The reasons for taking advantage of best-of-breed supply chain planning software have never been clearer, nor more compelling. Multiple analysts report that ERP vendor users are experiencing below average capabilities, substandard customer satisfaction, higher costs and longer implementation times. Lora Cecere at Supply Chain Insights has been writing about her concerns for several years and says there is a clear understanding that big IT vendors’ planning functionality does not meet today’s business requirements.

In the most recent Gartner Magic Quadrant for Supply Chain Planning System of Record (SOR), there was a fairly major reordering in the vendor landscape, with best-of-breed vendors leapfrogging ahead in the market, and big ERP vendors going in the other direction. Disruptive innovation is changing the Supply Chain Planning (SCP) vendor space, says Gartner. “Vendors that are leveraging technology advancements more quickly in line with user requirements are making the most progress1,” Gartner reports, while others are getting left behind.

Gartner says the disruption is driven by changing priorities and the needs of end users who are concerned about obtaining an integrated planning environment, functional depth and breadth, and reduced Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). In addition, volatile and dynamic supply chains are driving best-of-breed product developments such as advanced demand analytics, process automation, and increased insight from data.

1 Magic Quadrant for Supply Chain Planning System of Record, 19 January 2016, Tim Payne, Amber Salley