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Wholesale Industry and Dynamics GP Integration, SCM

Implementing new Corporate ERP application in wholesale and distribution organization often goes beyond standard accounting features.

You typically need some or many elements of Supply Chain Management, which often translates into Barcoding, RFID reading technologies.† Letís review how Great Plains could be implemented and integrated in the Wholesale trade environment.† Some of the paragraphs are also helpful in small manufacturing, picking and packing, shipping and receiving, various consignment schemas.† Standard parts of the Corporate ERP are probably simple to do and are very generic: General Ledger, AP, AR, Payroll, but now letís go to specifics:

1.†Warehouse Management System.† This is probably where you need the competitive advantage and the WMS may even have a way higher priority, comparing to your Accounting back office.† Well, we agree with you if this is what you feel.† WMS usually includes three key functionalities: Inventory Replenishment, Sales Order Allocation and Inventory Transactions (adjustments and transfers between the sites).† There are two approaches to implementing Warehouse Management System for your Great Plains or any other ERP application: External Standalone WMS and Warehouse Management extensions to your ERP system.† External WMS has its pluses and minuses: it typically has higher circulation (meaning that most of the software bugs are fixed and recorded in the knowledge base), plus it supports longer list of Barcode laser scanners (label printers) and RFID tag readers.† However, external WMS often requires you to pay for the same Warehouse related functionality twice (as you already paid for GP Sales Order Processing, Inventory Control and Purchase Order Processing modules licenses).† Second concern about external WMS is integration portion.† We were hearing reasonably alarming stream of customer complains about WMS integration phase.† The alternative is WMS extensions for Dynamics GP.† We recommend to consider the add-on available from Alba Spectrum, which supports budget versions of barcode scanners (compliant to text mode), and works directly out of the Great Plains Company MS SQL Tables (via ODBC connection, so WMS integration is not required)

2.†Simple Picking and Packing, Shipping and Receiving.† If you are smaller wholesaler or probably assembly on order type of supplier, you may decide to do simple customization, which should enable specific Great Plains form for barcode scanning.† We would recommend you to review Sales Order Processing order or invoice line allocation procedure to identify and design custom business logic.† There are several GP customization tools, where you can enable barcoding, the first one on the list is Great Plains Dexterity (opinions may vary depending on which ISV partner you are referring to).† It is also possible to do direct barcoding, if you use USB connected barcode scanning devise.† Letís say you would like SOP Transaction Entry form to be fueled by Barcode scanning.† In this case, train your cashier or in-store salesperson to open SOP Document, fill in required fields and then when you need to do scanning job, if the cursor in in the field intended for scanning Ė pressing scan button should accomplish the job

3.†Going beyond the Warehouse Management System functionality.† Here you may have requirements for such outside business processes as Consignment, Merchandise Delivery Just in Time (or in compliance to your business partner warehouse hours and expected workload)

4.†EDI or Electronic Document Interchange.† If you are required to comply EDI in merchandise restocking, especially from nationwide distribution hubs, you may need to consider EDI module (numerous are available from Dynamics GP ISV partner channel).† If you are self sufficient distributor, you may decide to introduce your own EDI protocol and data transfer channel (usually via FTP)

5.†B2B ecommerce as an alternative to EDI.† Electronic Commerce self service allows your B2B ecommerce customers to check the status of the order fulfillment and delivery, plus reorder merchandise based on historical orders and quantities

6.†For additional information, please feel free to call us 1-866-528-0577 or 1-630-961-5918 (this number works for international customers) or email us† We serve you USA/Canada nationwide via remote support (web sessions and phone/Skype conferences).† Local service is available in Western Michigan, Chicagoland, Southern California (LA, Orange County, San Diego)Article Search, Houston area of the state of Texas

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Andrew Karasev,† Great Plains Dynamics GP and eEnterprise Certified Master, Microsoft MVP and consultant with 10 years and plus experience and expertise.† Alba Spectrum, 1-866-528-0577,† If you are thinking to implement Dynamics GP in challenging environment, we recommend you to give us a call.† Our information portal is Pegas Planet

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