Johannesburg — SAP Africa has introduced an innovative online configuration tool, the SAP Business All- in-One Configurator, which provides a reasonable estimate of what it will cost to implement a typical SAP Business All-In-One solution for specific vertical industry sectors. In a matter of hours or even minutes, company directors interested in gauging the suitability and affordability of SAP Business All-In-One for their business can do so by visiting www.configurator.ch/za.
This online tool is an element of SAP’s Fast-Start programme which provides easy access to leading-edge Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) technology. With a clearly defined set of pre-configured industry-specific processes, Fast-Start enables companies to achieve fast and predictable implementation of SAP systems.
According to Luciano Ravenna, Director of SME Programs, SAP South Africa, the Configurator addresses perhaps the most pressing issue, that of cost, faced by the SME business owner when considering the purchase of an integrated business system. “The prospect of moving from the collection of applications, which a growing company might have in place to run their business, to an integrated ERP system, can be daunting. Just the exercise of identifying a solution and then establishing the investment required can be daunting, as it might involve ‘spec and select’ consultants – a process which can, in of itself, run up considerable bills.”
He says it is no secret in the industry that getting even an estimation of the cost of an ERP solution can be a major problem which can take weeks or longer to resolve.
The SAP Business All-in-One Configurator calculates an estimated price for the on-premise deployment of SAP ERP including hardware, software, and implementation costs provided by qualified SAP Business All-in-One Partners.
“The online tool includes the ability to configure all modules so the prospective SAP customer can get an accurate estimate for the system which is suitable for their specific business,” says Ravenna.
Noting that SAP’s solutions are designed for vertical industry specialisation, he says the Configurator currently provides estimates for Manufacturing, Wholesale and Engineering Services businesses. “The tool is localised for South Africa best practices for companies in these market sectors,” he adds.
In addition, the tool provides a complete description of each SAP module which will comprise the final solution, including fact sheets available for each scenario. Some are compulsory – such as the General Ledger – while others are optional. The business owner therefore can specify the solution which best meets immediate needs.
“The availability of this information ensures that the business owner can clearly understand where value is created by the proposed solution while examining the applicability of each and every module for the business. It even provides a step by step guide on how certain processes are executed by the SAP system and why, which reduces risk as it is possible to see what may have to change in the business with the deployment of SAP,” says Ravenna.
On completion of the SAP Business All-In-One Configurator, a scope document with a complete breakdown of modules, costs and assumptions – as well as the terms and conditions of the estimate – is emailed to the prospective client.
The SAP All-In-One Configurator has found favour with Gary Simon, Group Publisher of FSN Publishing Limited and Managing Editor of FSN Newswire, who says: “It is a bold approach to the perennial problem of how to make implementations quicker, smoother, less costly and more successful.”
SAP is the world’s leading provider of business software (*), offering applications and services that enable companies of all sizes and in more than 25 industries to become best-run businesses. With more than 47,800 customers (excludes customers from the acquisition of Business Objects) in over 120 countries, the company is listed on several exchanges, including the Frankfurt stock exchange and NYSE, under the symbol “SAP.” (For more information, visit www.sap.com)
(*) SAP defines business software as comprising enterprise resource planning and related applications.
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