While companies that use SAP as their sole ERP system may be willing to wait out the rationalisation of Ariba solutions within SAP and accept inevitable changes, those using ERP systems from one or more ERP providers have more reason to be concerned and are looking at possible alternatives.
The Pros & Cons of Ariba
Some organisations have been attracted to Ariba for their proprietary trading network – the original Ariba concept from the dot.com days (although the added cost to both suppliers and buyers has kept actual use of that network well below the hype that surrounds it).
But for many organisations using Ariba solutions to support their buy-side processes, the primary selling points of Ariba have been:
- A broad suite of procurement solutions for sourcing, supplier management and contract management integrated with a robust Procure-to-Pay system
- The ability to support global deployments
- ERP independence with the ability to provide a common spend management framework that works with any existing financial system, or across multiple financial systems in larger, multi-company organisations
The downside of the Ariba solution set, and the reason why some organisations have already moved away from Ariba even before the SAP acquisition, have been:
PROACTIS is a Better Alternative for Many
- Cumbersome application designs and user interfaces that have often been difficult to deploy and have often not gained widespread adoption
- High total cost of licensing, implementation, integration and operation
For organisations that are using Ariba as an integrated spend management system – especially those using it with ERP systems other than SAP – PROACTIS provides a very attractive alternative to a ‘just wait and see’ approach with SAP.
PROACTIS is the only spend management solution provider (we call it Spend Control and eProcurement) that can deliver:
- Breadth and depth of solutions that closely matches up with those offered by Ariba
- Solutions that are proven in hundreds of organisations across multiple industries around the world
- The ability to support global deployments with all the multi-language, multi-currency, multi-taxation capabilities such deployments need
- Supplier connectivity and enablement capabilities that are actually more practical and productive than a public supplier network for most organisations
- ERP independence and the ability to integrate with multiple different ERP systems within complex multi-company organisations
Just as importantly, PROACTIS solutions overcome the drawbacks many organisations have found with Ariba by providing:
- Intuitive, easy-to-use applications that foster broad adoption across the organisation
- Affordable, flexible licensing options that allow organisations to implement capabilities in the sequence and combination that delivers the greatest value
- Both cloud and on-premise deployment options to best fit an organisation’s IT strategy
- Lower total cost of ownership to accelerate ROI from an organisation’s Spend Control efforts
While SAP may or may not ultimately decide to retain all of the Ariba solutions over time, it is highly unlikely that they will make Ariba solutions easier to implement, easier to manage or easier to afford – that has not been SAP’s history. And while there are many options for point solutions to replace individual Ariba applications across the range of Spend Control functions, there are far fewer options for organisations with a vision of organisation-wide spend management.
No other provider can deliver the range of solutions, proven usability and overall affordability offered by PROACTIS. Ariba users – and organisations that had been considering adopting Ariba – should take a look at what PROACTIS
has to offer as an excellent alternative for support of true organisation-wide spend management.