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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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 articles on manufacturing costing


Not Yet Sold on SaaS ERP in Manufacturing? Take a Hard Look at Plex Online - Part 2
Part 1 of this blog series explained Plex Systems’ ebullience and growth despite a hostile and depressed environment, especially in the discrete manufacturing

articles on manufacturing costing  from anywhere My recent  articles have talked about Lawson Software  and  Infor ’s traceability solutions in the food industry , but neither of them is a multi-tenant SaaS offering. Plex contends that SaaS lends itself well for traceability, since on-premise and single-tenant hosted systems require massive (and expensive) storage systems to maintain data online and be readily accessible. In contrast, due to cloud elasticity SaaS providers can offer virtually unlimited storage. Moreover, incidents

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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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ERP Multisite Costing Challenge and Solution


Significant management issues posed by multisite manufacturing environments include optimizing resource use at each site and delivering the lowest possible cost for each stage in the product manufacturing cycle. To facilitate meaningful results in achieving these requirements, enterprise resource planning (ERP) software must thus provide the right tools for ensuring that multisite processes come up to “best-in-class” standards.

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Pricing and Revenue Optimization: A Manufacturing Perspective


Pricing and revenue optimization is the process of improving business margins by either increasing unit prices or increasing gross revenues. This type of optimization is fast being recognized as having the capability to help businesses grow margins significantly. In fact, studies have shown that it can add a 15 to 50 percent incremental margin to the bottom line.

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ERP Systems and the ETO Manufacturing Market Part One: Event Summary


Users increasingly look for an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system designed for a specific business, since software that combines industry-specific functionality with the flexibility to accommodate each company's unique processes goes a long way toward improving the functional fit and the speed of implementation.

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TEC Lean and Green Manufacturing Buyer’s Guide


While the need for sustainable development is affecting how organizations do business, the idea of environmental and corporate responsibility as value drivers is still relatively new. Many companies are just beginning to adopt an approach that provides measurable results. Learn how reducing waste and creating efficiencies within your company can make a difference to the environment, the economy, and your bottom line.

While the need for sustainable development is affecting how organizations do business, the idea of environmental and corporate responsibility as value drivers is still relatively new. Many companies are just beginning to adopt an approach that provides measurable results. Learn how reducing waste and creating efficiencies within your company can make a difference to the environment, the economy, and your bottom line.

In this lean and green buyer’s guide, we’ll discuss some of the challenges that companies are facing in light of the changes to the economy as well as the pressures of “going green.” We’ll talk about some of the highlevel changes your business can make, with a focus on operational efficiency and on how lean and green practices can both lead to the same result: efficiency equals sustainable business. We will also feature information about some of the vendor offerings targeted at companies looking to adopt or improve their “green business strategies.” The products covered in this guide address various areas within the scopes of both “lean” and “green,” including lean manufacturing, environmental management, operations management, compliance regulations, and more.

We’ve included customer success stories to illustrate how product lifecycle management (PLM), enterprise asset management (EAM), and enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions have helped companies like yours deal with their environmental concerns. For your convenience, there is also a vendor directory to assist companies that are looking for a “sustainability enabling” solution.

We hope this report will provide you with enough insight about the current state of the market—with respect to both lean and green—to help you start making a few decisions about how your company can make a change for the better. We think you’ll find this guide a useful tool for determining which type of solution is best suited to your company’s business model and particular needs.


Table of Contents


Executive Overview
Lean, Green, and Everything in Between

Thought Leadership
Corporate Social Responsibility: Using Technology to Become More Lean and Green

Case Study
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Increases Scheduling Efficiency with Asprova

Case Study
Lean in Action: Manufacturer Cuts Lead Time from Four Weeks to Four Days

Case Study
InkCycle Makes Green Ink, While Staying in the Black

Case Study
A Pragmatic Approach to Gaining Business Efficiencies

Case Studies at a Glance
TEC Analyst Perspective



Download the full copy of the TEC 2009 Lean and Green Buyer’s Guide for manufacturers.



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State of the Market: Lean and Green


Today’s need for sustainable development (economic, social, and environmental) is increasingly affecting how organizations do business. But the areas of environmental and corporate responsibility are still relatively new to businesses as concepts that drive value. And even though these concepts are rapidly growing in importance, many organizations are still in the early phases of adopting an approach that provides measured results.

The state of market in “green” is improving—albeit at a very slow pace—as organizations learn the value of integrating environmental thinking into their operations, and find more and more ways to align green thinking with their business strategies and goals.

This need for change affects businesses, municipalities, government, and resource-extractive industries like manufacturing. Some of the major influences affecting these organization’s environmental sustainability decisions are regulations and standards, competitive position, and public confidence. In fact, there is a great deal of reputation at stake, since public consciousness towards environmental issues is growing.

Today’s stakeholders (customers, investors, etc.) want to put their money into companies that are sustainable. If businesses don’t take an interest in the environment—and their impact on it—it reflects very poorly on their interest in their bottom line. The current economic situation being what it is, companies cannot afford “bad press,” and it’s in their best interest to realign their business strategies to include environmental awareness. Equally (if not more) important is the fact that green initiatives have a high return on investment (ROI) and end up paying for themselves through cost savings on resources, energy, carbon taxes, etc.

Today’s environmental challenges in business are vast, and range from financial burdens (such as rising energy, input, and transportation costs), to waste disposal and regulatory issues (minimizing/reducing waste), to accountability and sustainability—which can make the decision to go green both complex and convoluted.


Download the full copy of the TEC 2009 Lean and Green Buyer’s Guide for manufacturers.

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Improved Data Visibility Drives Manufacturing Performance


Getting the right information, at the right time, to the right decision maker is essential for the success of manufacturing companies. Without it, manufacturers do not have the insight to improve planning, forecasting, production scheduling, supply chain management, and more. This paper highlights the strategic importance of real-time manufacturing data, and how cloud ERP is uniquely suited to deliver company-wide visibility into operations.

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Sage 500 ERP for Discrete Manufacturing ERP Certification Report


Sage 500 ERP (formerly Sage ERP MAS 500) is TEC Certified for online evaluation of discrete manufacturing enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions in the Discrete Manufacturing ERP Evaluation Center. The certification seal is a valuable indicator for organizations relying on the integrity of TEC research for assistance with their software selection projects. Download this report for product highlights, competitive analysis, product analysis, and in-depth analyst commentary.

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ERP for Manufacturing (SMB)


TEC's new ERP for Manufacturing (SMB) evaluation model targets the software requirements of small and medium enterprises. If your organization doesn't have many sites to operate, seeks a solid base of ERP functionality, but doesn't want every possible feature of the biggest systems on the market, this model is a good starting place for your research. It covers fully featured accounting solutions with necessary manufacturing, inventory, human resources, purchasing, quality, and sales management functionality.

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Customer Relationship Manufacturing: the Symbiosis of Sales and Manufacturing


The departments within a company are like the children in a family: the owner, chief executive officer (CEO), or any other decision maker in the company, has a favorite department—in somewhat the same way that parents tend to have a favorite child. Not having children of my own, I did some research on the topic and found this very interesting article on a study about the burying beetle

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Lean Manufacturing Training: A Project Approach


Manufacturers who are seeking government funding for the introduction of lean manufacturing principles in their daily work environment encounter specific challenges. This white paper addresses lean training issues common to automotive production suppliers of component parts and sub assemblies.

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Application Single-Sign On: Netegrity, Securant, or Evidian?


As security breaches become increasingly more frequent, minimizing user access to back-end systems and web applications without impacting legitimate usage is more important than ever before.

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