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Compiere Software Capabilities and Its Suitability to Various Industries

Compiere software capabilities and its suitability to various industries

Compiere is among the top developers of cloud-based open-source ERP including customer relationship management (CRM) system. The ERP software Compiere is applicable to a wide range of users such as businesses, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The software’s low cost for right of use and software flexibility makes it highly adoptable. The popularity of the ERP Compiere software stems from the ease with which clients can tailor ERP solution to match their business needs without requirements for advanced skills in programming. The software is based on the Java programming language making it possible to be run on both Linux and Windows operating systems. The wide range of functions makes the software very comprehensive. These functions include; financial management, distribution, sales among other service process (Compiere: a Consona ERP Solution, 2010).

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Despite the high flexibility in software capability deployment offered by the Compiere software, clients are not restricted or charged to download and use the open source version edition. Once the clients decide to commercially use the software, they can opt to deploy it in their own data base of agree to a Cloud-based deployment by means of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) (Compiere: a Consona ERP Solution, 2010).

Unique features of Compiere

Compiere has capability to serve a wide range of functions of an organization even with its standard release. The software comes with an Application Dictionary that allows additional customizations and extensions without the need of advanced skills in programming. Consequently, additional costs of development and customization are greatly reduced because of non-inclusion of long code reviews, development, and code level testing which are expensive. The followings are some of its unique features:

  1. Order management: used to create quotes for customers, and undertake invoicing and cash receipt
  2. Warehouse management :enhances warehousing through inbound and outbound logistics automation
  3. Manufacturing management: this serves the work-in-process monitoring, multilevel billing of materials, work order costing, et cetera
  4. Sales management : this function serves as a request to reimburse costs, order and customer requests, invoicing, shipping, and warranty helpdesk
  5. Web store: this offers online product directory and sales transaction, customer management, and online pricing availability.
  6. Performance management: involves management of general reports and performance of enterprise solution.
  7. Purchase management: involves automation of various value chains, which ranges from procurement to payment.

Critical analysis of the Compiere ERP software

According to Wallen (2010), the ERP Compiere software is not only full-featured highly adaptable ERP solution, but it can be hosted either on site or served up from the cloud. Some of the specifications that make this software a superior product of immense benefits to the businesses include; ability to be hosted to any modern browser, availability of on site serve, ability to be used in both Windows and Linux operating systems, and incorporation of Java developer kit 6.

Apart for the wide application of the Compiere ERP software in any kind of business in need of resource management, the software has a disadvantage of being very complex. First time users of the software can be overwhelmed by the vast tools and tasks that need to be handled within the system. The software also lacks critical business processes such as the human- resource management system. Apart from the company partners, the software does not support listing of clients. Furthermore, the fact that the solution is mainly compatible on Oracle database is a cost limitation. This is because Oracle is proprietary software with a considerably higher maintenance cost (Enterprise Software Blog, 2008)

Compiere software installation on Linux does not support MySQL. The requirement for Java programming language makes it hard to crack the LAMP server and install the Compiere software on top on the Linux. However, Compiere software makes it easier to determine net value creation resulting from a lower cost of ownership. Despite its many advantages, there is still no mass adoption of the software. Apart from non-requirement for up-front investment, the software has got a wide range of hardware platforms, operating systems, databases, and browsers, thus making it is easy to implement (Schatz, et al., 2011).

Comparison and contrasting of Compiere ERP with other ERPs

Apache Ofbiz ERP was developed by the apache software foundation. Just like the Compiere ERP, this Java based software released under the Apache license is compatible with both Windows and Linux Operating systems and also offers a browser UI. Unlike the Compiere, the Apache Ofbiz software has very weak graphic design, poor menu navigation, and it is user-unfriendly. However, the software offers sophisticated customization and a very flexible architecture allowing the individual programming of parts. The software uses Oracle, MySQL, PostgreSQL, MS SQL, DB2, and Sybase, as databases (Schatz, et al., 2011).

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CAO-Faktura ERP is different from Compiere as it is programmed in Delphi language. Unlike the Compiere ERP which runs on both Windows and Linux, the CAO-Faktura only runs on Windows. However, CAO allows administering of multiple currencies and clients just like the Compiere. With CAO, it is not possible to provide interfaces to other programs except by importing and exporting data with.CSV format. Compiere software uses both.CSV and.XML formats to import data. CAO-Faktura is designed for use by small companies and therefore does not offer manufacturing functions. However, it offers Order Management, Material Management, Purchasing, as well as Order-based Invoicing, Accounting, Warehouse Management, and Finance (Schatz, et al., 2011).

Customer success stories: Pharma Nord pharmaceutical and OSG Europe

Pharma Nord is a pharmaceutical company that is based in Denmark. This company has had a successful experience with Compiere software. The company manufactures, develops and markets herbal supplements, dietary supplements and medical drugs. It sells its products in 50 countries from North America, Asia and Europe. As the company expanded, inventory management became more complex. The situation was even worsened by the fact that exportation of pharmaceutical products varied significantly from country to country. In other words, there are specific national regulations for every country, which have to be followed, hence exposing the company to numerous variants. If a solution has to be successful with such complexities, then it has to possess some exceptional functionality (Enterprise Software Blog, 2008).

Pharma Nord applies Compiere solutions to the complex processes of managing its invoicing, sales, purchasing, cash collections, receipts and shipments in the warehouses, and accounting for sales. The rule of ‘first in first out’ by use of Compiere solution highly enhances the shipping process. The Compiere ERP solutions are very flexible and can be customized easily to suit customer’s specific needs. Consequently, Pharma Nord has successively customized Compiere solutions and developed its functionality beyond what the software provides with the help of Compiere team. The significant growth in Pharma Nord can be attributed to use of Compiere solution which has improved its connectivity to more business partners, and increased the products and transactions they deal with. Actually, the company is in a better position to undertake analysis and reporting because Compiere maintains a good transaction history. The functionality is so enhanced such that the company can be able to store detailed data (Compiere: a Consona ERP Solution, 2010).

OSG Europe is a manufacturer and a distributor of several products. It has also experienced success through use of Compiere. Like Pharma Nord, this company operates in multiple countries making its processes to be complex. The company’s ambitious sales and growth objective needs created a gap for a software with enhanced capabilities. This gap was filled by Compiere which offered OSG owners a functionality that could streamline its purchasing, e-commerce operations, inventory management, order processing, accounting and financial analysis. This was in line with the company’s need for improved operational performance through adoption of a modern, easy to upgrade and customize, and cost-effective ERP system. The flexibility of Compiere ERP is very crucial to the OSG Europe as the company operates in eight locations with multiple currencies and languages. Each location needs its own unique account, with its own data group, which is enhanced by the customizability of Compiere (Compiere: a Consona ERP Solution, 2010).

Conclusion and recommendations

The open source technology and flexible business model presented by Compiere makes it easy and affordable for organizations to use advanced ERP and CRM capabilities to improve their performance through developing an ERP software solution. This is because Compiere business model allows shorter sales cycles than traditional ERP vendors, enabling companies to invest considerably more resources in developing additional software capabilities (Lee et al. 2009; Compiere: a Consona ERP Solution, 2010).

Adoption of the Compiere Enterprise software will provide a wide functionality making it possible to cover several different points in an enterprise. The software is created in a modular way thus allowing the users to merge the required components. The software also provides flexibility and customizability making it possible for organizations to tailor the software to their unique conditions. The software is also multi-lingual, multi-currency, and multi-client capable.Finally, Compiere ERP is secure as it is equipped with data encryption and a data-/role-based security system. All these are unique features of the Compiere ERP that makes it beneficial to adopt the software.

References

Compiere: a Consona ERP Solution 2010.

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Enterprise Software Blog 2008, Web.

Lee, S.M, Olson, D.L & Lee, S.H 2009, ‘Open Process and Open-Source Enterprise Systems’. Enterprise Information Systems, Vol.3 no.2, pp.201-209.

Schatz, A, Egri, P & Sauer, M 2011, Open Source ERP: Reasonable tools for Manufacturing SMEs?

Wallen, J 2010, Review: Compiere Enterprise business resource planning, Web.

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