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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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Compare Software Solutions
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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SAP Running Simple to Be a Cool Vendor
The SAPPHIRE NOW + ASUG Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida, was a well-organized event that afforded attendees the opportunity to explore SAP offerings from

screen captures movie  will offer Fiori and Screen Personas free of charge to its customers. This was a natural move for the vendor, as this year we have seen a large number of software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendors migrating toward product interfaces that follow the mobile first approach, thus supporting seamless user movement across devices. Offering Fiori for a fee was never a great idea, as user experience should be part of any software package and not something that companies should have to pay for. But, besides these

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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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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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How Biometrics in ERP Can Enable Cost Savings and Increase Operational Efficiencies


One technology that is currently flying under the radar in the manufacturing enterprise resource planning (ERP) space is biometrics. Biometric solutions aren’t currently getting as much press as say the cloud or big data. But, when properly integrated with an ERP system, biometrics can help an organization reduce costs and improve operational efficiencies. And best of all, a company doesn’t need a

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MATRAnet Converts Confusion to Cash


MATRAnet has added collaborative browsing to its customer relationship management product.

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Microsoft Analyst Event Part One: What’s New for Fall 2012


The traditional Microsoft Dynamics Fall Analyst Event (FAE) 2012 started with a tour of the flagship Microsoft Store in an opulent mall in Bellevue, WA, where Windows 8 and Surface were all the rage. Windows 8 is about the following three features: Performing tasks with fewer clicks -- the “tiles” (formerly called the “Metro” look-and-feel) are updated in real time, whereas on, say,

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Why Product Activation for Software Is Becoming Widespread


Software vendors have used license management for many years. Older approaches, such as key-file-based licensing or dongles, do have a number of drawbacks for both the vendor and the user. Product activation solves many of these problems, so is gaining broad acceptance. Learn more about product activation and licensing management, and why modern product activation systems are superior to other techniques.

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Winning Users' Hearts & Minds via Usability: A Retail Example


My recent blog series entitled “Integrated Workforce Management (WFM) Platforms: Fact or Fiction?” established that WFM systems have evolved from point solutions (i.e., time and attendance [T@A], workforce scheduling, absence management, human resources [HR], payroll, etc.) into unified solutions with a common user interface (UI), integrated WFM modules, and centralized

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Active Execution Management--Delivering on the RFID Promise


Active Execution Management captures radio frequency identification (RFID) and electronic product code (EPC) data and integrates it into the supply chain business process. AXM associates individual EPC events (the observation of an EPC tag at an RFID reader) with the supply chain transaction that is currently being executed and then determines if that supply chain transaction is executing as planned. AXM is able to make this determination by comparing key performance indicators of the supply chain transaction with the characteristics of the EPC event. The paper describes multiple business cases, such as promotions management, deductions management, complex international shipments, and spoilage management, and shows how RFID data can be leveraged to improve supply chain performance.

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Case Study: Meeting Room Manager-Scheduling Software


A software consulting service provider needed to develop a web-based interface having touch screen functionality to provide instant schedule visibility, eliminate double bookings, and fully automate the reservation process—including sending attendee invitations, managing catering orders, and reserving equipment. The service provider turned to Rishabh for development services.

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Oracle OpenWorld 2013-60,000 Attendees Minus 1


A Technology Event Like No Other This year’s Oracle OpenWorld was truly an impressive event. The sheer scale of the event parallels that of Oracle itself. Mark Hurd, President of Oracle, stated that with 60,000 attendees, OpenWorld 2013 was the largest single technology event ever. OpenWorld is now so large that the City of San Francisco finally agreed to completely close off Howard Street

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Blackboard Presents New Update for Blackboard Learn


Blackboard released a new update for its Blackboard Learn platform. Improved usability appears to be the major addition to the experience proposed by Blackboard to its end users—both instructors and students. Blackboard employed results from extensive user testing and research to advance the usability of its solution. A centralized view of course or activity updates was introduced to

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