The Rest of the
Story"> The Rest of the Story In all its development work, Lawson is adhering to the motto: Build it once, package it twice (or three, or four or five times).In this respect, Lawson 9 is the "bridge from the past into the future," said Hagar.
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The first indication, or productization of that, is Strategic Sourcing, a SOA-based application Lawson unveiled April 10.
Later in 2006, the company will roll out a Web service deployment of all its core applications on the Lawson 9 base and roll out a Business Intelligence engine for both application stacks. At the same time, it will offer pre-configured software packages for M3 and S3 around manufacturing and food and beverage.
In 2007, Lawson will focus on HCM (Human Capital Management), an area it believes to be the fastest growing sector within ERP.
To this end, the company announced April 10 its Lawson Performance Management, a new module added to its HCM suite that is the first product tied to a series of releases around talent management.
The Performance Management module has two components: goal view, which measures how individuals perform against measurable goals, and talent view, which helps companies understand how individuals perform.
A bit late to the game, Lawson also plans to focus on composite applications in 2007, by converging the M3 and S3 suites around IBMs WebSphere portal, to enable composite application development.
In 2008, the company plans to launch the next generation of its M3 product line, and continue to expand its Landmark suite of applications.
Dennis Dahlen, system vice president of Finance at Banner Health, said he is just happy to see Lawson emerging as a stronger company. "Our chief concerns with Lawson have been code quality and stock price," said Dahlen, who is based in Phoenix, Ariz.
"They were literally dying in a desert storm. They had a hang over from their IPO
.For customers pre-IPO Lawson focused on delivering [software] we needed. After it was selling stuff we might need."
Dahlen said that when his company upgraded to the 8.x platform between 2002 and 2004, Lawson rained down with "literally thousands of patches a month," he said. "It was a very, very low point."
Many of the software problems in the 8.x platform have been worked out, according to Dahlen, and he is anticipating upgrading to 9, which will bring some payroll upgrades, he said.
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The idea is to build applications for different suites with the same contextthe ability to survey in recruiting and strategic sourcing, for examplethat leverage the same infrastructure along the way.