Filed under: — Doug Contreras @ 6:53 am on

A properly designed ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system can enable a company to integrate its key processes. A typical system might include some or all of the following modules:

Business Intelligence
- Data Analysis

Checks & Forms Solutions
- Checks & Forms

Contact Management
- Contact Management

Customer Relationship Management
- Activity Scheduling
- Contact Management
- Customer Self Service
- Email Integration
- Help Desk Support
- Marketing Management
- Project Opportunity Tracking
- Proposal Tracking
- Sales Force Automation

Document Management
- Document Management

- Business-2-Business Commerce
- Business-2-Consumer Commerce
- Catalog Management
- E-Invoice
- E-Order
- E-Purchase

Electronic Banking
- Credit Management
- Download Transactions

General Accounting (GL, AP, AR, CM)
- Accounts Payable
- Accounts Receivable
- Bank Reconciliation
- Budgeting/Forecasting
- Cash Management
- General Ledger
- Inter-company Transactions
- Multi-Currency
- Multi-Lingual
-Trial Balance

- Bar Coding
- Inventory Transfers
- Lot Expirations
- Multiple Units of Measurement
- Multiple warehouses
- Negative Quantities
- Track Lots
- Track Serial Numbers
- Track Vendor Part Numbers
- Warehouse Management

- Bill of Materials
- Capacity Requirements Planning
- Discrete Manufacturing
- Engineering Change Notices
- Labor Performance
- Make to Order
- Make to Stock
- Material Requirements Planning
- Process Manufacturing
- Quality Assurance
- Sales Forecasting
- Shop Floor Control

- Change Orders
- Inventory Control
- Purchase Order Processing
- Receiving
- Returns
- Shipment Invoice Matching

Report Writer
- 3rd Party
- On-line Inquiry
- Proprietary
- Web/HTML Reports

Sales Distribution
- Bill of Materials
- Customer Self Service
- Inventory Control
- Invoicing
- Sales Force Management
- Sales Order Processing
- Sales Returns
- Shipping

Supply Chain Management
- Demand Planning
- Replenishment Planning
- Supply Chain Management
- Warehouse Management

In evaluating your need for an ERP system, answer the following:

  1. How much is the initial outlay for the software, installation expenses and hardware upgrades?
  2. How much is the ongoing cost (annual licensing, hardware upgrades, internal IT support)?
  3. How much will you save initially?
  4. Will the system allow you to grow your business without adding staff?
  5. Will the system allow your business to operate more efficiently and make you more competitive?
  6. How long will it take to get the system running?
  7. Are you and your key managers totally committed to its success or will you back off on the implementation in favor of managing a busy workload?
  8. Will the software be flexible enough to allow you to manage your business as you have in the past or will you be required to adapt to what they provide?
  9. Are there more cost-efficient options or services available that are better suited to your business size and needs?

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Filed under: — Doug Contreras @ 4:36 am on

Many start-up businesses adopt a market-based only pricing strategy and hope that the resulting income will produce a yield that will put some money in the pockets of the owners.

While a company needs to be competitive, market-based pricing will rarely produce a long-term and consistent result unless management is able to systematically track and control the cost and/or price of its products or services. Assuming that overhead has been properly burdened, a thorough history and analysis of direct labor and material costs should provide answers to the following questions:

  • Are raw material costs in line?
  • Is labor utilization consistent from run to run?
  • Are like products or services running with similar costs?
  • Can prices be safely reduced to encourage more business?
  • Are there specific circumstances that provide justification for a price increase?
  • Does the pricing model for a product or service produce a consistent result?
  • Should a product line or service be discontinued?
  • Are there product lines or services that should be expanded?

Does your database provide the information you need to ASK, ANSWER & ADDRESS?


Visit my profile on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/dougcontreras
I welcome your invite to connect!

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