You know your organisation would benefit, you know the business would run smoother and quicker, you know your processes would be streamlined. But is this enough to invest your time and resources into the latest in-memory technology for your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) needs?
At Blue Ocean Systems, we like to empower clients to identify and implement their ERP with the best possible benefits available from day one. In this post, we’ve put together a business case for how (and why) your organisation could leverage in-memory ERP technology and some challenges we can help you overcome.
Hardware, Software and Everything In Between
- Hardware costs are falling and more business decisions can be made without worrying as much about the investment risk
- Software for your ERP is more readily available and sophisticated with innovative features ready to help your organisation grow. Updates are automatic and down-time will soon be something of the past for a lot of businesses
- More products are available with in-memory technology already built in (e.g. SAP HANA) making it more available and more affordable than ever before
- The concept of hardware and software will soon be replaced by your in-memory technology capabilities because they are already combined and not reliant on any other component
Anything Less than Lightning Speed is Unacceptable
- The current partition of OLTP (OnLine Transactional Processing) and OLAP (OnLine Analytical Processing) is highly inefficient for organisations and their innovation activities
- Combining your organisation’s transactions and analysis activities will be a key deciding factor for the future of your organisation
- No longer will companies be able to compete effectively if there is any delay between needing the data, and obtaining it
- Companies will become more proactive rather than struggling to react because it will be the analytics they can gather from their data which will be the driving force for the future
Data from Everywhere
- Businesses have more data sources than ever before including social, online, ecommerce as well as historical transactional data – without swift and efficient management of these elements, businesses sink under the pressure
- Data sources which may have been eliminated or overlooked can now form an important part in the business management and decision making capability of your organisation
Nike is one company already leveraging in-memory technology capabilities to stay ahead of their competition and integrate innovation into their brand and products.
Running shoes and wristbands made by Nike come with embedded electronics to make an accurate record of the consumer’s activity including walking, cycling, running etc. They can then upload, compare and share their statistics online with other Nike users. This not only creates an online community of consumers with similar interests (a great marketing tool) but also enhances the Nike brand and capabilities by tapping into real-time analytics and using these to offer even more tailored products and services. With over 10 million subscribers, imagine the extent of data Nike is able to access! Of course it also helps that by providing this holistic offline and online experience to customers, loyalty will be long-term. This is true innovation![Source]
But That’s Not All There is to Consider
As with any good business case, challenges also need to be identified and mitigated in the right way. For in-memory technology to work, you also need to think about;
- Standardisation. Or lack of. Unfamiliar architecture, monitoring difficulties and current lack of streamlined cross-industry standards may cause some issues while the global business world becomes accustomed to the new technology
- Unfamiliarity with new procedures for backup or disaster recovery need to be carefully considered when exploring your in-memory ERP options
These are not challenges which cannot be overcome, however, and the SAP HANA consultants at Blue Ocean Systems are committed to working with all clients to alleviate any obstacles before implementing.
The fundamental value of in-memory technology is increased speed. Moving an analytical database into memory removes the bottleneck associated with physical disks. SAP HANA can handle data sets that span into the billions of records and return results in seconds. [See last week’s post for more examples]
Understanding how that speed creates value is the key to determining what in-memory technology can do for your business;
- Tap into big data sets from various social media, collect information and look for patterns that will enable businesses to offer the right solution to your customers
- Be innovative across your entire business platform and allow this to drive your growth
- Become known as the proactive, solution-driven leading organisation rather than the reactive, out-of-date business
The Blue Ocean Systems team of consultants are excited about the possibilities SAP HANA can bring organisations – let them take your real data and use SAP HANA to show you exactly what you could be accessing by using in-memory ERP technology.
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