Product Roadmap for Sage 300 ERP (Formerly Sage ERP ACCPAC)
Sage publishes a product roadmap to provide customers with an understanding of the future direction of their products. The product roadmap for Sage 300 ERP (formerly known as Sage ERP Accpac) was recently updated. This roadmap is intended for use as a guide only, and is subject to change; it represents the current view at Sage of its product direction. The Roadmap reflects the Sage commitment to deliver solutions that are easy to deploy and easy to use. Here we provide an overview.
Inspired By You
The new capabilities in planning are based largely on the feedback of customers like you. Since the In-Product User Survey was added, Sage has received over 14,000 responses. Enhancement requests also are collected at the website http://www.sageaccpac.com/feedback. Top areas for improvement were functionality, particularly in the area of managing users in the system, and reporting. The chart on page 2 shows the top customer requests as well as the time frame in which Sage plans to implement them.
According to the new roadmap, Sage is focused on adding features designed to simplify business processes, help you stay connected, and improve business insight. New functionality will be provided in Product Updates, mini-releases that deliver enhancements with minimal business disruption, and the major annual release.
Sage 300 ERP 2012
The next major release of Sage 300 ERP is planned for the third quarter of 2012. Sage will deliver on the promise to simplify processes with the availability of Sage Advisor. Sage plans to help you stay connected with technology updates and new web-based Sage Solutions. You can expect to obtain better business intelligence with the addition of new inquiry options and expanded reporting functionality. We cover each in turn.
Sage Advisor And Advisor Update
According to Stephen Smith, Sage 300 ERP Principal Product Architect, Sage Advisor is an umbrella term for a number of technologies that are being rolled into Sage products in coming releases. With Sage 300 ERP 2012, the software will include Product Enhancement Program (PEP). This software is designed to provide detailed information to Product Managers and developers on how users use the product. It helps Sage understand which parts of the program are working well and which parts need improvement. Participation in this program is purely voluntary and you easily can opt out. No data from your database is ever transmitted.
Another component that will be included in this release is the Advisor Update. This will work much like automatic software updates you receive for other programs such as Microsoft Windows. A new Sage Advisor Update program will be added to your Start Menu. This will give you a list of all the updates available for all your Sage products installed on your computer. From this program you can then download the update and also optionally install the update.
Enhanced Business Insight
A major request from customers in the surveys was enhanced reporting. Recent releases of Sage 300 ERP include Sage Business Intelligence, a powerful Excel-based tool. Complex reporting is made easy with customizable out-of-the-box report templates and dashboards. You can transform your data into information with powerful multi-dimensional analysis and what-if scenarios. Sage Business Intelligence also can consolidate data from multiple companies and sources. New with Version 2012 will be Reporting Trees and new report distribution capabilities.
Expanded inquiry functionality is being added in Sage 300 ERP 2012 to support custom queries and smart lists on your operational data, including: Inventory Items/History, Orders/Sales History, and Purchase Order Transactions/History. New Crystal Reports® 2011 (Runtime Engine) will provide you with improved report grouping, sorting, and filtering for reports created with Crystal Reports 2011. A new report format, .RPTR has been added to prevent unwanted changes to customized reports.
Sage CRM Enhancements
Service Pack 2 for Sage CRM 7.1 is included with this release. Support for Tablet computers is being added, as well as new Mail Merge and Document Filing capabilities.
A growing number of Web- and on-premise based solutions help you stay connected. These include Sage CRM Mobility with iPhone support. Soon to be available is Sage Shipping by SmartLinc.
Expanded Development Tools And Platform Support
The new SDK and SData toolbox in this release will improve the integration ability of Sage 300 ERP, making it more cost effective for us to develop and maintain integrations between Sage 300 ERP and any specialized software you may be using.
With this release, supported Virtualization Platforms include Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix Xen Apps, and VMware ESX. Supported operating systems include Microsoft Windows 7, and 8 (upon release), Microsoft Windows Server 2003, 2008, and Microsoft Small Business Server 2011. Supported databases are Microsoft SQL 2008 R2, SQL 2012 (upon release), Pervasive 11, and Oracle 11g. The Portal will be compatible with Internet Explorer 9, FireFox, Chrome, and Safari browsers.
Ongoing Product Updates
Following soon after the 2012 release will be a Product Update. Currently targeted for Q4 2012, the release is scheduled to include Sage CRM Enhancements, a Payroll Module Update, Additional Portal Snapshots, and a Custom Reports Link in the Portal.
Product Update 2, targeted for Q1 2013, is planned to include a User/License Management Utility, new fields in Order entry for Entered By and On Hold Reason, and additional parameters for certain reports.
Under Consideration For 2013
Sage already is planning the 2013 release. Under consideration for this release is the ability to build custom snapshots and inquiries in the Customizer. Module functionality under consideration includes easy reversal of General Ledger batches and the addition of an indicator to show which fields on a form are required. New connected services for 2013 could include Sage Collect and Sage Requisitions and Approvals.
Give us a call with your questions on Sage 300.