Jul 09, 2019

4 Ways to Get More Value from Your SAP or Oracle ERP – Without Upgrading

Are you facing a decision to upgrade your SAP or Oracle ERP?

When meeting with businesses across the globe, the most common question I receive is "Is there value in upgrading my ERP application?" And my answer is this: 20 years ago, upgrades were important because new features and functionality were being introduced all the time based on the evolution of software. However today, these software products are stable, and upgrades are not as important as they used to be.

This short video, part of the Rimini Street Tech Talk series, offers insight on how you can maximize your return on investment by building out functionality and enhancing existing SAP and Oracle systems.

What else can you do with the time, money and energy required to keep pace with ERP upgrades?

  1. Innovate within. After years of consulting work, I realized that instead of doing expensive upgrades that often resulted in little-to-no return on investment, clients would be better off investing that money in building out functionality and enhancing what they have. In doing so, they can attain the real promise of ERP, which is to benefit the bottom line with operational efficiencies that can be leveraged globally. In fact, it is possible to innovate with your existing Oracle or SAP ERP. In my opinion, that is a much better option for SAP and Oracle license management than simply doing an upgrade.
  2. Realize the value in your existing ERP. We have clients on all different releases of Oracle and SAP. The thing they have in common is that the specific release they own exceeds their needs. This is because while the technology delivery of ERP has changed, the functionality has been relatively stable for the last 10 to 15 years. These clients are sitting on untapped value because the existing application functionality significantly outweighs the cost, effort and disruption inherent in ERP upgrades or from moving to new providers. Instead, this functionality can be enhanced by adding software products that are truly innovative to their existing ERP. In many cases the value of updates is marginal, but regression tests and implementation still costs you in time, effort and budget.
  3. Leverage ERP analytics. Let's take the area of ERP analytics, for example, although the same point could be made about features such as mobility. If you have ever used ERP applications, you know that they have limited analytics and reporting capabilities. This can be hugely frustrating, so much so that over the years clients often upgraded to newer versions just to get a new report or a new reporting capability. That's a lot of time, money and effort to spend for a very small return on investment just to get a report. Software such as Rimini Street Analytics can help you achieve as much or more improvement in reporting and analytics and is much more cost effective.
  4. Add cloud components. Take advantage of cloud innovation without abandoning your existing ERP investments. Many enterprises are already in the process of moving to hybrid IT architectures that mix the best of Software as a Service (SaaS) with traditional on-premises software running in their own data centers or in cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) arrangement.

A software license management tool that covers your cloud cost management can deliver valuable insight here. Where there are gaps in your current ERP implementation, you may find you can adopt better functionality with less hassle by adopting and integrating best-of-breed cloud services.

When do you upgrade your ERP?

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to upgrade your SAP or Oracle ERP depends on how well your current ERP environment satisfies your organization's current and future business requirements. Make your decisions based on your own Business-Driven Roadmap approach, rather than letting a vendor product roadmap dictate your technology choices and upgrade schedule.

Topics: Cloud, Oracle, SAP