Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software covers a lot of territory, which explains the number of products available to perform its functions. Softwarereviews.com, a division of analyst firm Info-Tech Research Group, counted 109 possibilities in its ERP category report, of which seventeen received enough vetted reviews (at least 20) to be reportable. Three more are on the cusp, with partial results reported. These reviews, based on an intense survey gathering 130 data points, provide input to three reports examining various facets of a category: an overall look at vendors, customer service, and in-depth individual product reports.
When we look at the category overview, we see how cloudy the world has become. Most of the leading products are cloud-based, allowing vendors to keep up a brisk cadence of updates if they so choose. In addition, as an indication of how diverse this category is, Oracle, SAP, and Microsoft each has several products in the mix. Interestingly, each of those products garnered different perceptions of the vendor’s capabilities from its users.
Oracle ERP Cloud, for example, had a whopping 81 per cent satisfaction with vendor capabilities and was number one in the composite ratings with 8.6 (out of 10). Its 26 users were enthusiastic about the company across the 11 categories measured, ranging from business value created and breadth of features through ease of implementation. However, Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) and Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne (JDE) both tottered in at 71 per cent, slightly behind Oracle PeopleSoft and Oracle NetSuite ERP. All four of these products had substantially more reviews, so probably more reliably reflect the overall customer sentiment toward Oracle.
Similarly, of the 75 reporting customers of the number two product (scoring 8.4 overall), Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, 76 per cent reported positive satisfaction, while Dynamics AX, with 37 reviews, achieved 72 per cent, and Dynamics GP (26 reviews), brought up the rear with 69 per cent.
The SAP trio’s capability satisfaction ratings were more closely aligned, however, ranging from 73 per cent for number three placing Business All-in-One (27 reviews, 8.2/10)) to 69 per cent for S/4 HANA on 88 reviews.
Number four in the overall ratings was Workday Financial Management (52 reviews), with a composite score of 8.0. Its vendor satisfaction equaled that of Microsoft Dynamics 365, but customers weren’t as satisfied with its features, and it was also pulled down by another factor: likeliness to recommend.
For most products, the latter factor was more in line with satisfaction with product features than love for the vendor. It seems people will put up with a lot if the product features are up to scratch.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 topped five of the eleven product feature satisfaction categories, Oracle ERP three, one each for PeopleSoft and JDE, and SAP Business All-in-One snagged the final category, Accounting and Financial Management. Given the breath of functionality offered under the heading “ERP”, it makes sense to examine the ratings for each of these categories based on the most important use case planned for the product.
Curiously, despite below average satisfaction for both vendor and product features and a composite score of only 7.0, 83 per cent would recommend SAP S/4 HANA, equaling second place Microsoft Dynamics 365 and one percentage point below SAP Business All-in-One. SAP Business ByDesign displayed the same phenomenon.
It’s even more interesting when you factor in the Emotional Footprint score, which measures how well vendors treat customers after the contract is signed. It asks questions like, does the vendor have a customer-first attitude, or does it look after its own interests first? Does it handle conflicts with integrity? Is it fair? Is it trustworthy? Both SAP Business ByDesign and SAP S/4 HANA had middling scores, suggesting that the company doesn’t make those customers feel as warm and fuzzy as it should. It made Business All-in-One customers happy, though.
Microsoft may also be bemused to see that, while Dynamics 365 and Dynamics AX had respectable Emotional Footprint scores, customers were considerably less positive when it came to Dynamics GP.
Oracle suffered from the same issue, with ERP Cloud, NetSuite, and PeopleSoft customers smiling, and EBS and JDE users less happy.
Detailed results for Emotional Footprint will be published later this year; it would be wise to have a look and see whether the factors that lowered the ratings for these products are important to you.
Please note that the published report data referenced in this article may differ from what’s posted to SoftwareReviews.com. Responses on the site have been assigned to the category they came in under (eg: PeopleSoft reviews may have been posted in ERP or Financial and Accounting software), and new responses are continually being added.