Queensland-based integrator Data#3 has been selected by G3 Communications Group to implement SAP R/3 as its financial management system over competitors Oracle, Great Plains and Platinum.
Worth approximately half a million dollars, the contract includes the implementation of R/3 on Microsoft NT and SQL servers, with Data#3's partner, IBM Global Services, responsible for the actual implementation process.
But as one of only a handful of SAP's Australian channel partners, Data#3 admits G3's decision to go with R/3 was unique for the small and medium business (SMB) sector.
According to Jan Gomola, Data#3's business development manager, that sector is not the traditional domain of R/3.
However, G3 needed to plan for the future and, given the high growth rates the company is currently experiencing, the product offered the best support for its expansion and its aspirations as a large enterprise, Gomola said.
After performing some consultative work in regards to a financial management system for G3, Data#3 were exclusively asked to submit a proposal that met G3's requirements.
Data#3 also had to ensure that the system that it was providing could be utilised to track products such as G3's mobile handsets.
But the price tag for R/3's implementation threatened to jettison the whole project, until Data#3 and IBM Global Services leveraged their experience in the enterprise resource planning (ERP) market to give G3 access to the system.
"IBM has had some specific experience in this area and worked off an existing blueprint which lowered costs," Gomola said. "Also, the low number of user licences and amount of hardware kept costs down."
Gomola said the company also landed the contract because of its ability to provide an end-to-end solution.
"Data#3 is a SAP reseller and a SAP systems integrator which means that we can provide the licences and the products to build a system."
According to Margaret Sutch, G3's Financial Controller, Data#3 was awarded the contract because of its ability to provide a system that identified the particular solutions that G3 needed.
"We needed a financial system that was able to interface with a telco's billing system. I have had difficulties with previous billing systems because they did not integrate with the financial system," admits Sutch.