Sage ERP X3 Sales Convention was a great place for converging of sales and development teams of Sage X3 partners worldwide and it proved to be a fertile ground for exchange of ideas and collaboration. It has been more than 3 months now and Greytrix would like to recap one of the most interesting discussions and knowledge which was shared with different partners with regards to Development and programming outsourcing for Sage ERP X3.
Sage ERP X3 having a large number of functionalities still requires configuration and development to customize it for particular vertical or industry. A common discussion revealed 3 methods of taking up development projects for different X3 vendors.
In-house Development Staffing: This is proving to be the most popular methodology by Sage X3 partners to keep Sage X3 development staff for programming and development needs. The pros are the obvious like quick response, knowledge base and skill sets, lower costs, front ending and comfort of end user to see YOUR staffs while cons are difficulty of retaining of staff and training, discontinuity and over dependence on few people.
Contractual Freelancing: This is another popular method where a few Sage X3 experts freelance for difference consultants on a man hourly/man monthly basis. This trend is pretty much prevalent in SAP and Oracle environment and it is easier to get freelance SAP consultants but for X3 it is increasingly difficult to get qualified consultant at a logical costing.
Offshore Development: This methodology is very popular in established ERP systems while not so much in Sage X3 environment. The feeling is that Sage X3 partners are still learning the ropes to actually work with offshoring partners profitably and develop specifications to the best way possible. The potential is immense and scalability it offers to the partners is huge. This was discussed as the future and any partners who can make this model work can actually tap into the potentially huge development resources in India, Asia, Australia and Africa at a lower cost and large scale of operations. A pure offshore development is not recommended and the best way to approach X3 development is through a “Mixed Model” approach.
Mixed Model: Mixed model approach is having an in-house techno-functional project manager to handle an offshore development team. This results in huge cost saving with the inherent advantage of in-house staffing being intact. The lower end work is pushed to offshore development center at lower costs. For Sage X3 projects, this outsourcing and development methodology is the most suited and Greytrix has found to be the most effective. It has been also collaborated by a number of independent Sage X3 experts and partners as the best way to approach the large Sage X3 implementation and development projects.
How can the Mixed Model work commercially and legally?
Time and Material: For projects which are estimated to be ranging in months (at least 3 months + contract), time and material basis is the best suited The billing and invoicing is done on a monthly basis at the start of the month. For an organization which expects continuous work in X3 (at least 15 + days of work per month or a large project), this method proves to be very successful and cost effective as well as builds up the relationship with the developer.
Fixed Cost (Ballpark) Cost Basis: For projects which has well-defined specification which we can convert into a good design/concept document covering all possibilities, a fixed cost is the way to go. The risk factor is pretty low for clients as outsourcing company like Greytrix take the responsibility of any cost overrun if it is NOT a requirement change order based over run. The terms of payment is for this project is usually 50% advance, 25% on Delivery and 25% on successful completion of the project further mitigating the risk.
The source code and intellectual property of the project is usually owned by the client unless it is being used from the library of the code of the outsourcing company. The NDA and Non-Compete are usually also signed to keep the projects in hand.
Where are the outsourcing development companies for Sage X3 located?
They are located all over the world. In the sales convention, Greytrix met with a number outsourcing organization willing to take work based out of Africa, Asia and even USA. Greytrix is one of the largest in Sage X3 development outsourcing in India and is building up a continuous base working with Sage resellers and partners.
What does it usually costs?
On a per man-day basis, the range can be between 300 USD to 1000 USD per man day depending on the outsourcing company’s location and cost competitive advantages.
Disclaimer: The above views are personal views of the author and experience of working and collaborating with Sage ERP X3 community and it is based on observation rther than statistical analysis and concrete proof. For further discussion and possible collaboration, you can touch base at the following email id firstname.lastname@example.org
Hope this helps!
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