Systems solutions

Jun 01, 2008 9:30 PM  By

The British are coming! Or rather, the British software systems are starting to make their way to U.S. shores.

Two systems making their debut on our annual software roundup this year are imports from the UK: 1) Omnica, a new solution developed on the Microsoft Axapta platform, and represented in this country by nFocus in Deerfield, IL; and 2) the ActiveSeries, a suite of veteran SQL/Server applications installed in several dozen U.K. facilities, represented here by Datamann in Wilder, VT (which also has the MOSP application).

Both systems have been fully Americanized for U.S. dollars, U.S. addresses, U.S. sales taxes, and U.S. transaction processing such as credit card and manifesting. They also incorporate U.S. terminology, which is different enough from the U.K. to be annoying if left unchanged (for example, “general ledger” instead of “nominal ledger”).

How viable are these applications? Very! The U.S. partners are responsible for support, so you don’t have to worry about vast time zone differences.

Both developers are willing to make modifications if necessary to meet user requirements. And while Omnica is a new entry, the people who developed it have over a decade of experience in direct commerce software.

Finally, just a “sanity check,” the U.K. landscape for direct commerce is very similar to our own, even though it didn’t really emerge until the early 1990s. While one or two previous attempts by U.K. software vendors to make a go of it stateside failed, they were tepid affairs without U.S. partners. This time around, I think we have two winners.

As usual, the functional grades and ranks in the accompanying chart are based on the vendors’ own input (with very rigid ground rules), giving you a chance to see where they believe their strengths lie.


Ernie Schell is director of Ventnor, NJ-based consultancy Marketing Systems Analysis.

staff installs/user base prices e-commerce functionality rules modular rankings
Software Total staff Programmers Support staff Total supported installs Total installs on current version Number with fewer than 12 users Number with 12-24 users Number with 25-50 users Number with 51-100 users Number with more than 100 users Avg. orders per day Percentage of b-to-b users Percentage of b-to-c users Percentage that sell to both Percentage doing at least 15% retail Percentage that are primarily e-commerce Avg. number IT staff on site Hosted solution Software installed less than $15K Software installed $15K-$25K Software installed $25K-$50K Software installed $50K-$100K Software installed $100K-$250K Software installed more than $250K Transaction-based fee pricing Integrated shopping cart Complete e-commerce module Shared database for call center and Web Support for real-time Web order import Display all SKU sizes/colors in OE Fulfillment functionality Support single inventory in multiple warehouses Integrated manifesting Supports non-U.S. addresses Supports multiple currencies Integrated accounting module % of users with few/minor modifications % of users with major modifications Interfaces Basic business rules Complex business rules Enterprise integration Order entry/customer service E-commerce Contact/campaign management Warehouse management Fulfillment Merchandise planning/forecasting Customer database management Marketing database/analytics Retail management/POS
Abison CCS 8 6 1 6 11 4 —- 1 1 —- 325 0% 10% 90% 100% 0 1-2 N 20% 44% —- 36% —- —- NA Y Y R Y Y Y Y N Y N Y 0% 0% Y Y N Y A-1-1 A-1-2 B-2-1 B-1-1 B-2-1 E A-1-1 A-2-1 B-NA-5
ActiveSeries 35 5 5 78 (UK) 63 10 30 28 8 2 1-2,000 15% 80% 5% 75% 95 3 N —- 10% 25% 50% 10 5 NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N 95% 5% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-1 B-2-1 B-2-1 A-1-1 B-2-4 C-2-1 A-1-4 C-2-4
AssistCommerce Suite 19 7 7 55 3 2 6 38 12 7 2000 25 75 80-90 20 10 2-3 O 0 0 0 0 65% 35% NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N Y Y Y 60% 40% N Y P Y A-1-1 A-1-4 A-1-1 B-2-1 A-1-1 C-2-5 A-2-4 B-2-3 D-3-5
Avexxis 20 15 8 65 20 3 8 17 34 3 500 0 90 10 0 0 1 Y —- —- —- AVG —- —- NA Y Y Y Y N Y Y N Y N Y 30% 70% Y Y N N A-1-1 B-1-5 D-3-5 B-2-1 A-2-1 B-2-4 C-3-3 D-3-5 C-2-4
Cadence Order Management System 45 10 6 38 35 8 7 15 6 2 50 70 20 10 0 0 1-2 N —- —- —- —- AVG —- NA Y Y Y Y N Y Y Y N N N 50% 50% Y Y Y Y B-1-4 A-1-3 E A-1-1 A-1-1 C-3-4 C-2-2 E E
Commerce Management System 15 3 6 250 250 124 89 25 12 0 70-100 20 70 10 10 30 1 N 60% 20% 15% 5% —- —- N/A Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N Y 85% 15% Y Y N Y A-1-1 A-1-2 A-1-1 B-2-3 A-1-1 C-3-5 A-2-2 A-2-3 B-2-3
CORESense 50 12 3 65 50 40 15 5 3 2 150-300 10 90 10 100 70 0-1 O —- 30% 60% 10& 5% 5% 25¢ Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N N 70% 30% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-1 B-2-1- B-2-1 A-1-1 D-3-1 A-1-1 B-2-1 A-2-1
CWDirect 500 115 35 82 66 NA NA NA NA NA NA 5% 80% 15% 60% 15% 2-5 O 0 0 0 15% 50% 30% 5% Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 50% 0% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-2-1 C-3-2 B-2-2 A-1-1 C-3-2 A-1-1 A-2-1 A-1-X
CWSerenade 500 115 35 4 4 NA NA NA NA NA NA 0% 80% 20% 50% 50% 2-3 Y —- —- —- —- AVG —- NA N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 50% 0% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-2-1 C-3-2 B-2-1 A-1-1 C-3-2 A-1-1 A-2-1 A-1-X
Direct500 30 24 4 8 10 NA NA NA NA NA 500-2,500 NA NA NA NA NA 1 N —- —- —- AVG —- —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y N Y Y Y Y 100% 0% Y Y Y Y A-1-NA A-1-NA A-1-NA A-1-NA B-2-NA A-2-NA B-2-NA A-2-NA C-2-NA
Directions 6 4 4 30 6 —- 15 5 10 —- 50-500 30 70 25 10 50 —- O —- —- 30% 50% 20% —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N Y 10% 30% N S N N A-1-1 A-1-3 B-2-1 A-2-1 A-1-1 B-2-2 A-1-1 B-2-2 B-2-5
Ecometry Commerce Suite 450 150 100 245 108 18 31 64 78 54 10,000 15% 70% 15% 35 15% 1-2 N —- —- —- —- AVG —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N 40% 15% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-4 A-1-1 B-2-1 B-2-1 B-2-1 A-1-1 A-2-1 A-2-4
InOrder 15 7 6 31 30 10 10 9 2 0 1,000 43 35 22 57 51 0.2 N —- —- —- —- AVG —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 70% 30% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-2-2- B-2-2 A-1-1 A-1-1 A-1-1 B-2-1 B-2-3 A-2-4
Junction Retail Enterprise System 200+ 50 15 40 1 1 2 10 23 4 100-40K 20 60 20 80 15 5 O —- —- —- —- —- 100 NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 70% 30% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-5 A-2-1 B-2-1 A-2-1 A-2-5 B-2-1 A-1-5 A-1-5
MACH3 12 9 5 41 6 5 11 17 8 2 1,500 34 66 73 24 36 0.5 N 0% 0% 12% 63% 18% 7% 0% Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N Y 80% 20% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 B-2-1 B-2-2 A-1-1 A-1-1 B-2-2 A-1-1 A-2-1 A-2-4
Mailware 10 3 2 1000+ 200 NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA N 100% —- —- —- —- —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N 80% 20% Y N N Y A-1-1 A-1-4 A-1-2 A-2-2 A-1-1 C-3-5 A-2-1 B-2-2 C-3-5
MOM 58 8 27 3,873 3,412 2,866 581 270 154 2 100 20 60 20 10 40 1 N X —- —- —- —- —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N 15% 5% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-4 A-2-3 B-2-3 A-1-1 B-2-3 A-2-1 B-1-2 B-2-5
MOSP 35 5 3 95 24 15% 30% 25% 20% 10% 500 15% 80% 5% 30% 0% 0-1 N 10% 20% 45% 20% 5% 0% NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 75% 25% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-2-3 A-1-1 A-2-1 A-1-1 B-2-1 A-1-1 B-2-1 B-3-4
NaturalOrder 13 6 4 30 26 4 8 10 4 4 2500 50 20 30 2 5 1 N 0% 0% 0% 30% 60% 10% NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 90% 10% Y Y PRT C A-1-1 B-2-5 B-2-1 A-2-1 B-2-1 C-2-2 A-1-1 A-1-1 C-3-5
NetSuite 700+ 20 50 5,400+ 5,400+ NA NA NA NA NA NA 25% 31% 44% NA 10% NA Y —- AVG —- —- —- —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 50% 50% Y Y Y Y A-1-NA A-1-NA A-2-NA B-NA-NA A-1-NA B-2-NA A-1-NA A-2-NA B-3-NA
Omnica MCR 45 16 27 4* 4 0 0 1 2 1 1,500 40 40 20 66 15 1 N —- —- —- —- 50% 50% NA Y* Y* Y* Y* Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 80% 20% Y Y Y Y A-1-NA B-2-NA A-2-NA A-1-NA A-1-NA A-1-NA B-2-NA C-3-NA A-2-NA
OrderMotion 50 8 7 300 300 75 135 45 30 15 100 5% 95% 15% 5% 90% 0-2 Y —- AVG —- —- —- —- 55¢-20¢ Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 0% 0% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-2-1 A-1-2 B-2-2 A-1-1 C-3-3 A-1-1 A-2-3 B-2-4
OrderPower! 30 24 4 65 60 16 22 20 12 10 2,000 10 60 10 60 0 0 O —- —- —- AVG —- —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N Y 75% 25% Y Y Y Y A-1-NA A-1-NA A-2-NA A-2-NA A-1-NA B-2-NA A-1-NA B-2-NA E
OrderSuite 5 3 1 130 114 98 30 2 0 0 100-300 5% 95% 20% 10% 40% 1 N AVG —- —- —- —- —- NA N N N Y Y Y Y N Y Y N 70% 30% N N N N A-1-1 B-2-2 A-1-1 B-2-2 B-2-2 B-2-2 A-2-2 A-1-2 C-3-5
Profitability Software Suite 107 36 25 NA NA NA NA NA NA NA 350 50% 50% 50% 30% 80 1 O —- —- —- 15% 25% 60% Per-user Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 100% 10% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-1 A-1-1 A-2-2 A-2-1 B-2-5 A-1-1 B-2-1 B-2-4
Response 4 2 2 625+ 100 70 18 12 7 0 100-250+ 10 90 40 10 25 0-1 N 72% 16% 19% 3% 0 0 NA Y N N Y D Y Y Y Y N N 40% 60% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 B-1-2 A-1-5* B-2-1 A-2-1 C-2-4 B-2-1 B-2-1 C-2-5
Ship4U 5 4 0 25 20 20 4 —- —- 1 NA 30 70 0 80 10 0-1 Y —- AVG —- —- —- —- 35¢-10¢ Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N N 100% 0% Y Y N N A-1-4 A-2-1 D-3-5 A-1-1 A-1-1 C-3-5 B-2-4 C-3-3 E
SigmaCommerce 127 67 21 65 10 15% 40% 30% 10% 5% Varies 10 60 30 NA 30% 0-20 Y NA NA NA NAN NA NA YES Y Y Y Y N Y N N Y Y Y 95% 5% Y Y N AW A-1-1 A-1-4 A-1-4 B-2-1 A-2-1 A-1-1 B-2-1 A-1-4 C-3-3
Stone Edge Order Manager 14 4 8 2,000 1,000 NA NA NA NA NA 50 – 500 5% 95% NA NA 90% 0-1 N AVG —- —- —- —- —- NA N N Y N N Y N Y N N N 95% 5% Y Y N N A-2-1 A-1-1 D-3-5 D-3-4 A-1-4 D-3-5 C-3-4 E B-1-5
TernoVelocity 10 6 4 25 14 7 9 4 4 1 1 – 5K 15% 55% 30% 20% 15% 0.5-1 N —- 17% 33% 33% 17% —- NA Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 70% 30% Y Y Y Y A-1-1 A-1-3 B-2-5 B-2-3 A-2-1 B-2-3 A-1-1 A-1-2 A-2-4

ABBREVIATIONS

*Being implemented

R = Replicated Database

X = See system summary

P = Supported through partners

F = Future

UK = Users in the UK

AW = through APIs and Web Services

S = some

C = Custom

AVG = Average

I* = requires “Integrator” module

D = Depends on no. of S/C

PRT = partial

L = Local delivery

O (P) = Optional (Preferred)

KEY: Grade – Rank – % user base

GRADE

A = This is a major strength of our application suite

B = Above average in functionality and feature set

C = We offer and support this in our application suite

D = This is a minor element in our application suite

E = We do not support this in our application suite

RANK

1 = We are a market leader here

2 = We are competitive

3 = Support basic functionality only

% installed base using this

1 = >90%

2 = 75%-89%

3 = 50%-74%

4 = 25%-49%

5 = <25%

* Recently introduced