By: Gary Crouch
We just completed a great conference by Sage Software. The main theme for Summit 2014, and indeed for the organization is to strive to be the best support organization of the Small to Medium business. They fully admit they are not there yet, but announced several initiatives to move them closer to their goal. Here are a few short descriptions of some of the news.
Sage 500 ERP – It lives! Based on a consolidation of product lines to save costs, Sage announced in 2012 that a review of the Sage 500 ERP product would be made by 2017 to determine if it would be supported going forward. This year’s Summit had the Sage organization rescinding their announcement. Sage 500 ERP will not be retired any time this decade. Beyond 2020 is too far ahead to determine and depends on Microsoft’s support of VB 6.
Reasons given for the about face? First is the desire to accommodate a huge number of customers who emphatically relayed the message they were satisfied with their current investment and Sage wished to enhance their customer satisfaction. Second was a clear path to another Sage ERP product for many users. While Sage X3 will handle many of these organizations, it is not a direct path for many others. Practically speaking, the product will probably last until Microsoft determines the term of life for VB 6.
Sage 100 ERP – Mobile Cloud tools were the continuing story for the Sage 100 ERP product. Several years ago, the Employer Solutions group saw increasing competition from Cloud products before the term became synonymous with business IT. However, Sage’s customers relayed the message they were satisfied with administrative functions (back office) with on premise products if they could be extended to employees and managers with internet tools. Thus, Employee and Manager Self Service was introduced. Now the ERP product division is following the same path. ERP systems are being enhanced with tools available for employees out in the field, eliminating double entry and periodic synching.
Last year saw the introduction of Mobile Sales Order and Mobile Work Order for iOS devices. This year these products are being joined by versions for Android and Windows 8 devices. In addition, a new Mobile Time Collection module. To be sure, the initial versions have limited functionality. However, it is anticipated new features will be added to continue the increasing effectiveness of Sage’s SMB customers. In addition, a new Mobile Time collection application is being rolled out. The application will track an employee’s time allocated to specific jobs as they work throughout the day.
If you would like additional information regarding either of these great ERP products, let us know how we can help.