What This Article Covers

  • Introduction and Who We Are
  • The Brightwork Content Areas
  • SAP Publications
  • Supply Chain Publications
  • IT Management Publications


We are a research and advisory entity focusing on enterprise software. In many areas that we cover we are the only independent source of information.

Brightwork is one of the few media entities to accurately explain how different the reality is for S/4HANA and HANA from SAP.

  • Brightwork Research & Analysis performs the most in-depth research into SAP that exists anywhere.
  • We research SAP topics ranging from HANA to SAP’s TCO and best practice claims. Our large network of SAP sources, in addition to first-hand experience with SAP allows us to produce original research that entities like Gartner or Forrester cannot (will not?) do.
  • Brightwork is one of the only independent sources of information on SAP globally. Our media analysis has traced the financial connection between SAP and ASUG, Gartner, Forrester, Forbes, Fortune and virtually every major IT media provider. This is why none of these sources are reliable or predictive on SAP.

*Brightwork Riddle*

When do people stop taking advice or even buying advice from companies that take money from SAP?

Recent research includes the following:

A Study into SAP HANA’s TCO

SAP has repeatedly proposed that HANA has a lower TCO than competing alternatives. However, no study has ever been performed that evaluates these claims. In this research we produce a TCO model based upon both our analysis of HANA’s technology as well as HANA case studies. 

A Study into SAP S/4HANA’s Implementations

SAP has proposed that S/4HANA is a widely implemented ERP system. Accenture, Deloitte, Cap Gemini and many other SAP surrogates have proposed that companies should implement S/4HANA. The only study prior to ours is one created by ASUG, which is just a marketing outlet for SAP. This is the first independent study on S/4HANA. This research includes both private and public case studies on S/4HANA.

Upcoming Research

We are currently reviewing performing research into the following areas:

  • A Study into Forecasting Software
  • A Study into SAM Software
  • A Study into High Maintenance BI Environments (Using SAP BW as a Prototype)

If you have research funding and research that you would be interested in funding, reach out to us.

Brightwork Research & Analysis Areas

We cover the following content areas. Our publications span technical content to business process to IT management. Our publication is based upon actual software implementation experience.

Therefore this page is segmented into the following. Select the link for the area that interests you to be taken there:



Brightwork is one of the few media entities to accurately explain how different the reality is for S/4HANA and HANA from SAP.


This publication covers general SAP topics ranging from how SAP marketing uses terminology to the accuracy of IT media coverage of SAP.

SAP Planning

Our SAP planning content covers primarily SAP APO with a broad range of technical articles about how to use the application. This is one of the few publications to communicate issues with APO that are unaddressed.
We have published 5 books on SAP APO, which are connected to the articles.

SAP Indirect Access

Indirect access is a high profile issue for SAP customers. Yet the vast majority of coverage is made by those entities that are partners or media partners with SAP. We provide the most detailed and objective analysis on indirect access available.

SAP Project Management

This publication covers the management of SAP consulting companies for SAP customers that seek to get more from their implementation dollars.

Supply Chain Management

Forecasting & Demand Planning

Our forecasting content emphasizes how to leverage software to improve forecast accuracy. We provide detailed explanations of forecasting principles, what historically works, what features of forecasting software are the most beneficial.

We have published 4 books on forecasting, which are connected to the articles.

Supply Planning

Our supply planning content emphasizes how to leverage software to improve inventory management.
We have published books on supply planning, which are connected to the articles.

Inventory Optimization

This publication covers the technical area of inventory optimization and multi echelon software.
We have published a book in “MEIO” which is connected to the articles.

Supply Planning

Our supply planning content emphasizes how to leverage software to improve inventory management.
We have published 5 books on supply planning, which are connected to the articles.

Sales and Operations Planning

S&OP is an emergent and highly collaborative planning type based on demand, supply, production, sales and financial planning. This publication focuses on the topic.

We cover sales and operations planning in software in the following book.

Production Planning and Scheduling

Our production planning content emphasizes how to leverage software to improve production planning.

We cover production planning and scheduling in software in the following 6 books.

4rth Party Logistics

Our 4th party logistics content emphasizes how to leverage software enable 4rth party logistics capabilities.

BOM/PLM Management

This publication covers the BOM and PLM management.

We cover the benefits of BOM and PLM software in the following book.

IT Management

ERP Software

This publication covers ERP software. It is part of our ongoing research into ERP systems, and the ROI of such systems.

We have published the only book of meta academic research on ERP. What we cover is a storyline which is uncovered in all the major IT media entities and consulting companies.

Enterprise Software Policy

This publication covers the underpinnings of how the enterprise software market works. It covers everything from market structure to anti-competitive practices by the largest software vendors.

Vendor Ratings

These are the only honest vendor ratings that we believe are available on the Internet. Most entities that perform ratings tend to leave out the details of how it actually is to work with vendors.

Software Ratings

Here we review and rate software in 10 different categories.

We cover an evolved approach to software selection in the following book.

SaaS & Cloud

SaaS & cloud is the major transformative item in enterprise software currently and out into the foreseeable future. In this publication, we cover many Saas & Cloud topics that people often do not consider.

Total Cost of Ownership

These are the only TCO calculators that are complete (most TCO studies are only partial cost of ownership, or what we call PCO) and that are freely available online. They are adjustable based upon the implementation details.

We explain the method behind the TCO calculators in the following book.


Gartner has an enormous impact on enterprise software, and we offer the most extensive analysis on Gartner in existence.
We explain how Gartner works in the following book.

Enterprise Software Risk

Enterprise software risk begins with the sources that one uses to make decisions. Are those sources unbiased? Do they act in a fiduciary manner? These are the article topics covered in this publication.
We cover a new approach for enterprise software risk in the following book.

Our Books

Our books cover a broad range of IT subjects from technical configuration books to IT management.

Our Application

After over two decades of reviewing supply chain planning applications and seeing supply chain planning environments, we developed an application that is an entirely new approach to demand and supply planning and that works easily with MRP and external supply chain planning applications. It is free to access until it sees “serious usage” and is free for students and academics. Click the image to find out more.

Contact Us

Brightwork Contact Form

  • Interested in Accessing the World's Largest Independent Source of Intelligence on SAP?

    We operate as a true research entity and we only sell research to customers in a way that does not interfere with research and we produce no media for any vendor or other entity.

    The Benefits of Our Approach to You

    This gives us the following benefits to our clients:

    1. No Interference from SAP: We are disconnected from SAP, and unlike either Gartner, SAP Consulting Partners or SAP itself can tell our clients the truth. Unlike almost IT analysts that rely on SAP for lead generation, we don't care what SAP thinks about our results.
    2. No Implementation "Seeking" Bias: We do not seek implementation business, and therefore lack the pro-application bias of consulting companies when performing and providing analysis.
    3. A Multidimensional Analysis: It begins with two decades of SAP implementation experience, 10 years of writing and analyzing SAP, application testing, benchmarking, document analysis, information gathered from our large network of SAP users and overall "knowing" how SAP works from development up through marketing.
    4. Our Track Record on SAP: We have a 10 year track record of outperforming any other entity in our coverage of SAP and in predicting what will happen with SAP's products. In our study on SAP's accuracy, we measured both our accuracy along with SAP's accuracy, with our accuracy verifiable through links to our articles where we made our predictions.

    Our SAP Research Areas:

    1. SAP Applications
    2. SAP Databases
    3. SAP Licensing
    4. SAP TCO
    5. SAP Partner Consulting Practices
    6. The SAP Partnership System

    To Access All of This

    Just fill in the form below. Once we learn the scope of your SAP research/question, we will provide you with a fixed fee SOW.


If we look at the IT media entities, they accept SAP’s proposal that all applications work. There is no questioning as to any IT media entity going back and reviewing which SAP applications that were introduced with some fanfare worked out and which didn’t.

This leads to a sort of shocking conclusion that the media entities simply get all of their information from SAP. An analyst like Gartner does, on the contrary, speak with a huge number of SAP customers. However, they do not publish much of these observations regarding the overall view of a vendor. They may tell clients in private sessions.

But this means that fundamental analysis — like the analysis in this article just not being done. We have economists giving virtually no coverage to enterprise software. IT media being paid to repeat messages from software vendors and focusing very strongly on new introductions (rather than what happens after). Then we have IT analysts who don’t appear to get into areas outside of ratings (at least much outside of). However, ratings are only one type of analysis that needs to be performed. If a company is going to choose to use a vendor, they need to know the overall picture and not in such a limited dimension. 

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The Standard Answer to the Question

The common answer to this question is the following:

  • Pay the standard IT analysts
  • Hire an SAP consulting company.
  • Attend ASUG conferences.

The Real Story

Unfortunately, none of these are good ways to find out the real story.

  • From IT Analysts: As most of the IT analysts receive large sums of money from SAP, they have to be careful how much truth they tell.
  • From SAP Consulting Company: SAP consulting companies exist to bill hours for SAP resources. As such, they are normally pro any implementation they can get. This means they paper over the real experiences that they have exposure to. We have extensive research on this, but the messaging of SAP consulting companies is very close to a duplicate of that offered by SAP itself.
  • From ASUG Conferences: ASUG started its life as a user group, but is now a pawn of SAP. They serve as an outlet for SAP marketing. This is covered in a number of articles at Brightwork, but one example of this is ASUG’s Inability to Challenge SAP’s Predictions.

We have a history of challenging SAP, and of being right. This is something you can put to use within your company immediately to begin improving how you manage your IT budget to get more out of it.

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We have been the most vocal and consistent critic of the information generally available in the IT media space. We cover this topic in depth in articles like Understanding the Enterprise Software Market, How to Best Understand SAP’s Control of IT Media.

A major difference between Brightwork and any SAP consulting company or a Gartner or Forrester is that we don’t take money from SAP. This one major reason why our analysis of SAP is so much more accurate than Gartner or Forrester. And we have the articles to prove that claim.

Our view is that you cannot make good decisions if you listen to biased sources. In fact, this is the central premise of our book Rethinking Enterprise Software Risk. Gartner, Forrester, and others refuse to choose whose interests they represent. We represent the interests of decision makers.

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Our focus in on providing more accurate information to clients on SAP.

We offer anything from remote advice and walkthroughs of our research to on in site consulting projects where we perform detailed analysis of customer’s environments.

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