In just a few days, the latest version will be available: Having debuted at CeBIT 2010, SAP Business One 8.8 – one of SAP’s solutions for small businesses and midsize companies – offers new business intelligence functions, improved transaction management, and a revamped graphical user interface (GUI). SAP Business One is suitable for small organizations with as few as five users and maps business processes in over 70 industries (including automotive, chemicals, consumer products, mechanical engineering, healthcare, education, high tech, media, manufacturing, wholesale, and retail).
GUI sporting a new look
Right from the start, you’ll notice the solution’s new graphical user interface, which SAP has redesigned to offer improved clarity and ease of use. For example, users can preview multiple windows simultaneously and zoom in to the one they need. Those who prefer the previous interface also have the option of switching back.
Full complement of BI functions
In version 8.8, SAP Business One has become even more business-intelligent. It now comes with tools from the SAP BusinessObjects portfolio such as Crystal Reports, Crystal Reports Viewer, and Xcelsius, enabling users to analyze data, create graphical presentations, and make forecasts. With Xcelsius and some added help from Microsoft Excel, for instance, you can create interactive dashboards. SAP Business One 8.8 also offers diverse output functions: In addition to XML and XLS, the solution can export dashboards in such formats as Microsoft Office and Adobe’s Flash (SWF), PDF, and AIR.
More new features
Along with updates in BI and usability, SAP Business One 8.8 offers a number of other new business functions – for commissioning and packing, for instance. The solution can now map multiple units of quantity, such as in cases where a company purchases beverages in crates and sells them individual bottles or packs. Enhancements in finances and accounting, banking, purchasing and sales documents, and support are also included.
- Alternative reconciliation account: SAP Business One now makes it possible to create an alternative reconciliation account to change reconciliation accounts at the document level.
- Change log: In the solution’s administration component, users can track changes for definition windows for tax codes, cross-tax codes, house banks, freight, and credit cards.
- For India: The new version of SAP Business One covers withholding tax (TDS, eTDS).
- Changes in due date reports: When creating due date reports, users can now group reports on due vendor liabilities by vendor and purchaser and enter flexible time intervals. You can also display detailed information on multiple customers or vendors in the due date report window.
- Gross profit: You can now change gross profit figures in all sales documents – even those that are already closed. A separate field also enables you to calculate gross profit as an overall base price. In addition, you can view gross profit reports for item- and service-based sales transactions while accounting for bills of materials for sales and assembly.
With SAP Business One’s payment assistant, users can generate a series of ingoing and outgoing payments to be transferred, as well as checks and bills of exchange. It is also possible to define a minimum amount each transaction has to meet before any transactions are processed.
Purchasing and sales documents
- Down payments: SAP Business One can now link down-payment requirements to final invoices and account for various sales tax codes. A list of open documents shows those down payments that have been made, but are still linked to a final invoice.
- Item availability in sales orders: The solution supports improved processing of customers’ requests for quotes based on analyses of all open sales and production orders. It generates lists of all available quantities of the item requested.
- Duty calculations for the cost of merchandise sold: With SAP Business One 8.8, you can calculate the import duties on all costs of sold goods. It can also calculate duties in relation to overall costs.
- The latest version of the solution also enables you to enter negative amounts purchasing and sales documents, thereby covering credit memos, returns on sales and purchases, and other functions.
- The solution now supports document processing by document number series, independently of the respective customer number.
- You can copy exchange rates between source and target documents.
- Users with access to Xcelsius can embed Flash objects and Crystal Reports.
An expanded infrastructure
With the latest version of SAP Business One, you can limit licenses globally or by localization. The solution supports access restriction through new license types such as Limited CRM User, Limited Financial User, Limited Logistics User, and Indirect Access User.
Improvements for SAP partners
SAP partners can look forward to a number of benefits, such as an upgrade assistant that will make their work easier. The assistant verifies license servers, sets up connections, checks database availability, defines backup repositories, and carries out actual upgrades.
The Remote Support Platform, meanwhile, facilitates remote maintenance with an automated tool that monitors data records, safeguards the transfer of business data, sends queries to track down errors, collects information on installations and memory space, and issues automatic bug fixes. An upgrade wizard automates various processes, such as backups and software component upgrades.
Finally, the SAP Business One Software Development Kit (SDK) enables programmers to integrate third-party software and run Web services, add-ons, and other elements on mobile devices.
Outlook: From business solution to flexible business platform
According to SAP, implementations of SAP Business One take between just two and eight weeks.
Using the upgrade wizard, users can update their current version of SAP Business One (including releases 2005 ASP01, 2005 B, 2007 A, 2007 ASP01, and 2007 B) to version 8.8; pricing is available by request.
Another of SAP Business One 8.8’s useful features is its ability to integrate with SAP Business Suite. Smaller subsidiaries are thus not forced to switch to SAP Business Suite just because their parent companies use it at their headquarters. With the SAP Business One SDK, you can also insert diverse industry-specific add-ons and applications, making the solution a truly flexible business platform.