A Few Key Market Trends....
A few fundamental technology and business market trends on the Overall IT including ERP Market.
Is ERP Dead ? (25th January 2010) - Earlier Weblog Forrester 4th Wave.
There is an influential viewpoint in developed markets that ERP is dead and BPM - Business Process Management solutions are gaining precedence over ERP.
In India, the situation is different.
Many organizations (especially small and medium sized ones) do not have ERP on their immediate horizon, a thought echoed by the head of emerging markets division at one of the world's largest software vendors.
As depicted by our Systems Staircase, an ERP software is at the upper end of an organisation's systems climb in complexity, maturity & hierarchy.
ERP will not die.
However, ERP solutions will be designed in a lightweight process-centric manner using contemporary web technologies and service oriented architecture.
ERP & The Cloud
ERP has ^ already moved
Compiere has today announced that they are offering their Open Source ERP Solution on the Cloud.( 12th March 2009)
ERP has to move to the Cloud
Many global organizations are considering replacing their traditional standalone Excel spreadsheet based departmental productivity applications with integrated Internet based Applications.
These Web based Apps are hosted in the Cloud and stand on a strong foundation of either an Open Source Database like mySQL or Proprietary Databases like Oracle or SQL Server.
ERP Packages that are not Web-Enabled will find these Low Cost Internet Cloud Based Apps a significant marketing challenge.
It will hasten development of fully integrated Internet Cloud Based Web ERP Applications.(13th October 2008)
What will 2008 herald for the Enterprise Software Market ? ( 21st December 2007)
Every New Year ushers in a sense of optimism. 2008 is no different.
In the growing pessimistic shadow of an expected US slowdown, it promises more enterprising excitement in the Enterprise Software Market (including ERP and all related areas of CRM, PLM, SRM, etc).
Global Enterprise Customers will witness continuing progress towards the following technology & market spaces :
SOA - Service Oriented Architecture - Enterprise Software Suites will continue to be re-architected by all major ERP vendors as per SOA principles.
SAAS - Software As A Service - Or 'Software Plus Services' will strengthen it's position as an evolving Mainstream Delivery Vehicle for ERP vendors.
Open Source - Enterprise Vendors will have to create 'Community' or 'Open Source' Versions of their software for fast growing emerging market segments or risk loosing Enterprise Mashup Market Momentum.
Mobile Computing - The Entry of Google's Android Operating System Stack will create an open platform for enterprise computing on mobile internet devices currently dominated by Symbian, Apple OS, Windows Mobile & Linux OS software.
RIA - Rich Internet Applications will transform the web based front end User Interfaces of Back End Enterprise Solutions.
Next Generation ERP Software Services ( 18th December 2007)
The Next Generation ERP Solutions will not come in a huge monolithic bundled solution as is done today.
They may not even be called as ERP Software services, but just Enterprise Business Services.
They could originate from or be delivered to any part of the globe.
They will be composed of multiple independent yet integrated services that offer distinct business functionality.
Customers will be able to customize these services as per their unique needs.
New Paradigm for Enterprise Software
Increasing Criticality Of Human Capital & Emergence Of Wireless Devices has created significant gaps in yesterday's enterprise software solutions.
Organizational Key People & their Mobile Devices have become the pivotal Enterprise M-Assets - The Men, Materials, Methods, Money, Markets, Mortar-Brick, Machines, Messages & More...
Older ERP solutions may not be geared to handle the challenges of the future.
A new paradigm is required. ( 11th December 2007)
The ERP Space has become very challenging ...
Most large ERP Vendors like SAP, ORACLE, MICROSOFT are finding that the global ERP market is posing a series of technical and business challenges.
Technical Challenges are primarily due to the emergence of various software architectural issues due to Internet Platform enabled On demand Software, SOA (Service Oriented Architecture), Virtualization & Mobile Computing.
Business Hurdles are due to an overall Industrial Slowdown along with customers needing more deep industry vertical domain expertise as well the new Business economics of Software As A Service (SAAS) Utility Computing.
It remains to be seen as to how ERP vendors successfully navigate the tricky technology terrains ahead. ( 20th November 2007)
Oracle and Microsoft have signalled the Death of ERP Software License Fees in India.
Both of them have finally taken the plunge into Subscription Based Hosted ERP Services.
As reported by an IT trade magazine a couple of days ago, Microsoft is offering 3, 4 & 10 User Material & Financial Accounting Packs of their Dynamics ERP Solutions hosted by one of their business partners.
Oracle had commenced a similar initiative earlier.
This is in line with the global fundamental shift in the software & services marketplace. ( 9th August 2007)
PAAS - Platform As A Service is a Term coined by SalesForce.com to describe their new Java-like Apex Programming language which allows Developers to extend their AppExchange platform to develop / modify on demand software applications and deploy them as Web Services adhering to SOAP & XML standards. ( 20th July 2007)
We are currently in the midst of a massive disruptive revolution in ERP & the entire software business due to factors as :
Open Sourcing and Peers Production (which is being considered as an alternative form of production).
Non PC devices as software client platforms.
Software Interfaces getting coupled with content at the delivery point.
Free ERP Software supported only by advertising revenues and support revenues.
Trend towards Simplicity and Transformation of Information Technology as a Utility Service.
Open Source - The overall IT and software services market is quickly moving into the Open Source model wherein software would be freely available and support services would be paid for separately.
The Open Source Models would not be just in Operating Systems like Linux but in all areas of Software e.g. Eclipse and SourceForge for software development and other areas of Organizational Workings.
Real-Time Grid Computing - Driven by the large Hardware Players like Dell, HP, IBM and SUN.
Software As A Service (SAAS) - Web Services - A Vastly Improved ASP - Application Service Provider Model.
By enhanced extensions of the current ASP offerings by disaggregating of the current complexity into simpler Net-Enabled Interfaces available as Services.
All ERP Players including SAP are wary of Salesforce type of SAAS business models as it could have devastating impact on their current licensing based revenues and business models.
Since this SAAS trend is a real long-term area of worry for SAP as per one of their officials in Mumbai, they have also recently started offering SAP Based Application Service Provider (ASP) Services.
Software is anyway envisioned to be consumed via Web-Services in the future.
Perhaps it also makes sense (as long as a Vendor can afford the same) to give it away free and have as many people use it, get hooked on to it and then gradually start charging them the same.
Impact of Increased Offsourcing and IT Sourcing from India and China leading to Lower Price Points for IT Services.
Impact of Increased IT Consumption in Asia Pacific Region (mainly India and China).
Portable Mobile Devices to access Information beyond PC's only. (Mobile Telephones, Hand-helds, Palm Tops, PDA's, Blackberry, Treo, etc)
There is a lot of interesting Enterprise software (ERP included) action around the corner in the next couple of years.
Expect much more of Tier-1 vendors eating up others for their three daily meals like Oracle did to JDE and Peoplesoft.
Also, it will not be Microsoft Versus SAP or Versus Oracle.
Perhaps, each one of these (either in their individual form or consolidated / merged form) struggling to fight individual or combined forces of the above from the Open Source World in different market segments.
As a first step, Microsoft and SAP have already announced the development of a joint product named Duet.
Also, lets not forget the big Global Hardware Players - Dell, HP, IBM, SUN and other Regional Players.
They too will be around and will play an increasingly important role in delivering Services (ERP and other IT Hardware and Software Services) to Consumers.
ERP Market Dynamics & more visionary Thoughts of Business / IT Experts.