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Software Functionality Revealed in Detail
We’ve opened the hood on every major category of enterprise software. Learn about thousands of features and functions, and how enterprise software really works.
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Visit the TEC store to compare leading software solutions by funtionality, so that you can make accurate and informed software purchasing decisions.
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Fatal Flaws in ERP Software Create Opportunity for Niche Software in CPG Companies
ERP software may fail to meet critical business requirements. When companies find that their ERP doesn't meet all of their business requirements, they should

compare chemical software  Flaws in ERP Software Create Opportunity for Niche Software in CPG Companies Fatal Flaws in ERP Software Create Opportunity for Niche Software in CPG Companies Featured Author - Bill Friend* - April 24, 2004 Overview After companies purchase an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system they may discover that the ERP software fails to provide all of the functionality their business requires. These shortfalls have been characterized as fatal flaws . If a company uncovers a fatal flaw in their ERP

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Software Functionality Revealed in Detail

We’ve opened the hood on every major category of enterprise software. Learn about thousands of features and functions, and how enterprise software really works.

Get free sample report
Compare Software Solutions

Visit the TEC store to compare leading software by functionality, so that you can make accurate and informed software purchasing decisions.

Compare Now

Process Manufacturing (ERP)

The simplified definition of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is a set of applications that automate finance and human resources departments and help manufacturers handle jobs such as order processing and production scheduling. ERP began as a term used to describe a sophisticated and integrated software system used for manufacturing. In its simplest sense, ERP systems create interactive environments designed to help companies manage and analyze the business processes associated with manufacturing goods, such as inventory control, order taking, accounting, and much more. Although this basic definition still holds true for ERP systems, today its definition is expanding. Today's leading ERP systems group all traditional company management functions (finance, sales, manufacturing, human resources) and include, with varying degrees of acceptance and skill, many solutions that were formerly considered peripheral (product data management (PDM), warehouse management, manufacturing execution system (MES), reporting, etc.). While during the last few years the functional perimeter of ERP systems began an expansion into its adjacent markets, such as supply chain management (SCM), customer relationship management (CRM), business intelligence/data warehousing, and e-Business, the focus of this knowledge base is mainly on the traditional ERP realms of finance, materials planning, and human resources. The old adage is "Such a beginning, such an end", and, consequently, many ERP systems' failures could be traced back to a bad software selection. The foundation of any ERP implementation must be a proper exercise of aligning customers' IT technology with their business strategy, and subsequent software selection. This is the perfect time to create the business case and energize the entire organization towards the vision sharing and a buy in, both being the Key Success Factors (KSFs). Yet, these steps are very often neglected despite the amount of expert literature and articles that emphasize their importance.    

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Accounting for SMBs: A Solution Beyond Entry-level Systems Red Wing Software


Many SMB companies need more functionality than an entry-level system offers, but cannot afford to pay $15,000 (USD) or more for a higher-end product, nor do they really need the complexity found in these products. Red Wing Software’s TurningPoint is a good mid-market product that plays well in this market.

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TEC's Mid-market ERP-Distribution Buyer’s Guide


Midsize manufacturers and distributors now have access to an array of powerful software solutions that simply weren’t available before. But with so many choices, you need accurate and unbiased information. This comprehensive guide from TEC and SupplyChainBrain provides a state-of-the-market analysis, success stories from your peers, in-depth information on solutions, and a directory of the leading vendors in the field.

This guide features information on vendors offering dedicated ERP-distribution solutions for the midmarket. These solutions are all designed to address the logistical, financial, and workflow issues facing the distribution industry today.

Inside, you’ll find a chart highlighting 10 featured vendor solutions by installed base and business components, ranging from warehouse, transportation, and inventory management, to international trade logistics, Web commerce, and human resources (HR) and financials.

As well, you’ll find an analysis of the state of the market by the editor of Supply Chain Brain. Customer success stories have been included to illustrate how ERP-distribution solutions have helped companies like yours solve distribution and business logistics problems.

For your convenience, there’s also a vendor directory to assist companies looking for either full ERP-distribution systems, add-ons, or third-party solutions for the following: demand management (DM), retail systems, supply chain management (SCM), transportation management systems (TMSs), and warehouse management systems (WMSs).

We hope you’ll find this guide a useful tool in determining which ERP-distribution solutions are best suited for your company’s business model and particular needs.


Table of Contents


Introduction

State of the Midsize ERP-Distribution Marketplace

Methodology

Vendor Capabilities

Business Components

Customer Profile

Spotlight on ERP-Distribution

Executive Summary

Customer Success Stories

Spotlight on Inventory and Accounting

Executive Summary

Customer Success Stories

Spotlight on Supply Chain Management

Executive Summary

Customer Success Stories

Vendor Directory

Profiles

Demand Management

ERP-Distribution

Retail

Supply Change Management

Transportation Management System

Warehouse Management System


Download the full copy of the TEC ERP-Distribution Buyer’s Guide for the Mid-market.


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Inventory Management and Accounting Conundrum


The challenges of inventory management and the notion of inventory as a “necessary evil” (or the “asset versus liability” dilemma) have long been haunting operations and financial and accounting managers. It is a well-known fact that managing inventory risk is about managing the cost of maintaining unnecessarily high levels of inventory against the risk of running out of stock at a crucial moment of truth when a customer actually wants something. In a variety of aspects, inventory management is at the heart of the supply chain management (SCM) realm. Supply chain organizations are responsible for all the processes from sales and operations planning to customer fulfillment, inventory optimization, and new product delivery and introduction—all of which involve the planning and movement of inventory. Profit margins are also directly proportional to operational excellence in each of the above processes.
While cherished by material management folks as supply chain “grease,” inventory is not that beloved by financial managers.

The motto “time is money” certainly holds true when it comes to inventory valuation. Well, maybe in a reverse (negative) manner, because typically neglected in the continuous battle for executives’ focus and priority is the management of at-risk, aging inventory—be it excess active, obsolete, returns, or refurbished inventory. Some refer to these items as “slobs,” which stands for “slow moving and obsolete” ones. In other words, most companies in the sectors of high-tech, consumer electronics, retail, and consumer packaged goods (CPG) are focused on new product introductions. Given that everybody is most excited in the early stages of product life cycles (that is, devising and delivering the brand new, “coolest” products), much less attention is paid to the languishing, “totally so not cool” older product lines, with millions of accompanying inventory asset recovery dollars slipping away annually as a consequence.

Excess inventory, which ties up working capital and whose value is declining by the day, does not necessarily come from new product introductions only. Nowadays the manufacture of most goods is largely carried out in the Far East, which comes with a nominal item price advantage, but also with many potential downsides. In addition to the inevitable quality, communication, and cultural issues, manufacturing product in such lower cost, remote locations means a sizeable lead time increase, as the goods will need to be transported from the Far East back to the company’s warehouse. This in turn means that a planner will have to forecast the demand before placing an order with a remote supplier far away.

Download the full copy of the TEC ERP-Distribution Buyer’s Guide for the Mid-market.

compare chemical software   Read More

Process Manufacturing (ERP)


The simplified definition of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is a set of applications that automate finance and human resources departments and help manufacturers handle jobs such as order processing and production scheduling. ERP began as a term used to describe a sophisticated and integrated software system used for manufacturing. In its simplest sense, ERP systems create interactive environments designed to help companies manage and analyze the business processes associated with manufacturing goods, such as inventory control, order taking, accounting, and much more. Although this basic definition still holds true for ERP systems, today its definition is expanding. Today's leading ERP systems group all traditional company management functions (finance, sales, manufacturing, human resources) and include, with varying degrees of acceptance and skill, many solutions that were formerly considered peripheral (product data management (PDM), warehouse management, manufacturing execution system (MES), reporting, etc.). While during the last few years the functional perimeter of ERP systems began an expansion into its adjacent markets, such as supply chain management (SCM), customer relationship management (CRM), business intelligence/data warehousing, and e-Business, the focus of this knowledge base is mainly on the traditional ERP realms of finance, materials planning, and human resources. The old adage is "Such a beginning, such an end", and, consequently, many ERP systems' failures could be traced back to a bad software selection. The foundation of any ERP implementation must be a proper exercise of aligning customers' IT technology with their business strategy, and subsequent software selection. This is the perfect time to create the business case and energize the entire organization towards the vision sharing and a buy in, both being the Key Success Factors (KSFs). Yet, these steps are very often neglected despite the amount of expert literature and articles that emphasize their importance.  

compare chemical software   Read More

Audit Considerations for Enterprise Software Implementations Part 2: Applying Controls and Audit Emphasis


Whether audit expertise is provided by an internal staff or an independent, outside agency, calling in an audit specialist is as normal as calling in a kicking specialist in a penalty or field goal situation in football. Particularly when you consider the majority of an enterprise software implementation is all about testing, the present of an auditor as a functioning member of the project team makes perfect and logical sense.

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Computer, IT, and Software


The computer, IT, and software industry represents permanent innovation and change: new technologies, new business models, and the constant search for best business and technology practices. In a market that changes every day, high financial risks must be addressed accordingly. Computer, IT, and software companies must take action to maintain profitability and stay competitive. Leading companies in this industry that adopt technologies to help meet their business, operational, and manufacturing needs can set an example for other industries.

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Expandable Software


Founded in 1983, Expandable Software, Inc. develops, markets, and supports an integrated manufacturing enterprise resource planning (ERP). The company's implementation process is performed exclusively with direct employees of the company. Expandable's customers-which range from start-ups to growing manufacturers with annual revenues approaching the billion-dollar mark-manufacture a variety of products including medical devices, electronics, and consumer goods. Expandable is headquartered in Santa Clara, California (US), with offices in California (US), Medway, Massachusetts (US), and New Albany, Ohio (US).

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Software Solutions: Outsourcing, Applications Software Competitor Analysis Report


The outsourcing application software knowledge base criteria are appropriate for selecting outsource providers in the area of business software development. It includes all activities performed by outsource providers including software development; software maintenance; software reengineering or rearchitecting; porting software to a new platform; and more.

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Halogen Software


Established in 1989 and headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, Halogen Software provides web-based appraisal, 360-degree feedback and survey software solutions, consulting and hosting services. Halogen eAppraisal is web-based employee performance appraisal software that automates the time-consuming employee appraisal process. Halogen e360 simplifies the administration of formal feedback procedures with straightforward ease-of-use and sophisticated reporting. Halogen eSurveyor is the market-leading e- survey solution that makes online surveys simple, fast and cost- effective. In today''s increasingly competitive market, companies look to HR professionals to attract, retain, and motivate their top employees. Halogen Software provides web-based software solutions to dramatically improve HR and line manager productivity.

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Distribution in a Challenging Economy: Online (Software as a Service) versus Traditional Software


When considering major purchases, most people ask, “Why rent when you can buy?” But with IT systems, the reverse may be true. Software as a service (SaaS) offers many advantages over traditional software, especially in terms of the on-going costs of maintaining and upgrading systems. Learn how passing those burdens on to a SaaS vendor can help your company focus on optimizing efficiency, productivity, and profitability.

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Software Evaluation and Software Selection


Organizations are surrounded by ambiguity when making their implementation decisions. Accurate and relevant criteria that are properly weighed against an enterprise’s needs, what-if scenarios, and supporting graphics and reports are essential when making a software selection.

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