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FinancialForce Allows Users Scalability and Flexibility: Q&A with Analyst Seth Lippincott

Seth Lippincott, analyst at Nucleus, covers ERP, SCM and security technology. He recently released a report titled “Customers Say Certinia Is Sticky”, where he highlighted his findings from talking with Certinia customers. Seth learned that customers favor our solution because it has enabled them to scale rapidly, tailor to their company’s needs and it is native to Salesforce. I sat down with Seth to understand his definition of “sticky” and to learn more about our customers’ feedback.

1) Hi Seth! Your recent report was a great read. My first and most important question is what exactly do you mean by Certinia is “sticky”?

When a solution is sticky it means that the customer is tied to it in a way that makes switching to a different solution either too costly or too difficult to really be considered.

A solution can be sticky for good reasons, which is how I was characterizing Certinia.

In cases of Certinia customers where I look at their level of user adoption, the way in which the customers’ needs are addressed makes them resistant in their ideas of switching. In a concrete way the users have become accustomed to the single data model for each contact across their CRM and ERP system, removing that functionality and the benefits that come with that would not be greeted with enthusiasm.

2) When speaking with a few of our customers what were some of the more impressionable findings in that process?

I was surprised by the extent to which Certinia being native to the Salesforce platform was a differentiating factor for the customers.

Normally we forget about the platform as part of the value proposition, we don’t necessarily associate that with being able to deliver a lot of benefits but with Certinia that nativity is a major selling point to customers.

Another point that I would call out would be the rapid growth that customers are able to achieve. In this research, I found that companies were scaling rapidly with Certinia, in some instances we had customers scaling five times in terms of the number of transactions they were dealing with. They had only marginal increases in their accounting staff, which is something I didn’t necessarily expect to find at that level.

3) What do you hope readers take away from the report?

There are a couple things I hope readers take away from the report, the first would be that customers that I talked with hailed from a number of different industries and they were leveraging Certinia in a variety of ways. The only real common thread they had was that they use Salesforce CRM.

Second thing to really take away is the flexibility that the solution gives from its modular approach. Despite it being a cloud solution we often associate it with a one size fits all, but customers are tailoring their solution to fit their needs.

Lastly I go back to the scalability that Certinia allows customers. When you’re moving from one level to five times that level in terms of number of transactions and you’re only increasing your staff a marginal amount that is going to reap huge benefits for your company.

4) With the end of the year approaching everyone is talking about trends and predictions for next year. What do you feel are some of the ERP trends we should look forward to in 2017?

There has been a lot of focus on the SMBs – it is a huge growth opportunity for a lot of vendors so they have been putting a lot of time and energy into catering to that market. The ones that are able to demonstrate value to the SMB market are really going to be able to capitalize moving forward.

Delivering a cloud solution is integral to that so you don’t have infrastructure and technology to manage in-house. It’s also important to have a solution that can scale with your business as you move into the high end of the midmarket or a small enterprise company. I think that solutions that are able to capitalize on that segment of the market will have a good year in 2017.

To read the full report from Nucleus Research, view it here.

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