or LinkedIn here https://uk.linkedin.com/in/tonysmiththathousingitguy
It's not often that implementation of a new housing system is cited in reasons for not doing a mega-merger, but that's what I noticed in the following article about Sanctuary and Housing 21
The article mentioned the following snippet:
I have heard the phrase "No one ever got fired for choosing SAP", very few people hang around long enough traditionally to see it go live. Clearly there is some way to go for the Real Estate Management module, to unseat Northgate PS Housing, at Sanctuary. With what might have already been spent on it, plus future spend clearly Housing21 must have considered better uses for that investment. I.E. Lots more supported housing. I have procured many systems for large groups, for way less than a couple of £m.
I see many of my LinkedIn contacts have moved on quite a lot with their SAP skills, over the past three years, from Social Housing clearly into areas that pay much better, since the original award . A skilled ICT team with SAP ABAP and other skills, is an expensive one, and difficult to keep, feed and water. Skilled SAP people who can endure 45 degree heat in the middle east, can earn up to £2,500 per day tax free. The alternative being a potentially expensive contract to completely support the implementation, from a large expert provider.
Many public sector & government contracts have turned into proverbial poker games in the past. It feels easier chucking more money into the pot, rather than doing maybe the more sensible thing, of walking away from the table before the losses are too apparent.
Back getting on for 4 years ago, I chaired a session at a conference on the subject, "Is the traditional Housing Management System dead?". We explored the staleness and difficulty in implementing traditional systems and the hope that SAP and Dynamics CRM seemed to offer, to two of their users.At the time, SAP was touted as being big in the Netherlands social housing systems arena, after deregulation there. Vestia one of the biggest providers in Holland have had mixed fortunes, more recently.
Well it all seems to look a bit different looking back, hind-sight being a fabulous thing. Many of the old 'favourites' seem to have been improving what they do and still winning new HMS procurement's, particularly in larger RSL groups. There's been some thinking out of the box and a few more alliances & consolidations struck. Reasonable deals are available, if not rock bottom bargains in my experience.
Even in Holland which was held up as a stronghold of SAP in socialhousing, I have heard stories that there, many organisations are turning back to traditional vertical market housing applications. Certainly, now that budget belts are tightening in the UK, perhaps choosing SAP for housing data management was maybe not the best decision in hindsight, particularly if it's affecting mergers now too.
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The Cult - She Sells Sanctuary.
(c) Tony Smith, Acutance Consulting www.acutanceconsulting.co.uk 07854-655009
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