During the last few years the stampede to service the SMBs has been impressive. But some, like SYSPRO, have been there all along, and they have a deep understanding of what it takes to support the diverse and complex needs of smaller enterprises.
Small? Who you callin’ small? Being one of the shortest kids on the playground, I learned how to handle myself well. So I can relate to the needs of the SMBs and the companies that service them. One of the misperceptions about ERP firms that support the small is that the solutions are not deep. And this is true with some providers. But not with SYSPRO. After several decades of code development and a progressive culture of development demonstrated by such examples as their app store (note SYSPRO innovation in app store) and early entry into enterprise social networking — ahead of the larger players — they can support some pretty large and complex organizations (see Figure 1) with their solution.
SYSPRO has a global and multi-industry reach, from manufacturing to retail. They operate in over sixty countries with thousands of distributors and have a strong presence in each continent. They are a pretty tight group, the SYSPRO execs, and communicate intensely to drive the strategy and products forward.
Compliance-oriented process industries such as chemical, food, and beverage, for example, can benefit from their pro-active, head-of-the-line stance to keep up with trends such as sustainability and responsibility issues and FDA mandates.
A Quick Look at Their Retail Solution
SYSPRO is known for their strong manufacturing — both process and discrete; and financials — cost management, analytics and financial modeling. Lesser known is the quest to build a competitive retail solution.
Integrating across the business from customers and store operations through supply chain and distribution is no easy development task. So I was pleased to see what they have done in the last year for small retailers. Again, not-so-small functionality provides retailers a rich solution which includes:
- Ecommerce and catalogue — online sales, shopping cart, etc.
- Customer loyalty — program management, discounts and promotions; customer-specific history.
- Point of Sales — full range of approaches from mobile sales, scanning and cash register; as well, they support advantaged transaction management at the Point of Sales terminal, which includes:
- Integration with back office system for credit checks, inventory, order status, ordering, and a wide range of payment methods.
- Warranty sales and return and repair processing
- These features can support not just B2C but B2B operations between wholesalers, distributors, etc.
- Cash Management — till/drawer integration to back-end reconciliation. We have to mention the various fraudulent activities that go on at the cash register, especially when it comes to cash transactions, so monitoring and reconciliation is an important feature here.
- Inventory Management — from status and integration to pricing
- Stockroom/receiving — inbound receiving, ticket/price management and stock-to-shelf coordination
- Purchasing — replenishment and inbound goods-in-transit tracking and scheduling
These capabilities coupled with their distribution and manufacturing solutions can provide end-to-end management for retailers who sell their own branded products (Apple, Sony, apparel brands type stores).
Another element worth noting is their ‘always-on’ architecture. This is the distribution of processing capability, assuring that if one node goes down, the store for example, they can still function with connections to a central server.
Conclusion — Not Part of the IPO Stampede
Another interesting note about SYSPRO is their commitment to stay private. This, they feel, allows them to focus on doing what’s right to keep the product current. Rather than being distracted by Paternoster Square or Wall Street, they can make an investment in the company and product without worrying about that quarter’s impact on profits, knowing that it will pay off later.
That is in contrast with many other ERPs that have Private Equity (read our article about Private Equity in this issue, Who Owns the ERP Market?) or an IPO to raise funds for expansion. So, although they are private, they seem to generate enough cash from operations to keep their product up to date.
More on SYSPRO: SYSPRO Genius S=MC²
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