NETSUITE ERP SOFTWARE REVIEW
NetSuite Inc. is a vendor of on-demand, integrated business management application suites that include Accounting / Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and e-commerce software for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and divisions of large companies. NetSuite was originally Incorporated in 1998 with a company name of NetLedger as a SaaS solution that was limited to hosted accounting software. However, today NetSuite delivers a broad suite of ERP applications. The company is headquartered in the Silicon Valley area of California and operates regional offices in Canada and Asia. Hosted software pricing varies by product line and normally falls in the range of USD $99.00 to $129.00 per user per month. Additional fees apply to various add-on products and add-on services. Help desk support plans are priced separately and may range from 22.5% to 37.5% of the software subscription.
Strengths among the market of ERP software as a service solutions include the following:
- A single and enterprise wide integrated business software system. The application possesses a respectable balance of application breath and product depth.
- Flexible digital dashboards. NetSuite has made dashboards a showpiece of the ERP system. The dashboards are flexible and impressive.
- Role-based application navigation and security. NetSuite believes their role based structure provides a distinguishable difference from other ERP system. While largely true, it is less certain and left to each individual to determine whether this paradigm is an advantage or disadvantage.
- A native thin-client solution designed for on-demand Internet delivery.
- Strong market leadership positioning. NetSuite is a marketing powerhouse. The company invests near $100 million annually in aggressive advertising, marketing and media promotions.
- Several industry specific or vertical market solutions.
- The company’s Partner Relationship Management (PRM) is well designed, thoroughly integrated throughout the business application and provides flexible lead distribution, joint forecasting, commission management and partner performance metrics.
- While limited to SMB companies, NetSuite’s e-commerce shopping cart is the best integrated solution in the SaaS ERP market. Advanced functionality such as the keyword marketing module, affiliate management, eBay integration, promotional URLs, real-time credit card processing and basic SEO capabilities collectively provide an impressive e-commerce solution.
Weaknesses among the ERP software as a service solutions include the following:
- A difficult system to use. The company must improve the product’s ease of use or will lose competitive position.
- Troublesome customer support. Moving the customer support operation to Manila has been a problem that is seemingly not getting better.
- High customer support costs. Charging additional recurring fees of 22.5% to 37.5% for users who need to email and speak with help desk representatives is significantly higher than other comparable hosted ERP systems.
- Poor company reputation. NetSuite business partners, users and former users leverage social media channels to share their extreme frustrations regarding poor support, constant price escalations, system downtime and product instability issues. Recognized sites such as ZDNet, BusinessWeek and a host of blogs and social media networks list pages and years of rants directed at NetSuite
- High customer turnover. Primarily as a result of the issues previously cited, NetSuite’s customer churn is unacceptably high.
- Difficult customization tools. NetSuite does provide a suite of complimentary product tools, however, they are limited in nature and difficult to use.
- Product upgrades are notoriously troublesome. NetSuite uses an unusual phased upgrade release progression which resembles more traditional on-premise software solutions rather than the all at once model used by most SaaS companies. Due to the difficulties, experienced users recommend going last in the phased upgrade progression.
NetSuite's primary competitor is hosted ERP software provider Aplicor.
Other competitors include QuickBooks, Intacct, Microsoft Dynamics, Sage MAS and Salesforce.com.
NetSuite enjoyed significant first mover advantage as the only SaaS ERP and CRM solution on the market. However, that advantage is significantly diminished now with Intacct’s partnership with Salesforce.com to provide a competitive offering. Moreover, Aplicor has extended its system to full ERP functions for the middle market from its heritage as a CRM system for middle market and enterprise firms.
Additional Aplicor software reviews can be found at:
NetSuite Software Evaluation
2955 Campus Drive
San Mateo, CA 94403
netsuite review, accounting software, netsuite evaluation, CRM software, aplicor, intacct, microsoft dynamics gp, social media