Enterprise systems, often referred to as enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, is a term used to describe an integrated organizational (enterprise) information system. Specifically, ERP is software that helps the flow of information between the functional areas in the organization. It is a customized system that, rather than being developed in-house, is usually purchased from one of the software development companies well-known for its ERP packages, such as SAP or Oracle. The product is then customized to fit the requirements of a particular company. Typically, the vendor requires an organizational commitment in terms of specialized user or analyst training. Many ERP packages are designed to run on the Web. ERP, although growing in popularity, is also being viewed with some skepticism.
Enterprise resource planning (ERP) evolved from materials requirements planning (MRP), the information systems designed to improve manufacturing in general and assembly in particular. ERP systems now include manufacturing components and thus help with capacity planning, material production scheduling, and forecasting. Beyond manufacturing (and its service counterpart), ERP includes sales and operations planning, distribution, procurement, and managing the supply chain. It therefore significantly affects all the areas in the organization, including accounting, finance, management, marketing, and information systems.
Implementing an ERP solution may be frustrating because it is difficult to analyze a system currently in use and then fit the ERP model to that system. Furthermore, companies tend to design their business processes before ERP is implemented. Unfortunately, this process is often rushed and the proposed business model does not always match the ERP functionality. The result is further customizations, extended implementation time frames, higher costs, and often the loss of user confidence. Analysts need to be aware of the magnitude of the problem they are tackling when trying to implement enterprise resource planning (ERP) packages.
- Organizations as Systems
- Virtual Organizations and Virtual Teams
- Taking a Systems Perspective
- Enterprise Systems: Viewing the Organization as a System
- Systems and the Context-Level Data Flow Diagram
- Systems and the Entity-Relationship Model
- Use Case Modeling / Use Case Symbols
- Use Case Relationships
- Developing Use Case Diagrams & Use Case Scenarios
- Use Case Levels (Use case Modeling)
- Levels of Management
- Organizational Culture