Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software covers a variety of business processes from purchasing to accounting. The most used ERP software could be the most sold or the most implemented ERP software package applied to business processes; because of the difficulty in obtaining information about the most implemented and the depth of those implementations, most sold will be considered. Claims of ERP vendors are extremely suspect, as some vendors count modules sold or implemented versus entire ERP packages.
SAP is king of the hill; the reason is aggressive marketing and product development to back it up. SAP wins because their software has more features and areas covered; they have developed an enviable partner program that guarantees implementation expertise in any locale and around the world. Because of the number of features, SAP can take more time to implement; SAP seems to have solved this problem with development of aggressive "phase 1" implementations of a focused feature set followed by multiple implementation phases thereafter. SAP has clearly led the large company market for years; their foray into the small-to-medium business market with a software-as-a-service solution could lead to dominance of that market as well.
Oracle, unlike SAP, began as a database software company and has had a schizophrenic attitude towards ERP. They've leveraged their dominance in database technology to be the key competitor to SAP in the ERP software market. Oracle utilizes a strong partnership channel but also has healthy implementation services resources; however, Oracle's lack of focus on partner-led implementation, and the mix of database and ERP software, have contributed to their second-place ERP software status.
Although NetSuite does not get close to SAP or Oracle in terms of ERP software sales, they are the king of ERP in a different and growing arena: software-as-a-service (SaaS). SaaS allows use of software over the Internet thereby eliminating hardware on-site. NetSuite was born out of investment by Oracle but remains an independent company. SAP has chosen to attack the SaaS market internally; SaaS is the future of ERP, but the timing of that future is uncertain and subject to perceived SaaS weaknesses in the data security and internal control-of-systems areas. NetSuite is targeted to the small-to-medium sized business market, an area which SAP and Oracle have attacked and achieved mixed results so far.
Infor is an ERP software company with a completely different business model. Although they arguably occupy third place behind SAP and Oracle in terms of ERP software sales, their growth is through acquisition. Having acquired 12-13 mid-market ERP software solutions, they are highly dependent on sales of ERP add-on solutions to their customer base. Their business model makes it difficult to compare them to competitors and has proven to be difficult to understand by investors.
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images
Types of ERP Systems
Enterprise resource planning, or ERP, is a way of integrating organizational data and processes into a single system. ERP systems will generally...
What Is ERP/CRM?
Enterprise Resource Management (ERP) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) are two business management systems that often integrate policies, processes, procedures and computerized...
What Is ERP Solution?
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is a business software solution or package that integrates key business processes, functions and allied business activities. Since...
What Is ERP?
ERP is an acronym meaning enterprise resource planning, and it is usually used as ERP software or ERP system. ERP describes a...
What Is the ERP Market?
Enterprise resource planning (ERP) markets help businesses, as well as nonprofits and government agencies, increase productivity. ERP applications are information systems that...
What Is an ERP Package?
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), is a business tool that looks to aggregate and integrate business information from different business areas, such as...
How to Plan for ERP Implementation
ERP, enterprise resource planning, is used to integrate all processes and information of an organization into one system. An extensive study of...
What Types of Businesses Use ERP Systems?
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software supports the distribution of information between various functional departments and geographic locations of a company. ERP systems...
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is an automated information system that integrates all departments within an enterprise. First developed by manufacturing companies, ERP...