Monday, May 14, 2012

What makes a business software project go from good to great?

An international study carried out by TNS Sifo on behalf of IFS concludes that companies should look for innovative, proactive and responsive ERP vendors in order to achieve successful implementation projects. The vendor’s ability to listen and be close to the customer, to involve the customer in product development and testing, to provide comprehensive support, and be present in the customer’s geographies, is crucial for a productive, long term investment.

The study examined the attitude of 216 decision makers in the USA, the UK, Germany, Sweden and the Benelux countries toward return on investment, procurement strategy and vendor relations when purchasing business solutions.

The survey reveals that 68 percent of the respondents consider their latest business software project successful. 18 percent of these perceive their projects as very successful. Projects become very successful when customers select a vendor that is innovative and proactive when it comes to the needs of the customer. Other key factors that influence project success are customer involvement in product development and testing, a 24/7 support offering, and the vendor’s local presence.

The study finds that the success rate doubles to 36 percent when projects combine the four most important factors described above.

“This research confirms our long-held belief that successful business software projects depend on the vendor’s willingness to go that extra mile,” IFS CEO Alastair Sorbie said. “At IFS, we promote a culture of accessibility and commitment to provide added value and speedy ROI to our customers. Our industry experience combined with our leading-edge, innovative products makes IFS well equipped to take any ERP project from good to great.”

The second most important factor for ERP success is customer involvement in product development and testing. For example, participation in an Early Adopter program brings customers closer to the vendor, enabling them to provide timely feedback and steer development to suit their business needs.

“My experience of working with IFS is very positive. We have established a real partnership based on two-way communication, which makes our day-to-day business far more productive and collaborative,” said James Greaves, Systems Manager at Portsmouth Aviation, Early Adopter of IFS Applications 8.

Commenting on the survey results, Alexander Sovré, Director at TNS Sifo and specialized in IT and telecom-related research, said, “The results clearly prove that successful business software projects do not come about by coincidence, but rather are the combined result of a number of criteria against which companies can measure prospective software providers. Among such criteria, building relationships with and listening to customers are crucial.”

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About TNS

TNS advises clients on specific growth strategies around new market entry, innovation, brand switching and stakeholder management, based on long-established expertise and market-leading solutions. With a presence in over 80 countries, TNS has more conversations with the world’s consumers than anyone else and understands individual human behaviors and attitudes across every cultural, economic and political region of the world.

TNS is part of Kantar, one of the world's largest insight, information and consultancy groups.

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About IFS

IFS is a public company (OMX STO: IFS) founded in 1983 that develops, supplies, and implements IFS Applications™, a component-based extended ERP suite built on SOA technology. IFS focuses on industries where any of four core processes are strategic: Service & asset management, manufacturing, supply chain and projects. The company has 2,000 customers and is present in approximately 60 countries with 2,800 employees in total. Net revenue in 2011 was SKr 2.6 billion.

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Contact Information

Vice President Corporate Communications Oliver Pilgerstorfer

Phone: +44 1494 428900

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Frédéric Guigues

Phone: +46 8 58 78 45 00

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