Insights into innovation
Baan, the Chairman and CIO of Cordys, concluded an intensive series of talks to various multi-industry leaders last week. Baan visited Brisbane as the guest of Aptus International Services, the newly appointed implementation partner of his Netherlands-based company. Chris Spies, CEO of Aptus, says: “Judging by the number and calibre of the delegates in attendance, as well as the robust discussions that took place at each event, it’s evident that government and industry players recognise the value of the Cordys solution.” Even more tellingly, the kind of excitement that usually precedes the discovery of any notable invention was apparent throughout the proceedings.
This is perhaps to be expected, considering that the innovative business process solutions offered by Cordys are at the tipping point of changing the computing landscape forever. Baan made mention of certain other exciting developments he envisages will drastically change the way businesses operate, including BYOD (‘bring your own device’), where knowledge workers operate on their own device of choice and IT invests in software and applications rather than desktops and monitors. He explained that Cordys’ progressive processes are designed to seamlessly align with developments such as these that are set to change businesses operations as we know them.
Hidden costs of customisation
Globally acknowledged as the ‘father of ERP’, Jan Baan’s message was clear: “Business process management is the beginning of the end of legacy ERP”. While affording unequivocal respect to ERP systems and reminding his audience that, although it is old fashioned technology, ‘it makes sense’, Baan made the strong point that ERP ‘possesses no operational excellence’. Formulated when the concept of the worldwide web was akin to science fiction in mainstream society, ERP systems are highly successful in their ability to store data, but they are simply not equipped to ‘communicate’ effectively with the host of internet-based interfaces of the current day. Baan cited cases of large companies attempting ERP integrations and customisations that racked up horrific costs whilst simultaneously destroying entire systems.
Cordys’ BPM solution creates an internet-based collaborative workspace, changing and optimising the management of knowledge workers, processes and systems. “The Cordys solution is designed to add an ‘operational layer’ above already existing ERP systems, negating the need for expensive customisations or complete system overhauls,” explains Spies. “Not only does this translate to massive cost savings, but it speeds up processes to such a high degree that it’s hard to grasp – as an example, by incorporating standard spreadsheets into the process design, a process that would normally take a company four weeks to complete can be done in 20 minutes with the Cordys BPM system. It also puts the control of business processes back in the hands of business managers rather than system developers. Add to that the fact that the system is sustainable and scalable to any amount of business growth or complexity and you can understand the kind of interest that was raised among the delegates.”
ICT thought leader think tank
Mr Baan’s itinerary included sharing insights into his unique entrepreneurial journey and the power of innovative technologies at an exclusive CIO breakfast forum held by the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA). He also spoke at the invitation of the Queensland chapter of the Australia Africa Business Council (AABC) on how BPM will morph the legacy ERP landscape as it shifts to the cloud. At all events, delegates were treated to a copy of his book, Business Operation Improvement: The New Paradigm in Enterprise IT – so they could further explore his knowledge-sharing post his Queensland visit.
At the conclusion of his tour, Mr Baan expressed his admiration at how ‘open and willing to embrace innovation’ the government and industry delegates were – qualities he said would no doubt contribute towards positioning Queensland as a leader in the Australian and global digital economy.
About Jan Baan:
Jan Baan founded the Baan Company in 1978, which stood second between SAP and Oracle as one of the top three ICT players in the world. He garnered accolades for coups such as providing Boeing with one of the largest ERP deployments in the world, comprising 35,000 users on a single instance. Revenue of the Baan Company grew from $35 million in the early nineties to $680 million by 1998, with a peak market value of $12 billion. Mr Baan subsequently became a venture capitalist focused on software innovation, being an early investor in WebEx Communications and a backer of Top Tier, sold to SAP for $400 million.
In 2001, together with Theodoor van Donge, the key architect behind the Baan Company’s pioneering ERP solution, Mr Baan founded Cordys. Uniquely, deployment of the Cordys solution is possible on premise or in the cloud and connects three formerly disparate business areas: business process management, integration and composite application development. As such, Cordys successfully combines structured business logic with unstructured information to establish flexible and sustainable business processes that continuously evolve in speed and efficiency. More info: www.cordys.com.
Established in 1999, Aptus is a full-service global ICT consultancy with Australian operations in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. Operating at the intersection of business and technology, Aptus provides strategic cloud, security, identity and access management (IAM) and enterprise mobility solutions that enable smooth, sustainable operations, increased productivity and profitable growth for its clients. Visit www.aptus.com.au for more information.
Eugene Hodder (GM: Shared Services)