SAP AG is quietly putting together a set of services aimed at making it easier for R/3 buyers to measure the return on their investments.
Sources said SAP is developing a consulting and sales program, called ValueSAP, that will use a database of return-on-investment and business-performance data culled from R/3 customers by a consulting firm and a university in Switzerland. The program is already being piloted at two customer sites in Europe and Asia.
Prospective buyers of SAP's enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications could use the pool of ROI data to better gauge the potential benefits of installing R/3 before committing to investing millions of dollars in a project, the sources said. And users who already have R/3 are supposed to be able to get more detailed measurements of its ongoing impact on key business metrics such as inventory turns and product cycle times.
They then could look at how they're doing compared with similar organisations.
ERP vendors as a whole haven't had much hard-and-fast ROI data to show users, said Jim Holincheck, a Giga Information Group analyst. But that's becoming more important now that year 2000 fixes are vanishing as an easy way to justify an ERP project, he added.
"There's going to be increased scrutiny put on the business cases for these investments because that burning issue isn't there anymore," Holincheck said.