Skip to Content

Archived discussions are read-only. Learn more about SAP Q&A

About SAP Business One

Dear Experts,

I need to know about SAP B1 in general or specific and including the definition. using the explanation, we decide to keep on using B1 and implementing it in branch or in Head Office only.

Thanks in advance



Former Member

I could also give general answer because the specific requirement is not clear from you.

Here is the definition:

SAP Business One is a simple yet powerful integrated ERP solution provided by the world's largest ERP solution provider specifically for small and medium-sized businesses (SMB, SME).

Acquired by SAP from Israeli company Top Manage in 2002 it has benefited from SAP's significant investment in development and marketing. As of 2006 it is sold in at least 40 countries and SAP claims 9000+ installations.

Localized versions are offered in 3 clusters: A and B. Each edition, catering to a different region in the world. A covers Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Guatemala, Irish Republic, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Portugal, Puerto Rico, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, USA, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Greece and Turkey. Version B covers China, Hong Kong (based on Chinese Version), Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Brazil & India. SAP sells the product through channel partners.

SAP Business One consists of applications for Financial, Distribution, CRM, Manufacturing, MRP, HR and Services.

The SAP Business One consists of basic 14 "core modules" that are based on the core business processes are as follows :-

1) Administration Module which is for configuration

2) Financials Module which is for the accounting and financial activities

3) Sales Opportunities Module which is for tracking the existing customers and potential amounts

4) Sales Module which is for entry of orders, shipping and invoicing

5) Purchasing Module which is for issuing of the purchase orders are issuing and receving goods into inventory

6) Business Partners Module which is for maintaining and contacting the Business Partners (customers, vendors, and leads)

7) Banking Module which is for cash receipts and payouts

8) Inventory Module which is for Inventory control,valuation and management

9) Production Module which is for defining the bill of materials and tracking the manufacturing process

10) MRP Module which is for purchase and production planning

11) Service Module which is for managing the after-service products

12) HR Module which is for maintaining the employee information

13) Reports Module which is for generation of the system-default and user- defined reports on-screen tables or as printouts

14) E-commerce which is for enabling the users to buy and/or sell online to the consumers,business partners or the other businesses

SAP provides optional add-ons at no extra charge for applications such as fixed assets, synchronisation with MS Outlook and advanced forms design. Perhaps the most exciting add-on in this category is the XL Reporter reporting tool which came about as a result of SAP's acquisition of iLytix in 2005. With preset metadata, a drag and drop design and over 80 starter reports, it is extremely easy to learn and use. It uses MS Excel for formatting and comes with a choice of ready-to-use templates or you can put your knowledge of Excel to work to create your own.

The scope of the product is further extended by over 100 third party add-ons. Some are developed using SAP's Software Development Kit which results in a consistent 'look and feel' to Business One. Some add-ons have their integration with Business One certified by SAP.

The product has a relatively modern and 2-tier architecture. It has won a design award for its user interface. It offers users a high level of flexibility with the ability to create a virtually unlimited number of user-defined fields and tables, user-configurable alerts and workflow processes. Users can control to a significant extent the display of data on transaction screens, configure look-up windows and set data access security. Most of this tailoring can be achieved with no formal IT skills.

Bundled with Business One are templates that provide out-of-the-box integration with mySAP Business Suite. This makes it an ideal solution for small subsidiaries of large enterprises that use the larger SAP systems. SAP have also seen to it that the General Ledger, auditability and security are all of a standard to suit the needs of a demanding large parent company.

Any company looking for integrated and real-time solution with a secure future should consider SAP Business One seriously. As it is supported by SAP, it benefits from the commitment and experience of the world's largest and most successful ERP software company.

While Business One is quick to implement and is affordable, because it is designed for small to medium sized businesses, it does not offer the same level of functionality of the high-end SAP products or even many tier-2 products. In most cases, though, the inherent flexibility of Business One allows a more acceptable work-around than may be expected if you are prepared to invest a bit more in customising the product.

As an example, the standard Business One Financial module does not provide a ready-to-use approval process for supplier payments i.e. a user who has access to creating a payment does not need to get another's approval before paying a supplier. Using SQL scripts and the built-in Alerts function, though, it is possible to provide a measure of control for this process.

Another example is that the Purchasing module of Business One does not formally support prior stages to a purchase order e.g. purchase indent, nor tracking. It starts directly from "Purchase Order". However the approval process provided for purchase orders means that an unpproved "purchase order" can be created. This can function as a "requisition" until it has been approved. Changes made to the "Purchase Order" during the process are fully tracked. Further work can be also be done with MRP and the Planning Data in the Inventory module to manage purchasing requirements.

You can define a catalogue that matches item codes to part numbers used by suppliers and customers but there is no link between Items and Business partners directly out of the box. Again such links can be defined using the customisation tools.

Integration with third party applicaions requires considerable effort utilizing the SDK and the DI_API. One solution to this is to use iBOLT Special Edition as an integration toolkit instead, it has visual tools, pre-built samples and other solutions that make SAP Business One overcome some of th basic challenges it faces, such as integration with existing websites, consolidating different charts of accounts, entering service orders over the web, and a zillion other creative workarounds and integration and connectivity approaches. According to the vendor for iBOLT, Magic Software Enterprises, 150 SAP Business One business partners from around the world have decided to use iBOLT Special Edition for integration.

Some releases of SAP Business One have been error prone, especially when compared with older or legacy products that are having far less development than Business One. But stability is as good or better than for comparable, new generation, offerings. A good general policy for any product is not to be the first to upgrade to the new version - leave this to others. With SAP Business One 2006, things seem to have settled down considerably.

Third party add-ons should be added carefully. Apart from the cost, they will require additional system resources to maintain an acceptable performance level.

In short, don't expect Business One to do everything. But speak to a SAP Business Partner before ruling it out and you may be pleasantly surprised to find there is a workable solution to your perceived gaps.

let us know your requirement. I am sure if head office can use B1, the branch can also use it.


1 View this answer in context

Helpful Answer

Not what you were looking for? View more on this topic or Ask a question