fail at that their business success is at risk. If you want to keep your data on premise make sure you have a robust business continuity and security plan – and keep it up to date often.

How easy is it to get my data back?

The data is yours. It doesn’t belong to either Oracle NetSuite or SAP. You can extract it from the system as often as you like and in multiple different formats. Make sure you ask this question of all cloud software providers and don’t go with any company who cannot tell you how to pull your data back off their cloud.

Should I be thinking about an exit strategy?

It is just as prudent to consider an exit strategy at the point of cloud “entry” as it is for on premise software. Any big change you make in your company – whether it is moving building or moving systems should come with a plan B. Something as simple as clearly understanding your terms of contract (price increases, contract break points and areas to renegotiate) should form the basis of your plan. Consider also, details such as your cloud provider’s survivability. Go to a vendor that you are confident won’t “disappear” in a year or two. Big vendors are not always the cheapest but it’s worth paying for the security of knowing that you will be leaving them and not the other way about.