Anu Singh – July 2021
I wouldn’t be surprised, with the level of hyper-specialization new buyers are demanding, seeing (the number of software companies) grow to 1 million by 2027.”– Jay McBain. Did you know the software industry is in love with TLAs (three-letter acronyms)? Well, jokes apart, ISVs or independent software vendors are an essential part of the software ecosystem.
Not only do they help you build great relationships with ERP customers by providing additional functionality, but they also help you revamp your ERP(Enterprise Resource Planning) system as a whole.
But does your vendor provide an ISV?
Well, all ERP vendors have ISVs, and you can accordingly choose one that can expand your business without changing your ERP system.
Need for ISVs
Now, you might wonder, when you can integrate tools with your ERP, why do you need an ISV? Well, it can get difficult to stay updated with all technologies and information to maintain successful operations.
With specific industry demands, providers can readily provide solutions as the developments occur. Besides, ISVs tend to have extensive skills and knowledge in their subject area. However, they are not a great fit when it comes to fulfilling general requirements.
Typically, ERP customers can benefit from ISVs in narrow areas of need. Thus, the combination of products from ERP software and ISVs results in a great combination compared to a standalone system from an ERP provider.
An ERP user can derive immense value from ERP vendor’s ISV alliances and get a one-stop solution.
Build Vs. Buy
You might wonder if they are only some features, why can’t you build them yourself? Here are some reasons we recommend the build option.
1. Cost and Time
The amount of time and money required to design and code the solution can be high if you lack technical skills. Moreover, the final cost and maintenance would further add to your expenses. On the other hand, ISVs have spent years developing these solutions. As a result, you get access to great functionality at reduced costs.
2. Technical Expertise
When it comes to serving your ERP customers, you would want only the best features. Thus, it is suggested that you invest in an ISV as they will understand your requirements and use their expertise to take your system to a whole new level.
ISVs for ERP
Your ERP system forms the backbone of your business. It is the foundation for all your business’s production, customer services, supply chain, financial, and reporting needs.
But, ISV solutions also let you serve your ERP customer better by diving into parameters you didn’t think of before. As a result, your regular ERP customer can benefit more from your ecosystem and aid digital transformation.
ISVs offer the ERP ecosystem a wide range of add-on functionality to enhance the capabilities of the business ERP application. Moreover, they also help you fulfill industry-specific requirements and manage operational challenges with ease.
You must remember that before joining hands with an ISV, you need to be sure that your ERP system has a robust integration capability and a framework that supports ‘plugin and go.’
Furthermore, approved ISV partners will have done their homework and integrations beforehand, so your ERP customers will find it much easier to handle the changes.
Types of ISV Solutions
Common categories of ISV solutions are:
- Tax compliance
- Payment solutions
- Quality control and monitoring
- EDI in ERP
- Business intelligence and analytics
- Specific solutions areas for process or discrete manufacturing
- Warehousing and distribution
Then there are technology solutions for companies that include:
- Robotic process automation
- Internet of Things
- Augmented reality
- Artificial intelligence and machine learning
- Machine-to-ERP interfaces
Are ISVs Helpful?
The specific goals you need for your system and ERP customers are going to decide whether you need an ISV or not. While some businesses do not need additional functionality, others may require several ISV solutions, and others may need it when they plan to scale their business.
ISVs can work and coordinate with your cloud service provider to integrate their custom software with your ERP application. For example, an ISV application can improve your tracking experience with its tools if your business needs supply chain management.
Similarly, other ISV applications can improve your reporting with Dynamics GP or enhance project management capabilities on SharePoint.
5 Ways ISV Systems Can Help ERP Customers
Here is why an ISV is valuable for your ERP customers:
1. Customize Your Cloud
ISV applications help you build a business environment that matches your business model. Rather than dealing with ERP applications that are one-size-fits-all, ISVs have the ability to customize your cloud.
2. Simplify Your Compliance and Regulatory Needs
If your business is subjected to compliance requirements, ISV applications offer built-in audit intelligence, track changes to databases, and even produce reports for auditors. These solutions help your IT audit schedules run smoothly and quickly so that you can get back to business and serve your ERP customer in a fast and efficient manner.
3. Streamline Operations
Many ISV applications are designed as industry-specific. These applications can transform your ERP solution into an experience that makes you feel that it has been made for you and by you. Some of the industries ISVs cater to include manufacturing, distribution, education, healthcare, finance, and more.
4. Enhance Departmental Efficiency
ISV applications are also available for departments within your business. For example, some can revamp your HR systems, while others can help your accounts department produce reports more efficiently.
Similarly, your sales team can calculate commissions and manage multiple store operations with ease. This, in turn, helps you serve your ERP customers better as you do not need to spend time dealing with administrative tasks.
5. No More Maintenance
Opting to implement ERP and ISV applications together means that your business will no longer need to provide ongoing maintenance or fix issues on your software. With your business on the cloud, ongoing maintenance is included in the monthly amount your service provider charges.
This blog explored how ISVs can help ERP customers fulfill their needs and stay on top of business operations. ISVs have the potential to change the way you serve your average ERP user and provide them with an extraordinary experience.
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TimeLinx delivers innovative project & service management software as a complete solution that perfects the sell-track-manage-support-bill cycle that services organizations must have to delight their customers; TimeLinx brings the cycle together in a single application that offers less frustration, better project management, complete reporting, and improved profitability – all specially designed for Infor and Sage.