Profoss / Events / November 2008 ERP / Speakers / Danny Cools / Dany Cools interview

Dany Cools interview

What's your daily job?

I am one of the 2 co-founders of Think Wize and our company has been focussed on delivering applications to improve business processes from day 1.


While Pim is our technical lead my main activity is to engage new projects and act as project manager during implementations.

A software migration is always hard. Is migrating from a closed source ERP to an open source ERP even harder?

No, I do not believe so. Any migration consists of various aspects, some are purely technical, some are purely human. They all need to be managed, maybe the aspect of active listing to a community is a plus open source ERP integrators have acquired that is beneficial during implementations.


It is important to realize for ERP decision-makers that the quality of the integrator is as important as the software solution which is chosen.

What's the primary reason for a company to start such a migration?

It still boils down to value in the end. Migrations are driven by the lack of functionality, the win-loose set-up of proprietary maintenance contracts and the inability for an application to grow with the company it is supporting.


Depending on the specific situation, triggers are different but how to maximize customer value is the key.

Aren't there integration problems with third party software already in use at the company? What about the migration of closed source tools integrated with the previous closed ERP, and not integrated with the new open source ERP solution?

This is indeed a key topic which is on the agenda of my talk. In general the lack of open standards support from closed source tools is what makes integrations a hurdle.


When technically feasible however taking these integrations on-board during a project is exactly how to leverage customer value. For us, we always do integrations in a project as this is where you can allow so-called island automation to become less important and also achieve a sound closed-open source mix.

Are there situations in which you advise against such a migration?

Yes, when during project qualification it comes clear an existing open source ERP is not the right match or tool for the job.