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TEC Discrete ERP Product Certification Report: Navigator One for SAP Business One (v88)
is also known as : SAP Business One
, Discrete Enterprise Resource Planning Solutions
, SAP Business One Extensions
, Business One V88
, Navigator One White Paper
, Discrete ERP Solutions
, Navigator One for SAP Business One
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TEC Product Certification Report
Navigator One for SAP Business One (v88) has been certified by
Gabriel Gheorghiu, TEC Research Analyst
Aleksey Osintsev, TEC Research Analyst
Demonstration conducted by
Richard Haugen, Vice President Sales, Navigator
Kent Blackhurst, Channel Manager, Navigator
Technology Evaluation Centers (TEC) is pleased to announce that the Navigator Business Solutions product, Navigator One for SAP Business One (v88) is now TEC Certified for online evaluation of discrete enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions in TEC’s ERP Evaluation Center. This Evaluation Center enables you to compare and evaluate functionality based on TEC’s comprehensive model of ERP software. Data used in the Evaluation Center are obtained from the vendor’s responses to TEC’s request for information (RFI). Certification ensures that
- The capabilities of Navigator One for SAP Business One have been demonstrated to a TEC analyst based on the responses Navigator provided in its completed TEC RFI;
- A TEC analyst has analytically and comparatively reviewed Navigator One for SAP Business One RFI data against known benchmarks.
Benefits of Evaluating a TEC Certified Product
There are many benefits to evaluating a TEC Certified product. To potential clients of a software vendor, TEC certification provides the following:
- Reassurance : You can be assured that the data TEC provides about its certified products conform to a well-defined standard of accuracy. When a vendor’s product is TEC Certified, it means that a trusted, independent third party has seen the product up close.
- Better communication with vendors: TEC certification helps ensure that vendors understand and respond accurately to their clients’ RFI criteria. Certification with TEC analysts provides the opportunity to clarify any issues with the RFI criteria. This ensures that the vendor is speaking the same language as its potential clients, and gives the clients an unambiguous specification of product functionality to inform their selections.
The certification seal is a valuable indicator for organizations that rely on the integrity of TEC’s research services for assistance with their software selection projects. Organizations looking for a solution can be confident that they’re comparing the product on an “apples to apples” basis with other, similar products.
Navigator One for SAP Business One Market Data Summary
Founded in 1994 and headquartered in Pleasant Grove, Utah (US), Navigator Business Solutions develops SAP Business One Extensions. The company offers installation, training, and implementation services for technology created exclusively for SAP Business One. Navigator Business Solutions focuses mostly on the North American market, with more than 1,000 implementations and 150 partners, but it also does business in Europe, China, Australia, South America, and Africa. It has sales and support offices in more than 20 cities in North America.
Through its North American-based local offices, Navigator offers implementation (software installation, system configuration, data conversion, and training) and consulting services (business process modeling, project management). It also offers these services via Web education and Web application consulting. Client support is provided based on an annual maintenance and support agreement, plus a Web education subscription. Web support is available 24/7 via SAP, and phone support is provided from 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM (Mountain Time).
Product pricing is per user and per module. Navigator One offers the option to rent the software through its Cloud One offering, which is defined by Navigator as “hosted software as a service for SAP Business One that allows you to run Business One on a ‘cloud’.” Almost all of Navigator’s customers (90 percent) have opted for maintenance and are using either the current version or the previous version of the software.
Product design and development, as well as quality assurance and support, are handled in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Navigator One suite is comprised of two types of products: standard (delivered as part of the standard product) and advanced (which provides add-ons to the standard package). A brief description of the modules and add-ons follows:
||Project tracking, milestone billing, time and expense, change order tracking|
||Field service and dispatch, map integration, contract and maintenance management, depot repair|
||Online/offline point of sale, customer loyalty, up-sell/cross-sell, store management|
||Container tracking, history-based forecasting, stocking levels optimization|
||Make to order, make to stock, repetitive manufacturing, routing, labor, and overhead tracking|
|Matrix One for Apparel and Footwear
||Color, size, product, or style matrix for sales, purchasing and production|
|Data Collect One
||Hand-held data entry using barcode scanners or touch-screen tools for shop floor or warehouse|
|Plus One Suite
||Dashboards, shipping (UPS/FedEx), bin management, automated reporting, credit card processing, revenue recognition, sales and marketing, request for quotation, return merchandise authorization, estimating|
||Advanced rules-based parametric Configurator|
||Route delivery and field service data collection|
|Production One APS
||Advanced planning and scheduling for production|
|Web Portals One
||Collaboration with customers, vendors, business partners, and reporting (includes Web-based CRM)|
Navigator will perform SAP Business One customizations, but generally its implementations involve “off the shelf” modules configured by industry. The company offers modules that can be used with SAP Business One, and targets existing SAP customers as well as new customers. The extended functionality provided by Navigator allows it to address the needs of companies that do more than distribution and light manufacturing (the sweet spot of SAP Business One).
From a sales perspective, Navigator’s main goal is to sell packages consisting of SAP Business One and the modules Navigator has created. It can also provide customers with SAP Business One only, or sell modules to companies already using SAP Business One.
Navigator One for SAP Business One competes against products such as Microsoft Dynamics NAV and GP, Sage MAS 500 and MAS 90/200, SYSPRO, and Oracle (Enterprise Business Suite and JD Edwards), depending on the industry. Epicor ERP is the main competitor for manufacturing, Activant Prophet 21 for distribution, WinServ for services, Deltek Costpoint for project-oriented industries, and Microsoft Dynamics Retail Management System (RMS) for retail.
The industries Navigator concentrates on include the following: business services and consulting, equipment manufacturing and service, construction, electronics and high tech, food and beverage, oil and gas, telecommunications, warehousing, and retail.
Navigator One is best suited for companies having 10 to 1,000 employees, but can also be used by larger companies. The product is generally not targeted at companies with more than 1,000 employees. Extensive support is offered in Asia and Southeast Asia (including the Far East and Japan), Europe, Latin and North America, and Oceania, with some support offered in Africa. Navigator also has the ability to support customers in the Middle East.
The product described in this report is a combination of SAP Business One and the modules offered by Navigator Business One Solutions. Some of the options or functionality described derive from SAP Business One, while others derive from the modules developed by Navigator; we do not make a distinction in this report, as they are delivered as a single solution.
Based on five main principles, here is how Navigator One for SAP Business One fared.
Ease of Use
- Layout: The look and feel is very similar to SAP Business One (see videos of the SAP Business One solution), except for the Retail One module, which has an interface similar to a point-of-sale (POS) system.
- Interface: Menus are organized in several different ways: as text menus, where the user can click or use keyboard shortcuts; as buttons for the most frequently used functions (print, export, help, etc.); and as menu bar that can have multiple tabs, with an easy-to-navigate hierarchy. The right mouse button can be used to open lists of options in certain areas of the interface.
- Navigation: Multiple tabs for different sections of the system can be used, minimized, or maximized, with straightforward navigation between them. Visual indicators for mandatory fields, drop-down lists, and different colors for active and inactive fields make accessing screens fairly intuitive, even to users who are not very computer-literate.
- Integration: The product takes full advantage of the extended integration of SAP Business One with Microsoft Office (Outlook, Word, and Excel).
- Wizards: Predefined wizards guide the user step by step through some of the most important processes in the system, such as forecasting, material requirement planning (MRP), stock optimization, and payments.
- Business processes: SAP Business one provides functionality for business management processes, enhanced by modules created by Navigator for project management (Project One), product and sales process configuration (Configure One) and production scheduling (Production One and Production One APS).
- Reporting capabilities: Before generating reports, a screen with multiple tabs allows the user to select criteria to limit the output. These options can be defined by selecting multiple date types, the use of ranges, options for display of data in the report, etc.
- Warnings: Pop-up windows warn users when they are about to initiate actions that may break the logic defined by the administrators (e.g., credit limit exceeded, customer on hold, etc.). Warnings can notify the user, who will decide to continue or not, or can prevent the user from completing an action that should not be executed.
Ease of Implementation
- Server: Navigator One can be installed on-premise, but the vendor also offers the option to host the application.
- Customization: Although Navigator does not perform customizations per se, a software development kit is available for customers who want to make changes to the system (add/remove fields, modify screens and menus, etc).
- Integration capabilities: The system takes advantage of SAP Business One’s integration with Microsoft Office, including Outlook.
- management and consulting: Navigator offers consulting services to its customers, including documenting business processes, change and project management, testing, and rollout.
- Wireless: Navigator provides barcode, touch screen, or wireless hand-held data entry through its Data Collect One module.
- Mobile: Users can access the system remotely for sales, service, and delivery needs using the Data Collect One Remote Module. There is also an app for the iPhone, powered by coresystems (a company providing cloud applications for SAP Business One).
- Web portals: Business partners (e.g., customers, vendors) can access the system through Web portals using the Web Portals One add-on.
- Architecture: The current version of the product is based on client/server architecture, but Navigator plans to develop a service-oriented architecture (SOA) version that will Web-enable the product.
- Data Import: The Data Import Wizard allows users to import or update data from text files into the system. The wizard supports files containing character-separated values.
- Data archiving: Using the Data Archive Wizard, transactional data can be archived, which will decrease the size of the database, thereby solving storage problems and increasing the speed at which data is extracted.
- Server and database: Navigator One works exclusively on Microsoft Windows Server. As for the database, Navigator One works with Microsoft SQL Server only.
Using the TEC Advisor decision support engine, we have prepared a few high-level graphs that identify this product’s functional focus and competitiveness.
The TEC Focus Indicator (FI)™
This TEC Focus Indicator (FI) tells you which types of functionality are most likely to differentiate Navigator One for SAP Business One from other products in the accounting space. It includes three zones indicating the product’s focus: the Dominant zone, Competitive zone, and Not Competitive zone.
TEC’s model of discrete ERP systems is designed with a comprehensive breadth; generally vendors will deliver a common base of functionality. While we believe in the necessity of knowing whether a product supports a base of common functionality, it’s very helpful to understand how a product really differs from the crowd.
The bars in this FI chart represent neither the quality of the product nor an absolute quantity of supported functionality. Rather, the bars show support relative to the average solution.
The functional focus arrow indicates which modules of this product provide an equal or greater quantity of support than the average solution. Modules near the top of the functional focus arrow reveal where Navigator One for SAP Business One is more likely to differentiate itself through breadth of functionality. The more concern you have for the type of functionality near the top of the functional focus, the more it’s to your advantage to explore this product further.
Understanding the TEC FI Zones
The top Overall bar shows the overall difference in supported functionality between Navigator One for SAP Business One and the average solution. To understand how we calculate this difference, read the Calculating the TEC FI section (page 14).
The Overall bar is our measure for determining which modules fall within the Dominant zone. If a module’s difference from the average is greater than the product’s overall difference from the average, we label it dominant. Those are the modules most responsible for pulling the Overall bar beyond the average.
Modules with values that do not extend beyond the Overall bar but still provide as much or more functionality than the average solution, are labeled competitive.
Navigator One for SAP Business One has two modules located in the Dominant Zone: Human Resources (HR) and Manufacturing Management.
With the exception of payroll, discrete manufacturing ERP solutions generally do not offer strong HR functionality. Navigator One is an exception, offering strong support for all subsections of HR, which explains why it is dominant in this area. As for manufacturing management, the strength of the Navigator add-ons to extend SAP Business One functionality (Production One, Matrix One for Apparel and Footwear, and Production One APS) explain why the product is dominant in this area.
More details for the modules in the Dominant zone are available in the Functionality Benchmark section later in this document.
The area of functional focus within the green Dominant zone indicates two things. First, it indicates which of the most competitive modules contribute the most pull in raising the product’s score above the average. Second, it indicates where the product has a significantly greater level of support for functionality than the average solution in this space.
This also may reveal how the vendor has focused its product development. These modules may or may not make up the bulk or even the core of the functionality within the product, but if your clients require more than the average breadth of functionality from these modules, this product will stand a better than average chance of satisfying your requirements.
Navigator One for SAP Business One has five modules located in the Competitive Zone: Sales Management, Financials, Inventory Management, Purchasing Management, and Quality Management.
Among the modules where Navigator is competitive, Sales Management, Financials, and Inventory Management show important differences from the average solution for discrete manufacturing ERP. Purchasing Management and Quality Management provide only slightly more functionality than the average.
More details for the modules in the Competitive zone are available in the Functionality Benchmark section.
The area of functional focus within the green Competitive zone indicates where the product has a level of support for functionality that is somewhat greater or on par with the average solution.
In some cases a module may be considered a commodity within the market: many vendors offer the majority of the functionality, which makes it difficult to differentiate a product based on breadth of functionality. In other cases, a vendor may intend its product to compete on a level that satisfies most customers’ requirements for certain modules, with a market focus requiring that it differentiates itself through other modules.
Not Competitive Zone
Navigator One for SAP Business One has no modules located in the Not Competitive Zone.
The area in the red Not Competitive zone indicates where the product supports a lesser quantity of functionality than an average solution. Modules listed in this section are unlikely to be as important to the vendor’s target market as the other modules. It may also be the case that the product is a newer entrant to the space. If the product has many modules in the Not Competitive zone, this indicates a more finely scoped target for its functionality than other products, which may be indicative of a point solution. Even if a product has modules in the Not Competitive zone, it may still be entirely capable of satisfying your requirements for this functionality, particularly if the average solution offers more functionality than you require. Nevertheless you should be aware that if you require a greater-than-average breadth of functionality from a module in the Not Competitive zone, this product may not offer all that you require. It’s likely that you would need to review the product in more depth to determine whether its functionality is sufficient.
Calculating the TEC FI
TEC defines an average solution using data about real software products available on the market. We calculate an average of the capabilities about which vendors recently provided us with information and that we’ve certified. We define these capabilities and assign numeric ratings representing various levels of support in our models of enterprise software. These models may be accessed on our publicly available Evaluation Centers. Typically, we use anywhere from a thousand to several thousand criteria to determine the average scores.
The average solution forms the benchmark from which we calculate the difference in functionality offered by Navigator One for SAP Business One. We plot the average solution’s capabilities at point zero on the x-axis.
Next, we determine the quantity of functionality supported by Navigator One for SAP Business One for each module in our model. We assume that all criteria are equally important. In a real-world situation, you would give a greater priority to criteria that are more important for your needs. However, for the sake of the TEC FI analysis, we want to draw conclusions about the product’s focus independent of any users’ functional priorities. (Note: If you wish to prioritize and evaluate the product’s functionality, you can do so online in our Evaluation Centers.)
We calculate the difference between Navigator One for SAP Business One and the average solution, and we plot that value as a positive or negative distance from zero (the average solution’s capability). If, for example, Navigator One for SAP Business One offers a greater quantity of support for a particular module than found in the average solution, its line will extend to the right of zero.
It’s important to note as well that just because a product has more or less functionality than other products, does not mean it is a good or bad product. To understand whether it will do what you need it to do, at a price within your budget you must evaluate the product in depth.
The following functionality benchmark graphs represent Navigator One for SAP Business One’s quantity of support for the functionality within each module identified in the TEC Focus Indicator. The further the solid line extends toward the edge of the graph (or, in the case of the initial bar chart, the closer the bar is to 100 percent), the more functionality Navigator One for SAP Business One supports. For the sake of comparison, you can see what you might expect from the average solution by referring to the dashed orange line.
The Financials module covers the processes required for book-keeping, including the General Ledger, Accounts Payable (A/P), Fixed Assets, Cost Accounting, Cash Management, Budgeting, Accounts Receivable, Financial Reporting, and Project Accounting submodules.
Navigator One for SAP Business One is very strong in all submodules, including Project Accounting, where the average solution is at its lowest level of support. This can be explained by the strength of SAP Business One functionality for financials, extended by Navigator.
About Human Resources
Human Resources (HR) covers the processes required for managing an organization’s personnel. This includes the Personnel Management, Benefits, Payroll, Employee Self-Service, Employee Metrics, Health and Safety, Workforce management, and Training submodules.
HR is one the dominant zones for Navigator One—its scores are much higher than the average, especially for Workforce Management and Training, where the difference is 40 points or more. This large difference is due to the modules that Navigator has created for production, which includes labor planning.
About Manufacturing Management
The Manufacturing Management module addresses the processes associated with product data and production. This includes the Product Costing, Shop Floor Control, Field Service and Repairs, Production Planning, Project Management, Product Data Management (PDM), and Product/Item Configurator submodules.
Navigator has a level of support that exceeds 95 point for all submodules in Manufacturing Management, except Project Management. The most important difference between Navigator and the average solution is for Field Service and Repairs. All this can be explained by the add-ons Navigator created to enhance manufacturing functionality already present in SAP Business One.
About Inventory Management
The Inventory Management module covers processes required for warehouse goods record-keeping and managing the movements of these goods. It covers the Inventory Management—Online Requirements, Processing Requirements, Data Requirements, Reporting and Interfacing Requirements, Locations and Lot Control, Forecasting, Reservations and Allocations, and Adjusting Inventory submodules.
Navigator offers a greater quantity of support than the average solution for all sub-sections of the Inventory Management module, except Adjusting Inventory, where it falls slightly below the average. It is interesting to note that for Forecasting, the difference between Navigator and average solution is almost 30 points – this is due to a rather low overall average combined with very high support from Navigator.
About Purchasing Management
The Purchasing Management module provides functionality for managing activities related to the acquisition of raw materials and finished goods. This includes the Profile of Suppliers, Rating of Suppliers, Requisitions and Quotations, Purchase Orders (POs), Pricing, Vendor Contracts and Agreements, Management of Pos, Procurement and Online Reporting, Repeat Procurement, Receipts for Procurement, Online Requirements for Purchasing Management, and Reporting and Interfacing Requirements for Purchasing Management submodules.
Purchasing Management is an area that many discrete ERP vendors support very well, which explains why the average is high. Despite this, Navigator’s level of support is higher than the average, with the exception of the Online Requirements for Purchasing Management submodule.
About Quality Management
The Quality Management module provides functionality for managing all actions taken by a company to ensure it delivers quality products or services. Navigator’s level of support for quality management is slightly higher than the discrete ERP average.
About Sales Management
The Sales Management module provides functionality for data entry processing, basic customer relationship management, and reporting. This includes the Online Requirements, Reporting and Interfacing Requirements, Available-to-Promise, Pricing and Discounting, Customer Service and Returned Goods Handling, and CRM and e-commerce Requirements submodules
Sales Management is another module that is extensively supported by many discrete ERP products, which explains why the average solution has very strong support for all submodules. Navigator ranks very close to 100 for all submodules except CRM and e-commerce requirements.
Navigator One provides modules to enhance existing SAP Business One functionality, allowing users to benefit from both the SAP Business One options and the advanced features provided by add-ons created for specific needs (e.g., Production One for manufacturing companies, Project One for project-oriented organizations, and Matrix One for Fashion and Apparel).
While the majority of Navigator’s customers are based in North America, this will change in the future, with an estimated increase of sales in Asia, Europe, and Oceania. Distribution, marketing, services, project, and retail are the top five industries targeted by Navigator.
During the certification process, we learned that the product integrates with a third-party tool for electronic data interchange (EDI), and Unipoint is used for quality management. Also, a partner-supported solution is used to integrate Navigator with carriers for shipping (UPS, DHL, etc.).
Navigator One can be a very good fit for companies in business areas such as accounting and finance, administration, operations, planning, production, purchasing, sales, warehouse, and inventory control, with employees numbering between 10 and 1,000 and budgets up to $1,000,000.
As for any software selection, the criteria mentioned in this report should be evaluated for your particular needs. For a detailed analysis of the functionality provided by Navigator One, or to compare the solution with similar products, please visit our ERP Evaluation Center.
Technology Evaluation Centers (TEC) provides insight and expertise in offering impartial resources and services to minimize the costs, risks, and time associated with software selection. Over 3.5 million technology decision makers visit TEC’s Web sites each month, to find information on hundreds of solutions, and to access articles, white papers, and podcasts. TEC’s decision support system (DSS) and analyst data assist with the evaluation, comparison, and selection of enterprise solutions and services. TEC’s offerings include in-depth research, detailed product information, and software selection services for any industry or company size.
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