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August 2018, Vol. 6, No. 4

SMBs see vertical ERP technology vendors meeting specialty needs

SMB ERP system users are constantly faced with difficult choices as technologies advance and pressures mount to be effective while being cost-effective. Stay on premises or migrate to the cloud? Keep the old system with occasional upgrades or go entirely in vogue? Rely on a large ERP vendor or a small specialty software maker? Specialty ERP technology vendors don't have the big marketing budgets, massive user bases and mindshare, but they meet a critical need for their users and continue to thrive. Outside their specific verticals, specialty ERP vendors may not be very well-known; their customers typically are SMBs. But these vendors employ multiple strategies, such as satisfying specific feature requests and supporting new technologies, to keep their customers happy. Swedish-based ERP technology vendor IFS, for example, develops systems for manufacturing, distribution and asset management. For comparison's sake, IFS has about 3,500 employees, compared to Oracle's 138,000 and SAP's 91,000-plus. IFS customer Chief Industries is a...

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