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Author's profile photo Carolyn Horiel

Cloud Success: AIM, “Big Software on a Startup Budget”

AIM_header.PNGWhen your company is just starting out – or on a tight budget – you might not think you can afford a sophisticated software application.  But the story of a company called AIM might make you think again.

American Industrial Manufacturers & Building Materials (AIM), a building product company located in Plano, Texas, is the consolidation of five regional manufacturing companies.  It operates manufacturing plants and warehouse locations throughout the United States.  As a newly-created entity, AIM had a very limited budget for technology, according to Chief Technology Officer, Michael Manning.  “We knew that we didn’t want to go through the investment of a hardware system,” he says.  “We also didn’t want to add the headcount that is necessary when you have an in-house system.  So we knew cloud was the answer for us.”  Still, the company wasn’t sure they could afford anything with the name “SAP.”  But when they discovered SAP Business ByDesign, and looked at its total cost of ownership, they knew they had found the right solution.

A Complete Solution

In SAP Business ByDesign, AIM found a cloud-based application that was complete, integrated, and ready to run the entire enterprise – from financials, to human resources, to sales, procurement, customer service, and supply chain.  All without modification working with SAP Gold Partner, Navigator.  The company especially values the document flow functions of SAP Business ByDesign, which enable AIM to trace transactions from initiation to payment.  “Without SAP Business ByDesign,” Manning says, “we would not really know how to accept orders, process orders, record shipments, and just do basic order-to-cash transactions.  It allowed us to do those things very easily, and so it fit a very, very important business need for us.”

Extending to the Ecosystem

With an affordable monthly license, SAP Business ByDesign has proved to be a great fit for AIM’s budget.  And now, the company is encouraging its broader ecosystem of affiliates – many of whom are using legacy applications – to adopt SAP Business ByDesign.  “We think it would be good to have the entire network on SAP,” Manning says.  He adds, “SAP Business ByDesign allowed us to get off the ground and run our business.”

Build Your Business on a Strong Foundation

As AIM clearly demonstrates, you don’t need a big IT budget to afford a powerful ERP solution.  You just need SAP Business ByDesign.  For more on AIM, click here to download the Customer Success Profile. If you are looking to build your business on a strong foundation using SAP Business ByDesign, currently implementing or a live customer, join SAP for the 4th Annual SAP Business ByDesign Users Conference, October 11-14 at the Mirage Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.  To learn more and how to register, visit

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