31 May

tCognition: A Value Added Reseller of ERP and CRM

tCognition: A Value Added Reseller of ERP and CRM

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Value Added Reseller of ERP & CRM

Selecting the right value added reseller (VAR) for a CRM or an ERP implementation is a tremendously important decision. Being an IT-first company, we focus on your entire infrastructure when implementing and enabling any sort of deployment. Businesses trust tCognition to provide value-added services at the highest level for Sage ERP Products, SAP ERP Software, and Microsoft Dynamics 365.

tCognition’s onshore and offshore development teams create complex customized CRM and ERP integrations at an extraordinary value, that is also often only possible through third-party middleware. We can even create integrations that operate and synchronize data in real-time.

Listed below, are the perks of each of the high-profile platforms we have skill servicing and integrating with (as defined by each solution).

 

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Sage ERP Products

Manage sales, service & marketing as well as accounting, asset management, inventory, people, & payroll, through Sage enterprise resource planning. Make smarter decisions faster. Gain productivity to reduce operating costs and increase revenue. Serve more customers and increase their satisfaction. Sage helps every industry from retail to wholesale.

Sage has more than 30 years of experience helping small and medium companies manage businesses. In fact, they help more than 3 million customers worldwide to be more effective by making smarter decisions. Whether your business is growing locally or expanding globally, Sage has a solution for every stage that’s more flexible and scalable than other traditional ERP solutions.

Traditional ERP and Sage ERP Solutions: The Difference

Traditional ERP

Enterprise resource planning is comprehensive, end-to-end, integrated software that claims to “do it all.” Unfortunately, traditional ERP systems are complex, inflexible, not scalable, expensive, and not easy to use.

Sage ERP & Business Management Solution

Sage ERP business management solutions do it all and are flexible, customizable, scalable, affordable, and easy to implement. They can even be mobile, enabling you to work anytime, anywhere; giving you complete control of your business.

ERP Solutions

The Sage technology gives you one of the most powerful sets of business tools in the world. Sage offers one of the largest selections of scalable, integrated business management & ERP software systems available. Their extensive network of 40,000 accountants and 26,000 business partners provide you with industry expertise and on-site support to help you select, plan and implement the ideal mix of ERP solutions to run your business your way.

Sage 100

Sage 100 is perfect for small and medium businesses growing beyond their accounting software. This solution is ideal for light manufacturers.

  • Production management for manufacturers
  • U.S. payroll

Sage 300

Sage 300 is perfect for small and medium businesses that manage multiple locations, currencies, and languages. Access online or on your mobile device.

  • Multiple languages, multiple currencies
  • Project job costing
  • U.S. payroll
  • Canadian payroll
  • Mobile access

Sage X3

Sage X3 introduces a better way to manage your entire enterprise – from procurement to manufacturing, distribution, and financials.

  • Multiple languages, multiple currencies
  • Project job costing
  • Production management for manufacturers
  • U.S. payroll
  • Canadian payroll
  • Mobile access
  • SaaS or web-based

Sage 100, Sage 300, and Sage X3 Capabilities

  • Manage inventory and your warehouse for increased accuracy
  • Manage purchasing and vendors
  • Automate sales and marketing
  • Handle advanced accounting
  • Improve visibility and make better decisions
  • Deploy on-premises and hosted

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SAP ERP Software

Get ahead of the game with an enterprise resource planning system (ERP) from SAP. Stay competitive by relying on their proven ERP software to streamline your processes across procurement, manufacturing, service, sales, finance, and HR. Learn more about the different types of ERP systems – and explore their benefits – on SAP’s What is ERP? page.

SAP ERP exceeds the industry standard worldwide – offered for 25 industries, 37 languages, and 45 localizations. The reason SAP’s ERP solution is so successful is that its nearly 50,000 customers have helped shape its scope through programs like Customer Influence.

The Next-Generation ERP Business Suite

Run a truly live business with SAP S/4HANA, an in-memory ERP suite available in the cloud or on-premise. SAP S/HANA is the digital core that enables your business to take complete advantage of the Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, real-time analytics, mobile, business networks, third-party systems, and more.

What is SAP S/4HANA?

SAP S/4HANA is a real-time enterprise resource management suite for digital business. It is built on SAP’s advanced in-memory platform, SAP HANA, and offers a personalized, consumer-grade user experience with SAP Fiori. Deployable in the cloud or on-premise, SAP S/4HANA can drive instant value across all lines of business – no matter your industry or business size.

Immediate, Intelligent, and Integrated ERP

SAP S/4HANA is the digital core – the nerve center – of your entire business. It consolidates internal and external elements into a single, living structure that goes beyond traditional ERP software. In other words, it connects all of your processes, provides you with live information and insights, and seamlessly integrates your enterprise with the digital world at large.

Sales

How can a telecommunications company with highly customized products and services maximize customer satisfaction? With SAP S/4HANA the company can streamline its sales and delivery, quickly addressing bottlenecks and other disruptions that drive customer churn.

Corporate Planning

How can a high-tech company use public information to identify the best acquisition target? By running what-if simulations with SAP S/4HANA Finance – combining internal and external data to evaluate the potential financial impact of each scenario.

Consolidation

How can a large hotel chain connect disparate systems after multiple mergers and acquisitions? By using SAP S/4HANA Finance. With the software’s central journal scenario and embedded analytics, booking information is calculated in real-time for one reservation, invoice, and journal entry.

Manufacturing

How can a company that makes 500 cars per day process material transactions fast enough to keep up? With SAP S/4HANA, material postings are processed in parallel, giving the manufacturer real-time visibility into the material ledger. This visibility makes it quick and easy to respond to production issues and avoid delivery delays.

Next-Gen ERP Deployment Options

SAP S/4HANA offers flexible deployment options – on-premise, in the cloud, or using a hybrid model – to meet your unique needs. Explore product editions, deployment scenarios, and other key resources below.

SAP S/4HANA Cloud

The SAP S/4HANA Cloud delivers the power of in-memory ERP with the key benefits you expect from public cloud solutions. This option offers the scalability, ease of management, and security your business needs to excel in today’s fast-paced digital economy.

SAP S/4HANA

SAP S/4HANA, deployed on-premise or in a private cloud environment, is designed for businesses of all sizes, in all industries, that need deep and broad functionality combined with a high degree of flexibility. Deployed in your data center or on SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud, this option offers maximum control for your business.

Discover the Value of SAP S/4HANA

Ensure a successful deployment and drive quick time-to-value with information resources that support the different phases of SAP S/4HANA – from planning and installation to operation and continuous innovation.

 

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Microsoft Dynamics 365: Unifying CRM Business Software and ERP Systems

Drive big growth for big business. Make data-driven decisions with a complete set of enterprise resource planning (ERP) tools to provide global visibility, scalability, and digital intelligence.

Make Smarter Decisions

Use modern, intelligent ERP system tools that uncover real-time insights and information to help you make fast, data-driven decisions.

Transform Your Business

Improve business planning and execution while saving valuable time, helping you stay ahead of the competition.

Grow At Your Pace

Scale operations globally in the cloud to meet changing business needs – while integrating legacy systems to make full use of existing investments.

Finance

Fast-track your business performance. Get a live view of all your numbers and data analytics from Dynamics 365. With this Microsoft ERP system, you get the relevant information you need to deliver strategic, data-driven insights to key departments.

  • Gain immediate financial insights
  • Drive corporate strategy and growth
  • Decrease debt through efficient collection management

Manufacturing

Work smarter with connected operations. Get ERP system continuity for visibility across connected distribution, customer service, sales, and marketing systems. Innovate your products and processes to meet rising expectations.

  • Simplify production floor management
  • Accelerate product introductions
  • Offer flexibility in delivery alternatives

Retail

Deliver exceptional customer experiences. Give your salespeople the product and customer information they need to provide immediate, personalized service – across social media, mobile sites, stores, and other retail touch points.

  • Deliver customer experiences that inspire loyalty
  • Move products smoothly from procurement to sale
  • Merchandise your products more effectively

Cloud Services

Roll out powerful ERP tools. Get real-time information on almost any device, at any time. Simplify and accelerate business process changes, seamlessly integrate with legacy systems, and scaled globally with Dynamics 365.

  • Enable rapid business transformation
  • Cost-effectively support your IT needs
  • Grow at your own pace

Tailor and extend Dynamics 365 Across Your Business

Add Pre-Built Applications

Do even more with Dynamics 365 for Operations using AppSource. Enhance your ERP systems and processes by integrating add-on applications from Microsoft and our partners.

Customize Your Applications

Do more with your Dynamics 365 data. Easily create custom applications that connect with Dynamics 365 to solve your exact business needs – with little to no additional code development.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 provides intelligent applications that work smarter together. Run your entire business from end-to-end with intelligent applications that seamlessly work together in the cloud – unifying the capabilities of CRM business software and ERP systems.

There are an overwhelming number of options for ERP and CRM software solutions and a Value Added Reseller can help you choose. If you’re interested in learning more about the best ERP/CRM solution for your organization, check out our offerings and contact us at info@tCognition.com for more information.

25 May

128 Technology: 128T Networking Platform

128 Technology: 128T Networking Platform

128-Technology-Logo

We’re proud to announce that tCognition has recently partnered with 128 Technology, Inc. (Burlington); the former founders of Acme Packet (now Oracle)!

128 Technology in a Nutshell

128 Technology understands that for many companies, the network is a core part of their business – and in some cases, the network is their core business. They have developed the game-changing and stateful 128T Networking Platform (128T), which uses a Secure Vector Routing architecture that exponentially improves enterprise application performance, Cloud (AWSAzureGoogle), Security & Identity Governance, and network simplification, all while reducing cost through the elimination of now unnecessary devices (i.e. load balancers, firewalls, etc.).

128 Technology’s vision for 128T is rooted in the five basic principles below:

IP networks should be session-aware

All meaningful IP services and applications are based on sessions – the two-way exchange of information between endpoints. A session-oriented perspective provides the basis for a fundamentally new way of building, optimizing, and securing networks with end-to-end, fine-grained control, and visibility.

Advanced network capabilities should not be standalone functions

Network functions such as firewalls, load balancers, and Wide Area Network (WAN) optimizers have some level of session-awareness, yet reside in multiple physical or virtual appliances that add to the complexity. Imbuing session awareness and control into the routing layer enables the consolidation of these functions, and makes them native to the act of routing.

Routing must evolve to be application and service-centric

The modern model for routing must evolve beyond simply IP addresses and cost-based forwarding to encompass the notions of service topologies and policy frameworks. Multi-tenant policy and control logic should exist within, not on top of, IP networks.

Overlay networks are not the answer

Encapsulation or tunnel-based overlay networks such as MPLS, IPSec, and VxLAN sit on top of IP networks in order to deliver deterministic routing, network virtualization, and segmentation. These techniques create overhead, fragmentation, operational costs, and scaling challenges – and limit the effectiveness of security and monitoring systems. Session-oriented networking offers a better alternative that stretches virtual networks end-to-end across network boundaries and domains.

Zero trust security must be everywhere

Perimeter security models are no longer sufficient for today’s business demands. Next-level network security requires that no user, traffic source, or connected network should be trusted. IP routing is no exception.

With these principles in mind, 128 Technology has developed a new kind of networking platform that addresses a broad range of networking challenges but is easy to implement alongside your existing network. They’re excited about this platform because it will deliver outstanding benefits to enterprises, service providers, and cloud services companies alike.

128T Networking Platform (128T) is a software-based platform that exponentially simplifies networking, reduces cost, and provides greater security. The session-oriented, service-centric, and deterministic policy engine enables faster route selection and bi-directional route enforcement through the use of a distributed control plane (vs. centralized controller), eliminating the need for tunnels, overlay networks, and segmentation, treating traffic flows in direct correlation to the established policy.

The CGN approach to networking configures end sites with private addresses, which in turn are translated to public addresses by NAT devices embedded in the network. The incorporation of CGN is similar to a tunnel header applied in multi-tenancy environments, and thus, application-level NAT problems are eliminated, as the source and destination addresses are translated back to the original addresses before delivery to the final destination. 128T is superior to current software-defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN) architectures and network functions virtualization because it eliminates complexity and reshapes the way organizations design, deploy, and operate real-world networks by making them dramatically simpler, smarter, and more secure.

Application in Financials and Retail

128T brings tremendous value to the Financial Services and Retail Industries, with a unique focus on the following use cases.

Security

Zero Trust Security starting at the very edge of the network and extending across network boundaries; no packets enter the network unless there is an explicit policy allowing access.

Reliability

Next Generation WAN (NG-WAN) with seamless failover, the ability to leverage public and private networks, and the need for more and lower cost bandwidth across networks.

Interconnecting Data Centers

To create one “logical” DC to the enterprise including Disaster Recovery with the support of duplicate IP addresses, and the ability to move services across networks.

For example, 128 Technology is currently working with a large financial software company that had experienced a session failure resulting in millions of dollars lost in trades. Session migration and session failover were a high priority for them; all resolved using 128T.

128T can also add enormous value to any retail organization by providing secure, efficient, and dynamic connections to retail locations. Through the NG-WAN platform, a large auto part retailer, for example, was able to connect over 4,000 sites countrywide. The primary driver for this retailer was 128T’s ability to provide dynamic failover of applications.

How tCognition Can Support 128 Technology

tCognition offers cost effective programs in support of advanced technologies like the 128T Networking Platform, providing Application Development & IntegrationQA-Test EngineeringHelp Desk (Level 1-3+), and 24×7 Managed Services all customized to meet the exacting requirements of our client’s needs.

We employ solution development and product support teams for Enterprise applications like NetSuiteOracleSAGE and SAP; monitoring and management tools like EM7, Nectar, and HP OpenView; secure mobile (iOS, Android, MS) application Single Sign-On (SSO) solutions for accessing ServiceNow, ERP and CRM platforms; Omni-Channel – WebRTC solution frameworks enabling browser based full collaboration communication; Telematics, connected vehicle solutions for Agero, vehicle manufacturers like Toyota and VW, and Insurance companies.

We look forward to working with and supporting 128 Technology in taking on the challenge of securing, controlling, and optimizing clients’ overly complex networks – and internetwork – architectures. Let us know how we can engage you in a discussion and show you how we can help deliver the highest level of security, control, and agility – along with 128 Technology!

26 Jan

Sage X3 vs Dynamics AX: An ERP Comparison

Sage X3 vs Dynamics AX: An ERP Comparison

Dynamics AX and Sage X3 are both ERP solutions that are inclined towards the manufacturing industry. They are both similarly sized companies. Both also have roughly similar feature sets. This makes it necessary to examine both solutions through an objective lens in order to understand which solution is right for a business.

Any selection process must start with mapping your business process flows and understanding which modules and functionality is critical. A comprehensive overview of your needs is necessary to inform your decision-making process.

Dynamics AX vs Sage X3 — Platform Differences

Differences in platform, integrations and deployments are sometimes more critical than individual features. Depending on your business environment there may not be much of a choice.

Sage X3 Operations Systems

  • Windows
  • Mac OS
  • Linux
  • Unix

Microsoft Dynamics AX Operating Systems

  • Windows

As a Microsoft product, Dynamics AX will integrate nicely with existing Microsoft products in your software environment. As many of these are commonly used solutions, (Outlook, Excel, etc.) a seamless integration can be a boon.

Industry Verticals

Sage X3 supports several verticals right out of the box, including discrete and process manufacturing (read our manufacturing ERP article). There are a number of pre-configured implementation templates to accommodate specific requirements. It also satisfies compliance requirements of organizations like the FDA, USDA and MSDS.

Sage X3 Preferred Verticals

  • Manufacturing (Process/Discrete/Mixed-Mode)
  • Distribution/Warehousing
  • Multinational/Parent Companies
  • Configure to order (food processing, pharmaceutical, etc.)

Microsoft Dynamics AX offers similar capabilities. Through their active Independent Software Vendor (ISV) network, there are a number of third-party add-ons and modules that can enhance vertical functionality.

Microsoft Dynamics AX Preferred Verticals

  • Retail (with POS)
  • Project Management
  • Manufacturing
  • Distribution

Production and Warehouse Management

Sage X3 and Dynamics AX are simply two of the best ERP solutions for the manufacturing industry.

X3 has fantastic engineer to order and configure to order processes, quality control options and complete backwards/forwards traceability capabilities. With Sage’s exceptional BPM systems, X3 is at the top of the pyramid for this industry (particularly discrete manufacturing).

Dynamics AX is an agile and efficient system that gives full control of position, processes and resources. It provides a Gantt chart presentation of all Production Schedule Orders. AX can also predefine the tests that must be performed for the material, define the quality guidelines that relate to purchase and of course record the test results in quality order.

Full White Paper: Sage X3 vs Dynamics AXsage_x3_vs_dynamics_ax

  • Quality Assurance Modules
  • Deployment Environments
  • Pricing Models
  • Database Architecture
  • Licensing Differences
  • Dashboard Comparison

getyourwhitepaper

 

 

 

 

05 Jan

ERP Software for the Manufacturing Industry

ERP Software for the Manufacturing Industry

The manufacturing industry as of 2013 made up the largest portion of the United States GDP. With a gross output of $5.9 trillion (over a third of total GDP), the market share of manufacturing remains massive. The manufacturing industry also remains one of the most complicated. It is critical then to identify the best ERP software for the manufacturing industry.

There will always be similar constraints and obstacles related to business processes that manufacturing companies face. There are a set number of things that a manufacturer must do. Simply they are to order something, produce something, sell something and ship something. Identifying the best ERP software based on these criteria would be overly simple. Nearly every solution on the market could cover those criteria. However those are only the most simple and broad of issues, a more in-depth list could include:

  • Product data management
  • Planning and scheduling
  • Automated data collection
  • Compliance management (domestic/international)
  • Quality management
  • Recipe management
  • Batch management
  • And so many more

What you manufacture is specific, and your customers want specific solutions. Finding the best ERP software for manufacturing is about outlining your own processes. The ideal solution will adapt to your needs.

The First Decision — On-Premise or Cloud Deployment?

The increasing adoption of cloud hosting for ERP solutions has made the option more affordable and effective (read our cloud based ERP article for more information). The relatively quicker deployment times and lower total cost of ownership (TCO) can be a huge incentive. This is particularly true for emerging businesses.

However on-premise deployments have the reputation of dependability. This may be a better option for a larger and established company. Scalability and expansion can become a financial burden with traditional deployments, but with proper planning your growth plans should not be hindered.

erp-for-the-manufacturing-industry-chart

 

What ERP Software Can Offer You as a Manufacturer

Understand that needs as a process manufacturer can be very differentiated compared to the needs as a discrete manufacturer. Be aware that within the ERP landscape, some solutions are more suited to process manufacturing, and vice versa. Here is a short list of what ERP software can do for businesses in manufacturing:

  • Quality ERP software can provide a business with the comprehensive requirements for tracking production. This is a truly massive function, but it can provide the agility needed for the immense amount of variables involved in both discrete and process manufacturing.
  • Track recipe adjustments and requirement differences for different consumer bases. Moving your old spreadsheets and databases into a comprehensive solution can bring massive efficiency increases and reduce overheads (as well as maintaining compliances).
  • Quality control management can be executed from a centralized system. This is a huge improvement over traditional quality controls that can have gaps. Just one mistake can be incredibly costly, and adopting an ERP that can automate and centralize this process can reduce your risk immensely.

How To Choose The Best ERP Software for Manufacturing

Any manufacturing business should take a considerable time mapping out the processes and workflows most integral to their business. This will give you the power in choosing the best ERP software. If you are able to speak with a vendor knowledgeably, they will be able to guide you to the best solution. Be sure to know which software modules will be most crucial for your company.

There is a massive amount of customization available for most ERP solutions, but you should also be aware that the more third-party modules that are grafted on, the more costly and ineffective the system can become.

Examples of ERP Software for the Manufacturing Industry

There an often overwhelming amount of choices for your ERP software. Considering the impact that this choice can have, the process can be daunting. We will go briefly over a few options for you to further research or to reach out to us for more information.

Sage X3 offers maybe the best out-of-the-box functionality for the manufacturing industry. For manufacturers in general, but particularly those specializing in discrete manufacturing, Sage X3 offers excellent modules. We particularly like their native options for advanced quality control and inventory management.

Microsoft Dynamics NAV (and AX) also offers a good range of native modules for manufacturers. Dynamics offers advanced production functionality including time and materials reporting, quality assurance and warehouse management.

SAP B1 offers the least amount of native options. While they do have a great project management tool, we have found that SAP B1 requires a hefty amount of third-party modules to bring it up to speed. This does not mean it is a poor product, but there will be additional resources spent to get maximum functionality.

NetSuite provides a solid foundation for process manufacturing with its Advanced Manufacturing module. However there are some more meta issues with NetSuite. It only allows for cloud deployments, and tends to be too pricy as it includes some unnecessary and bulky systems.

If you want to know more about the best ERP software for your manufacturing company, be sure to contact us through info@tcognition.com.

 

23 Nov

Sage 100 vs Sage X3: A Meaningful Upgrade?

Sage 100 vs Sage X3: A Meaningful Upgrade?

Sage X3 and Sage 100 are both capable ERP solutions. If you currently use Sage 100 you might be thinking about upgrading to Sage X3. If you don’t use either, you may not be sure which platform is right for you.

Sage X3 is Sage’s self-proclaimed flagship, top of the line ERP offering. It improves process through a workflow-heavy backend which ultimately provides an interface that is much easier to use. Sage 100 is closer to working with spreadsheets rather than true dashboards and visual drag-and-drop components. There is no golden rule as to which is better if you operate a small business. There are distinct advantages to each ERP solution beyond differences in price.

There are concerns that Sage X3 will undergo a rebrand as other Sage products have in the past. Sage may have had some stigmas attached to how often the names of their products change, but they assure us the name is sticking this time. Today, Sage has become a cutting edge ERP company with true cloud deployment options and improved customer service.

Sage 100 vs Sage X3 Key Differentiators

As you can see in the one-pager above, there are some sharp differentiators between Sage X3 and Sage 100. Sage X3 clearly has more out-of-the-box functionality (a quality that X3 has over SAP B1 as well). This is particularly true if you are operating across borders, have multiple companies or have international employees. If you’re expanding rapidly and have a need to automate processes, Sage X3 could be a better fit over Sage 100.

Sage 100 vs Sage X3 Industry Verticals

Sage 100 has an advantage in a few different micro-vertical industries:

  • Rental Management
  • Retail PoS
  • HVAC Plumbing
  • Job shop

Sage X3 has a well-deserved reputation as one of the top ERP solutions for manufacturing. Both process and discrete manufacturers would benefit from choosing Sage X3 over 100. X3 offers the following and more over 100:

  • Engineering change orders
  • Formula management
  • Quality assurance
  • RoHS Management (compliance related)

Sage 100 vs Sage X3 – The Decision

Deployments and implementations of an ERP cost valuable resources. When considering using Sage 100 vs Sage X3, remember that Sage X3 is a flagship product. Follow the graphic below to get your comparison one-pager.

sage 100 vs sage x3

29 Sep

Benefits of a Cloud Based ERP

Benefits of a Cloud Based ERP

The projected growth of cloud based ERP versus traditional on-premise deployments is good news for most businesses. RnR Market Research forecasts a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 8.30% for 2016-2021. The current market share of traditional on-premise vs cloud deployments is roughly 75% to 25%. We expect those numbers to nearly reverse over the next 10 years.

Advantages of a Cloud Based ERP

Today most of the perceived stigmas of cloud computing have been corrected. Five years ago many of these factors would not necessarily have been true of ERPs hosted on the cloud. Here is a quick list of why you should consider switching to the cloud:

  • Avoids all of the up-front costs of implementing computing infrastructure like hardware and servers
  • Allows business to expand geographically, becoming more efficient due to less hardware infrastructure
  • Promotes easier customization of software, improving end-user accessibility

Who Should Switch to a Cloud Based ERP?

There are benefits to businesses of nearly all shapes and sizes. An ERP in the cloud would be particularly effective for businesses which have a large percentage of revenue dedicated to tech spending. ERPs hosted in the cloud offer fully functional, scalable and cost-effective answers to business needs — critical requirements for any growing company. Accessibility, affordability and deployment speed all need to be at the right level to stimulate growth.

If you are currently using an on-premise deployment for your ERP and worried about the massive transfer of data, don’t be. The answer for you may be a hybrid ERP. This means keeping your legacy system and integrating it with a cloud-based ERP.

Which ERP Should I Consider for Cloud Hosting?

There are many cloud ERP solutions on the market today. We particularly recommend Sage X3 and SAP B1. Sage X3, with its recent 7.0 update, offers fantastic multi-tenancy functionality (read our guide to hosting Sage X3 on the cloud). SAP B1 is a great SAP ERP cloud solution (SAP case study on AWS for finer details). There are many other options for an ERP in the cloud including Dynamics NAV/AX and SAP S/4HANA.

cloud based ERP
Compliance Capabilities of Sage X3 with AWS

Hosting Options for Cloud ERP Solutions

There are some ERP solutions that have proprietary and internal hosting like NetSuite’s SuiteCloud. However we recommend Amazon Web Services (AWS). There are many benefits of AWS. It is absolutely the most reliable hosting option available for a compatible ERP.

AWS security is second to none. Under lock and key, your data will always be safe and available. All of the ERPs mentioned above are available to be hosted on AWS.

ERP in the Cloud — The Dark Side

You’ve probably heard of the “faux cloud” before. This is a cloud system that is not a true cloud solution. One warning sign can be that they do not offer a multi-tenant platform (meaning multiple users sharing the same platform). This can result in downtimes, poor upgrade pipelines and poor support systems. Make sure to align yourself with a true hosting solution like AWS and a fully cloud-compatible ERP.

 

22 Sep

NetSuite vs Sage X3: An ERP Comparison

NetSuite vs Sage X3: An ERP Comparison

Both NetSuite and Sage X3 are two of the most asked about ERP solutions on the market today. While NetSuite might be getting more press because of Oracle’s recent acquisition, it would be a mistake to write off the growth of Sage and its flagship product in Sage X3. There are some clear differentiators between the two products, so we decided to create this head-to-head ERP software comparison (and a more in-depth NetSuite vs Sage X3 white paper here).

NetSuite vs Sage X3 Deployment Differences

Sage X3 can be hosted on-premise or on the cloud (through Amazon Web Services or similar solution), whereas NetSuite is only available on it’s internal cloud (SuiteCloud). There are benefits and drawbacks to each deployment method. Some companies can’t handle the exhaustive transfer of data to NetSuite’s cloud. Going on-premise with Sage X3 does require a higher upfront cost. However, it may be a more flexible deployment option in a hybrid environment (combinations of on-premise and cloud systems). Products in the cloud environment overall tend to promote more flexibility. Whether deployed on-premise or cloud, Sage X3 implementations tend to be less costly than NetSuite and have a shorter go live time.

Sage X3 has made strides with its cloud capabilities, and with the launch of 7.0 is fully capable as a multi-tenant platform. Sage has also addressed concerns about a lack of third-party apps by implementing RAD (Rapid Application Deployment). Creating updates and add-ons has become much more agile than in the past.

NetSuite vs Sage X3

NetSuite vs Sage X3 Integration Comparison

Wherever the initial decision on deployment lands, both NetSuite and Sage rarely cover all aspects of any given businesses financial practices. Generally speaking businesses have a multitude of third-party apps and patchwork solutions (i.e. barcoding / warehousing apps) in conjunction with their ERP solution. Often this can lead to integration issues and general user unhappiness.

Depending on your mindset, this can lead you down two paths. One might lead to NetSuite, which is an all-in-one solution. This can lead to difficulties if you are using a number of external business applications and need to integrate. But with its relatively full suite of options, you will likely have enough functionality. There is a native integration with Salesforce, but generally your path will be concrete.

If you think this is too much of a monolithic solution, Sage X3 offers more integration options. In general we also noticed pages and dashboards in NetSuite run noticeably slower than Sage X3. X3 is a more agile platform from which to optimize into a best of breed stack. If integration and flexibility is more important to you, Sage X3 is probably where you should lean. 

 

 NetSuite vs Sage X3

05 Aug

Top Five Sage X3 Modules

Top Five Sage X3 Modules

There are many native and third-party add-on modules in Sage X3. Here we break down the five most popular X3 modules to give you a better understanding of how they work. Each of these modules is responsible for a different aspect of your business. Sage X3 is the most advanced accounting suite Sage offers, so keep in mind that each of these modules are process driven.

Sage X3 Manufacturing Module:

SMB-manufacturing

Sage X3 Manufacturing is the most popular native module not included with the base version of Sage X3. The module makes managing the manufacturing process simpler by allowing the user to filter by job, order, inventory and more. Sage allows constant monitoring of stock, production scheduling, planning functions and overall management; which is all defined by price lists, cost centers and stations.

This module is able to make manufacturing processes simpler with tools like:

  • Comprehensive Technical Data
  • Cost Accounting
  • Planning
  • Work Order Release
  • Decision-Making Tools

Sage X3 Finance Module:

SMB-finance

The Sage X3 Finance module includes Sage’s core financial functionalities (GL, AR, AP, etc.). This module is able to keep information and reports in real-time between multiple branches or even multiple companies. You can reconcile globally in real time with multi-currency, dynamic exchange rates (updated daily) and multi-lingual support. The finance module is also able to cover personal and financial budgeting, P&L, etc.

The finance module comes with a number of out-of-the-box tools:

  • Multi-Ledger (GL)
  • Accounts and Fiscal Calendars
  • Automatic journals
  • Inter-company Transactions
  • Analytical Dimensions
  • Budgeting
  • Account Inquires
  • Reporting

Sage X3 Purchasing Tool:

SMB-purchasing

Sage X3’s purchasing tool is part of the distribution module, and takes over your entire purchasing process. The module includes functionality such as management of RFQs/RFPs, integrations with price lists, delivery monitoring and the reception of incoming goods.

Because the purchasing module is built right into Sage X3, it provides user with easier and faster control over budget, purchase requests and order issuing. 

More processes available with the purchasing module are:

  • Business Partners and Products
  • Flexible Pricing Rules
  • Purchase Planning and Ordering
  • Delivery Scheduling and Receiving

Sage X3 Services Module

SMB-service

Needs for service-based modules are different for all companies, so it is important to scrutinize the service module with X3 to make sure it meets your needs (if you are, say, a contractor, you might want to look elsewhere). 

The services module will allow your company to achieve more in less time and work remotely while doing it. The service module looks great on devices like iPads and improves the response to your customers’ requirements. It is rare to find a service module that is connected so well to your financials, usually it is driven through the CRM. 

Sage X3 Service module will bring to the organization these tools:

  • Calculation Cycles and Conditions for Contracts
  • Calculation of Recurring Services and Contacts
  • Control of Maintenance Intervals
  • Automatic Coordination of Service Calls
  • Administration of Rental Services
  • Automatic Calculation of Cost and Invoicing

Sage X3 Sales Tool

SMB-sales

The Sage X3 sales tool, as with the purchasing tool, is grouped into the Distribution Module. Sage X3’s sales tool allows the user to provide quick information about the products, stock, quotations, management of contacts and deep-dive information about each SKU. You can create reports and change price lists, discounts, distributors, carriers and more on the fly. 

Other processes included in the Sage X3 Sales Module are:

  • Business Partners and Products
  • Flexible Pricing Rules
  • Flexible Order Acceptance and Processing
  • Inventory Allocation and Delivery Scheduling
  • Order/ Shipment Preparation

All these modules are customizable and can be integrated in your instance of Sage X3. For more information about working with a certified X3 partner, send us an email at info@tcognition.com.

03 Aug

Hosting Sage X3 in the Cloud

Hosting Sage X3 in the Cloud

Hosting Sage ERP in the Cloud:

Sage cloud hosting, as opposed to an on-premise deployment, is destined to gain larger market share as more companies transition their business operations to cloud-based offerings. At tCognition, we prefer hosting Sage ERP products on Amazon Web Services (AWS) for our clients. Here we focus on deploying Sage X3 in the cloud, but it is possible to host Sage 100 ERP, 300 ERP and 500 ERP on the cloud as well.

Some of the main considerations that lead companies to host Sage ERP products in the cloud are security improvements, speed to deployment and overall cost savings. Sage and AWS are making strides together as partners, and there is more attention to detail than ever before in regards to hosting Sage cloud hosting and hybrid environment. With AWS, it is possible to hold many different compliances while still hosting Sage ERP products in a cloud environment.

Maintaining Compliance While Hosting Sage ERP in a Cloud Environment:

sage cloud hosting

It is important to recognize that both Sage and AWS are both separately responsible for their own set of compliances. Amazon Web Services are some of the world’s fastest, most secure servers – the servers are literally under watch by armed guards 24/7. Because of this and many other reasons, it is indeed possible to pursue Sage cloud hosting while maintaining compliances (such as HIPAA). That being said, your Sage Partner and yourself still need to make sure sensitive data is not being shared where it isn’t supposed to be – which could leave you out of compliance.

Benefits of Hosting Sage ERP in the Cloud:

  • Security

AWS is one of the most secure place to host your Sage ERP instance. They pass strict regulatory standards, have extra security tools and focus on confidentiality of the customer’s data. Amazon’s cloud is so secure that the even the most data-sensitive companies, such as NASA, rely on it to power cloud operations

  • Speed Improvements – Deployment and Runtime

Cloud servers are faster for Sage in two ways: they tend to have faster deployment times and also the products themselves run faster than in most on-premise environments. Again with the NASA example, they report speed improvements of up to 4x using AWS over their internal servers in some cases.

When we talk about deployment of Sage products like Sage X3, cloud can cut deployment times in half (to just 2-3 months) wherein on-site it could take 4-6 months to deploy the same ERP product.

  • Simpler IT department

Hosting Sage in the cloud allows your IT department to downsize. Downsizing IT lowers your cost (especially on human capital); and allows you to focus more from a managerial standpoint on doing what your business is good at.

  • Compliance

Every country has different laws and every company needs to adapt and follow them, this is why is so important for your cloud service to maintain compliance in every part of the world where the company resides. With AWS the data will reside where the company decides and it will not be moved unless the company authorizes it.

sage cloud hosting*based on $287.50 / per user / per month cost of Sage X3
  • Cloud Cost Savings

The total cost of Sage cloud hosting includes the base cost of the software (in this case, Sage X3), the modules you want or need, the number of users and the cost of an Amazon Cloud subscription. The best part about the cloud is, you only pay for the data you use. You do not have to overcompensate and pay for more server space than you need.

Fore more info on how much it costs to host Sage ERP Products in the cloud, send an email out to tCognition at sage@tcognition.com.

 

16 Jun

Sage ERP X3, 100 and 300 Implementation Costs

Sage ERP X3, 100 and 300 Implementation Costs

sage implementation costsIf you are thinking about a Sage ERP implementation, here are the typical Sage implementation costs from Sage ERP X3, Sage 100 ERP and Sage 300 ERP partners.

1. Only Certified Sage ERP Partners are Allowed to Sell Licenses and Perform Implementations:

All Sage ERP products require you pair up with a certified partner. Your partner will sell you the actual licenses or subscription (for Sage Cloud), perform implementations and assist with any support inquiries that you might have. They are free to charge any amount they’d like for the Sage implementation, so it is to your advantage to know what the typical implementation costs per hour and average amount of hours are overall.

1. Total Sage ERP Implementation Costs – On-shore vs. Off-shore:

Typical Implementation Costs Per Hour:

Usually, Sage 100 is the most affordable of the three platforms to implement. The cost of Sage X3 is generally the highest, because it usually encompasses more parts of your business as an all-in-one platform and requires separate, more advanced partner certifications. At tCognition, we have a hybrid model of on-shore project managers managing off-shore development teams.

sage implementation costs

Typical Amount of Hours Per Sage Implementation:*

It’s important to note that this section can vary drastically based on integrations, customizations and user count. We do, however, suggest you set reasonable expectations of how many hours a proper implementation actually takes. Typically, offshore implementations take about 50% hours than onshore, although those hours tend to be drastically cheaper.

Sage implementation costs

*Projects vary tremendously, for a certified Sage ERP quote, email tCognition at sage@tcognition.com.

3. Traveling Can Cost Money

Even if you are considering a Sage implementation on-premise, it is possible for the partner to do almost 100% of the work remotely. Still, it can be a safer bet going with the cloud version of each Sage product to keep travel costs down. Alternatively, you can choose to work with a local consultant that will also keep travel costs down. Be aware, though, many times the right Sage Partner for you may not be the closest one to your office.

4. Hidden Costs – Sage Support

Sage has three types of care support to choose from: Bronze (18% of license costs per year), Silver (21% of license cost per year) and Gold (25% of license costs per year). All three support packages include version upgrades, service pack updates and unlimited access to the online Sage Knowledgebase.

The main difference between plans is the amount of calls to support that you can make. the Gold Plan comes with unlimited calls, silver with five calls and bronze no support. The silver and gold plans also include Realtime Learning Courses.

Sage x3 vs SAP b1 ERP Whitepaper

For more information on Sage X3 implementations, head to our Sage X3 page or send us a query at sage@tcognition.com!