Enterprise Resource Planning – Real Time Integration of All Business Needs

The organizations always have a variety of functions to perform. The functions and roles are all embedded together under one organization which sets up different departments to cater to different functions and processes. There are mainly three types of business processes. The first is Management process, which governs the running of any organization such as Corporate Governance and Strategic Management. The second is Operational Process which includes purchasing, manufacturing, advertising, marketing sales etc, and third is Supporting Processes which are meant to support the main core processes such as Accounting, Recruitment, and other various technical support. Finance and accounting, Manufacturing, Sales and Services, Customer Relation Management etc are some of the basic roles that organization encompasses. There is an altogether greater need to manage the information among all these services and functions. Data needs to exchanged and flow through all these bodies in order to enable the organization function smoothly without any redundancies, discrepancies or contradictions. For all this to happen, information must flow between all the modules in the company and at the same time, connections are also to be managed between clients,sage 100 customers and stakeholders outside the organization.

The typical characteristics of the basic Enterprise Resource Planning systems are

• An integrated system which works in real time, without relying on periodic updates.
• A database to support the applications involved.
• Consistency and congruency among the various modules involved in the processes.
• Proper installation of the Enterprise Resource Planning System without involving elaborate details and data from the Information Technology departments.

The various modules which the Enterprise Resource Planning encompasses are

• Finance/ Accounting: This module involves payables, cash management, receivables, budgets, consolidation, fixed assets, and general ledger.
• Human Resources: This module involves payroll, training, benefits, recruiting, and diversity management.
• Manufacturing: This module involves Engineering, manufacturing process, product lifecycle management etc.
• Supply Chain Management: This module involves order to cash, inventory, supply chain planning, commissions etc.
• Project Management: This module covers the costing, billing, performance units, time and expenses etc.
• Customer Relation Management: this module basically deals with the relationships of the customers with the company, by providing call centre support, customer contact, commission. Sales and marketing etc.
• Data Services: this provides a platform for the customers, suppliers and other employees to gain self services.
• Access Control: This module handles the granting and authorization of privileges of the various processes.

The various components of the Enterprise Resource Planning include:

• Transactional Database
• Management Portal
• Business Intelligence System
• Customizable Reporting
• External Access Via technologies
• Search
• Document Management
• Messaging, Chat Services
• Workflow management

Enterprise Resource Planning definitely brings changes in the existing work environment. To implement these changes, there are some services available such as consulting, customization and support. The time taken for the installation of the Enterprise Resource Planning may depend on the size of the organization. There are a number of advantages as well as disadvantages to this strategy. The advantages however shadow the negative aspects.