In the last few weeks I’ve had conversations with two different customers about a common issue: how their deployment of SAP conflicted with their deployment of GainSeeker Suite.
The first conversation was with a client who already had several seats of GainSeeker in his plant. For the last year he has been planning to standardize on GainSeeker Suite throughout his plant. He had purchased additional seats, and we were trying to nail down dates for our staff to deploy the system and train his people. At the last minute, he told me that he had been handed a corporate edict to implement SAP and that they would not be expanding GainSeeker after all.
The second conversation was with an individual who just accepted a new job at another company. He called me to say that he was so happy to get back into a company where he could use GainSeeker Suite. A year before he had left a job where he had used GainSeeker on a daily basis, but that company had implemented SAP and had started to decommission GainSeeker Suite. He told me “By the time I left, we had lost so much. The SAP Quality Module doesn’t do anything useful with analytics or trending. There is no real-time capability. It just isn’t designed to do what GainSeeker Suite is so good at doing, and we needed what GainSeeker was good at.”
What he didn’t know is that in the year since he left, his old company had recognized the same thing, and had recommissioned GainSeeker Suite.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen this happen over the years, and SAP seems to be particularly good at positioning themselves as the “be all and end all” for running a manufacturing company. What I’ve seen over and over again is that that just isn’t true. Over and over I’ve seen customers back off their implemention of GainSeeker Suite because SAP was going to do it all, only to find out two or three years later that SAP can’t touch GainSeeker’s real-time data collection, analytics, and dashboarding. In the meantime, the company either delays or, in the case of the second customer, actually loses the benefits they had realized from the implementation of GainSeeker Suite.
Which is where I come back to the blog title: “Buying a business suit for the beach…” The SAP Quality Module, although it is good and useful, doesn’t do what GainSeeker does. It’s like buying a business suit when you need a swimsuit for the beach. They’re both articles of clothing, but they have different functions. Actually it may be more like buying a really expensive business suit, and then wearing it to the board of directors meeting, then the beach, to soccer practice, to the factory floor, and to work in the garden. Maybe after you’ve spent all that money, you naturally want to try to use it for everything.