There's no secret that I am a supporter of ECI e-automate and they are part of my collaborative. A collaborative of industry leading organizations dedicated to helping our dealer friends during the industry's greatest disruption in its history.
I have no issues asking questions of the channels actors. My intentions are to discuss things no one else will.
Over the last decade we have all witnessed the attempts of FORZA to replace ECI e-automate as the largest ERP in the channel. A decade later ECI e-automate remains the largest ERP in the channel.
In a recent The End Of The Day With Ray! episode I discussed FORZA and how I see its SAP relationship. I did this as I continue to see marketing and rhetoric regarding SAP - as if SAP is FORZA.
Here's a link to that episode.
With all due respect to Konica Minolta's FORZA aspirations, I ask should dealers have reservations and questions regarding the future of FORZA?
I imagine during cost cutting an ERP system built for dealers in the document imaging channel would be on the shortlist. FORZA is a decade-old product, and I question when will FORZA accomplish all the things it has dreamed over the last decade?
Again, we all must realize that low-hanging fruit is usually at significant risk of being cut during cost-cutting measures, ESPECIALLY in a declining marketplace. Does FORZA generate appropriate bottom-line profits? If not how long will Konica Minolta continuing investing in unprofitable products?
Maybe Konica Minolta can share some successes regarding FORZA. How many dealers have come on the platform since they bought it? Another question is, how many have left and why?
The dealers moving from well-established working ERP systems to alternative ERP systems must question the real capabilities and the stability of the platforms they choose. This is also true of DCA tools. The time and cost in jumping from one ERP to the next must not be considered lightly.
Hoping, dreaming and wanting is not doing. During the industry's most significant decline in its history, dealers must be prepared for all possibilities.
If FORZA had a massive customer base, these worries would be less worrisome.
I will conclude that if Konica is selling off direct operations, I do not see any reason they would not sell off FORZA or even All Covered. Afterall in 2020 no one thought they would be selling direct operations. Oh, I did.