Information Systems

Using ERP Software, Evolution of ERP, Business Objectives and IT

<< Supply Chain Management: Integrating systems, Methods, Using SCM Software
ERP & E-commerce, ERP & CRM, ERP– Ownership and sponsor ship >>
Information System (CS507)
Enterprise Resource Planning
Following are various modes of integration:
1. Connect Existing modules/system
2. Use Supply Chain Management (SCM) Software
3. Use ERP Software
The material on first two modes is available in the handouts of lecture 42. The third way of
integrating is using an ERP software. Before we start of with what ERP is, I would like to touch
a previously discussed linkage between IT and business objectives.
43.1  Business Objectives and IT
The goals set by the business strategy are always of supreme importance. Some of these goals
are meeting customer requirements, reaching customer where he is --- online, scattered
locations, achieving distinctive competence and winning brand loyalty. IT function in an
organization is set up in order to support the business goals set at all levels of the organization.
IT objectives should be flexed according to the business needs of the organization. This helps in
efficient use of IT resources for the achievement of business objectives.
Text in above clips related to IT objectives
Technology for the sake of it serves no purpose. It needs to be driven by objectives and these
need to be cleared ahead of time if any organization wants to embark on the journey of
advancement in technology. So we were very clear and we have been very clear in our business
objectives and tools that are required for advancement e.g. equipment, technology. So that
objectives which are profitable can be constantly managed. The objective of any business is to
operate in a manner to create value, to create value for itself and for the company. There are of
course other subsidiary objectives like social responsibility. And I fully concur that whatever the
available technology that must be used in an economic manner so that it can create value for the
company as a whole.
Gist of the clips
The corporate objectives define the IT objectives. The IT objectives should be of help in
achieving business objectives as IT is tool being used for the purpose of achieving the
corporate objectives. It is not as end by itself. Technology for the sake of technology is futile.
43.2  Using ERP Software
ERP is an abbreviation for Enterprise Resource Planning. In this three word term, resource and
planning may seem as least relevant, but the most relevant part is "Enterprise" since the
software aims to take an enterprise level view of the entire organization. ERP can be defined as
"ERP (enterprise resource planning) is an industry term for the broad set of activities supported
by multi-module application software that helps a manufacturer or other business manage the
important parts of its business, including product planning, parts purchasing, maintaining
inventories, interacting with suppliers, providing customer service, and tracking orders."
There are some reasons attracting companies to take up ERP.
1. Planning the operations
Information System (CS507)
2. Integrated customer related information ­ order tracking with customer database, inventory
and shipment at different locations.
3. Standardized HR information ­ A company with multiple business units will require a
comprehensive and all-encompassing method of locating employees and communicating
with them.
4. Integrated financial information and analysis
5. Monitoring the operations including those of sub-vendors and manufacturers
6. Standardization analysis of financial and non financial information for decision making
7. We will now listen to the views of the State Bank Of Pakistan's CIO on the subject.
Gist of the clips
The CIO, State Bank is talking about how they came to the decision of having an integrated
system to help the institution provide a modern environment for not only conducting its
business but also by using the latest in technology, achieve the corporate objectives through
better speedier accumulation of data, analysis, thereof to assist in the regulatory function. The
system being used by them not only had to cater for data relating to the central bank's own
activities but also data of all commercial banks in Pakistan. This necessitated a system of data
43.3  ERP Compared to integrated Software
The concept of ERP is that of an integrated software. An integrated software can be defined as
a software package that combines many applications in one program. Previously, the user
needed various utilities to operate the program and provide suitable interfaces. Today these
utilities are an integral part of the software. Thus the receipt of a confirmed customer order
should provide the start of a number of activities that are essential to complete and deliver the
order. There is no need to separately enter data for each of the other related activities.
Integrated packages can move data among several programs utilizing common commands and
file structures. In effect, there are multiple applications using the same data simultaneously. An
integrated package is recommended when identical source information is to be used for varying
purposes and activities.
Most of the software modules can be integrated to provide a complete picture. Generally,
customized integrated software/lays stress on meeting the needs of an organization without
causing change or too much change in the business processes. ERP's on the other hand
incorporate industry best practices. Thus ERP's are a generic solution requiring business
process chances. The presence of best industry practices makes ERP a highly generic software.
ERP though can be customized for a business, but at very high costs. Hence the benefits are
better earned in implementing the ERP as a generic software and spending time realigning the
business processes and synchronize with it.
Gist of the clips
Once the decision to adopt the ERP route is made and a product selected, it is imperative to
establish what is demanded by the software, what is the requirement the business and how the
two above can be reconciled for the benefit of organization. Thus a gap analysis is conducted
and the realignment of the existing procedures with the requirements of the ERP have to be
undertaken. There may be some element of customization of the ERP, but it is generally
minimal. Stress is therefore on the realignment of the business process.
Information System (CS507)
Text in the clips (Packages)
When we compare an ERP with an integrated software, an ERP offers much more than just
being an integrated software. The reason behind it is that it has been developed after studying
hundreds of different industries and based on best practices. ERP standardizes in itself the best
practices that are available.-and practiced the world over. So a customized integrated software
may be serving the needs of the organization very well. There business information flows and
efficiencies adopting good practices of the best ERP is indeed very helpful. An ERP gives you
the flexibility to add on new functionalities and modes of doing business.
Text in the clips (State Bank)
The concept of ERP started in Early 90's when we had MRP-I and MRP-II which purely
focused on manufacturing side. Then later on, the financials were added to it. Then the rest of
the business i.e. sales, inventory, receivables, payables all were added as part of the software.
ERP is across the enterprise, that is why they call is Enterprise Resource Planning System. The
other thing is that it has a central database. What ever you are dealing with, be it sales or
manufacturing, the data base is the same. So the paradigm of the way you use the system is the
same. The look and feel is the same, though the training issues should be taken care of. The
programming and parameterization of the system is quite similar across the board and those
benefits don't come in if let us say we are having integration at a limited scope. There are
interfaces for each module which help to reconnect with other modules, so if we don't have a
system implemented across the board, benefits don't start coming in as expected.
Gist of the clips
Standardization of processes based on best practices makes an ERP a more effective tool. The
generic characteristic of an ERP with all-inclusive tools turns it into an effective means of
doing business efficiently.
43.4  Evolution of ERP
The current form and version of ERP has evolved over time. It took nearly four decades for the
ERP model to mature. Let's take a look at the brief history of ERP development.
Information System (CS507)
Inventory Management and control is the combination of
information technology and business processes of maintaining the
nt & Control
appropriate level of stock in a warehouse.
The activities of inventory management include
o identifying inventory requirements,
o setting targets, providing replenishment techniques and
o monitoring item usages, reconciling the inventory balances,
and reporting inventory status.
· Materials Requirement Planning (MRP) utilizes software
applications for scheduling timely material procurement.
· MRP generates schedules for the operations and raw
material purchases based on the production requirements
of finished goods, the structure of the production system,
the current inventories levels and the lot sizing procedure
for each operation.
Manufacturing · Manufacturing Requirements Planning or MRP utilizes
software applications for coordinating manufacturing
processes, from product planning, parts purchasing,
inventory control to product distribution.
· Enterprise Resource Planning or ERP uses multi-
module application software for improving the
performance of the internal business processes.
· ERP systems often integrates business activities across
functional departments, from product planning, parts
purchasing, inventory control, product distribution,
fulfillment, to order tracking.
· ERP software systems may include application modules
for supporting marketing, finance, accounting and
human resources.
Attributes of an ERP software
ERP applications address the complete  business process. ERP applications are modular
generally covering all aspects of the business as each aspect is dependant upon the other. Thus
you will generally find certain standard modules as part of ERP software which are
manufacturing, supply chain, financials, CRM, human resources and warehouse management. It
may also be stated that depending upon business size , phased approach may be opted to
Information System (CS507)
implement the ERP. A phased approach becomes necessary because of business process
realignment and implementation issues particulars relating to change in habits of the users.
During the past, the software laid greater stress on financial transactions and their cumulative
result with information for other department being provided as a secondary objective. ERP is
extended to the enterprise level, encompassing not only the organization but also the entities
external to organization i.e. suppliers and customer.
Text in the clips (Packages)
The perception was correct in the past. But as economy is growing, finance is not the only
important field. Supply chain, production, marketing they all are very important parts of
industry whether in form of goods or services. So for this purpose information should be
available as soon as possible through out the company e.g. about the stock levels, processes
used to produce finished goods till packing and dispatching it to customers and recovering.
ERP is a system that helps in making information available live throughout the system at one
time and it is available to all. So now a days it is no longer a finance driven. It is basically a
company driven idea and the idea is to serve the customer well.
Gist of the clips
ERP is across the enterprise in its literal sense. ERP is a package that builds in itself at facets of
a business.
43.5  ERP & Customer relationship management
Integration involves a broader view of various soft wares being used by the organization. Now
CRM is also being used in connection with the ERP for efficient planning and effective control.
Text in the clips (Packages)
Some of the world's good ERP system, they do have planning and interpretation methodology
embedded in them. When we went under the procedure of implementing, we were told that
there are two modes to do the same: long procedure and short procedure. The long procedure
is spread over two years. The short procedure is spanned over nine month's time. The short
procedure can also be termed as the quick methodology. In short procedure, the organization
needs to have a certain time line, certain procedures and certain things are to be done. The logic
of having this short implementation procedure is that the human natures if it is too long people
lose interest, things change, people change, processes change, so we need to do it in a very quick
implementation mode. For this we have to form what we call a project team. The project team
is further headed by the steering committee in which members are taken from various
functions. We don't need to have all people present at the same time but at a time we need to
have four or five people to be present for every function which is being configured to align with
the ERP system and connected by the ERP consultants.
Gist of the clips
ERP should be seen as an independent project. Like with every other project, this must have
an independent project team. The project team is made up of generally heads of departments
of various functions. This team is led by a steering committee comprising those charged with
policy making to ensure that any decisions are taken expeditiously.
Table of Contents:
  1. Need for information, Sources of Information: Primary, Secondary, Tertiary Sources
  2. Data vs. Information, Information Quality Checklist
  3. Size of the Organization and Information Requirements
  4. Hierarchical organization, Organizational Structure, Culture of the Organization
  5. Elements of Environment: Legal, Economic, Social, Technological, Corporate social responsibility, Ethics
  6. Manual Vs Computerised Information Systems, Emerging Digital Firms
  7. Open-Loop System, Closed Loop System, Open Systems, Closed Systems, Level of Planning
  8. Components of a system, Types of Systems, Attributes of an IS/CBIS
  9. Infrastructure: Transaction Processing System, Management Information System
  10. Support Systems: Office Automation Systems, Decision Support Systems, Types of DSS
  11. Data Mart: Online Analytical Processing (OLAP), Types of Models Used in DSS
  12. Organizational Information Systems, Marketing Information Systems, Key CRM Tasks
  13. Manufacturing Information System, Inventory Sub System, Production Sub System, Quality Sub system
  14. Accounting & Financial Information Systems, Human Resource Information Systems
  15. Decision Making: Types of Problems, Type of Decisions
  16. Phases of decision-making: Intelligence Phase, Design Phase, Choice Phase, Implementation Phase
  17. Planning for System Development: Models Used for and Types of System Development Life-Cycle
  18. Project lifecycle vs. SDLC, Costs of Proposed System, Classic lifecycle Model
  19. Entity Relationship Diagram (ERD), Design of the information flow, data base, User Interface
  20. Incremental Model: Evaluation, Incremental vs. Iterative
  21. Spiral Model: Determine Objectives, Alternatives and Constraints, Prototyping
  22. System Analysis: Systems Analyst, System Design, Designing user interface
  23. System Analysis & Design Methods, Structured Analysis and Design, Flow Chart
  24. Symbols used for flow charts: Good Practices, Data Flow Diagram
  25. Rules for DFD’s: Entity Relationship Diagram
  26. Symbols: Object-Orientation, Object Oriented Analysis
  27. Object Oriented Analysis and Design: Object, Classes, Inheritance, Encapsulation, Polymorphism
  28. Critical Success Factors (CSF): CSF vs. Key Performance Indicator, Centralized vs. Distributed Processing
  29. Security of Information System: Security Issues, Objective, Scope, Policy, Program
  30. Threat Identification: Types of Threats, Control Analysis, Impact analysis, Occurrence of threat
  31. Control Adjustment: cost effective Security, Roles & Responsibility, Report Preparation
  32. Physical vs. Logical access, Viruses, Sources of Transmissions, Technical controls
  33. Antivirus software: Scanners, Active monitors, Behavior blockers, Logical intrusion, Best Password practices, Firewall
  34. Types of Controls: Access Controls, Cryptography, Biometrics
  35. Audit trails and logs: Audit trails and types of errors, IS audit, Parameters of IS audit
  36. Risk Management: Phases, focal Point, System Characterization, Vulnerability Assessment
  37. Control Analysis: Likelihood Determination, Impact Analysis, Risk Determination, Results Documentation
  38. Risk Management: Business Continuity Planning, Components, Phases of BCP, Business Impact Analysis (BIA)
  39. Web Security: Passive attacks, Active Attacks, Methods to avoid internet attacks
  40. Internet Security Controls, Firewall Security SystemsIntrusion Detection Systems, Components of IDS, Digital Certificates
  41. Commerce vs. E-Business, Business to Consumer (B2C), Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), E-Government
  42. Supply Chain Management: Integrating systems, Methods, Using SCM Software
  43. Using ERP Software, Evolution of ERP, Business Objectives and IT
  44. ERP & E-commerce, ERP & CRM, ERP– Ownership and sponsor ship
  45. Ethics in IS: Threats to Privacy, Electronic Surveillance, Data Profiling, TRIPS, Workplace Monitoring