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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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 wholesale distributors hair products


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.

wholesale distributors hair products  a viable model for wholesale and distribution. We've grouped this material into four thematic areas: Adaptability and Agility SAP presents its perspective on SaaS and some of the ways this delivery model can help organizations adapt to business and market change. Manufacturing and Distribution Epicor provides thoughts on the practical benefits manufacturers and distributors can derive from SaaS, followed by a TECSYS case study focusing on SaaS in action. Growing Your Company with SaaS NetSuite takes 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

ERP for Distribution Industries

Enterprise resource planning (ERP)—distribution software is designed for companies in the distribution and logistics industries. Traditional distribution businesses focus on moving goods through a supply chain, and the distribution software market has developed products to meet these needs. The software solutions developed for ERP for distribution includes functionality for supply chain management (SCM), distribution process management (DPM), and retail and commerce.  

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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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Chemical Products


Globalization, regulation, the shape of the macroeconomic landscape, and the high cost of labor and raw materials are just a few of the major challenges that companies from the chemical products industry have to face. Chemical product manufacturing is also an energy-intensive process, making it difficult for companies in this industry to "go green" and remain compliant with environmental regulations. To stay competitive, companies in the chemical products industry must find innovative ways to reduce their dependence on energy resources, and conduct ongoing research and development (R&D) to improve existing products and bring new products to market ahead of the competition.

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TEC Certified Products: 2010 Vendor Wrap-up


With 2010 almost behind us, the Technology Evaluation Centers (TEC) research analyst team takes a brief look at some of the newest software products to join its roster. MicroStrategy, MicroStrategy 9 Plex Systems, Plex Online Sage, Sage ABRA HRMS  SmartOrg, Portfolio Navigator Vormittag Associates, Inc. (VAI), S2K EnterpriseBusiness Intelligence (BI) Solutions—Jorge García

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Pelican Products: Supporting Growth with a Consolidated Business Platform


A leader in the design and manufacture of advanced lighting systems and rugged protective cases, Pelican Products Inc. is also recognized as one of the fastest growing companies in the United States. Learn how, by consolidating its worldwide operations on a single instance of an enterprise resource planning (ERP) application, Pelican gained greater operational transparency and established a platform for continued growth.

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Software Evaluation Guide for Small and Medium Wholesale Distributors


Implementing the proper business system can be as strategic and important to your bottomline as expanding your warehouse or bringing on new product lines. However, implementing the wrong solution or choosing an inexperienced solution provider can have serious negative effects on your business—-from lost opportunities and late orders to bankruptcy in some extreme cases. Consequently, it is imperative that wholesale distributors take time to clearly define their business processes and objectives before they start their search for new business software. This guide is designed to help wholesale distributors manage the entire software evaluation cycle, from needs analysis and budget planning through software selection and implementation.

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Wholesale Banking: Challenges in Automating Commercial Credit Risk Management


The challenges associated with commercial credit are complicated, but through automation, commercial credit risk management can be made straightforward and more efficient. IBM’s Business Analytics for commercial banking can help improve commercial lending operations, and, along with strong risk management practices and modernized operations, can create best practices for implementation and enhance overall operational effectiveness.

It’s essential that an automated system is transparent, helps with compliance, can serve multiple relationship types, and is able to use several criteria for risk assessment. A good system should take into consideration the complexities between customer, loan, and approval processes, and limit the need for multiple individual systems by way of a single user interface or tightly integrated systems.

In this white paper, read a detailed overview from IBM Business Analytics about the advantages and potential challenges of automation in five areas of interest, including complexity of the customer and credit granted, as well as continuous risk monitoring and how to improve overall relationship management. Get details on the management and analysis of commercial portfolios and related documents, business intelligence reporting, and defaults/recoveries management. Also provided is an extensive point-form information checklist, allowing you to self-check your own organization to determine what areas may need attention. Security issues for data protection are also addressed.

Creating infrastructure for your organization for best success begins with choosing the best technologies, and IBM Business Analytics can help, improving profitability and providing solutions that allow your business goals to be realized.

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Google Acquires Smart, Connected Products Manufacturer Nest


Google has announced that it has entered into an agreement to buy smart device manufacturer Nest Labs for $3.2 billion (USD) in cash. Now the future of smart, connected products takes on an entirely new twist with Google strongly in the mix.

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Case Study: Rich Products Corporation


Rich’s legacy IT systems could not interoperate with platforms and applications among departments, preventing a single, centralized view of the product development process and limiting collaboration. The company decided it needed a new product lifecycle management (PLM) system to integrate and accelerate PLM processes. Rich’s new system supports research and development (R&D), formula management, and more.

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Must-read Harvard Business Review Spotlight on Smart, Connected Products


There have been few IT trends that have taken hold as quickly as the Internet of Things, or IoT. In this post, TEC's Ted Rohm takes a look at how a recent Harvard Business Review report on managing the Internet of Things sees this new technology trend, and tells us why the report is a "must-read" for the whole executive team.

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Fabricated Metal Products-The Most Complete and Adaptable On-demand Business Solution


Fabricated metals companies need to create a competitive advantage around their core competencies, demonstrated by their ability to respond quickly to change, efficiently manage relationships with suppliers, and deliver quality products on time. Read about a solution that provides these companies with transparency and control over their entire business, empowering them to respond immediately to issues and opportunities.

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