Our Book on The Real Story Behind Two Tier ERP

Two Tiered ERP 2

The Real Story Behind Two Tier ERP: Separating the Marketing from The Usable Strategy

What the Book Covers

If you need help determining your company’s overall enterprise software strategy and how two-tiered ERP fits in, this book is for you.

Two-tiered ERP is widely understood as the use of different ERP systems for different layers of an organization. Until this book, the effectiveness of a two-tiered ERP strategy could only be determined through anecdotal evidence, the marketing literature of ERP software vendors, and the advice of consulting companies. By understanding two-tiered ERP software within the context of ERP’s history, readers will see how two-tiered ERP may represent a crack in the façade of “big ERP,” and will know how to formulate a comprehensive and logical response to proposals about implementing a two-tiered strategy.

By reading this book you will:

  1. Eliminate confusion over definitions of two-tiered, multi-tiered, and single instance ERP.
  2. Review SAP and Oracle’s Tier 1 and Tier 2 ERP products.
  3. Understand why two-tiered and single instance ERP is not the best strategy.
  4. Appreciate that WHAT is written about two-tiered ERP depends greatly upon WHO is writing it.
  5. Recognize the logic used by vendors to sell two-tiered ERP and whose interests are being served by a two-tiered strategy.
  6. Learn an alternative strategy that provides functionality, cost savings, and the best return on investment.

If you are just beginning your research on ERP systems, read the companion book by the same author, The Real Story Behind ERP: Separating Fiction from Reality first, as it provides the most exhaustive history of ERP currently published.

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Related Books

This book is closely tied to the book Enterprise Software TCO, a lack of proper analysis in multiple dimensions (as well as TCO) explaining the uptake of solution categories which are not validated by any evidence. Once ERP systems could not demonstrate much in the way of financial benefits, the book explains how a new logic was developed — that ERP systems were simply “essential infrastructure.” This also turns out not to be true. Of course the initially proposed argument that ERP software would be the only system that companies ever needed is now laughable three decades after the ERP trend began. Readers will learn that with respect to ERP software, old rationals are never proven, simply new hypotheses proposed.

The book is also connected to the book Enterprise Software Selection, because the selection of so many poor quality ERP software solutions from big name vendors demonstrates a clear inability on the part of many companies to perform a proper software selection.

Finally, it is the second volume in the SCM Focus ERP set, with the third book, Replacing ERP explaining what to do about the conundrum that the over-investment into ERP systems has left implementing companies. This book provides a strong focus on SAP ERP as well as Oracle ERP. This gets into SAP ERP ECC/R/3 and Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne and SAP Business One and Oracle JD Edwards World. SAP ERP software is both the author’s area of expertise as well as the most popular ERP software application. ERP software solutions are discussed from the perspective of Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3.


  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: What is Two Tiered ERP
  • Chapter 3: The Reasons for the Rise of Two Tiered ERP
  • Chapter 4: Analyzing (some of) The Logic Used to Sell ERP
  • Chapter 5: Analyzing Two Tiered ERP
  • Chapter 6: Applying the Concept of Two Tiered ERP to Your Company


  • Two-tiered ERP with Integration to a Master ERP System Versus Business
  • Books and Other Publications on Two-tiered ERP
  • My Background and the Book’s Focus and Orientation
  • The Vendors Covered in This Book
  • How Writing Bias Is Controlled at SCM Focus and SCM Focus Press
  • The Approach to the Book
  • The SCM Focus Site
  • Intended Audience
  • Abbreviations
  • Corrections


  • Two-tiered ERP with Integration to a Master ERP System Versus Business Intelligence Integration
  • Two-tiered Versus Multi-tiered ERP
  • How Two-tiered ERP Is New
  • Conclusion


  • The Background on the Development of the Term “Two-tiered ERP”
  • Is Two-tiered ERP the Savior of ERP?
  • A Dangerous Idea
  • Two-Tiered ERP and SaaS
  • Matching the ERP System to the Environment
  • The Truth To Two-Tiered ERP
  • The Supporting Logic Versus Marketing Hyperbole
  • Conclusion


  • One System to Rule Them All: The Single System Logic for ERP
  • The Changing Story on ERP’s Ability to Meet All Requirements
  • Account Control
  • The Boogie Man of Problematic Integration
  • One Size Fits All
  • Planning for the Inevitable Customization
  • The Single Instance Logic of ERP
  • The Logic of Cost Reduction for ERP
  • Conclusion


  • The Unstated Assumption of Two-tiered ERP
  • The Tier 1 ERP Software Vendors
  • Major Consulting Companies
  • IT Analysts
  • An Algorithm for Starting Trends Without Evidence
  • Conclusion


  • Implementing the Two Tiered ERP Strategy
  • Choosing a Two Tier ERP System
  • How to Integrate the Tier 2 or Tier 3 ERP System
  • Conclusion
  • Conclusion
  • About Software Decisions

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Questions about the Book? 

Do you have any questions about the book? If so please comment below, and we will address them.