Sensor manufacturer TT Electronics has saved “hundreds of thousands of pounds” moving its support contract to SAP's rival Rimini Street, after its CIO found the firm had only made four support calls to SAP's service over five years.
The company, which manufactures sensors for the automotive, medical and aerospace industries, has seen a “few hundred thousand coming off in direct profit with very little effort” since cutting ties with SAP’s maintenance support in 2012, CIO Ed Heffernan told ComputerworldUK.
Like many UK manufacturers, TT Electronics is still working with austerity measures implemented several years ago during the recession. The firm needed to cut its costs, and maintenance fees were an obvious first choice, CIO Ed Heffernan said.
“It’s a case of - if I don’t save that [maintenance] money - I’ll have to fire a few people to pay for it”, Heffernan said.
He added: “In the manufacturing business where money is tight, depreciation is getting higher as I’m delivering more projects. You are constantly being pushed to get more value out of budgets.
“When we look at what are we throwing our spending money at, licensing for SAP becomes an obvious thing as it is quite a high cost.”
Despite an ongoing legal battle between Oracle and Rimini Street, Heffernan said that the savings in moving to third party support outweighed the risks.
Furthermore, the company are not planning on upgrading to Hana any time soon – something firms who jump ship may have to buy another license for in the future.
“The conscience kicks in because SAP need to make those developments, but it is every man for themselves.”
Heffernan believes “SAP is a fantastic tool - it is a tool I would use in any company.”
However, he said companies like Rimini Street and Spinnaker’s recent growth is telling.
“I think SAP were assuming that it wouldn’t become as competitive as it is and now they have to fight back a bit more.”
TT Electronics’ IT
The manufacturer hosts its IT in two datacentres in San Diego and Germany. It moved half of its business to SAP’s latest on-premise ERP, ECC 6.0, while under Rimini Street’s support.
However its German payroll processes, hosted in the German datacentre, are still supported by SAP as there are different regulations in the vendor’s homeland.
TT Electronics now hopes to consolidate most of its IT to further cut costs and streamline its estate by 2019.
It is currently using Salesforce.com as a means to centralise some business processes in the interim.