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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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 conveyor


Do Chinese Enterprises Really Need MES and WMS?
Despite rapid industrialization in China and other developing countries, most manufacturing execution systems (MES) and warehouse management systems (WMS) are

conveyor  any problems that arise. Conveyor systems feed high-speed production lines in China, too, but human workers on each end load fresh material onto conveyors and take material off the conveyors at the production line. But because the typical Chinese factory is a multi-story building—receiving and warehousing operations usually occupy different floors than the production lines—it's often impossible for workers at one end of the conveyor to see what's going on at the other end. As a result, warehouse

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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

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Supplier Parks - Back to the Future


As supply chains become increasingly integrated and synchronized, we are witnessing the evolution of the business/production models (in some industries) that merge virtual integration with elements of the older vertically integrated enterprise. This has profound consequences, in particular for suppliers to OEMs.

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Jack Link's Beef Jerky Case Study: "Wal-Mart Didn't Make Me Do It" Part Two: An Approach to RFID Implementation


A four-phased approach allowed for the gradual assimilation of a new technology into the organization. Start small and feel your way, but think and plan for bigger opportunities. The benefits are gained and eventually the technology would be deployed throughout all of the manufacturing and distribution facilities.

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Radio Frequency Identification Implementation: The First Steps


Phase one of the four phase approach to a successful radio frequency identification implementation consists of several essential steps, including the careful selection of business partners and the development of a test environment and corrective label placement procedures.

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Further Analysis: Saturno-TP's Selection of QAD ERP


I am quite familiar with the Russian auto industry, and thus I enjoyed analyzing the transaction that recently took place involving a big player in the automobile industry in Russian manufacturing hub Togliatti, whereby automotive industry supplier, Russia-based Saturno-TP, became a client of ERP software vendor QAD (also see yesterday's TEC blog post). Despite global industry depression, the

conveyor   Read More

Further Analysis: Saturno-TP's Selection of QAD ERP


I am quite familiar with the Russian auto industry, and thus I enjoyed analyzing the transaction that recently took place involving a big player in the automobile industry in Russian manufacturing hub Togliatti, whereby automotive industry supplier, Russia-based Saturno-TP, became a client of ERP software vendor QAD (also see yesterday's TEC blog post). Despite global industry depression, the

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Provia Tackles RFID in a Twofold Manner Part One: Recent Annoucements


The fact that the size does not necessarily mean everything in the enterprise applications space might be proven by Provia, which certainly still continues to differentiate its value proposition despite its smaller stature and quieter nature compared to most of its adversaries. Most recently, it would be its early embrace of RFID through two offerings for different levels of RFID needs: 1) ViaWare WMS--RFID compliant product, for intrinsic RFID enablement of many processes within the supply chain, and 2) the RFIDware add-on module, for achieving outbound RFID tag application only.

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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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Electronic Product Code (EPC): A Key to RFID


The real benefits of radio frequency identification will be achieved, when the integration of the EPC data will be a substantial part for the control of supply chain business processes.

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