APS Implementation Truths

Abstract

After significant negativity in the press, we decided to find out what the true story was — was APS worth it?

Report

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The bottom line: customers have been satisfied overall, and a significant majority would buy again from the same vendor. Only about 10% of companies are dissatisfied with the software, which is about average for the software industry. The renewed and real focus by APS vendors on customer satisfaction, combined with avoidance of the common end user and consultant pitfalls that contribute to project problems, mean companies will drive real value from the vast majority of APS projects.

ChainLink Research has directly talked to hundreds of Advanced Planning System (APS) users. That experience, combined with unique access to multiple software vendor performance data, was used to generate the content in this report. This core data was supplemented by working with software vendors to engage in more detailed discussions with leading implementers of APS solutions. This report will not be the last word on this subject—but it is the most definitive to date.

Key findings from this research includes the following:

  • APS implementations did suffer from a period of declining success around the 1999-2001 time frame, due to a variety of factors, many of them related to the overall overheated technology climate in users and vendors during that time.
  • Since then, APS module-by-module implementation among the top APS vendors has become streamlined and predictable.
  • Software vendors are playing a more active role in the implementation of their solutions than in the past. Frequently today, vendors are implementing the whole program without use of outside consultants.
  • The roles and engagement of the implementing company’s own users and its vision for how the system will be used, remain the key factors for APS deployment success—as it always has and will be.

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