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Supply Chain Management Software Vendor Evaluation


Top Supply Chain Software Vendors

The balance of this White Paper evaluates eight of the top 20 Supply Chain Management software vendors. Evaluation goals are to provide a sense of functionalities, features, short comings, and benefits of the top supply chain systems. Also, the evaluation illustrates the differences and similarities between the vendors and their products. The vendors are evaluated in alphabetical order to avoid conveying a bias. The vendors are HighJump Software, i2 Technologies, Infor Global Solutions, JDA Software Group, Manhattan Associates, Oracle Corporation, and SAP AG.

Areas Evaluated

The supply chain software evaluation is broken down into 5 areas: Company Background, Vertical Markets, Supply Chain Products, SCM Features, and Strengths & Weaknesses.

The bulk of the evaluation concentrates on SCM Features and Strengths & Weaknesses. Instead of each vendor’s suite of products driving a different structure for presenting their SCM features, a common presentation structure is used and each vendor’s features are evaluated accordingly. The area on Strengths and Weaknesses provides expert opinion and context for the value of each vendor’s SCM Features.

Supply Chain Software Features

The key features evaluated for each software vendor include:

Software Architecture and Cross Application Solutions – All the vendors have some form of an underlying software architecture for delivering common IT services and making their application extensible via integration or customization.

Sales and Operation Planning – Only a few supply chain software vendors supported a fully functional S&OP solution. Most vendors have some level of support for the S&OP process.

Demand Management – This software evaluation focused on forecasting, demand shaping and order fulfillment. Most vendors addressed forecasting and order fulfillment. Although some software vendors addressed promotions, demand shaping falls more into a CRM solution. Vendors with integrated CRM software fare better in demand shaping.

Supply Management – Supply management is the one area with the greatest differences among software vendors. The vendors developed their products to meet a diverse set of requirements and the level of product maturity is at different stages.

To stick with a common structure, features were further broken down into:

  • Strategic Network Planning (SNP) – SNP is becoming a standard feature for many SCM vendors. SNP is a mid-term to long-term supply chain planning tool.
  • Distribution Planning – Distribution Planning is a mid-term inventory management and planning tool.
  • Replenishment – Replenishment addresses short-term inventory and demand fulfillment planning.
  • Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) – Vendors replenish customer inventory based on stock and sales data sent to the vendor from the customer. The vendor plans and manages the replenishment of goods.
  • Procurement Management – Procurement Management plans and executes sourcing strategies.

Warehouse Management Systems – Most of the best practices for WMS are well established, thus the features for each vendor are often similar. Each software vendor was evaluated for the following:

  • Yard Management
  • Inbound Processing
  • Outbound Processing
  • Cross Docking
  • Value Added Services
  • Storage

Transportation Management Systems – As with WMS, most of TMS features are similar for most vendors. Each software vendor was evaluated for the following:

  • Planning
  • Dispatch
  • Freight Charges and Settlements
  • Fleet Management

Supplier Relationship Management – Most vendors did not have a full featured SRM. If they did, they were evaluated for the following:

  • Catalog Management
  • Sourcing
  • Contract Management
  • Supplier Compliance

Customer Relationship Management – CRM addresses topics that are becoming critical to SCM demand management. CRM software captures short-term and mid-term information relevant to demand planning.

Summary of The Evaluation Process and Presentation Structure

Reasonable efforts were made to align each vendor’s products into a common presentation structure.

Note: The SCM software market is constantly changing with acquisitions and vendors adding new features to their products. The supply chain software market is fluid.

Next - Highjump Software Review >>

Supply Chain Software GuideSupply Chain Management ExplainedSupply Chain Management StrategySupply Chain Software BenefitsSupply Chain Software PitfallsSupply Chain Software SelectionSupply Chain Software ImplementationSupply Chain Software OptimizationSupply Chain Software Vendor EvaluationHighjump Software Reviewi2 Technologies ReviewInfor Supply Chain Software ReviewJDA Software ReviewManhattan Associates ReviewOracle Supply Chain Management ReviewRed Prairie ReviewSAP Supply Chain Software ReviewSupply Chain Software Glossary




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