Sage, one of the world leaders in enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, has suggested that the term ERP has become outdated; in addition, chief executive Stephen Kelly said that the company won’t force any of its customers to adopt cloud services and products, despite its range of software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings.
Talking at the New Orleans-based Sage Summit 2015, Mr Kelly said that if firms continue to desire on-premise IT solutions, then Sage will do all it can to support them. Sage will also help and advise companies wishing to make the migration to the cloud. “The following words are not in the Sage vocabulary: end-of-life [and] forced migration,” Mr Kelly explained, adding: “These are painful words that cause business disruption and needless cost. Sage will not force you to migrate. You will decide when to migrate, and we will be there to help you. It's all about you controlling the pace of migration that works for your business.”
Mr Kelly went on to explain that 85% of small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) utilise accounting solutions and hold their data on-premise, which means that a lot of support is required when it comes to deploying IT tools. Rather than focussing on a cloud-first approach as others in the ERP area ‒ such as SAP and NetSuite ‒ have adopted, Sage wants to focus on the technology made available to each firm and then asses a company’s strategy and needs. “One of the biggest catalysts of change is technology disruption,” Mr Kelly said, adding that, as a result, Sage is more than happy to allow firms to run business and data from their own offices.
Mr Kelly also suggested that the term ERP has become outdated and Sage will look to abandon the expression; in fact, he went as far as saying: “We will no longer use the word or the term ‘ERP’ to describe any of our products.” He later explained that the 25-year-old ERP industry is characterised by cost overrun and disruptive IT initiatives, which could both spell doom for businesses; as a result, Sage wants to ensure that companies are given better ways to stay in control, thereby circumnavigating the expense, pain and regret of ERP implementations. The company will create services and products in its core areas of payments, payroll and accounting, which will support its customers’ various needs without making any specific deployment methods a mandatory requirement.
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