4) What are some of the challenges that these vendors will face?
One challenge across Asia is that when the vendors want to operate in niche markets, there is the need for specific industry and language expertise. Vendors will have to decide which countries, which verticals and which applications they will support.
Another issue is the lack of skills within organisations. This applies to the newer technology areas as companies seek to move beyond ERP and focus on new applications deployment such as supply chains, and product lifecycle. The challenge will be to find people to support the implementation of these new applications.
5) And how can they overcome these issues?
From a vendor and user perspective, an adequate skills development programme needs to be in place to meet future needs for products and services. From a user standpoint, this means that they can hire people with the skills.
Products need to be matched to the customer's business challenges. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is still the mainstay of the organisation, but companies that want to differentiate themselves should look at the next application after ERP.
Ensure that there is a clear message as to how companies can move from using ERP functionality to thinking about the next application, whether it is supply chain, manufacturing operations, or product lifecycle linked. Working with the customers to develop roadmaps that match new technology to business requirements will be the key.
Have a rethink on how to sell in this region. With growth slowing in the region, vendors that used to be able to operate their operations on a "shoestring" budget, with minimal sales and marketing efforts, need to work much harder now to sell their products. Having local reference material is important, since companies want to know how companies in other parts of the region are overcoming common challenges.
Enable an efficient sales force. Research done by IDC Manufacturing Insights suggests that many vendors are not perceived as efficient by their customers. The need to respond to queries and being proactive in responding to questions will be important in ensuring success and greater sales in 2013.
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.