Choosing to implement an ERP manufacturing management and accounting system to run your business is a decision that will greatly impact how it operates for years. With various manufacturing ERP systems offering a similar set of features, it ends up being more challenging than comforting to nail down which system is the right one. Instead of highlighting the shortcomings of competing systems here are three reasons why small and midsize manufacturers are moving onto Acumatica's modern platform and excited about what the future holds.
Features & Functionality
- Manage the full quote-to-cash cycle from one system; create a quote, convert it to a sales order, check inventory availability, manufacturer, pick, ship, invoice, and collect payment.
- Standard accounting functions including GL/AP/AR, Cash and Tax management; making sure the checks come in, go out, and are cashed/allocated accordingly.
- Bills of material (BOM), routings, engineering changes and custom configurations; offering multiple levels of BOM for both engineering and costed views of the entire product structure.
- A master production schedule (MPS) that plans production based on actual and forecasted orders and utilizes both forward and backward scheduling methods.
- Material Planning & Control (MRP) to create work orders and purchase orders based on the MPS; track completions, work in process (WIP) and scrap; eliminate reporting by backflushing labor or material when reporting the production quantity completed.
- Inventory Management that tracks the movement of goods throughout the distribution network; control customer and transfer orders; use multiple locations with lot and serial number tracking; automatically remove expired items from available inventory.
- Product costing to track purchase and production activity including material, labor, overhead, and outside operations; analyze and report actual versus expected costs with variances; post costs to the general ledger.
- Create requisitions, obtain approvals, convert to purchase order, receive inventory, receive invoice, match and pay.
- Offering support for multi-company, multi-warehouse, and international companies, including financial consolidations, inter-company eliminations, and reconciliations.
Productivity & Performance
- True Cloud software with universal availability regardless of the device (laptop, phone, tablet) for staff working on the road, onsite with customers and/or suppliers, or at a home office.
- Workflow that automates routine business processes, manages approvals, and sends out real-time notifications to users.
- Document management tools embedded inside the software that make documents accessible to all key personnel. Attach images, drawings, and specs to quotes, orders, and invoices.
- A single database that holds the information, and answers, your business needs instead of piecing things together from multiple applications. Leave the spreadsheets behind and instead get comprehensive reporting out-of-the-box that leads to informed decision making.
- Software pricing based on the resources used, not user counts. With resource-based licensing the ERP system is available to all employees, and even customers and suppliers requiring access. ERP pricing that is per user hinders a growing company by having to lay out cash every time a new employee needs access.
- Scale resources as the company grows to accommodate heavier workloads. Additional resources can be added as needed and even for short periods during busier times of the year.
Technology & Value
- Full system accessibility using a standard internet browser without any software installation on the users device.
- Interact with every page of the application on any device with a minimum of resizing, panning, or scrolling. See the information you want without the hassle.
- Utilize the functionality in other Acumatica ERP product suites, like Service Management, to expand the system capabilities, or easily integrate with other modern applications. Manufacturers that also do installs or service their own products NEED and LOVE this.
- An intuitive and modern application with role-based screens and dashboards. Easy enough to complete tasks with minimal clicks for enhanced productivity.
- Ability to customize individual screens in short order or to use programming services to modify complex business logic that can meet company specific requirements.
- Multiple deployment options including on-premises, private cloud via a data center, or a public SaaS cloud using Amazon Web Services (AWS).
- A cloud-based ERP system brings predictable monthly costs and a high level of security provided by a large-scale data center. Remove the frustration of purchasing new hardware and the man hours IT allocates for maintaining it.
It's hard to overstate the importance of having a great piece of software to run your business, but you don’t want to overthink it either. Here is a checklist to use when comparing various Manufacturing Management systems. My advice: run through the checklist, put down the check marks where applicable, view the products and ask questions, find a vendor with a good track record backed up by references, and start down the path of implementing a system that can get your business where it needs to go.