Acronyms Are Hard: ERP Enterprise Resource Planning
Acronyms can be hard to figure out. If you want proof, look no further than our Acronyms Are Hard Series! If you’re looking to learn more about the basics of ERP, look no further.
ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning Software. This will typically be broken down into a couple of sections depending on the software and the specific business. In modern business systems, the ERP has become the backbone for business. Allowing virtually every part of the process to be input into databases. Then the business can pull the information up (query the data) and understand how they are doing. An ERP can replace dozens or hundreds of filing cabinets for a small or medium size business. Plus this now allows you to access the data without being in the same room (or country) as the filing cabinet.
Many of Corso’s customers who use ERP’s want to integrate their ERP into their Manufacturing Execution system.
Check out THE Ultimate MES Guide. Where we get more into ERP integrations with an MES.
Parts of an ERP
If the ERP is the backbone of modern business, the CRM is it’s heart and soul. CRM stands for Consumer Resource Management (system). This is where you put all your customer and vendor data. When used properly, it’s the equivalent of your Rolodex, notes, and collective memories. Birthdates, anniversaries, important upcoming projects, reminders, everything can be contained within the CRM.
A specialized sales CRM that many people have heard of is Salesforce. Hubspot also does a really good job of advertising.
There could be a Warehouse or Inventory section of the ERP to delineate your inventory. If you get really fancy, you can delineate where it is physically located.
There can be a Human Resources Section, where the folks from HR can do what the folks from HR do. Time tracking, pay sheets, everything can be figured out in the system.
You can track all your purchases and orders. If you’re manufacturing, this could be raw materials in to finished good out.
Some companies set up a e-commerce business directly integrated with their CRM. It’s a pretty in-depth project.
As with everything, there are limitations. Firstly if you’re buying something you many need to either a) adopt a new process or b) do a lot of customizations.
Secondly, there is only so much you can do with each of the modules. Yes you can figure out factory inventory. What to get into parts you’re currently using, adding barcodes and eKanBan? Then you are probably going to need to expand the MES functionalities and institute a push/pull integration with your ERP.
Build or Buy?
For the vast majority of people out there, the answer is easy: buy and customize. Figure out what your core needs are and look at what can facilitate that the best way possible with existing software.
If your core competency is in software, then you may want to look at building. The best example of this is Inductive Automation’s building of their internal “ERP.”
The Big 3:
If you’re looking for some specifics on these and or integrations, please ask us.
Many manufacturing companies are also using the SAGE products, specifically SAGE X.
There are many more options out there. They all depend on your needs.
Another benefit: We can help you automate your time cards!
Want to know more about ERP’s? Or talk about integrating yours? Contact us and Dave will be happy to walk you through the process.