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Gaining a competitive advantage through ERP Organizations today confront new markets new competition and increasing customer expectations Thus todays organizations have to constantly re-engineer their business practices and procedures to be more and more responsive to customers and competition In the 1990s Information technology and Business Process re-engineering used in conjunction with each other have emerged as important tools which give organizations the leading edge The efficiency of an enterprise depends on the quick flow of information across the complete supply chain ie from the customer to manufacturers to supplier ERP Enterprise resource planning systems have been a major information technology that has been used by businesses today in hopes of gaining a competitive advantage But this advantage seems only plausible if the implementation is coupled with process re-engineering as well ERP is an enterprise wide system that integrates primary business applications including all areas and levels of an organization All the applications in an ERP suite share a common set of data that is stored in a central database It aims to serve as a backbone for your whole computing business integrating key business and management processes to provide a sky-level view of much of whats going on in your organization A typical ERP system provides applications for accounting and controlling production and materials management quality management plant maintenance sales and distribution human resources and project management In the 1990s most companies have experienced business process re-engineering and implemented ERP or other packaged software ERP is difficult to implement Often firms adapt their business processes to the ERP system rather than the other way around This translates to using business processes similar to those of competitors and losing competitive advantage Moreover ERP systems only address the needs of part of the enterprise creating islands of automation and a need for integration that requires considerable effort A typical ERP system gives you an 80 solution You must still implement the
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