The maintenance of information systems (ERP, CRM) is a topic about which solution providers do not talk very much. Rarely mention the legislative update part as the main maintenance component. Of course, the legislative changes in Romania require a considerable amount of updates, which requires suppliers to make sustained efforts (and often with very short deadlines) to help users adopt and comply with the new provisions. But beyond that, a business software solution must keep pace with new technologies and trends, must help users ease their work and exploit their technological resources as efficiently as possible.
Maintenance work involves both the improvement of existing functionalities and the addition of new functionalities and integration with new technologies.
SAP has a continuing concern to develop ERP system SAP Business One, the ERP solution for medium-sized businesses, both by optimizing and enriching existing modules and by launching new functionalities to meet the needs of its 60000 customers.
Of course, SAP is the world leader in business solutions, the creator of the ERP concept for over 40 years. This gives us the opportunity to use a huge set of knowledge and industry best practices, so the opportunity to add new features and improve existing ones appears quite often. Thus, SAP Business One has a major version every 12 to 18 months, a version that always brings modules and exciting options to its customers. New versions are accessible to customers who can decide when and if they want to upgrade their systems.
Installing a new version of SAP Business One is a complex process that is planned and performed by the IT department of its customers or by System Innovation Romania consultants. The upgrade process takes into account both the ability of our customers to discontinue the use of the computer system, but also customizations and integrations with complementary systems that need to be tested and eventually adjusted with the installation of a new version.
SAP facilitates planning of update procedures by offering its clients an installation package that automatically migrates both applications and databases from the previous version to the new version. This upgrade package takes into account not only the standard application, but also custom fields and tables added to the client’s implementation process as well as system extensions (add-ons) developed by its partners. Thus, the migration process is complex, but its execution is quite simple and with minimal risk to the client. Risks are removed from the implementation and personalization phase of the system because all partners providing implementation and support services have a discipline and methodology imposed by SAP in making these changes to the system, which makes it possible to standardize changes and treat them as part of from the base system at the time of installing new versions.
The upgrade process is also facilitated by the fact that in the implementation stage and post-implementation activities, System Innovation Romania consultants use SAP applications and frameworks to customize the system. For example, to migrate old system data, it never runs scripts directly into the database, potentially generating data integrity errors. Always data changes are made with the Data Transfer Workbench application included in SAP Business One. Also, to add fields or new tables there is no need for development, no programming code is written. SAP Business One customization menus are sufficient, so customization costs are minimal and programming errors are eliminated.
The acquisition of an ERP system is a complex project with long-term implications for the business. Choosing the right solution should balance both the quality of the chosen solution and the services and expertise of the service provider. The manufacturer’s maintenance may have the greatest impact on the quality of the solution, which must be able to support both the growth of the user’s company and to keep up with the new technologies and provide efficient management tools to its users. A poorly maintained solution will reach its limits shortly, not being prepared to lead management to a new level of complexity in the business.
by Ciprian Condur