Johannesburg — For more than 40 years, SAP has focused on developing enterprise software that makes companies of all sizes run more efficiently, more productively and more profitably. That is why SAP is inextricably linked to the world’s best-run businesses.
To grow and meet its aggressive long-term sales targets, SAP needed to reach out beyond the established and recognised customer base of large corporations to further penetrate the more robust and varied pool of mid-sized businesses. Example of this include Crown Berger, Dis-Chem, Niger Biscuit Company and Sameer Africa, which are successfully running SAP software solutions.
SAP holds a strong track record with mid-sized companies demanding deep vertical, micro-vertical insight and a scalable foundation. These companies share a common need for lowering total costs of ownership, predictable projects, fast deployment time and a long-term protection of their investments. Research revealed that while a fair amount of mid-sized businesses recognise SAP as the market leader in enterprise application software, the common belief is that the solutions would be far too complex and expensive for them. To gain confidence of the lower segment, SAP had to change its perception and break some of these myths in order to assure the industry that SAP solutions are for the big and the small.
Myth 1: You have to be ‘big’ to work with SAP
SAP comprises 195 000 customers in 120 countries, of which 79% are small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which equates to more than 86 000 businesses. SAP has been working with SMEs for nearly 40 years, helping SME customers achieve faster time to value, allow more effective use of resources and reduce costs.
SAP is known to have flexible automated processes, which allow companies to gain valuable insight into their businesses. This allows businesses to eradicate assumptions from the equation, and make better business decisions based on quantifiable facts and insight, thus finding it easier to identify business opportunities and market growth.
Myth 2: SAP is too ‘expensive’ for us
It is a well-known fact that SAP helps reduce businesses’ costs. However, some of them have been under the impression that the software is only available to enterprise organisations with big budgets. This is not the case. SAP is an affordable option for SMEs. In fact, SAP has more than 86 000 SME customers as a proof point. These businesses are not only reducing costs with SAP, they’re also boosting profitability. In most cases, that translates into a quick return on investment.
Myth 3: SAP is not ‘agile’ enough
‘A bigger business is a better business’ is a common assumption. However, SMEs have many advantages over their larger counterparts. Their size is often their strength, and this helps them to react swiftly to changing market conditions. SAP solutions are “best fit” and dedicated to meeting the individual demands of small and mid-sized companies in their respective industries.
SAP is known to help companies streamline their internal reporting processes, and can help companies achieve quick monthly internal reports, reducing reliance on manual data, thereby improving reporting accuracy, reducing errors and promoting decisions based on solid information rather than just gut feeling.
Myth 4: SAP is too ‘complicated’ for us
Implementing new IT systems can be a daunting prospect for businesses. SMEs are often under the false impression that SAP software is too complex for a business of their size, however, they agree it could help them grow their businesses. The complexity of SAP is yet another myth that disappears when you start looking at some of these facts.
In the last few years, the number of SMEs implementing SAP software has tripled. This is partly due to the fact that it’s easy to use, fast to implement and SAP puts its industry expertise to work with you through its 10 000 SAP-certified SME partners worldwide.
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As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back-office to boardroom, warehouse to store front, desktop to mobile device – SAP empowers people and organisations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 190 000 customers (includes customers from the acquisition of SuccessFactors) to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visit http://www.sap.com/africa.
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Antonia Stafford Ashton
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