Definition

SAP Business One

Contributor(s): Jim O'Donnell

SAP Business One is an ERP software platform specifically intended for small and medium-size businesses. SAP Business One (also known as SAP B1) was designed with the idea that smaller companies need ERP software to help manage their business, but not the kind of ERP that large and complex organizations need. It has functional modules for finance, customer relationship management, warehousing and production management, purchasing and procurement, and reporting and analytics.

SAP B1 was originally developed by TopManage Financial Systems, a company based in Israel, and was acquired and rebranded by SAP in 2002. More functionality has been added to SAP B1 from acquisitions made by SAP. A reporting and budgeting function called XL Reporter was acquired from the iLytix Systems AS, based in Norway, in 2005. SAP acquired Praxis Software Solutions, based in Minneapolis, 2006 and integrated its Web-based CRM and e-commerce functions into SAP B1.

SAP B1 was built on and runs on Microsoft SQL server and now also runs on the SAP HANA in-memory platform. It can be deployed on-premises and in the cloud and it can be accessed remotely via a mobile app. SAP sells B1 primarily through a partner network, with about 700 value-added resellers in the network as of 2018. The partner network has also developed more than 500 industry-specific applications, according to SAP. The vendor claims to have more than 60,000 customers in 2018.

Features

The most important core features of SAP Business One are:

  • Financial Management– SAP Business One offers a complete set of tools for streamlined financial operations to help businesses improve margins, reduce errors and enable more profitable decision-making. These tools include accounting, a fixed asset management system, banking and reconciliation features, and financial reporting and analysis.
  • Sales and Customer Management– with this tool, users can oversee the complete sales process and customer lifecycle from initial contact to final sale, after-sales service and support. This feature offers tools to address sales and opportunity management, marketing campaign management, customer management, service management, reporting and analysis, and mobile sales.
  • Purchasing and Inventory Control– this features improves purchasing practices and controls costs by enabling users to manage the complete order-to-pay cycle, including receipts, invoices, returns and payments. This tool includes master data management, streamlined procurement processes, accounts payable, warehouse and accounting integration as well as the ability to generate integrated reports with real-time data.
  • Business Intelligence– this feature enables users to create timely, customizable and accurate reports based on data from across the business. Users can create reports using intuitive tools, analytics with predefined metrics and data visualizations.
  • Analytics and Reporting– this module lets users make better business decisions by capturing all the critical data in real time and making it instantly available company-wide via dashboards and reports.

Benefits of using SAP Business One

The key benefits of deploying SAP Business One include:

On-premises:

  • Compliance with internal data security policies
  • Direct control and access to data
  • Customize and extend business process more efficiently
  • Leverage internal hardware and existing IT infrastructure and resources
  • Perpetual licensing – higher upfront cost but better total cost of ownership in the long term
  • Less dependence on always-connected internet

In the cloud:

  • Easy and affordable implementation
  • Secure browser-based access from anywhere, at any time
  • Access to the most up-to-date functionality without having to rely on in-house IT employees
  • Subscription licensing means no capital expenditure
  • Manage critical business functions in the Web browser

Mobile app:

  • Instant access for employees who need to view and update data from anywhere
  • Integrated analytics enable real-time decision making
  • Comprehensive sales and service functions
  • Enables employees on the road to be more productive

Who is SAP Business One for

SAP Business One is aimed at the needs of small to midsize businesses in a variety of industries. This business management software connects and streamlines a company’s processes. It is designed to help the business grow by managing each aspect of a company’s activities from sales and customer relationships to financials and operations.

SAP B1 certification

The SAP Business One Release 9.3 certification exam verifies that the candidate possesses the basic knowledge in the areas of implementation, logistics, financials and SAP Business One support. An individual who earns this certificate is able to work under the guidance of an experienced consultant on his first SAP Business One implementation project.

This was last updated in March 2019

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Does SAP Business One have serious limitations that would cause you to look elsewhere for a more capable ERP system?
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Our former ERP system was a bit old fashion but quite complete (without any customization) and stable. Now with SAP B1, in my opinion it's very limited in terms of report and not so stable. We need to work with a lot of excel sheets to get all need information.
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