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In today’s extremely fast changing business world, agility and continuous innovation are the magic words for businesses who want to stay ahead of the curve. And want to grow into the position of a real customer-centric organisation. This is especially important since implementation success is no longer based on big-bang projects. But more on a continuous stream of smaller, incremental improvements. For long years, Microsoft is ranked as the number one vendor of the list of Research and Development spenders. Last year, the company spent Euro 18,8 billion on R&D, employing over 60.000 R&D professionals. That is way more than any of its competitors in the market. That’s why a choice for Microsoft is a choice for continuous innovation.  

Every business software vendor talks about innovation these days. Of course! After all, that is what every single vendor admires to create. And that is also what their customers want to hear. The question, however, is if all vendors are capable to deliver continuous innovation. Not just tomorrow. But also in the medium to long term. It is difficult to overestimate the amount of resources needed to keep up with the cut-throat innovation pace.

These are some crucial questions to ask:

  • does your current vendor have the economies of scale to spend these necessary budgets on research and development?
  • if so, do they have the skill sets needed to excel in all the different domains where innovation is urgently required in the years to come?

Most IT vendors spend somewhere between 8 and 12 percent of their annual revenues in R&D. But these similar percentages clearly give completely different outcomes if you compare a locally operating vendor with 3 to 5 million Euro in annual revenue with a company like Microsoft with more than 150 billion Euro in revenue.

Some of the most important economic indicators that determine the ability of your potential vendors to pump up their R&D budgets and secure long-term product innovation:

  • global product availability
  • continuous revenue growth
  • and a strong partner channel with solutions that fit in many different industries

Are you aware of the size of the R&D budget from your current ERP/CRM vendor? And from the vendors that are on your longlist when you are preparing for a new selection process?

The choice for Microsoft as the vendor for your next upgrade of new software implementation is a choice for a stream of innovation that never stops.