Both the Swedish and US team agreed on the issues leading to the business need of a new software package. The number one issue that pushed the decision to purchase a new software package was the instability of our existing system. The current system would not allow user modification without altering the source code; over the years the changing of source code has lead to frequent system failures. Also due to modification of the source code and system failures the data is not reliable for users. The current system is a Hewlett-Packard’s MM3000 and HP has notified our company to inform that they no longer will support the MM3000 model. Our teams identified a future need for dealer network, parts and service, and integrating manufacturing. Financial data was also at risk using the current system.
Although both teams agree there was a need for a new software package; they did not agree on the manner and timeliness of the selection process. Sweden’s team was on a tighter schedule and needed a faster change because operations were effected tremendously. The Atlanta team had more flexible time schedule and wanted to implement a universal system. The members of the Atlanta team compose an RFP with little input from the Swedish team and the Swedish team did not agree with the length of the document or the time frame of composing. The Swedish team was not concerned with customization where as the Atlanta team made this a high priority.
The chosen software package has to:
Run on a UNIX system.
Have strength predominantly in distribution.
Have presence in Europe and North America.
Modification without changing source-code is needed.
Those are a few of the requirement and both Oracle and QAD meet these but the other requirements are where the two packages differ.
QAD: This vendor does not seem to have the best interest of our company, they are not considering time constraints, extra resources if needed, and have a disregard to the fact that many modifications will needs to be made if their package is chosen. QAD is giving an implementation time-frame of 7 months without adding the time needed for system modifications and no guarantee. The Swedish desire this system because modification is not needed for their system but Atlanta desire modifications. They have not successful demonstrated a running version of their package. They took the risk to display a package that was a few years and we are not interested in this version. It gives the impression that with heavy modification a older system is required. Their overall scoring was lower than Oracle in every area of functionality. Although QAD will be less expensive there may be a trade of lessened quality.
Oracle: Oracle was the desired software package by the DSI team initially. Gartner Group publication which is a highly reputable source for information in the software industry named Oracle a top in the ERP software market. Oracle demonstrates a desire to be flexible with our company to help us achieve our goals with this purchase. Noncompliance rules makes Oracle more viable The willingness to reduce cost of implementation to remain competitive with QAD and also to offer US resources as need at no cost to our company to guarantee a 1-year implementation. Oracle meets many of the system requirement with the base package so there will be very little expense and time for modifications. Oracle is more expensive but there are many less concerns and also higher quality with the highest scores on the functionality chart.
The best software package that meets needs across both teams is Oracle. Atlanta’s need for modification and user specifics within the system make it difficult to choose QAD because of the failure to demonstrate the desired QAD version with system modifications. It has lead me to the conclusion that the newest versions will have many issues and will not function well with heavy modification. Oracle seems to take the extra steps to help our company reach our goals where as QAD seems to throw out numbers and vendor options and clearly cannot have the best interest with a faulty site visit. There is a $500,000 gap in the price tags of Oracle and QAD with Oracle being the most expensive. Oracle has demonstrated through reputation and presentation to be the most sure choice. The quality gained from Oracle matches the price.
The expenses for modification and timeline for implementation of QAD can increase as new modification issues surface and there is also a worry about on-site resources for implementation. Oracle is clearly the better choice although the Swedish team worries of the lack of presence of Oracle in Sweden Oracle has promised extra resources and a guaranteed 1-year implementation. Oracle has a answer for all concerns that arise as with QAD they leave you very concerned and many questions unanswered. Focus of business needs, integrity of the software package and quality puts Oracle as the number one choice