SAP Business One Small ERP Package with Worldwide Availability

Published: 09th December 2011
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We often hear the question from small business owners: ‘We cannot afford expensive high-end corporate ERP solution and at the same time we are active participant in international business. Which accounting solution should we consider for implementation?’ This question is very good as it allows us to come through accounting packages and try to categorize them. First of all there are small and mid-market ERP products that are available in United States only and plus probably in English speaking countries. If you begin your research with one of the consulting firms selling product available on the USA market exclusively then they probably suggest you to pick one of the local accounting packages available in the targeted country with the option to consolidate financial statements. Good examples are Microsiga in Brazil or 1S Accounting in Russian Federation. This tandem solution theoretically should work but here you have to pay twice for software licenses, implementation consulting and probably expect some overhead in communication between your USA based consulting firm and foreign consultants who are implementing accounting for your overseas location. We would like to suggest different approach by looking at SAP B1. If you remember the history of late 1990th when such ERP vendors as Great Plains Software, Oracle and SAP were trying to introduce scaled down version of their high-end Corporate ERP packages, good example would be Small Business Financials (initially Small Business Manager) from Great Plains Software. Later on big players realized that scaling down is not an ideal solution and the development of the story was acquisition of future Business One by SAP and similar steps from other vendors:

1. Corporate ERP Localization concept overview. If you have one of the accounting packages implemented in the United States this doesn’t automatically mean that you can deploy the same application in the overseas located office. There are hurdles associated with local country language support and compliance to business code in such areas as taxation, state and federal reporting. Here in the USA we have requirements to file 1099 to report about payments to your contractors as well as W2 to report on employee wages and taxes. United States are pretty liberal and encouraging healthy business climate. Foreign country might be more restrictive and exercise higher control including money repatriation to the States. The XXI century seems to be the century of rising China and South East Asia. Initially in earlier 1980th and through 1990th accounting packages were concentrating on North American and European markets and paying only minimal attention to China and India. Good example in Microsoft Dynamics GP or formerly known as Great Plains where Dexterity IDE doesn’t support Unicode characters (two bytes long and covering all languages including Chinese hieroglyphs)

2. SAP B1 and its position on the international Small Business ERP market. SAP policy seems to be pursuing ERP market worldwide including such countries and regions as China, Brazil, Latin America and Russian Federation. It doesn’t have issues with Unicode and supports all kind of hieroglyphs as well as its recommended managerial reporting tool Crystal Reports (SAP acquired Business Objects few years ago)

3. Version 8.8X. Here we see the merge of A and B flavors (compare to 2005A/B and 2007A/B). This might be considered as small progress however think about the way to install SB1 on central server located in the headquarters and exposed to international users via Citrix, VPN or Microsoft Terminal Server

4. Simple Discrete Manufacturing. What are you doing in the foreign countries? Typically you are manufacturing your finished goods with the destination to the European and American consumer market or you sell your products to the local consumer or in B2B environment. Business One has simple bill of materials, MRP as well as powerful Sales set of modules

5. Please call us 1-866-304-3265, 1-269-605-4904 (for international customers, where our representatives pick up the phone in Naperville and St. Joseph, MI call centers). We have local presence in Atlanta, Chicago, Southern California, South West Michigan, Houston and Dallas areas of Texas. We serve customers USA, Canada, Mexico and Brazil nationwide and internationally via web sessions and phone conferences (Skype is welcomed). Our consultants speak English, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian and Chinese. One of our experiences is international Corporate ERP and Consolidated Financial reporting

Andrew Karasev is SAP Business One consultant and Great Plains Certified Master, MVP, MCSE and MSDBA, 1-866-304-3265, 1-269-605-4904. He is also the initiator of eFaru project and founder of Alba Spectrum information space. Please note that we implement and support Dynamics GP directly through Alba Spectrum

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