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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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 customer survey samples for home building


Experiencing the Customer Experience: Listening to, Learning from, and Acting on the Voice of the Customer
To ensure a positive customer experience, companies must first learn what their customer values, and then determine how they are measuring up to those values

customer survey samples for home building  Studios put together a customer feedback survey (see scorecard and rankings from the actual survey in figure 1). From the customer value discussions, the stores identified the top four value drivers as Customer Service , Store Setup and Training , Order Handling , and in-store Merchandising . Benjamin Studios also sought additional feedback on overall value and satisfaction to create its scorecard. The store managers were asked to rate their satisfaction with the overall value for the items listed on a

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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

Customer Care & Billing RFI/RFP Template

General Requirements, Mediation, Provisioning, Sales and Marketing, Customer Billing, Customer Care, Packages and Promotions, Accounts Receivable, Financial Systems, Enterprise Data Warehouse, Reporting, Telephony Products and Services, Utility Products and Services, CATV Products and Services, IP Products and Services, EBPP Services, Technical Requirements  

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SaaS Buyer's Guide for Wholesale and Distribution


SaaS, despite its phenomenal popularity, is certainly not one-size-fits-all. You need to consider decision criteria such as fit, return on investment, and risk. Learn how SaaS works, who the major vendors are, how SaaS can help your business grow, and how to find the SaaS solution that’s right for you. It’s all in this comprehensive SaaS Buyer’s Guide for Wholesale and Distribution from TEC and SupplyChainBrain.

From a business requirements perspective, the defining characteristic of wholesale and distribution (W&D) organizations is that they operate as intermediate agents between manufacturers and retailers. Their top business needs thus focus on requirements for:

  • processing high volumes of transactions,
  • maintaining constant communication between upstream and downstream collaborators (manufacturers and retailers/customers, respectively), and
  • managing products for multiple competitors within the same warehouse or distribution center

In this guide we will explore considerations for W&D organizations that are considering adoption of the SaaS delivery model, and examine the particular business issues that arise from this change.Specifically, we will address the following considerations:

  • the differences between SaaS and on-premise delivery models
  • SaaS architectures
  • SaaS pros, cons, and other considerations
  • selection criteria for SaaS-based applications
  • viable wholesale and distribution SaaS vendors

Later in this guide, we’ll provide examples of SaaS delivery model success stories, as well as a SaaS IT directory, segmented according to business area.


Table of Contents


Preface

Software as a Service: A Buyer’s Guide


Spotlight on Adaptability and Agility

Thought Leadership from SAP
SAP’s Perspective on Software as a Service

SAP Case Study
Johnson Products Capitalizing on New Sales after 30-day SAP Deployment


Spotlight on Manufacturing and Distribution

Thought Leadership from Epicor
SaaS ERP for Small Manufacturers and Distributors

TECSYS Case Study
LifeScience Logistics Achieves 99.97% Inventory Accuracy with TECYS’ EliteSeries for Healthcare


Spotlight on Growing Your Company with SaaS

Thought Leadership from NetSuite
The Benefits of a Business Management Software Suite for High-growth and Midsized Businesses: Overcoming the Barriers of Stand-alone Business Applications

NetSuite Case Study
Woodworking Machinery Maker Cuts Costs, Grows Efficiency with NetSuite

NetSuite Case Study
NetSuite Helps Manufacturer Take Advantage of Fast Market Growth


Spotlight on Distribution Centers

Thought Leadership from Bond International Software
Cloud Computing for Your Distribution Workforce

IBS Case Study
Konaflex Focuses on its Core Business with IBS Distribution Management Software


Vendor Directory


Download the full copy of the TEC 2010 SaaS Buyer’s Guide for wholesale and distribution.



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What Are the Differences between the SaaS and On-premise Delivery Models?



Defining the on-premise delivery model is relatively straightforward:

  • The software is acquired by the customer up-front.
  • The software is installed, deployed, managed, and maintained at the customer’s site, generally with a great degree of involvement by the customer.
  • The customer provides the in-house infrastructure (e.g., servers, hardware, networks) to support the software.


Defining the SaaS model is slightly more complex, since different SaaS vendors offer different definitions. We’ll explore these variations in more detail shortly, but for now we’ll note the following SaaS characteristics:

  • The software vendor provides customers with access to the software via the Internet.
  • The customer pays for this service on a subscription basis (normally per user, per month, or per number of transactions).
  • The vendor is responsible for maintenance, upgrades, and software support, as well as the supporting infrastructure.

The major difference between the on-premise and SaaS delivery model lies in the ownership of the software. In the on-premise model, once the software is purchased, the customer owns it. In the SaaS delivery model, the software is not owned by the customer: it is provided to the customer in the same manner as any other service.


Download the full copy of the TEC 2010 SaaS Buyer’s Guide for wholesale and distribution.

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Steps for Selecting Business Software Solutions: A How-To Guide for Growing Companies


This workbook is designed to help firms that are in the process of investigating their need for more advanced business management and accounting software. Companies have a wide variety of potential software and system needs based on their size and industry. Determining exactly where a company stands in terms of needs and current technology will be necessary for deciding the exact approach it should take toward upgrading. This document has two types of information designed to make this process easier: interactive self-assessment tools and educational text based on IDC research covering the small and medium business (SMB) and enterprise applications markets.

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PPM for PSA Software Review: NetSuite OpenAir


This product portfolio management for professional services automation (PPM for PSA) software review report examines the PPM for PSA software by NetSuite and its support for business management processes against known benchmarks. It assesses NetSuite OpenAir for PPM for PSA functionality and reviews the product’s support capacity with a focus on:

  • Portfolio and Project Management
  • Resource Planning and Scheduling
  • Opportunity, Contact, and Contract Management
  • Time and Expense Management
  • Budgeting, Costing, and Billing
  • Knowledge Management, Collaboration, and Analysis
  • Third-party Integration

The report also contains an independent analyst’s review of the PPM for PSA software based on a demonstration provided by NetSuite. The review identifies the features of NetSuite OpenAir that distinguishes it from other business process management solutions, including its integration capability with NetSuite’s SuiteApp.com application store, its multicurrency and multi-tax support feature, and its mobile compatibility for use over various device types. In this review, the analyst outlines the software provider’s implementation process, support model, and target user base.

NetSuite OpenAir achieved TEC certification status for its PPM for PSA software solution by completing TEC’s certification program, which includes a demonstration of the PPM for PSA software’s support for specific real-world business process and a detailed functional benchmarking analysis.

Based on a demonstration of NetSuite OpenAir, a TEC analyst has assessed the PPM for PSA software’s features, evaluating the software against known industry benchmarks, to determine that NetSuite OpenAir by Aptean is a strong manufacturing ERP system.

Download this software review report for product analysis and comparison, an in-depth analyst commentary, and to learn more about how NetSuite OpenAir can help businesses achieve their PPM for PSA objectives.

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RP Software Review: IFS Application version 8.0 for ERP for Services


This enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution software review report examines the ERP software by IFS and its support for business management processes against known benchmarks. It assesses IFS Application (v. 80) for ERP functionality and reviews the product’s support capacity with a focus on:

  • Portfolio and Project Management
  • Resource Planning and Scheduling
  • Opportunity, Contact, and Contract Management
  • Time and Expense Management
  • Budgeting, Costing, and Billing
  • Knowledge Management, Collaboration, and Analysis
  • Third-party Integration
  • Back-Office Functionality

The report also contains an independent analyst’s review of the ERP software based on a demonstration provided by IFS. The review identifies the features of IFS Applications that distinguishes it from other business process management solutions, including its compatibility with multiple sites and companies, its integrated document management feature, and its support for mobile operations across various devices. In this review, the analyst outlines the software provider’s implementation process, support model, and target user base.

IFS Applications achieved TEC certification status for its ERP software solution by completing TEC’s certification program, which includes a demonstration of the ERP software’s support for specific real-world business process and a detailed functional benchmarking analysis.

Based on a demonstration of IFS Applications, a TEC analyst has assessed the ERP software’s features, evaluating the software against known industry benchmarks, to determine that IFS Applications by IFS is a strong services support ERP system.

Download this software review report for product analysis and comparison, an in-depth analyst commentary, and to learn more about how IFS Applications can help businesses achieve their ERP objectives.

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Epicor Enterprise Resource Planning Software System v. 9.05 for ERP for Mixed-mode Manufacturing Certification Report


The Epicor product Epicor Enterprise Resource Planning Software System (v. 9.05) is now TEC Certified for online evaluation of enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions for mixed-mode manufacturing in the ERP Evaluation Center. Download this report for product highlights, competitive analysis, product analysis, and in-depth analyst commentary.

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Double Trouble for Cap Gemini: Integrator's Problems Suggest A Different Approach to Contracting for Technology Services


IT systems company Cap Gemini has been dropped from some large contracts and is being sued for allegedly refusing to perform on another.

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ERP for Services (Non-manufacturing) for Industrial Automation


A multinational consulting company specializing in industrial automation was looking for a fully integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution to replace its legacy system—a patchwork of point solutions.

To find the right solution, the company turned to TEC for a software evaluation and selection project.

Starting with a list of nine qualified solutions, TEC issued requests for information (RFIs) to each of the vendors. Based on the RFI responses, the company was able to compare the nine solutions and develop a shortlist of the three most promising ones for in-depth evaluation.

TEC also helped the company collect market data, and prepare scripts for a formal demonstration session—a key component of the final selection process.



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SAP for Chemicals: A Packaged Solution for Mid-market Companies


Packaged solutions for the chemicals industry are available from SAP and selected partners. Still, given a number of other viable solutions, prospective users will have to decide whether SAP would indeed be the best solution without the packaged option.

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Time Management for HR: 5 Tips for Getting it All Done


Every time an employee calls a human resources (HR) department to check a company policy, change benefits information or obtain a form, this is time spent on administration that could be spent on strategic, goal-oriented activities.

It’s time to target and destroy the traditional HR distractions that may keep your teams from reaching their full potential. This guide outlines five practices and ways to leverage new technology. By streamlining or replacing old processes, going 100 percent paperless, and more, you can potentially save money and time as well as reducing your risk of costly compliance errors.

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