Mid-Sized Companies Still Feeling ‘Unloved’ by Traditional ERP Suppliers--Bisham Consulting Survey Update Confirms Needs Not Same as Those of Large Companies

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An up-date to the study conducted by UK logistics and supply chain consulting company Bisham Consulting has confirmed that medium sized companies cannot necessarily meet their supply chain solutions needs from traditional ERP providers.

An up-date to the study conducted by UK logistics and supply chain consulting company Bisham Consulting has confirmed that medium sized companies cannot necessarily meet their supply chain solutions needs from traditional ERP providers.

As part of an initiative to identify and meet the needs of these mid-size companies, Bisham one of the UK’s leading independent logistics and supply chain consulting companies, was called in to identify the need and build a business case for appropriate offerings.

Martin Williams, Director of Bisham Consulting, who project directed both studies said that the original survey was conducted amongst Bisham’s own customers. “This time we extended the reach with a web survey and with companies attending events we organised,” he said. “It is still clear that the suppliers of major ERP systems are either not interested in the needs of mid-market companies – or they simply do not care about that market. This was the view of most companies in the original survey and this much expanded study has more than confirmed it.”

Why chose a new supply chain system?

The most common choice criteria in choosing a new supply chain system was the ability of the new package to integrate with existing operational/functional business systems combined with the system being user friendly. Being a ‘big name in the IT provider marketplace was seen of little merit in the selection process.

Reasons for Dissatisfaction

In the survey the companies, who had implemented a supply chain system as part of an ERP solution, were asked if they were satisfied. A staggering 85% expressed some dissatisfaction. The key reasons for this level of dissatisfaction are shown below.

Williams said, “This shows that the demands of cost effectiveness, simplicity, visibility and customer service are still not being met. Although the major ERP solutions are expensive to purchase and to implement, they all too often do not meet the expected cost benefits in the supply chain. The key reason for this is certainly the lack of in-depth logistics and supply chain functionally in most ERP systems.”

Following the original study, five IT solution providers within the supply chain have come together to offer mid-sized companies a sensible, practical, cost-efficient supply chain alternative to the major ERP offerings. The companies involved are, Deltion, Destiny, DPS, Fleetwood and RedPrairie, all of whom are market leaders in their own specialised spheres and they have formed a strategic alliance to meet these needs.

The supply chain offering, will be on show at a series of free showcase events - http://www.logisticsshowcase.co.uk - in Edinburgh at Murrayfield on April 25th, at Gaydon Warwickshire on April 26th at the Heritage Motor Museum both in association with CILTUK, and Dublin on a date to be confirmed in May in association with CILT Ireland. It is modular allowing companies to pick all or whichever parts are appropriate for their business needs. The key elements of these web-based solutions are order management, warehouse management, vehicle routing and scheduling, tracking and tracing and proof of delivery.

For further information contact Denis O’Sullivan, NetworkedWorld, 01344-776636; 07710-820979.

For further details about the companies mentioned above, see the brief descriptions below and visit their websites:

Bisham Consulting (http://www.bishamconsulting.com) is one the UK's major independent logistics consultancies. Established 14 years ago, the directors and senior consultants have all held senior management or board level positions in the logistics arena. Bisham offers practical solutions in all aspects of the supply, ranging from the strategic to operational and tactical issues. The client base ranges from major multi-nationals to small and mid size private companies

Deltion (http://www.deltion.co.uk) offers a web-based platform which manages and displays distribution information, delivering real-time visibility and a single communications channel for customers, distributors, sub-contractors, drivers and consignees. Online access is available across all operational sites in all countries in real time.

Destiny Wireless (http://www.destinywireless.co.uk) is one of the world leaders in the delivery of Digital Pen & Paper (“DP&P”) technology using Anoto Functionality™ to the business market. Destiny specialise in improving business process flow because with increased efficiency and productivity clients can expect to generate more profit and improve cash in-flows.

DPS International (http://www.dps-int.com) is one of the World’s leading suppliers of innovative vehicle scheduling and routing software solutions based on a wealth of experience in logistics consulting gained over a quarter of a century. DPS has recently introduced logixcentral, the only Internet based scheduling and routing service.

Fleetwood (http://www.fleetwoodmobile.com) enables businesses to view and manage all their remote events, transactions and resources in real-time through its innovative handheld mobile devices, integrated software applications, mobile communications, and GPS based location tracking – improving operating efficiencies, cash flow and customer service

RedPrairie (http://www.redprairie.com/uk) has, for over 30 years, enabled leading global companies to create competitive advantage through supply chain excellence. RedPrairie’s comprehensive technology solutions provide rapid and sustainable return on investment by optimising the performance of people, places and processes. The integrated solutions suite includes warehouse management, workforce performance management and duty management solutions.

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Denis O'sullivan