Our Blog

Understand the Positives and Negatives of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) with a TMS

by Aristides Smith 11/22/2016

Savvy business owners are quite familiar with enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, which integrates product planning, service delivery, marketing, shipping, and more into one suite, giving them the ability to collect, store, and integrate data. They’re also familiar with the transportation management solution (TMS) subset.

What some business leaders don’t know is — like the cream in an Oreo cookie — the TMS sits between ERP software and a legacy distribution model. Or, in some organizations, the TMS is integrated into the ERP software, providing seamless operation. For those interested in this type of setup, here are a few plusses and minuses of integrating ERP and TMS software:

The positives

There are definite advantages to utilizing integrated ERP and TMS software, the two biggest being cost and efficiency.

  • Avoid the headaches associated with integrating legacy ERP suites with current TMS packages
  • Minimize downtime when applying patches and upgrades.
  • Cut back on reactive IT administration and increase both sales and shipping staff efficiency as they can easily transfer information from one screen to another.

The negatives

We could say there’s nothing negative about integrated ERP and TMS software — but that isn’t quite true. There are a few disadvantages to this type of software suite.

  • Cost of the TMS Module: There is a whole value proposition that you need to take into account here. ERP vendors usually charge a premium for their modules in comparison to a "Best-Of-Breed" TMS which can cost a fraction of the enterprise module.
  • Data transfer between legacy systems and new products: Package installers should be able to correct these situations and merge data between the two systems, yet there’s data loss risk during this exchange.
  • Integration with third-party systems:  There may be products organization decision-makers wish to use that simply aren’t compatible with the ERP and TMS software.

Additional considerations

Budget plays a role in any software or service decision. And organization leaders need to look at the cost and determine if they’ll receive a sufficient return on investment (ROI) due to efficiency or sales increases. Another consideration point is the amount of training companies selling integrated ERP software offer. Documentation is fine, but on-hand training is even better to help decrease the sales and shipping downtime during the transition.

Our Dynamics TMS® is the best-in-class solution for your enterprise transportation management software needs. From front-end operations  including route planning, rate shopping, and tracking  to back-end reporting and analytics, our 28 years in the business show in platform functionality and usability. On-premise, hosted on-premise, and hosted SaaS options provide you with the solution that best fits your organization. Not only is FreightMaster TMS® and Dynamics TMS® quick and easy to deploy but our experts can also integrate Dynamics TMS® with your ERP system, regardless of whether you're using FreightMaster TMS®, Microsoft Dynamics® ERP or a legacy system.

To learn more about Next Generation Logistics supply chain FreightMaster TMS® and Dynamics TMS® software as well as our additional services, contact us at +1 847-963-0007, online, or email us.