Celebrating its 30th birthday in 2013, enterprise software giant IFS offers solutions for companies with asset management, manufacturing, field service management, supply chain management, or project management as a focus. TEC's P.J. Jakovljevic attended the company's recently held IFS World Conference 2013 annual user event, and here reports on IFS' worldwide growth and global partner ecosystem, IFS Labs' innovations, and how the company is handling current changes in the market, specifically with the company's flagship IFS Applications 8.
At its recently held annual user event, the IFS World Conference 2013 in Barcelona, Spain, IFS displayed strength and moderate optimism, and revealed its vision of becoming the leading supplier of business applications to its target markets. IFS’ strategy is to stay focused on the verticals the software vendor is able to serve better than its competitors. For example, IFS is the leading enterprise asset management (EAM) vendor in the oil and gas sector, according to ARC Research. Founded in 1983 and with HQ in Sweden, IFS has 79 offices in over 60 countries as well as four global support centers and two development centers (in Sweden and Sri Lanka). The publicly traded company on the Stockholm exchange has about $400 million (USD) in revenues, 2,800 employees, and over 900,000 users in 25 languages at 2,100 companies.
For the flagship IFS Applications, a component-based extended enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite built on service oriented architecture (SOA) technology, IFS focuses on industries emphasizing one of the following core processes: service and asset management, manufacturing, supply chain, and projects (see Figure 1). The vendor’s strategic focus on these four core processes is evident not only when looking at its process-oriented solutions, but also when considering the roadmap for horizontal solutions such as financials and human resources (HR). For example, several of the planned developments in financials are aimed at improving project financial management, while new initiatives in HR focus on enabling better service and project management.