Businesses worldwide use Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) to manage information exchange and improve workflow throughout their organizations. Scalable, convenient ERP systems integrate these companies’ vital business processes and technologies into a single manageable, user-friendly, real-time system that adds value, convenience and efficiency to the enterprise.
Enterprise Resource Planning solutions integrate diverse systems across all levels of the business infrastructure. These include sales force systems like CRM applications, executive systems like project management applications and even manufacturing and resource planning programs. ERP combines the data flow between these diverse applications to unify all departments, enhancing communication and productivity.
The leaders in the ERP realm are Oracle’s JD Edwards EnterpriseOne and SAP. Both have their own pros and cons relative to many individual business’ needs, but it seems the JD Edwards offering has the edge on SAP when it comes to comparing price and budget metrics, support and flexibility, complexity and the ability to meet very specific needs.
Cost is a key factor for companies shopping for ERP solutions. JD Edwards EnterpriseOne was a clear winner in two major areas of cost comparison:
*Implementation cost: Simply put, JD Edwards costs less to buy and roll out than the SAP offering in similar-sized enterprises.
*Ongoing cost: A major complaint about SAP is that everything is a la carte. In this system, businesses buy a base solution from SAP and then are “nickel and dimed” for add-ons that many thought came with the product. These costs add up quickly and price many companies out of SAP.
What good is an enterprise-level software package without adequate support? JD Edwards’ open-source nature won praise from stakeholders unwillingly to be locked in to SAP’s rigid system.
*External support: As a closed system, SAP essentially requires companies to rely solely on them for support and for consulting services moving forward. EnterpriseOne customers, in the meantime, have relied on JD Edwards consulting from Syntax and many more external sources for help.
*Functionality: The JD Edwards product supports open source technology, making it a clear-cut winner when it comes to flexibility and customization. Businesses can personalize this product themselves instead of contacting the vendor, and paying a lot of extra money, for necessary customizations.
Even the best ERP offering can be felled by the inability of everyday customers to actually use it. JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, compared to SAP, has proven to be far more user-friendly. It offers just the right amount of customization and functionality without being too complex.
*Features: Surprisingly, a common complaint about SAP was that it had too many features. Customers found themselves bogged down in minutiae, confused by too many choices. In the end, it didn’t matter that the product had an edge in functionality, since much of it came in the form of features they’d never use.
*Industry-specific functionality: JD Edwards EnterpriseOne scored points with stakeholders by offering modules specific to strictly-defined business areas. These include manufacturing and engineering, food service, construction, real estate and more. Rather than offering a massive array of features that clients in individual industries would have to wade through, JD Edwards cut through the complexity with client-specific offerings.
Considering the importance of ERP in business’ daily activities, proper comparison of ERP vendors is a must. Selecting the right ERP package can boost productivity and save on costs, so it’s important to consider key areas like price, support and complexity. In these crucial categories, Oracle JD Edwards ERP is clearly superior to SAP.