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SAP ERP for newbiesAre you an SAP ERP newbie and looking for information which can help you understand the basic concepts?… You are on the right spot. The discussion here focuses on SAP ERP for beginners though SAP professionals too may get some information helpful in broadening their understanding. This is the second part of this series about SAP ERP, what it does and how it can help you run your business better.

ERP can take your customers information and it will help you keep track all of their many wants and needs including the fact that they want your product customized just for them. ERP accepts their orders and will automatically figure out what it needs to fulfill them, how long will it take and what you should charge for those orders including all the local sales tax deductions. In the case of really big and demanding customers that uses something called EDI. ERP will often include an Electronic Data Interchange module as well. ERP will help you fulfill those orders. If you are in the distribution business, ERP will tell you how much inventory you have on hand, where it is physically sitting, and give your packers instructions on what to pick and put them in the containers for those customers. ERP will arrange the shipment to get your products to your customers, fill in the paper work for you, getting the custom stuff for national and international borders. ERP also determines what each of your packers gets paid, writes the checks, and makes automatic deposits for them.

If you actually manufacture the products you are selling. ERP will translate sales orders into detailed work orders, outlining each step in putting your product together, how much material will take, the labor involved, quality assurance processes, and even what tools and machines needed in manufacturing. It will pay you production staff by the hour, or maybe by the work done, or even the mix of both. ERP knows what your team knows to make sure the people are assigned to jobs where they are trained for. It will track where the finished goods go and how they eventually get put into containers to fulfill orders and get shipped just like the distribution.

This series of activities is an end-to-end process called “Procure to Pay” (P2P) and SAP MM (Materials Management) module addresses this business process. It is one example of end-to-end processes in a business enterprise. Other examples are Order to Manufacture, hire to retire, etc.

The persons responsible in the respective departments carry out their business transactions and store business data. This data (information) is available across organizational boundaries to all SAP users.

The improved visibility helps in better decision-making saving time and money. The business processes are well defined and this lends them to further investigation. Investigation leads to innovative ideas. Innovation leads to improvement of business processes. Improved business processes convert to increased business results and the enterprise is able to realize the returns on its investments.

All of this information is compiled in pretty amazing reports and statistics so management can make them all knowing in very little effort. A live dashboard of what is going on throughout the company is available so decisions can be made on an up to date informational basis. ERP will also help you put together financial documents for filling taxes and submitting your remittances. So what does ERP do? A lot… and that only is the basic description. ERP is pretty modest so we won’t get into consignment, contractor tracking, handling credit notes or bulk orders.

Here in Fasttrack IT Academy, we have been in the business for several years now and were still finding new things to do to make businesses better. We think we are pretty good at it for a few reasons but first and for most because we listen to our customers. Most of our features have been things we have built over the course in response to customer requests. Give us a call sometime. There is always a person at the end of the line and we are happy to be able to tell you more about our friend SAP ERP and the trainings we offer.