Could an integrated enterprise suite make business sense?

SaaS can help your pain points.
SaaS can help your pain points.

Global enterprise applications company IFS has released the latest version of its extended business software suite, IFS Applications 9.

Launching the product to kick-off its IFS World Conference 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts, the firm outlined the key new features and capabilities of Applications 9.

Designed to help organisations "spot the signals that help [a] business change and create an advantage", Applications 9 is an agile solution based on a partner-friendly architecture and can be delivered via Microsoft's Azure cloud.

New: IFS Lobby and IFS Streams

Introducing Applications 9, IFS senior VP of research and development Thomas Sald said the suite benefitted from an improved user experience, more than 500 new industry updates and capabilities including an embedded CRM, a lower overall total cost of ownership, and localised support for global businesses.

"We know that user experience is important - it's directly linked to the business. It increases productivity and makes it easier to make the right decision. It also shortens the implementation time and increases talent retention. It looks good, yes, but it supports your business."

Applications 9 also comes with a number of project management and collaboration improvements, thanks to the new IFS Lobby and IFS Streams applications. These include real-time messaging and notifications across multiple devices and the web in Streams, and customisation options in IFS Lobby, Applications 9's at-a-glance information dashboard that can be tailored to individual roles and processes.

Introducing the new features, the company's CTO, Dan Matthews, said:

"Applications 9 is about creating business agility and the flexibility to capitalise on change. You need to be able to look out across multiple areas of your business and understand how they work together, getting close to things that are happening, as they're happening. "

Alastair Sorbie, president and CEO of IFS Group, added: "Today, we will be launching IFS Applications 9. We think it's the best release we've ever brought out. We've tried to build this idea of agility into the product as we've gone along. If you want to ride the wave of disruption, you need to have agile systems in place, ready to work like mad when the wave comes along."

Among the one million users of the firm's applications, key verticals for IFS Applications 9 include the service management, industrial manufacturing, and offshore contracting sectors. Early adopters of the software suite include Beijer Electronics and Kimal.

Leveraging the Internet of Things

During the opening keynote session, Stephen Boyle, VP of enterprise partners at Microsoft, also encouraged businesses to start leveraging the Internet of Things for a competitive advantage, saying it was poised to disrupt a range of industries.

"The Internet of Things is the next opportunity facing us. Whichever set you look at, the numbers are enormous - IoT touches all industries. Whether you're in healthcare or consumer, it fundamentally allows you turn anything into a service."

James Laird

James is a technology journalist with nearly 10 years experience and currently Sports and TV Streaming Editor at Future, where he works across TechRadar, T3 and Tom's Guide. He is here to help you find the best ways to watch sports, TV shows and movies online. Previously, he was News and Features Editor at Trusted Reviews, Editor of Lifehacker UK, and Senior Staff Writer at ITProPortal.