An open source ERP solution can save you thousands of dollars – in licensing fees as well as customization expenses. BlueSeer is an open source ERP solution that runs on the Linux desktop.
Most businesses in the manufacturing sector adopt some form of centralized software that records and retrieves data from various departments within the organization for purposes of metrics and financial reporting. This software is collectively called “Enterprise Resource Planning” (ERP). ERP software is ubiquitous throughout modern manufacturing industries and constitutes a total enterprise solution that governs most, if not all, aspects of daily business activity – from inventory control to financial accounting.
Today’s ERPs have a much larger scope of application compared to their predecessors (see the box entitled “A Brief History of ERP”). Beyond accounting and materials management, current ERPs offer solutions for other departmental operations within an organization, such as sales and marketing, supply chain management, human resources management (HRM), customer relations management (CRM), asset management, and many other business operations. The last two decades have seen an explosion of new ERP software applications with new vendors marketing creative solutions to manage business operations and fill feature gaps of competitor offerings.
Most of the innovations today target options that go beyond on-premise installations and engage cloud-hosted platforms in the form of software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), or hybrids of cloud-based technology. As with other markets, the drive to offer more enhancements and fill feature gaps has led to consolidations of packages by acquisitions and mergers. This consolidation has created a best-of-breed class and fully established SAP and Oracle as the flagships of today’s ERP vendors. ERPs are now marketed as off-the-shelf total solution packages that attempt to encompass every aspect of business operation. The biggest advantage is the implementation of a single-access application portal that removes departmental “silos” of operations.
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