In the beginning was the… OpenERP
Odoo is a fully-functional ERP system. Core is an open source under LGPLv3. This is a high-performance system that works really great for particular types of companies. The new v9 brings a lot of changes. Let’s sort out whose version should we select.
ERP packages blossomed in the nineties to replace a set of custom-built software in big servers or mainframe. Now we see that companies are willing to move away from a set of disparate application packages covering various parts of their business. Just like running your operations with multiple software was tedious in the nineties, having multiple packages to run your sales channels, your marketing and your operations is now a major blocking point. We have the right solution to address that issue.
Odoo v6, 7, and 8 had no technical or functional difference between Community and Enterprise versions. Openerp SA was selling support and migration services only with Enterprise contract. That, however, has changed with v9.
Odoo SA (Openerp SA previously), a commercial organization, has developed a specific approach for monetizing software. Some additional functionality and services are available in the Enterprise package only. Core is absolutely the same in both versions. The whole proposition can be understood as illustrated below:
The whole database and back-end applications, without limitations, are in Odoo Community
- Basic Functionality is in Odoo Community
- + (additionally) Migration to the next version by Odoo SA engineers is in Odoo Enterprise
- + (additionally) Several Functionalities are in Odoo Enterprise
- + (additionally) Support of the non-customized Odoo Enterprise by Odoo SA Engineers
- + (you can install any moment) Apps from Odoo Store
This approach is not a surprise in open source world. Similar schemes can be found in Alfresco and Pentaho, for example.
High-level comparison: Odoo Community vs Odoo Enterprise
ERP is a multilayer system. Technically, Odoo Enterprise is Odoo Community + Additional Functional Modules. But these modules play a big game. Does it mean that the main difference between the two versions is just a few paid apps? All layer differences are covered below.
List of layers
- Required hardware
- Community and Enterprise Apps
- Access Rights
- Support and Upgrades
– Multi-company internal flows
– Dynamic Reports
– Follow-up payment management
– Manage subscriptions and recurring invoicing
– Forecasts: Multi-tasks planning and Gantt charts
– Lead Scoring
– Digital signature
|Layer||Community v9||Enterprise v9|
|Required hardware||from 2 CPU / 2 RAM||from 2 CPU / 2 RAM||Scalability||The same load balancing||The same load balancing||Flexibility||The same modular architecture||The same modular architecture||Community and Store Apps||Can install any module||Can install any module||Enterprise Apps||Not available||Included in the package||Localizations||The same localizations||The same localizations||Out-of-the-box*||Requires more customization||Includes nice UI and more functionality||Access Rights||The same configuration||The same configuration||UI||Standard interface||Nice and fast navigation||Support and Upgrades||Not included||Included by vendor||Price||No license costs||20 EUR / user / month|
The same hardware is needed for both versions.
Odoo is an undemanding system. For 5-employee companies, a 2 CPU 2 RAM server would be enough, raising to 4 CPU 8 RAM for 20 employees. We would recommend splitting application and database servers for 90 employees. Load balancing (LB) of application server would be needed for a company of 250+ employees.
Following the Hardware abstract, Odoo can be scaled up for companies of almost any size. We did it for 2k+ and global companies with huge geographical distribution. Proper infrastructure provider selection, applications load balancing and database replication can do magic with this open source ERP.
It is the most scalable business application in the world for two good reasons:
1. Open source
2. Modular structure: All functions can be customized via modules and database configuration.
If your company changes fast and experiments with processes, then Odoo should fit perfectly well.
There are free (~90%) and paid (~10%) applications (modules) in the Odoo App store. Odoo Enterprise already includes additional unique modules that will move the ERP experience to the next level.
Based on our analysis of implemented projects, we can conclude that Odoo covers Sales, Project and Warehouse Management processes pretty well. Also, specific changes in Finance module makes accounting management intuitive, if we can say it that way. All these makes Enterprise version a good choice for companies where sales and services are the key processes.
|Odoo Modules||Community Version||Enterprise Version (Community+)|
|Finance Management||Account Payable
Bank Statement Reconciliation
|Dynamic accounting reports
Bank Interface US / NZ / Canada
Import bank statement in .qif files and .ofx formats
Payment follow-up management
(Tasks multi-planning and Gantt charts similar to MS Projects)
Timesheet app for Chrome/Android/iOS
|Sales and CRM||CRM
|VoIP (Asterisk) integration
Sell digital products
Send documents by regular post
Manage subscriptions and recurring invoicing
|Human Resources Management||Employee Directory
|Mobile app to track time activities|
(offline tracking mode)
|Inventory and Supply Chain Management||Inventory Management
|Barcode scanner support|
(connect barcode scanner to the system)
|Website and E-commerce||Website Builder|
A/B testing and versioning
|Point of Sale||Point of Sale|
|POS Restaurants Loyalty cards|
(loyalty program with points and rewards for customers)
(Lead automation. Adding weight to each potential customer)
Email Marketing Templates
*View supported banks – https://www.odoo.com/page/accounting-features
Let’s highlight the most significant features from the Enterprise version.
This module allows chaining transactions between several holding companies. For example, it allows you to have a Sale Order created automatically when a Purchase Order is validated with another company of the system as vendor, and inversely. SO, PO and invoices/refunds are supported at this moment.
This feature allows to generate all main accounting reports (P&L, BS, Trial Balance and etc.) on the fly. Also, after preview, it can be exported to Excel with a click.
This module automates emails/letters for unpaid invoices, with multi-level recalls based on specific rules.
You can create and edit any subscription, modify one with sales orders, and generate invoice automatically at fixed intervals.
Understand it as MS Project built-in into ERP now. Delivery date of group of task or project is being calculated based on resource availability. Use Gantt view feature to adjust your results and reschedule deadlines.
The module calculates “score” of your potential customers based on the info they left on your website. The system calculates the score of lead automatically. Odoo sorts out your lead automatically and considers the most important first. This provides significant improvement of the sales team’s performance, as there can be more than 50 leads in the pipeline.
You can also define rules based on customer locations, company size, budget, etc. Leads can be assigned to the appropriate sales teams automatically.
It’s a fast way to sign, approve and send documents. You can drag and drop blocks with your signature, name, company name, etc., to the necessary place in the contract. Specific fields can be completed by the parties via portal. You can submit signature requests and track status of sent documents as well.
Any localization can be installed as additional package on both versions. Around 50 localizations are available at this moment. The ones that are ready are for EU and US countries. Additional configuration for accounting and payroll modules is needed in most cases.
Bank integrations are available mainly for US banks and corresponding branches.
As described earlier, all service-related processes are well supported in all Odoo versions: Community, Cloud and Enterprise. Companies in Software, Engineering, Service, Retail and Wholesale Industries with less than 15 employees can select any version. Any one of them would perform great with a little amount of customization.
Odoo Enterprise is the most preferred choice for middle enterprises of 50 to 300 employees. It contains modules that dramatically improve company performance, like multi-tasks planning, finance dynamic reporting, and advanced contract management. It has intuitive and clear UI that increases system adoption. The Enterprise version is more ready to be used out of the box from this point of view .
There are no differences here. Both versions have generic access rights with rules that are good enough for small and medium companies. However, for companies with complex organizational structure, basic access rights functionality is not enough. They should be ready for additional configurations.
The most obvious difference between the two versions is the new UI of Odoo Enterprise. Odoo adopted the latest Google, mobile and web UI / UX trends to meet the high expectations of modern users. If your colleagues are using modern applications a lot, then they should feel very comfortable with Odoo Enterprise interface.
Each module is accessed as a separate application through the single dashboard. And each module provides access to one ERP application, which automates a particular business process. Under the “Contacts” icon you’ll see all your prospects, customers, and partners. Website app allows you to build your own website without coding. Odoo Enterprise interacts with a customer on intuitive level and familiarity with the ERP happens organically.
The new UI is built in a responsive design so that it’s interface can readily adapt to the resolution and orientation of your tablet or smartphone.
The Community edition inherited the classic corporate design from previous versions of Odoo. It has standard left column navigation structure and typical list and form views.
System stability is vital for much bigger companies. Odoo Enterprise SLA covers all native Odoo applications. Odoo SA engineers will fix bugs, improve stability, and upgrade to the next versions at no additional costs. We highly recommend Odoo SLA for companies with employee size of 20+.
Be aware of Odoo’s flexibility and related specifics. Most likely your company will request additional customizations from integration suppliers like Xpansa. Note well that Warranty by Odoo SA is provided on non-modified core and Enterprise modules only. However, there should be no problem if the integration company meets these two requirements:
1. All customizations are done in separate modules. This is required so that the Odoo Enterprise code can be isolated by the supporting engineer to search for the issue.
2. The integration supplier is an official Odoo partner with deep relationship with the vendor. This way, both technical companies can interact fast and smoothly to support the whole system.
The Community version is open source and has no license costs. So you can use Odoo as is or customized by system integrator without support of the vendor, next updates, and additional improved apps for free. It’s a good choice for a small company that doesn’t need additional services and complex customizations.
The cost of the Enterprise version is 20EUR/user/month. For this price, a customer gets all additional apps + vendor support + future updates (Odoo 10+, for example).
Hence, it would be most reasonable to pay for the Enterprise if your company has more than 20 employees. However, the main indicator for a company to choose the Enterprise package is industry and speed of internal changes.
Profile of a company where Odoo would fit perfectly:
- Fast and changing company
- SME with up to 500 employees
Operating in one of the next industries:
- Internet Software & Services
- IT Services
- Life Sciences Services
- Construction & Engineering
- Trading Companies & Distributors
- Commercial Services & Supplies
- Professional Services
- Retail ( e-commerce platforms to be integrated additionally)
- Health Care Providers & Services
The system will work on bigger companies, as well, it’s just that it requires much more customization and adjustment of the processes. Application can be scaled up to any size. The Open source code of Odoo allows full flexibility in the selection of versions and integration of the system.
The main factors for selecting the Enterprise are:
- Companies with more than 20 employees shall have necessary guarantees and appropriate SLA from the vendor
- Requirement of fast adoption to make full use of the benefits offered by the modern UI
- Highly loaded operational departments that will dramatically cut operational cost if ERP would have dynamic reporting and multi-task planning
HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT ODOO 10? WE WOULD BE HAPPY TO HELP
Photo by Mariusz Kluzniak