Frequently Asked Questions
We get these a lot!
"Would SAP Business One be appropriate for my company?"
We have found that companies with fewer than ten employees to as many as several hundred employees can be an appropriate fit, depending on a combination of factors. Such factors may include, among others
Rate of growth
Complexity of processes
Management’s desire to take competitive advantage of advanced IT capabilities
If your company is very small with little growth expected, and your needs are very basic, you will probably not require the power and expandability of SAP Business One. At the other extreme, SAP has other packages designed for certain high-end requirements that SAP Business One does not address. We find, however, that the majority of companies we meet with are an excellent fit for SAP Business One because of its versatility and "scalability".
"How can SAP Business One fit such a wide range of companies and industries?"
SAP designed Business One utilizing a “Best Practices” model based on their experience over thirty years in over 100,000 companies. The basic package includes all the features needed by typical small companies and even some midsize companies, including:
Accounting and Financial Management
CRM (Customer Relationahip Management)
E-Commerce and Web Store
Inventory and Warehouse Management
Microsoft Outlook, Word and Excel Compatibility
A very powerful, user-friendly Reporting and Administration Module
The system can be customized by means of the included Software Development Kit or “tool box” that permits many kinds of changes and enhancements without actually modifying the software code. Changes made using this "tool box" require little or no rework when upgrading to newer versions of SAP Business One.
The software was designed to be extremely “scalable”, in that a growth oriented company can start with a very small number of users and grow to a large number without needing to replace the software with another system, thus avoiding the disruption and expense that such a conversion would entail.
"Why wouldn't I be smarter to choose an industry-specific software package?"
Companies which have complex processes or very industry-specific requirements benefit by the availability of “Partner Products” which have been developed by SAP Business One partners who are experts in their respective fields. These “Partner Products” must adhere to very specific methodology and rules which integrate them seamlessly into SAP Business One. With SAP Business One, you have the best of both worlds--the best core software availabe in the world for small to midsize companies, combined with industry-specific features when needed.
"We are anticipating and planning for rapid growth and do not want disruption as that occurs. How difficult will it be for SAP Business One to accomodate change?"
SAP Business One is built for growth and change!
In a typical scenario, a company can start with just the basic SAP Business One product. Our usual recommendation is to implement as little of the software and as few features as possible at the beginning, to shorten the process and familiarize users with the system.
The next step, as the need arises and resources allow, will be to "turn on" and begin using additinal features and functions which are a standard part of SAP Business One. These additional features are easy for users to assimilate since they already have become familiar with the basic software.
As new requirements arise, the Software Development Kit or "Toolbox" that is a standard part of SAP Business One may be utilized to accomodate further needs, all without changing the code in the core software. The company may use either its own people or Carolina Cipher in this manner.
Finally, at some point the company’s operations and processes may become so complex that greater sophistication in certain areas is needed. At this point, a “Partner Product” may be added, functioning just like the basic SAP product and continuing to take full advantage of all the great features they have been using all along.
You will not find another business software product that is as flexible, capable, easy-to-use or affordable as SAP Business One. It is software you can start with and stay with, growing with you with minimal disruption and expense along the way.
"Wouldn't SAP Business One be too expensive for a company the size of mine?"
It may be less than you would expect when you consider how it can literally transform your company. At Carolina Cipher, our smallest new system sold last year including software and services was approximately $20,000 and the largest about $200,000 so you can see there is a huge variance. We can say confidently that SAP Business One is very cost-effective in comparison with any software that could be considered comparable. And we will of course provide a detailed quotation in advance as part of our proposal
As with any comprehensive ERP software package implementation services costs will be more than the cost of the software itself, and they can vary widely. As you can see below, these costs are under your control to a great extent.
As your implementation partner, Carolina Cipher will help you determine a realistic budget for the initial and ongoing costs. Having implemented hundreds of systems over more than thirty years, We have learned that recognition and control by the customer of several important elements can reduce the implementation project costs trememdouly: Some of these elements are:
Ongoing involvement and review of senior management in the project.
Asssignment of a competent inside project manager.
Reducing the complexity of the project where possisble. Complex processes will always add to the cost, somtimes greatly. Often a system is made unnecessarily complex by insisting that the software mirror processes just as they have always been done, when utilization of SAP Business One's "Best Practices" processes may actually be as good or better.
Stabilizing the environment infrastructure, such as hardware, operating system and network. These issues should be examined and corrected if necessary before the implementation begins.
Performing routine functions, clerical data entry operations, etc. by customer personnel vs. asking Carolina Cipher to be responsible for them.
"How can we cost justify an investment in SAP Business One?"
Companies large and small worldwide have found that on-going investment in technology, including software, is not an option--it is a necessity in order to grow and to remain profitable and competitive.
Fortunately, investing in SAP Business One is not a cost of doing business or a necessary evil--it is truly an investment that will pay for itself many times over. Many companies choose to lease rather than purchase the software and services, making it possible to spread the investment over a period of years and acquire the system even if cash on hand is not available.
The following composite benefits were taken from a number of customer success stories, all of them relating to ways these companies have found SAP Business One to be easily cost justified:
ROI (Return on Investment) is one to three years
Reduced staffing requirements, allowing them to grow their businesses without adding to staff
Improved profits, in at least one case almost doubled
Employee productivity increases up throughout the company
Reduced operationsl costs
Improved customer satisfaction, resulting in addition of new customers and retention of existing customers
Reduction of outside accounting costs
Increased market share and ranking within their industries
Enables better and more timely management decisions leading to continuous improvement of their companies