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.


SAS is one of the most stable and well-respected vendors in enterprise software. It has had 35 straight profitable years. SAS has for decades been known as one of the most humanitarian of companies and one of the best software vendors in which to work, however, what we are observing across the enterprise software space is that jobs are becoming more difficult. It is much more common to find companies – epitomized by Epicor, that are primarily run for the benefit of executives. This trend is very harmful to future implementation success ratios, and it is disheartening to hear about standards of how employees are treated being lowered even at SAS. Because of the way that SAS treats employees, SAS provides one of the most experienced and most knowledgeable groups of consulting resources in forecasting, and that is a differentiator for the company. SAS has been an independent private since its inception, and for SAS will be independent in the future. Oracle cannot come and buy SAS, and then reduce development, support and product quality – which should count for something when companies look at the risk of their enterprise software purchases.

AS is not only rated as a good place to work in its home country of the US but its international locations as well. Interestingly in a time of great outsourcing – which invariably has to lead to lower quality, even the childcare workers at SAS work for SAS itself.

Quality of Information Provided

Known for a conservative sales philosophy, which is quite rare, particularly for a software vendor of SAS’s size. Part of the reason for this is that sales are not as well compensated versus other functions as it is in other software vendors. SAS provides good quality information. This is true of sales, and several employees of SAS are authors and are published through SAS Press – a longtime publisher that has written on SAS software and related topics. When SAS makes statements, they are in most cases true, not only regarding their products but also about concepts. For instance, there has always been a great deal of hyperbole surrounding the business intelligence field. However, SAS has consistently been a voice of reason. One example of this was in deflating the marketing hyperbole generated by SAP and Oracle, who are cynically promoting their HANA and Exalytics “products” as items that make much more of a contribution to BI than they do or will.

“These in-memory approaches like SAP HANA are basic business intelligence on steroids,” said Jim Davis, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at SAS. “But you can’t do high-end analytics on them as they are database-bound systems.” – Enterprise Apps Today

Jim Davis of SAS is correct on this point. Certainly, SAS is trying to win converts, but a historical analysis of SAS’s statements demonstrates that they are typically true. When SAS says something, it most often makes sense to listen, which is normally not the case with the larger software vendors.

Consulting and Support

SAS has many experienced consultants of excellent quality. We do not have enough information to comment on SAS support.

Internal Efficiency

SAS has historically had good internal efficiency, but as with any company of significant size (and SAS is now 7000 people), SAS has its challenges with bureaucracy.


SAS has been a historical innovator. Its Current Innovation Level is still relatively high.

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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