Life in the Fast Lane: Acumatica’s Cloud ERP

Acumatica bills itself as “the world’s fastest-growing cloud ERP company.” While this kind of marketing slogan can be hard to prove, Acumatica is providing convincing numbers to back up its claim.

In January, I attended Acumatica Summit, the company’s annual customer conference, where CEO Jon Roskill announced that Acumatica now has more than 6,500 installed base customers. Back in January r of last year, Roskill had informed us that Acumatica’s customer count was 5,200.

Based on these numbers, Acumatica’s customer count has grown by 25% over the past year, and the vendor says its revenues rose 72% in the same period. I’m not aware of any other ERP vendor—cloud or on-premises—that can beat this trajectory (but if you do, please let me know!).

So, before looking at the most recent news from Acumatica Summit, its worth taking a look at what has gotten them this far.

Staking Out Its Position as a Top ERP Value Brand for SMBs

Acumcatica bill of rights Since its inception in2008, Acumatica has grown into its current position as a top ERP value brand for SMBs by doing a lot of things right. For instance, Acumatica:

  • Provides an open, flexible cloud-based ERP platform-standards, with a focus on d pragmatic innovation to solve real-world customer problems.
  • Differentiates with customer-friendly business practices, such as a consumption-based pricing model that makes it easy for SMBs to size and buy its solutions, and a “Customer Bill of Rights.”
  • Offers industry-specific solutions for different verticals—including manufacturing, distribution, construction, field service, and commerce.
  • Spends 74% of its revenues on R&D—a much higher percentage of its revenue than its peers.
  • Trains, mentors and enables channel partners (who number 300+ and account for 100% of its North America sales). This partner-centric model facilitates linear-growth, unencumbered by direct and indirect channel conflicts.
  • Attracts ISVs (it now has 200+ onboard) with its open platform, structured onboarding and certification processes, tools that make it easier for ISVs to stay current with Acumatica upgrades, and an ISV marketplace.

Acumatica’s success and potential have not gone unnoticed. In June 2019, EQT, a private investment firm with over $45B in capital, decided to acquire Acumatica and invest in the company to further accelerate growth.

Jockeying for the Pole Position

Acumatica made a slew of announcements at the Summit that support its intentions to up its game to the next level. Acumatica announced the beta release of 2020 R1, which offers advances in usability, powerful new native modules, best in class functionality, codeless personalization, and cross-connected workflows, and also unveiled new acquisitions and partnerships.

Some of the most interesting developments included:

  • A native Payroll module as part of Acumatica 2020R1. Until now, Acumatica has partnered with several companies to provide payroll services to its customers. But due to high demand for an Acumatica solution, Acumatica built its own to provide customers who want an all-in-one solution with that option.
  • Native expense management features in the Financials module, which leverage OCR, AI, and machine learning to scan and enter receipt information directly into Acumatica. Again, customers asked for native capabilities, and Acumatica delivered.
  • A partnership with CFMA offer for Acumatica Construction Edition customers, which offers Acumatica construction customers a free one-year membership to the Construction Financial Management Association and access to its financial benchmarking tool.
  • Acquisition of  JAAS Systems, a complete solution for make-to-stock, make-to-order, engineer-to-order, project-centric, job shop, batch, and repetitive manufacturing companies, to enhance Acumatica Manufacturing Edition.
  • A partnership with BDO, the international network of public accounting, tax, consulting and business advisory firms, to better serve midmarket customers with more complex needs, large national or international requirements, and companies that seek independent guidance in their ERP selection or implementation process.
  • Integration with Smartsheet, which will more tightly integrate Smartsheet and Acumatica to improve real-time visibility into workflows to help streamline business operations.
  • Integration with BigCommerce for omnichannel sales.

In addition, Acumatica also told us that in 2019, customers established nine new user groups—ramping up from zero the prior year.

Summary and Perspective

Acumatica will continue to gain momentum with its open platform, partner focus and customer-centric approach. Several of the customers I spoke with at the event had switched to Acumatica after becoming dissatisfied with “nickel and diming,” opaque terms, troublesome integrations and other issues from competitive cloud ERP options. Positive customer sentiment towards Acumatica also extends beyond these anecdotal stories, as evidenced by Acumatica’s strong showing in G2’s end-user ratings Forbes Software Reviews.

Wearing the white hat has been good for Acumatica. It’s difficult to over-estimate how much Acumatica’s commitment to customer and partner-friendly business practices have contributed to its impressive growth rate.

But growth also brings challenges. It will be interesting to see how Acumatica deals with the next round of growing pains and the new demands that this will place on the company. Finding, hiring, training and getting enough people productive to keep pace with this growth is clearly the biggest hurdle the vendor faces. Acumatica will need to leverage the white hat image it’s developed among customers to similar effect in the war for talent.

Rivals that used to brush off Acumatica as a competitor, will, of course, be increasingly less likely to do so. As a result, Acumatica will need to put more time and energy into combatting the increasing volley of shots that rivals will aim at it.

However, if Acumatica can stick to its core values, principles and business practices, it should be able to overcome these challenges and continue to differentiate and accelerate its market momentum.

© SMB Group 2020

 

Source: Laurie McCabe’s Blog

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