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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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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

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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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What You Should Know Before Selecting a WMS


Before an important game, you create a game plan. Before you start building a house, you have a blueprint. And before you start looking at a warehouse management system (WMS), you must define how you want your warehouse to be organized and function. This article looks at basic warehouse strategies that need to be understood to ensure that the WMS software effectively and efficiently supports the activities of the warehouse, now and in the future. This is not to say that you will not consider the best practices of the new

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Off-shoring: Are You Getting Your Money's Worth?


Are companies that offshore software development, call center operations, and remote implementations really saving money? Are customers and users realizing benefits? Indeed, there are areas where savings can be misstated. But companies can do something to protect themselves against disappointments.

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Process Manufacturing: Ensuring Food Safety through Active HACCP Management


As a result of publicized food contamination and product recalls, food safety regulations are under increasing scrutiny. Process manufacturers in the food and beverage industry may soon be facing stricter rules. But food manufacturers can prevent contamination by using existing technology to automate and ensure the effectiveness of the hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) food safety program. Learn more.

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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.

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5-step CRM Software Selection Guide: A Pragmatist’s Guide to CRM Software Selections


Selecting a new enterprise customer relationship management (CRM) solution is an undertaking that requires careful planning and managed execution. And in fact, there are a number of common mistakes that organizations make. Failing to execute the selection process in an objective and structured fashion can be an expensive financial mistake—as well as a fatal hit to your professional reputation.

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abas Business Software


abas Business Software is an ERP and e-business application designed specifically for manufactures in assemble-to-order (ATO), make-to-order (MTO), and engineer-to-order (ETO) environments. The abas Business Software brand includes the following products: abas ERP for production abas Distribution for distribution, wholesale, and service companies the abas eB e-business solution New functions and technologies are added to the standard software with each new version. abas Business Software is currently offered in 28 languages and can be run on the Linux, Unix, and Windows platforms. ABAS has been a supporter of the open-source Linux operating system since 1995. Approximately 80 percent of over 2,300 abas installations are Linux-based. abas Business Software includes the following functionality: sales and sales order processing shipping purchasing and purchase order processing warehouse management scheduling logistics materials management materials resource planning (MRP) production and production planning and control (PPC) financial accounting fixed asset accounting cost accounting eBusiness

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New Software Comparison Capabilities: Recruitment and Staffing Software


Over the past few months, we have built TEC’s Human Capital Management (HCM) Evaluation Center with a comprehensive set of features and functions, allowing our users to compare a wide variety of human resources (HR) and related enterprise software solutions available on the market. Last year saw the development of the Talent Management software evaluation competency, which nicely complements our

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Software Link


Enterprise Solutions and ServicesUnequaled ServicesWhen you hire Software Link as an application solutions provider, you expect significant results. Software Link consultants provide industry experience and direction to companies nationwide who are looking to analyze and improve their business operations, whether through a complete ERP review, extensive implementation of a world class ERP system or analyzing and providing solutions to everyday business processes, Software Link has the expertise. Our consultants have spent more than twenty years successfully building, implementing and using software for organizations like yours. Software Link key practice focuses includes: manufacturing, distribution, multichannel marketing, eCommerce and project based firms.Software Link consultants are well versed in implementing ERP Solutions with a strong focus on the Sage SalesLogix, Sage MAS 500 and Sage X3 software solutions. No one knows Sage products better and no one has been successfully implementing them longer than Software Link.Why partner with Software Link? Software Link always works hard to make sure you have many reasons to value a relationship with us. Not only do we know our products better than anyone, but we also know how your business runs. Many of our consultants have worked at companies just like yours. So we'll never force your processes to fit our software. We'll always help you figure out how to incorporate best practices in your business processes and only then determine how Sage software can best support those processes.What will you accomplish by partnering with Software Link? You can expect to minimize implementation risks and have a system that runs efficiently and reliably. Our proven processes and implementation methodology were developed during thousands of successful engagements allowing Software Link consultants to produce quick and reliable results. You'll see your core, business processes streamlined. And, you'll see your employees using the software to its fullest extent for maximum benefit.Software Link helps you solve complex business challenges with a combination of technology and business application services that leverage Sage's World Class Software Solutions. Consulting Services help you implement and maintain your Sage software, assess your technology architecture for maximum system performance, develop and execute data migration strategies, integrate critical third-party enterprise software technologies, and customize software functions to meet highly specialized requirements. Business Application Services help you examine your business processes and requirements in order to better adapt to change, optimize the way your organization uses your enterprise software and maximize the results you achieve from your investment.Our satisfied customers confirm that we're uniquely positioned to help you achieve measurable success. Let Software Link Solutions help you make sure your software is working as hard as it can for your company.

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Small Business Software (SBS) Software Evaluation Report


The Small Business Software (SBS) evaluation model targets the functional requirements necessary to support a typical small business. If your organization doesn't have many sites to operate, seeks a solid base of ERP functionality, but doesn't need the biggest systems on the market, this model is a good starting place. Extending beyond accounting functions, it includes general ledger, accounts payable (A/P) and accounts receivable (A/R), payroll, job and project costing, multinational accounting, light manufacturing, inventory, technology, and more.

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Vero Software


Vero Software is a world leader in CAD CAM software with a proven track record of reliable product delivery. Vero develops and distributes software for aiding the design and manufacturing processes, providing solutions for the tooling, production engineering, sheet metal, metal fabrication, stone and woodworking industries.

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