Executive Summary

  • This article is part of our honest vendor series, which is one of the only ratings of vendors rather than applications.
  • The vendor quality is critical to the decision making process as software purchases have a high long term involvement by the software vendor.


Sage has been a value-driven software vendor for quite several years but given our exposure to Sage buyers, and the activities within the company are concerned about Sage’s future. Without a change in management, Sage can within five years become a vendor with serious problems and an acquisition target.

Sage is another follower of growth through acquisition, which we consider a low-quality path to growth. As with JDA, this has lead to the purchase of software vendors with duplicate functionality – which is a sign of a vendor, which is making acquisitions not for the software but as a way to purchase customers.

Quality of Information Provided

Sage is similar to Epicor and Infor in that their size versus their market opportunity is not favorable, which means that salespeople are tripping over themselves and dealing with them as a customer means being perpetually pitched new products. This will always bode poorly for the accuracy of the information that is received from sales, but it has not come back to bite Sage in the same way as some of the other software vendors that are in similar predicaments. In reviewing multiple documents available at Sage’s website, we found quite a few unsupported contentions made within them. Statements like this one…

“Well-run, global organizations are increasingly adopting a two-tier enterprise resource planning (ERP) strategy.”

Without any reference or evidence were easy to find. Therefore, Sage’s published material should not be considered a reliable source of information.

Consulting and Support

While we do not have the statistics to prove that Sage has high turnover, given what employees say about the company, it appears that low pay below the industry standard leads to early departures. This is negatively affecting consulting and support. Sage has also been one of the most aggressive ERP vendors in outsourcing support to countries where English is a second language. It is amazing to us that so many ERP software vendors are so expensive, and yet outsource their support to India. This is true of the giants in the ERP market as well, such as SAP and Oracle. However, these costs savings don’t ever seem to get passed on to the buyers. All of these decisions are showing in Sage’s reduced ability to provide support. This is yet another in a string of short-term oriented decisions that are eroding Sage’s reputation and ability to deliver on sales promises.

Internal Efficiency

We reduced their rating in several areas because Sage’s strategy may yield short-term results. Still, it is traveling down a lower quality path, and we consider it one of the most likely of the ERP vendors to continue to lose market share. Buyers have to consider two countervailing factors – one is the fact that Sage has some good products, but the other is that Sage, as a company, is far less impressive than its product database.

A poor management team more focused on personal enrichment than on maintaining a sustainable and dynamic company is causing Sage to shrink, even with a quality product. There is also some question as to whether Sage is dedicated to continuing to develop their ERP product or if it to be treated as a cash cow.

Recently Sage made an acquisition. They purchased Intacct. Intacct was one of our highest rated vendors, but the purchase by Sage means we had to downgrade Intacct although the purchase of Intacct should lead to a bump for Sage.


Sage has historically been a modest innovator. However, we have lowered their Current Innovation Level because recent management changes will naturally lead to a decline in innovation.

Vendor Scores

Honest Vendor Ratings

Search for the vendor in this table using the search bar in the upper right of the table. Shortening Key: 
  • VC = Vendor Consulting
  • VS = Vendor Support
  • QIP = Quality of Information Provided
  • IE = Internal Efficiency
  • I = Innovation
  • C = Category
  • ACS = Average Category Score
Average Score for the BI Heavy Software Category6. HeavyCategory Average
Average Score for the BI Light Software Category7.76.756.36.8BI LightCategory Average
Average Score for the CRM Software Category5. Average
Average Score for the PLM Software Category7. Average
Average Score for the Production Planning Software Category7.36.765.25.7Production PlanningCategory Average
Average Score for the Small and Medium ERP Software Category7. and Medium ERPCategory Average
Average Score for the Supply Planning Software Category7. PlanningCategory Average
Average Score Score for the Demand Planning Software Category7. PlanningCategory Average
Average Score for the Big ERP Software Category4. ERPCategory Average
Actuate77865BI HeavyApplication Specific
Arena Solutions91010810PLMApplication Specific
AspenTech43437Production PlanningApplication Specific
Base CRM88997CRMApplication Specific
Birst8888.59BI HeavyApplication Specific
Business Forecast Systems991098Demand PlanningApplication Specific
Delfoi888.548Production PlanningApplication Specific
Demand Works99101010Supply PlanningApplication Specific
ERPNext888.5109Small and Medium ERPApplication Specific
FinancialForce10109109.5FinancialApplication Specific
Hamilton Grant89.589.58PLMApplication Specific
Intacct1010999.5FinancialApplication Specific
Intuit88966.5FinancialApplication Specific
JDA3.53422Demand PlanningApplication Specific
Microsoft45211Small and Medium ERPApplication Specific
MicroStrategy87777BI HeavyApplication Specific
NetSuite65644CRMApplication Specific
OpenERP788.587Small and Medium ERPApplication Specific
Oracle52111ManyApplication Specific
PlanetTogether91081010Supply PlanningApplication Specific
Preactor787.533Production PlanningApplication Specific
ProcessPro1089109Small and Medium ERPApplication Specific
QlikTech87589.5CRMApplication Specific
Salesforce73866CRMApplication Specific
SAS971077Demand PlanningApplication Specific
SugarCRM44553CRMApplication Specific
Tableau101091010BI LightApplication Specific
Teradata98.58.568BI HeavyApplication Specific
ToolsGroup1010999Demand PlanningApplication Specific
SAP53111ManyApplication Specific

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Software Selection Package for Big ERP