NetSuite SuiteWorld: omni-channel ERP for the Internet of Things

Adrian Bridgwater looks back on NetSuite's recent user conference to put the announcements in context...

The "touch-less" customer

NetSuite's grand design here is to automate so many ERP-level tools that businesses can operate with online shopping carts that process customers without them ever actually contacting them. This is what NetSuite calls the "touch-less" customer. If an annual renewal order for any business service is automated to perfection, then that customer becomes touch-less. This scenario is less likely with new customers where a human being tends to have been involved, but with X2X machines-to-machines transactions around the corner, it's the next logical step.

So where does NetSuite go next? That's an easy question to answer when any vendor reaches a certain critical mass i.e. it wants it software to be regarded "as a platform" for developers. In fairness to NetSuite it has presented its NS-BOS NetSuite Business Operating System (it's a play on MS-DOS, get it?), its SuiteScript developer-facing flexible business application logic offerings and its SuiteCloud Developer Network. So while NetSuite is by no means Java or .NET as a programming platform in its own right, it is building its cadre of tools quite fast.

How far can ERP take us?

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But NetSuite doesn't just want to be an ERP platform. It wants to be a cloud financials, ERP and omni-channel ecommerce company with a hand in lower level order management and upper level CRM.

IT Pro asked CEO Zac Nelson personally just how far he thought NetSuite could go. Nelson agreed with the suggestion that ERP could indeed make the leap all the way through the data chain to the Internet of Things if its importance (as he sees it) is championed appropriately. The cloud ERP ubiquity theory works, but it's still just a theory at this stage.

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