Requirements of ERP solution for Software Industry

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1.Software Industry

ERP solution provides a comprehensive solution for the software industry to help reduce operating costs, integrate processes across the enterprise including your supply chain, and increase communication and accessibility of information about customers, suppliers, outsourced operations and accounting. The lifecycle and coordination of complex projects can be managed within the ERP system: tracking changes and versions of requirements, connecting requirements to a project WBS, generating cost estimates and project time tables, milestone tracking, delivery schedules, proposals, contract reviews, project contract management, engineering, requisitions, production, testing and shipments. ERP will help you manage vendors and subcontractors, track and maintain procurement, operations and material management. Every aspect of your business can be interconnected in the system, including purchase planning and requisitions, engineering and production control, delivery schedules and shipments, contracts and billing, providing consolidated information for quicker and more accurate analysis, and more efficient processes. ERP provides advanced reporting and analytical tools needed to make critical business decisions. With extensive Internet capabilities, ERP is an ideal interface tool for collaboration with your OEM and subcontractors during the development, production and/or distribution phases.

ERP solution for Engineering and Construction

 

2.Industry Targeted Functionality

  • Project management with stage gates
  • Activity-related hourly reporting and resource costs
  • Upgrade tracking and licensing control
  • Customer revision management
  • Customer-targeted software modification management
  • Service level maintenance and tracking
  • Subscription management and billing with automated renewals
  • Partner management with software sales commission management
  • Bug tracking and fixes delivery
  • FAQ and documentation management
  • Deferred revenue management, revenue recognition

3.Issues & Solutions

3.1.Managing an Extended, Multi-Stage Sales Process

ERP allows you to manage a sales opportunity as a “sales project.” A sales opportunity consolidates the various tasks that need to be completed by the different units in your organization.

The sales BPM utility directs the progress of the opportunity through its various stages, and ensures that relevant personnel are notified of the opportunity status, as well as any delays that may occur, in an organized and methodical fashion.

The likelihood of closing the deal is updated according to the odds of closing defined for each stage of the process, and company managers receive up-to-date information on the pipeline, in terms of the financial scope of the deal versus the odds of closing, per sales rep, customer, and/or product.

3.2.Graphic Interface for Assigning Resources to Tasks

ERP offers a fully integrated graphic calendar, in which you can define alerts and constraints, and which can be synchronized with MS-Outlook. Use this calendar to set up meetings, schedule appointments for technicians and sales people, and assign resources.

3.3.Assigning Technicians by Specialty/Geographic /Availability

ERP’s Customer Service module enables you to manage technicians by their area of expertise, the geographic regions in which they operate on any particular day of the week and their availability in respect to customer needs. You can then use the system’s graphic interface to schedule technicians for service calls.

3.4.Displaying Projected Expenses in P&L Reports per Project

Displaying Projected Expenses in Profit & Loss Reports per Project: In the midst of a project in which various resources have been invested (e.g., raw materials have been purchased or transferred to a customer), there may be expenses for which journal entries have not yet been posted, and which are not yet accounted for in the ledger. The CFO, as well as the project manager, may want to use anticipated revenue and expenses to determine the project’s current state of risk (i.e., projected profit and loss).

ERP allows you to create financial statements which display revenues and expenses not yet posted to the ledger, but which can determine the project’s risk. This is done by defining the project as a profit center and then running a P&L Statement per Profit Center report that includes provisional entries. Provisional entries are created automatically by the Create Provisional Entries program, based on unbilled inventory and purchase transaction documents.

3.5.Managing Accounts for Service Calls to Private Customers

In companies that provide service to private homes, most of the receipts are generated at the customer’s home by field technicians.

These technicians work with computerized service calls, which provide a description of the malfunction and its recommended solution, and issue manual receipts to the customers.

When the technicians return to the office at the end of the workday, over-the-counter invoices are recorded in the system based on the service calls performed.

3.6.Selling an Assortment of Items as a Single Unit

ERP enables you to define product assemblies that include different quantities of assorted products in various combinations. The list of products can be transferred automatically from one sales document to the next (price quote, order, packing slip, and shipping document), and quantities adjusted as needed, enabling quick and efficient delivery of the entire product set to the customer.

3.7.Advance Payment Invoices

You can produce an invoice that will act as advance payment for a sales order, indicating the amount advanced and without indicating order items. Upon finalizing the invoice, the Advance Payment Balance field for the sales order is updated. Each additional invoice opened for this order will have a certain percentage deducted against the advance payment (as per the percentage defined in the order), until its balance is cleared.

3.8.Automatic Preparation of Project Invoices

ERP enables automatic creation of invoices for projects. Project customers will be billed for:

  • Project payments whose due date has arrived and that have been released for collection
  • Reported hours flagged as billable (work hours and reported expenses)
  • Customer shipments for projects flagged as billable
  • Service calls for projects flagged as billable
  • Payments due for service contracts for the project

3.9.Planning a Project Payment Schedule

You can record payments that a customer owes for a project in a special form. Payments can be linked to WBS activities flagged as milestones. When reporting 100% completion of an activity linked to a payment, the payment is released for collection. When invoices for the project are automatically prepared, the program will prepare invoices for the released payments.

3.10.Ensuring Customers are Receiving Dedicated Service

ERP has created an automated module for this very purpose. ERP’s business process management (BPM) module allows you to define the maximum amount of time that a document (e.g., sales opportunity, price quote, order, service call, etc.) can remain in a given status. When the specified time frame has elapsed, you the manager will receive a message, so that you can establish the cause of delay and ensure that no one is neglecting your valued customer.

3.11.Engineering Change Orders (ECOs)

ERP enables you to track engineering change orders (ECOs) issued during part production. For each ECO, you can record a date, description, parts modified, etc.

You can also attach an ECO to a part revision and/or BOM. The system will track the revisions, and related work orders, that are affected by an ECO.

3.12.Managing Billing

ERP enables you to record telephone calls and emails sent to a customer regarding billing in a “customer tasks” form, enabling marketing and service personnel who contact the customer to view the current billing status for that customer.

3.13.Invoice Preparation Based on Service Calls & Contracts

ERP enables you to bill customers (prepare invoices) for all billable line items in a service call, or for payments due for a service contract, with the push of a button.

3.14.Reporting Hours to a Project

ERP enables you to link reported work hours to specific sales orders, projects, and customers. Hours can be reported from the user’s office PC or via the internet. In each project to which hours are reported, you can monitor the planned hours for an activity versus its actual status at the push of a button.

3.15.Project Costing

ERP enables you to record planned costs of human resources and materials for each activity, which are updated automatically from system documents such as journal entries, orders, shipments, invoices, etc. In addition, every activity displays its cumulative cost (the total planned cost of its sub-activities), which is calculated by a special program.

3.16.Managing Customer Requests for a Proposal (RFPs)

Before planning a project, record the customer’s objectives as you understand them, or as recorded in the RFP document you received with the Scope of Work (SOW) document. The SOW document consists of a numbered hierarchy of requirements and sub-requirements, which can include extensive remarks explaining each requirement. Each requirement can also be linked to its own final product, where the price of the product determines the price of the requirement (e.g., how much a specific development activity in the project will cost).

During project planning, you can link each activity to the requirement it is intended to fulfill, and thus calculate the requirement’s projected cost and profit. If you are working with planning versions, you can then create sub-activities automatically from the sub-levels of the linked requirement.

SOW documents can be imported from MS-Word files provided by the customer. You can maintain versions of each SOW document, as well as versions of the remarks recorded for individual requirements.

3.17.Are Your Customers Satisfied with the Quality of Service?

ERP’s Customer Service module allows you to perform surveys amongst the customer population. Each survey is accompanied by a structured format of questions and responses determined in advance (which can also be updated during the course of the survey). The survey format is based on multiple-choice questions (for which several possible answers are provided). The user has free reign over the selection of questions to be included, as well as possible responses. During the survey, each customer contact’s responses are recorded.

At the completion of the survey, reports can be run that organize and summarize the accumulated information in a useful format. This information can then be used to reach conclusions with the aim of making your customer service more efficient and effective.

3.18.Project Payment by Milestones

ERP allows you to determine project milestones by flagging project activities (WBS) as milestones for payment. Once 100% of a given activity is completed, the planned charge is released and an invoice is created billing the customer. This invoice, which is created as a draft, undergoes a separate authorization process.

3.19.Profit & Loss Analysis for Projects

ERP’s Projects module is integrated with all forms and documents in the system, enabling you to view a form displaying the current profitability of any project, including projected profit. This form takes into account all actual and projected revenue and expenses recorded for the project.

3.20.Project Planning and Execution

ERP’s Project Management module enables you to calculate planned costs of a project at the activity (WBS) level, including material and labor costs, and subcontractor costs. Total planned costs of all activities are collectively added to the projected cost of the project. As the project progresses and resources are invested, you can receive a continuous report of how well its actual execution conforms to its planning, from the project level down to its individual activities, so that if there is any deviation, it will be recognized as soon as possible.

 

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