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Microsoft Business Solutions: ERP, CRM, RMS for small and mid-size company - overview for Consultant
Microsoft Business Solutions has good combination of ERP, CRM, Retail Management applications to cover all the needs for small, mid-size and even large company. These are ERP: Microsoft Great Plains, Navision, Axapta, Solomon, Small Business Manager; CRM: Microsoft CRM and Navision CRM; Retail Management: Microsoft RMS and Navision Retail module.
You should know that these products were not initially developed by Microsoft (except Microsoft CRM), but purchased from leading mid-market software development companies: Great Plains Software, SMS, Navision Software. This means that Microsoft is on the way to align all its products and make them be granular (so-called Microsoft Business Suites: Financial, Manufacturing, Logistics, Project Accounting, etc.)
Also please know that Microsoft is trying to create integration packages between its products as far as they come from different vendors these products were not initially designed to be cross-integrated. Microsoft however covered long way to prepare such integrations it has Microsoft Biztalk server.
Next point for you Microsoft is now on the way to move all its products to its database platform Microsoft SQL Server. Good example is Great Plains now it is available on MS SQL Server or MSDE, no Ctree or Pervasive SQL 2000 (with new version Microsoft Great Plains 8.0). Also Microsoft is trying to enable other technologies for its ERP, CRM and RMS the best example is Microsoft CRM: MS SQL Server, MS Exchange, Active Directory, Replication, Message Queue, Text Indexing to name a few. This means for you, consultant, that your clients IT group will love these solutions from technical side, if they are Microsoft-oriented and vise versa they will be more than reserved if they are coming from Java/Oracle/IBM world.
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