Anyone paying attention to developments with enterprise resource planning (ERP) packaged applications over the course of 1999 cannot help but notice that the number of new installations coming online has been in steady decline. Indeed, ERP packages are entering a life cycle stage representing market saturation. Most large companies and other organizations that are prospective users have already implemented an ERP or have made a definitive decision not to. This is especially true among Global 1000 companies in which sales of ERP packages are down sharply compared to recent years. In this sense, the ERP software market is cooling noticeably.

Even so, a burgeoning ERP after- market is currently heating up. As companies deploy their ERP implementations to enterprise-scope user bases, they are discovering that an ERP cannot fulfill many software functions -- or cannot fulfill them on a truly enterprise level. To satisfy requirements that their

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