"MS Dynamics Is Fast Rising In The Tier 1 ERP Market"
Veena Thimmaya, SAG on how SAG has helped strengthen MS's presence in India.
Systems Advisers Group provides integrated solutions and services around Microsoft Dynamics AX for mid-sized and large hub and spoke companies around the globe. The company has over 18 years of experience in executing ERP solutions in close to 50 countries around the globe. Veena Thimmaya, director, Systems Advisers Group, shares with Biztech2, her views on the ERP market in India and how the System Advisers Group has strengthened Microsoft's presence in India.
Could you brief us on Systems Advisers Group in India and the association with Microsoft?
Systems Advisers Group India was formed back in 1990 during the nascent years of Bangalore’s IT boom to form the base for the Group’s development team primarily for outsourced development projects that we work on for Microsoft (mainly product localisation, documentation, QA Testing, core product development).
Back in 1999, Great Plains, a leading ERP solutions provider in Europe, outsourced their development work to Systems Advisers Group – the first time that they ever outsourced development work to any third party vendor. We were chosen because of our knowledge of the European market. Later, in 2001 when Microsoft bought over Great Plains we became the preferred outsourced vendor for all Microsoft Great Plains development and localisation and in the recent past for Microsoft Dynamics AX.
Since then we have worked on localisation for Microsoft Dynamics GP (7 years) and over the past 3 years on Microsoft Dynamics AX. We have worked on the latest Microsoft Dynamics GP 10.0 release and localisation work for the LATAM region.
How is the Systems Advisers Group dealing with the Indian ERP market?
India is currently a booming manufacturing hub, one of the countries that make up the BRIC. As per a recent Frost and Sullivan report, the ERP software market in India was $45.1 million in 2005 and is expected to reach $116.5 million by 2012. The mid-market segment, on the other hand is expected to grow at a CAGR of 20.7% to reach $77.4 million by 2012.
Systems Advisers Group is currently focusing on the manufacturing and services verticals in India. The ERP opportunity within companies with a turnover of Rs.60 Crore to Rs.1000 Crore is huge, especially since these companies are increasingly investing in ERP solutions to streamline their operations and increase profits.
What are the products Microsoft Dynamics has on offer for the ERP market?
The products that Microsoft Dynamics has on offer for the ERP market are Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics SL and Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
Systems Advisers Group is currently focusing attention around implementation of Microsoft Dynamics AX in the Indian market. This is because Microsoft Dynamics AX is the flagship product in Microsoft Dynamics and offers maximum functionality for mid-size to large organisations.
How is Microsoft Dynamics different from its competitors?
Microsoft Dynamics AX is cost-effective on the following counts, it is quick and easy to implement, it can be easily used by an organisations workforce, because it looks and works like Microsoft Office and it works on the concept of concurrent licenses unlike the ‘named license’ concept that SAP works on.
Microsoft Dynamics works around the concurrent user model, which has huge advantages for most companies. In this model you only pay for the people accessing the system at any one time. If for example you have 20 employees in a production floor who need to access the system, but no more than 15 of them will be accessing the system at any one time, then you only pay for 15 user licenses. This works very well in a production environment where employees work in shifts but are essentially doing the same function.
Another big advantage that Microsoft Dynamics has is the ease with which an organisation can build an in-house team for customisations. Microsoft Dynamics AX is built around MorphX and X++, which is very similar to C++ and C#. Unlike ABAP skilled resources for SAP customisations who are expensive, it is easy to recruit and train professionals familiar with object oriented coding with tools like C++ and C# skills since these form a part of computer education in colleges and local computer training institutes.
How is Microsoft coping with the competition thrown in by some older players like SAP and Oracle?
Obviously, the incumbent Tier 1 players have an advantage in terms of installed client base in India. They have been around for years and their prime experience has been with large implementations. It is only in recent years that they have re-engineered their products to try and suit the mid-market requirements.
Microsoft Dynamics AX being a fairly new entrant has much to prove in the Indian scenario. However, Microsoft has targeted small and medium businesses with Microsoft Dynamics traditionally throughout the world. The product has been built for the mid to large sized companies from day one.
Over the past few months we have experienced huge traction from these verticals indicating to us that Microsoft Dynamics AX is a fast rising force to be reckoned with in the Tier 1 ERP market.
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