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Distribution: Facing the Forces of Change with an ERP Softwa
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MessaggioInviato: Mar Nov 19, 09:44:17    Oggetto:  Distribution: Facing the Forces of Change with an ERP Softwa
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Distribution: Facing the Forces of Change with an ERP Software System Technology Articles | April 7
, 2006
The four definitive trends listed in the National Association of Wholesalers-Distributors? publication Facing the Forces of Change are fairly straightforward, although meeting these customer expectations often proves difficult for an unprepared distributor. Learn to successfully cope with these trends is often assisted through the implementing an enterprise resource planning (ERP) software package, which is a critical first step for wholesale distributors.


In Facing the Forces of Change (available at
) the four trends are detailed:

Customer Self-service: Providing customers with up-to-date technology that allows access to pertinent account information and provides the customer with an avenue to immediately act upon this information as needed. Examples include such functions as: online ordering, online access to product offerings and documentation
, interactive product configuration management, and access to inventory levels or order status. Not all ERP systems are equally suited to meet this distribution requirement. Strategic Sourcing: Leveraging an organization?s existing purchasing power to lower product and transportation costs, reduce product lead-times, and streamline the overall purchasing process. In companies with multiple locations
, this can easily be achieved by centralizing purchasing, instituting formalized purchasing policies, and automating the purchasing process through the usage of distribution requirements planning or DRP processing. Again, many ERP systems fall short in assessing distribution requirements. Fee-based Services and Pricing: This concept allows distributors to offer value-added services to differentiate themselves from their competition and improve profitability by providing customers with a service offering they both want and need. The key is to offer products that are backed by exception services which help augment the customer?s own profitability and aid in the purchaser reaching their own sourcing objectives. Many ERP systems cannot accommodate the exceptions common in distribution. Logistics and Fulfillment: As more third-party logistics companies vie for the market share of the wholesale distributor
, these old school distributors need to become savvier with their service and fulfillment offering. Simple order to cash processing will no longer appease the average customer; distributors must advance their offering to show exceptional customer focused value. ERP systems must have the capacity to accommodate fulfillment.

Founded in 1990 and headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, Technology Group International (www.tgiltd) is a proven technology leader delivering Tier 1 application software functionality at a price performance level that can be readily accepted by wholesale distribution organizations of all sizes. A best-of-breed ERP software solution provides the basic footprint for managing the four trends outlined and Enterprise 21 offers functionality well beyond that of the standard distribution package. Enterprise 21 provides full ERP functionality with a fully integrated e-commerce module. It is one of the few ERP systems to meet the needs of today?s wholesale distribution without the need for expensive and time consuming modifications.


Technology Group International





Rebecca Gill


rgill@tgiltd


800-837-0028


Welcome to the zany ideas of a productive writer. My students keep reminding me of my unusual tools and how helpful they have been for them. I also thank my students for their concept testing and refinement. Now, I feel much more confidant about sending them out into the world.


For the next few minutes let your imagination run amuck. Okay
, amuck is a little too far out there, so what about allowing an open mind for the time being. Afterwards, you can let your mind ruminate.


My office has a beautiful ?u? shape ash wood desk that I'm proud of. Partially due to its price and uniqueness. It is here, I handle my emails
, pay bills, read, coach, and edit there. Yet
, I had difficulty setting the ground work for my writing. Tasks like creating first drafts, deciding on the major points, or creating a table of contents. Because of this I usually seek another environment that sparks these efforts.


Probably like yourself, I found my best ideas arrive when I'm in the shower
, when I first wake, while driving, or while walking. Just to name a few. Let's take a short side trip, I want to share with you how I capture my thoughts during these light-bulb moments.


While walking I use a tape recorder on an adjustable camera strap around my neck. Voice activation and the mike pointed up towards your chin are musts. To start recording all you need to do is tuck in your chin and begin speaking. I say my name first usually because the first one or two words get lost while the recorder's activation mode kicks on. Heavy breathing or puffing
, since it goes forward and not down, usually does not activate the recorder.


In the shower, I use a pen I purchased while visiting NASA in Florida. It can write in extreme temperatures and underwater. A grease pen works well if you don't mind writing large. It is also cheaper. Add a diver's under water board and you're ready.


For driving, I use the same method as I do for my walks. Normally the engine noise will activate the recorder if left on the seat. That is
, unless you have a car that is perfectly quiet inside.


Okay, side track over, back to zany ideas.


During the day I found myself playing musical chairs when writing. At home and in the office. My lounge chair in my bedroom was right for.
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