ERP customization and integration are the greatest application challenges facing enterprises today, according to a recent survey of more than 200 North American IT and business managers. Conducted by Hubspan, the survey highlights the ongoing struggle by enterprises to efficiently manage the exchange and interaction of business-critical information. On the integration front, the research found that overall costs and managing multiple B2B integration solutions posed the greatest pain. The research focused on current and planned use of both ERP systems and B2B integration solutions.
"These results show that companies of all sizes have common challenges around managing ERP systems and B2B integration, with cost and complexity the key themes," said Margaret Dawson, vice president of product management, Hubspan Inc., a provider of cloud-scale B2B integration solutions. "This clearly illustrates the need for solution providers to make it easy and cost effective for customers to deploy and manage ERP and integration products, without sacrificing security or feature robustness."
SAP was the most widely deployed ERP application, with 37 percent of respondents using it, followed by Oracle at 31 percent. A quarter (24 percent) of those surveyed use a homegrown or custom ERP system to manage internal processes. Of those companies planning to change ERP systems, SAP was by far the most popular, with 60 percent planning to migrate to SAP. While Lawson software posted a mere one percent penetration among deployed ERP systems, more than 10 percent of respondents said they planned to migrate to Lawson.
Additionally, the majority of those surveyed have implemented at least one B2B integration solution, with the need to integrate with customers (56 percent), suppliers (52 percent) and partners (44 percent) driving B2B collaboration. Of the 27 percent not using a B2B integration solution today, 30 percent of those respondents plan to deploy a solution in the near future. The cost of integration, selected by 42 percent of respondents, is the greatest integration challenge facing companies today, while managing multiple solutions (37 percent) and interoperability with external partners (24 percent) are also creating complexity.
Companies are integrating a wide range of business processes with external communities with procurement processes ranked highest in current integration implementation, such as purchase order (48 percent) and invoice (47 percent) exchange. Other primary business integration processes include customer integration (41 percent), e-commerce integration (39 percent), supply chain integration (39
percent) and file transfer (33 percent).
More than 200 companies completed the survey, ranging in size from under 50 to several thousand employees. Respondents represented a range of industries, with high-tech, manufacturing, wholesale distribution, finance and healthcare accounting for 60 percent of those polled.
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