Subscribe By Email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Follow Len's Tweets...
  • I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with tequila than Kay.  04-07-2011
  • Check this video out -- Accounting Software Lead Generation via @youtube  02-22-2011
  • I guess I was rubbing in the great weather in Southern California I hereby extend an invitation to visit with us.  01-28-2011
  • More updates...

The Attivo Blog

| 1| 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 ...| 75 next »

5 Tips for Managing Inventory More Effectively With ERP

11-24-2015  |  By: The Attivo Group, Inc. |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
5 Tips for Managing Inventory More Effectively With ERP

Many smaller manufacturers and warehousing facilities believe (mistakenly) that automated systems are too expensive. Others fear that software solutions like ERP and automated warehouse management software just take away jobs from hardworking people.

The reality is that ERP and other automation systems can be affordable. Additionally, the automation doesn't take away worker jobs; it just changes the nature of those jobs for the better. Here are some of the inventory tracking capabilities of ERP.


1. Automate, Automate, Automate

Automation does a number of things. First, it lowers inventory costs by improving the organization and management of the warehouse and inventory. Automation reduces the chances of human errors, some of which are costly, dangerous, or both. Automation makes employees more efficient and effective, keeping labor costs down. Finally, automation allows for better customer service because order processing and tracking is much more accurate. Automate as many systems as possible, beginning with inventory, orders, and purchasing, which can all be handled by ERP.

2. Determine the Best Tracking System for Your Environment

There are several ways to track inventory within the system, including bar codes/UPC, RFID, QR codes, etc. Choose which way you will use to track inventory, and then your ERP system will be consistent and streamlined. This makes training easier, managing inventory easier, and helps you through an audit, if you have to undergo one of those.

3. Track Inventory in Real Time

The beauty of ERP is that you can know exactly where everything in the facility is at any given moment. Paper systems come with a natural delay between the time an order is pulled and when the worker manually enters those items into the system. ERP scans the item's codes and instantly tracks it as its shelved, pulled, packaged, shipped, etc.

4. Know What Suppliers Your Various Stock Comes From

With ERP, not only can you track when items are added to stock and removed from your inventory, you can also track raw materials and other supplies as they come in. This gives you incredible visibility into your suppliers. Which are gradually raising prices on you? Which are fastest to deliver on a rush order? Which are typically delayed in delivering during adverse weather or other circumstances? Once you can track the performance of your suppliers, you can better negotiate your prices and determine which suppliers to keep and which likely need to be replaced.

5. Be Prepared to Respond Quickly to a Product Recall

Fortunately, product recalls don't happen often. But when they do, it can be a nightmare without an automated ERP system to help you identify products included by the recall and get those off shelves and isolated. Just be sure that the system you've chosen to track your inventory is the same method used to identify products affected by a recall. Then, all workers need to do is enter the affected UPC, SKU number, etc. and indicate which products are to be pulled.

ERP will revolutionize the way you manage your inventory. The Attivo Group specializes in getting manufacturers and warehousing facilities fitted with the right ERP solution and getting the software system up and running right. For more information you can call us at 877-428-8486 or contact us here



Integrating Your E-Commerce and ERP Software can Save You Time and Make You Money

11-20-2015  |  By: The Attivo Group, Inc. |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Integrating Your E-Commerce and ERP Software can Save You Time and Make You Money

The holiday shopping season is almost upon us, which means e-commerce sales are about to spike. Even manufacturers and distributors see a surge in sales activity around the holidays.  But so few small to midsized businesses have e-commerce platforms that integrate with their ERP system. While it’s great that more and more companies are taking advantage of online storefronts, the fact that so few of these are integrated solutions creates extra work and really fails to help you take advantage of potential revenue streams.

Reasons to Integrate Your E-Commerce and ERP software

Order fulfillment– One great thing about integrating platforms is that your inventory management software can automatically update your e-commerce website, ensuring that any out of stock items are easily identified by potential customers, preventing customer service issues and cancelled orders. You can also set up alerts to notify purchasing when inventory drops to specified thresholds, to avoid out of stock issues all together.

Automatic order entry – In non-integrated systems, order information is pulled from one system and manually entered into the accounting module of the ERP system. Not only is this time consuming, but it opens the door for human error in the data entry process. An integrated solution will pull financial data and enter it directly into the accounting system, saving time and money.

Customer Targeting – Just like an integrated system can pull financial data from the e-commerce engine and enter it into the accounting software, it can also integrate with the CRM system and remember vital data. For a distributor, this might mean automatically recognizing a large client’s order volume and pricing, allowing accurate pricing to be displayed in real time. For a B2C retailer, it could mean remembering a past customer’s order and presenting special deals and related merchandise to promote additional sales.

One of the benefits of being a small to midsized organization is being agile enough to take advantage of technology. Too many of these organizations are settling on disparate systems because they don’t realize that there are options out there that are both affordable and designed to integrate with Tier 2 ERP software.

For more information on finding an e-commerce platform that integrates with your existing ERP software you can call The Attivo Group at 877-428-8486 or contact us here.


An ERP Implementation….I don’t Have Time for That

11-18-2015  |  By: The Attivo Group, Inc. |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
An ERP Implementation….I don’t Have Time for That

There are a few very real and impactful truths about an ERP implementation.  They are time consuming, they require a full investment of both human and financial capital, and there are going to be speed bumps along the way. It’s a daunting proposition that often times can scare a business away from the process all together. I don’t have time for that is a common reason we hear from companies we consult.  Despite the fact that many businesses have stretched their current software systems to the point where there are obvious holes in their processes, surviving as is seems like the lesser evil when compared to a full scale ERP project.

There are ways to lessen the impact of an implementation though. While there will still be some inevitable hiccups along the way, if you do either (or both) of these things, you should be able to keep the migraine pills in the medicine cabinet and realize a more immediate return on an ERP investment.

Do a Business Process Assessment

Before you embark on any ERP project you should conduct abusiness process assessment (BPA). This is a full audit of all of your day to day processes.  This will allow you to identify any areas of weakness and inefficiency that need to be addressed. But more importantly than that, once completed, it can be used as a checklist to determine which software package is going to best suit your specific needs. This in and of itself can eliminate a number of potential headaches down the road.  Take it one step further, however, and you can use your BPA to prioritize specific projects. You can implement in stages, reducing the initial implementation time and allowing users to get familiar with a new software package before adding addition modules and features.

Consider the Cloud

There are a lot of advantages in moving to cloud hosted ERP.  It’s the same software license as a traditional on-premise solution, but you’ve taken all of the IT infrastructure overhead and maintenance off of your plate.  As far an implementations are concerned, moving into the cloud allows your implementation partner to create your new system in the cloud while you are operating as usual.  Test environments can be set up to train on and data can be migrated to the cloud, presenting much less disruption to your business operations.  When it’s time to go live you just need to move the most recent copy of your data into the new system and hit the ground running.  In the cloud, those same test environments are still available for software updates and 3rd party add-ons that may come into play down the line.

As we said before, there will still be some bumps in the road, even if you do a BPA or move into the cloud. But those bumps will be fewer and farther between, allowing you to spend your time figuring out how to maximize your investment rather than worrying about how to maintain operations during a software transition.

For more help on choosing an ERP system or if you have any questions about cloud hosted ERP, you can call The Attivo Group at 877-428-8486 or contact us here


POP or Shop Floor – When Should You Use Them?

11-13-2015  |  By: The Attivo Group, Inc. |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
POP or Shop Floor – When Should You Use Them?




Manufacturers that use Macola have a choice as to which method they should use, but I often see clients using POP where Shop Floor is required and vice versa.  It gives you plenty of flexibility in managing production.  So what’s the right answer?  First, a few facts of interest:



  1. Shop Floor and Production Order Processing can both be used for different items. In fact, you can change an item to Shop Floor Mfg. method, and open and release a shop order for it while there are still open POP orders.
  2. Often overlooked is the use of “Order Entry” as the manufacturing method.
  3. Using the Standard Product Routing application is optional, but Manufacturing Cost Accounting is required.
  4. Forced Demand=Pull items can create either a Shop Order or a POP Order.

When should you use Shop Floor Control?

  1. When you have long mfg. lead times and need to know where you are in the process.
  2. You have a substantial value in Work in Process at any one time, and need visibility and audit capability.
  3. Product costing information and quote to actual comparisons is important.
  4. Issue of materials to a manufacturing order happens at different times in the process, or there is variability in the amount of raw materials and components from order to order.
  5. You need to more accurately schedule and manage capacity in the various work centers in your factory.
  6. Most complaints about Shop Floor center around setups required, such as routings, additional processing required to support Shop Floor, and the greater complexity of Manufacturing Cost Accounting.  However, there are many ways to deploy Shop Floor and keep it simple enough to balance the desired benefits with the additional effort.

So when should you use Production Order Processing?

  1. Items are produced quickly – like a day or two. Progress for an order is not important.
  2. Issuing materials can be done in bulk – as a “backflush” of the bill of materials - either at the start or the finish of the order.
  3. Work in Process valuation is minimal, and does not present a valuation challenge.
  4. When product costing is pretty stable, and the costed bill of material report or standard cost is a reliable number.
  5. Use POP in a Kanban environment – where production is recorded after it actually happens.
  6. Production Order Processing has its limitations, but many of those limitations can be overcome with the WiSys Agility Wireless applications, and the Lynq Workforce Manager.

How is Manufacturing Method = Order Entry Used, and what are the differences?

  1. Like a kit item, items that are flagged as manufactured but are manufactured at order entry are assembled during the order picking process. The material pick list is the actual order entry pick ticket. There is no production order required.
  2. Manufactured items where mfg. method = order entry are stocked and controlled items.
  3. A bill of material is created, just like a POP or Shop Floor item.
  4. You can do a cost roll up using either the Costed BOM Report, or if in use, Standard Costing system.
  5. Use this approach for items that are easily assembled just prior to shipment where a kit item just won’t work.

For more information on whether or not you should be using Shop Floor or POP you can contact The Attivo Group at 877-428-8486 or contact us here.

Exact Macola 10 Wins Prestigious Frost & Sullivan Award for Food and Beverage Manufacturing

11-12-2015  |  By: The Attivo Group, Inc. |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Exact Macola 10 Wins Prestigious Frost

Exact Macola 10 (EM10) isn’t even two years old yet and it’s already being recognized as one of the leading ERP software platforms available to the mid-market. Frost & Sullivan, a leading business growth and consulting firm, recently awarded EM10 with their prestigious Product Leadership award.  The award was specifically given for EM10’s expertise as a food and beverage manufacturing ERP software solution.




The Methodology behind the Award

Frost & Sullivan looked at several tier 2 ERP solutions designed specifically for mid-sized food and beverage manufacturers. They identified 10 core attributes that the various software products were judged on.

  • Match to Business Needs
  • Reliability and Quality
  • Product/Service Value
  • Positioning
  • Design
  • Financial Performance
  • Customer Acquisition
  • Operational Efficiency
  • Growth Potential
  • Human Capital

After all of the scores were tallied, EM10 stood out as the top option amongst its peers for the food and beverage industry. You can read the full report here

Why EM10 Stood Out

While EM10 received high marks in all categories, two specific features really seemed to stand out to Frost & Sullivan. The first was the amount of bang EM10 provided for the buck.  Not only was EM10 priced very competitively in the market, but it included several modules right out of the box that are often charged as add-ons with other solutions. EM10 also comes with Synergy CRM and Exact Event Manager, which makes the software a completely integrate ERP and CRM package for one low price.

Once they got past EM10’s value, they also were quick to point out EM10s innovative workspaces. As described by Frost & Sullivan “workspaces are the front-end of what users see on Exact Macola 10, a kind of interactive dashboard with the ability to not only drill down into numbers, but also take action.” The fact that EM10 is designed to be customizable based on role, providing one screen access to actionable data allows for levels of automation and efficiency not typically seen in ERP systems in the same price segment.

If you are in the food and beverage industry and would like to learn more about Exact Macola 10 and how it can transform your business you can call The Attivo Group at 877-428-8486 or contact us here

| 1| 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 ...| 75 next »
Attivo's Blog.Tips and Tricks for Increasing Productivity

The Attivo Group will get your system implemented - on time and within budget. Realize increased efficiencies, lower costs and improve profits. As trusted advisors for distributors, manufacturers and service providers, we will help you improve and automate your business processes.