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Supply Chain Management Software


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Fishbowl Inventory logo
 
We recommend Fishbowl Inventory to small to mid-sized businesses evaluating supply chain software that integrates with QuickBooks. Supports multiple locations and offers order management, tracking and reporting functionality.
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We recommend Fishbowl Inventory to small to mid-sized businesses evaluating supply chain software that integrates with QuickBooks. Supports multiple locations and offers order management, tracking and reporting functionality.
 
Rubberstamp logo
 
Rubberstamp is a standalone, web-based Procurement system. It aims to help automate the entire procurement process for businesses in many different verticals, from pharmaceuticals to electronics to office supplies. It is compatible... Read More
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Rubberstamp is a standalone, web-based Procurement system. It aims to help automate the entire procurement process for businesses in many different verticals, from pharmaceuticals to electronics to office supplies. It is compatible... Read More
 
Freightview logo
 
Freightview is a standalone transportation management system designed for small to midsize businesses that ship less-than-truckload (LTL) freight and work with multiple carriers or brokers. Its customers include manufacturers and distributors... Read More
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Freightview is a standalone transportation management system designed for small to midsize businesses that ship less-than-truckload (LTL) freight and work with multiple carriers or brokers. Its customers include manufacturers and distributors... Read More
 
Deltek Costpoint logo
 
Deltek Costpoint is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) and management solution designed to meet the requirements of midsize and large enterprise businesses. The solution primarily assists government contractors, professional service... Read More
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Deltek Costpoint is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) and management solution designed to meet the requirements of midsize and large enterprise businesses. The solution primarily assists government contractors, professional service... Read More
 
Procurify logo
 
Procurify is a web-based procurement platform that allows users to make requests, approvals, and purchases from any Internet-connected device. This real-time platform helps users can create, track, and report on all requisitions,... Read More
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Procurify is a web-based procurement platform that allows users to make requests, approvals, and purchases from any Internet-connected device. This real-time platform helps users can create, track, and report on all requisitions,... Read More

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3PL Warehouse Manager by 3PL Central logo
 
3PL Central's 3PL Warehouse Manager is a stand alone warehouse solution designed for the specific needs of third-party logistics operations. Offers functionality to help 3PLs better manage multiple clients and accounts.
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3PL Central's 3PL Warehouse Manager is a stand alone warehouse solution designed for the specific needs of third-party logistics operations. Offers functionality to help 3PLs better manage multiple clients and accounts.
 
Tipalti logo
 
Tipalti is a cloud-based accounting management solution that helps users automate their accounts payable process. It offers a variety of features, including invoice automation, payment remittance, regulatory compliance management,... Read More
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Tipalti is a cloud-based accounting management solution that helps users automate their accounts payable process. It offers a variety of features, including invoice automation, payment remittance, regulatory compliance management,... Read More
 
Conga Novatus Contract Management logo
 
Conga Novatus Contract Management software provides a comprehensive solution designed to help businesses generate, track, maintain, and report on important business contracts. Conga Novatus Contract Management solution automates the... Read More
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Conga Novatus Contract Management software provides a comprehensive solution designed to help businesses generate, track, maintain, and report on important business contracts. Conga Novatus Contract Management solution automates the... Read More
 
Wireless Warehouse in a Box™ by Systems Logic logo
 
Having mobility in mind, Wireless Warehouse In A Box™ offers turnkey WMS software with tier 1 capability with a multi-language, mobile solution. From blind receipts and directed put-away, to full pick, pack, ship and carrier compliance... Read More
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Having mobility in mind, Wireless Warehouse In A Box™ offers turnkey WMS software with tier 1 capability with a multi-language, mobile solution. From blind receipts and directed put-away, to full pick, pack, ship and carrier compliance... Read More
 
Lead Commerce logo
 
Lead Commerce is a full-featured, flexible, and customizable order management solution that offers a powerful suite of applications like Inventory Management, Merchandise Planning, and Customer Relationship Management. The solution... Read More
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Lead Commerce is a full-featured, flexible, and customizable order management solution that offers a powerful suite of applications like Inventory Management, Merchandise Planning, and Customer Relationship Management. The solution... Read More

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Latitude WMS logo
 
PathGuide Technologies delivers comprehensive warehouse management systems to optimize productivity and key processes across a distribution enterprise. Their flagship product, Latitude WMS, is engineered to embrace the system’s... Read More
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PathGuide Technologies delivers comprehensive warehouse management systems to optimize productivity and key processes across a distribution enterprise. Their flagship product, Latitude WMS, is engineered to embrace the system’s... Read More
 
TPSynergy logo
 
TPSynergy is a Web-based supply chain management (SCM) solution that offers users a suite of applications to that can help companies of many sizes and types manage their supply chain from beginning to end. Integrated supply chain planning,... Read More
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TPSynergy is a Web-based supply chain management (SCM) solution that offers users a suite of applications to that can help companies of many sizes and types manage their supply chain from beginning to end. Integrated supply chain planning,... Read More
 
QStrat QLM Sourcing logo
 
Since its launch in 2000, QStrat has offered three supply chain management (SCM) products: QLM Costing, QLM Sourcing and QLM Sales. These are flexible systems that are available as either Web-based or on-premise. Many essential applications... Read More
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Since its launch in 2000, QStrat has offered three supply chain management (SCM) products: QLM Costing, QLM Sourcing and QLM Sales. These are flexible systems that are available as either Web-based or on-premise. Many essential applications... Read More
 
3PLink by Camelot 3PL logo
 
Camelot Software offers both on-premise and Cloud-based hosting options for its 3PLink warehouse management system. Designed to specifically handle multi-client, client-owned inventory warehouse operations.
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Camelot Software offers both on-premise and Cloud-based hosting options for its 3PLink warehouse management system. Designed to specifically handle multi-client, client-owned inventory warehouse operations.
 
U Route logo
 
U Route is a transportation management system that was designed to tighten the link between shippers and their core carriers. Offering a host of features in a scalable web-based environment, U Route is a suitable option for companies... Read More
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U Route is a transportation management system that was designed to tighten the link between shippers and their core carriers. Offering a host of features in a scalable web-based environment, U Route is a suitable option for companies... Read More

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Apprise logo
 
Apprise offers organizations an enterprise resource management (ERP) and supply chain management solution developed for consumer goods manufacturers, importers and distributors. It is suitable for companies operating internationally... Read More
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Apprise offers organizations an enterprise resource management (ERP) and supply chain management solution developed for consumer goods manufacturers, importers and distributors. It is suitable for companies operating internationally... Read More
 
Transwide TMS logo
 
Transwide is a modular and carrier neutral Transportation Management Solution that is delivered in a Software as a Service format. The suite of integrated modules provides the tools for carriers to source, plan, execute, settle, and... Read More
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Transwide is a modular and carrier neutral Transportation Management Solution that is delivered in a Software as a Service format. The suite of integrated modules provides the tools for carriers to source, plan, execute, settle, and... Read More
 
ProcureWare logo
 
Since 1999, eBid Systems has been providing supplier management, sourcing, bidding, and contract management software-as-a-service to clients globally across a range of industries. ProcureWare by eBid Systems is their latest cloud-based... Read More
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Since 1999, eBid Systems has been providing supplier management, sourcing, bidding, and contract management software-as-a-service to clients globally across a range of industries. ProcureWare by eBid Systems is their latest cloud-based... Read More
 
Snapfulfil logo
 
Snapfulfil by Synergy North America is a full-featured cloud-based/Software as a Service (SaaS) warehouse management system (WMS) designed to meet the needs of a variety of businesses in a multitude of industries, including manufacturing,... Read More
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Snapfulfil by Synergy North America is a full-featured cloud-based/Software as a Service (SaaS) warehouse management system (WMS) designed to meet the needs of a variety of businesses in a multitude of industries, including manufacturing,... Read More
 
Synapse logo
 
Created by Zethcon, Synapse is an end-to-end Warehouse Management System for small to mid-sized businesses. This system is geared towards 3PLs and offers many 3PL-centric features. However, it also works well for a variety of other... Read More
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Created by Zethcon, Synapse is an end-to-end Warehouse Management System for small to mid-sized businesses. This system is geared towards 3PLs and offers many 3PL-centric features. However, it also works well for a variety of other... Read More
 

Buyer's Guide

by Daniel Harris,
Market Research Associate
Last Updated: April 21, 2017


While the supply chain management software market is relatively small (compared to many other markets), the vast disparity in functionality between different SCM programs makes buying decisions much more complicated. Some programs concentrate on business intelligence, others focus on inventory control or transportation management and there are full-suite systems that do all of the above and more. This buyer’s guide is designed to identify the features associated with supply chain management systems to help navigate the selection process.

Here's what we'll cover:

What Is SCM Software?
Common Features of SCM Software
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Market Trends to Understand
Benefits of SCM Software
Recent Events You Should Know About

What Is SCM Software?

Supply chain software refers to the range of tools that are designed to control business processes, execute value chain transactions and manage supplier relationships. While functionality in these systems varies tremendously, common features include:

  • Purchase order fulfillment
  • Shipping
  • Inventory management
  • Supplier sourcing
  • Execution-focused applications (e.g., warehouse and transportation management) 

Many supply chain management systems include forecasting, which helps companies manage the fluctuations in supply and demand by using complex algorithms and consumption analysis to evaluate buyer histories. Supply chain optimization software can be an invaluable tool in maximizing production efficiency and planning for the future.

Screenshot of Freightview shipment overview dashboard

Screenshot of Freightview shipment overview dashboard

Common Features of SCM Software

Supply chain planning Planning systems are used to forecast customer demand and adjust the speed and flow of production accordingly. Simulated demand estimates are run using historical trend data and planned promotion schedules to determine how changes in market awareness will affect your organization's inventory requirements in the future. Example vendors include InStyle ERP, SCP 4.0, VISION SCM and Clever.
Demand planning Demand planning software improves the accuracy of potential demand forecasts by reducing biases in the data and providing that data to your organization in real-time. Multi-dimensional forecasting allows users to view information through a variety of different filters—by market, time or customer—and run a series of "what if" simulations to project future demand. Example vendors include Microsoft Dynamics, Geneva BMS, Fishbowl Inventory and SAP.
Vendor managed inventory Vendor managed inventory (VMI) systems give suppliers the ability to monitor and replenish the buyer's inventory themselves. Various communication options—such as XML, Web portals and email—help multiple business partners increase visibility. Buyers can automate sold inventory reports, and suppliers respond with new shipment notifications and invoices. Example vendors include Datalliance VMI, RedPrairie, SAP and Aravo.
Supplier management Buyers use supplier relationship solutions to monitor the performance of their suppliers. Users can assess supplier risk through user-defined risk categories. Performance analyses utilize key performance indicators (KPI) and audit trails to monitor spend and supplier performance. The software also helps users keep track of their suppliers' regulatory compliance. Example vendors include R.Portal, Geneva BMS, Fishbowl Inventory and S2K.
Procurement Procurement software carries out purchase orders and maintains the financial side of supplier/customer relationships. Purchasing terms are distributed electronically throughout the organization for instant approval, and expenses are logged for future reference in the next sourcing cycle. As the accounting segment of SCM systems, procurement also handles reporting and compliance issues. Example vendors include Coupa, SphereWMS, Microsoft Dynamics and WISE.
Strategic sourcing Sourcing software is used before the procurement process to establish cost-cutting goals and to pre-screen potential vendors. Spend analysis pinpoints unnecessary costly supplier relationships by comparing current spend to other market options. Buyers can submit e-RFx, electronic requests for x (quotes, proposals and other information), to potential vendors to gather data for making informed purchases. Example vendors include ShippersEdge, Aravo, Epicor and Lawson.
Warehouse management WMS systems monitor and control the movement of materials within the warehouse. Shipping and receiving events are controlled with advanced shipment notifications, and picking and putaway are tracked using tools like auto ID data capture (AIDC) and radio-frequency identification (RFID). WMS software also assists with the design of warehouse infrastructure. Third party logistics companies should review our 3PL software guide for a list of systems tailored for 3PL. Example vendors include SphereWMS, WISE, HighJump Warehouse Advantage, Manhattan Associates and RedPrairie.
Transportation management TMS software guides the movement of materials to and from the warehouse. Logistics software can suggest the most efficient delivery modalities (air, land, sea) and manages multiple delivery variations like heterogenous vehicle fleets and load splitting constraints. Deliveries are monitored using satcomm and other communication devices. Land-based fleets should review our fleet management software guide for the top trucking, dispatch and routing software as well as systems to manage overall operations.
Order fulfillment This software helps supply chain managers decrease lead times on production orders, resulting in smooth quote to cash processes. The system can determine whether build-to-order (BTO) or engineer-to-order (ETO) is the best solution for each product. After order completion, order fulfillment software keeps track of unpaid orders through revenue recognition processes.Order fulfillment applications are often bundled in to broader order management systems. Example vendors include SphereWMS, ShipppersEdge and ShipSoft. 

What Type of Buyer Are You?

Third party logistics. Companies that manage the ordering, warehousing and transportation of supplies for another business need a robust solution that can handle the data and processes for lots of different companies. These supply chain management tools will include lot tracking, customer profiling, supply management and order fulfillment.

Manufacturing. Manufacturing software needs to be able to track suppliers, costs and customers. This is where features like collaboration, demand planning and strategic sourcing are most likely to be used.

Distribution. Distributors sit in the middle, connecting manufacturers to retailers and/or consumers. Distributors need to track products and terms for multiple suppliers and customers, and have robust inventory and transportation capabilities in order to ensure the products get to the right person at the right time. Freight brokers and forwarders also fit into this category, and they typically rely on specialized software that facilitates daily freight operations.

Retailers. Brick and mortar retailers will want to consider dedicated retail software, but phone—and Internet—order retailers function more like distributors. These buyers will need warehouse and transportation solutions, inventory control and possibly additional strategic/planning modules, particularly for the larger/volume-based retailers.

Market Trends to Understand

Online purchases. Over the last decade, online retail sales have exploded, and with them the need for effective warehousing, inventory and transportation control. Suppliers, more often than not, are taking a product from manufacturing not to a store, but to a warehouse where it is stored and ultimately sent directly to the consumer. Ensuring an effective inventory control path is absolutely critical throughout this process.

Software as a service (SaaS). Cloud-based software—that is, software that’s hosted by the vendor and accessed through a Web browser rather than being installed on a local computer—has been adopted by most industries to a large extent. SCM technology has been a little slower to adopt this trend, with major players like Microsoft, Geneva Systems, WISE and Fishbowl yet to develop Web-based systems. But as the technology improves, more and more supply chain management software providers will offer Web-based applications, with its benefits of collaborative networks and online purchasing integration. Currently, S2K and SAP are the biggest SaaS contenders.

Eco-friendly logistics. With environmental consciousness at an all-time high, consumers are beginning to think about logistics when it comes to purchasing their products. This trend is most noticeable in the food industry, where grocery stores and restaurants are beginning to brand and market products under a banner of being “locally sourced.” As transportation from suppliers is the easiest place for a manufacturer to cut its carbon footprint, buyers may want to look out for a program’s ability to identify suppliers based on proximity or other green factors.

Improving business intelligence. More and more companies want to know how their business spends money, so sophistication of planning, demand planning and strategic sourcing capabilities will only grow in an effort to meet the demand.

Increased demand for labor management. Companies using SCM software to track their inventory are now turning their attention toward labor optimization and the ability to manage each worker more efficiently. These systems can create a list of tasks for a worker so he can complete multiple types of work in one trip.

Benefits of SCM Software

The benefits of supply management software are considerable:

Increased efficiency. First and foremost, SCM software is designed to improve the efficiency of your operation, from inventory check-in and storage to distribution and transportation. By making the processes electronic and/or automated, the time spent on these tasks drops considerably, which allows you to send more products out faster.

Reduced costs. The resulting efficiency reduces labor costs. In addition, many of the intelligence features are specifically designed to identify cost waste and eliminate it—for example, where commodities can be procured at lower rates, how to combine shipping to reduce to transportation costs or where to reduce inventory to maximize storage capacity.

Trend analysis and business intelligence. The intelligence features, in addition to helping control costs, can help improve revenues by identifying strongly performing products and guiding the user toward meeting market demand.

While these supply chain solutions do come at a price, proper implementation will usually lead to a calculable return on investment within a year.

Recent Events You Should Know About

Jabil Circuit enters supply-chain software business. In October 2016, Jabil Circuit, a manufacturer of electronic components for the likes of Apple and Cisco, announced that it is entering the supply chain management software business. Jabil’s move into software-as-a-service (SaaS) comes with growing demand for technology to help companies manage increasingly global and fast-paced supply chains. The move underscores how Jabil and other electronics manufacturers, including Flextronics International, are pushing beyond their core businesses to higher-margin products and services.

Infor introduces cloud-based supply chain planning suite. In November 2016, Infor launched Infor Integrated Business Planning (IBP), a comprehensive suite of tools for optimizing supply chain processes. The suite integrates core supply chain management (SCM) processes, such as sales & operations planning (S&OP), demand planning (DP) and supply planning (SP) processes, into a holistic, cloud-based solution.

IT firm Saksoft acquires 60 percent stake in DreamOrbit. In December 2016, India-based IT company Saksoft Ltd acquired a 60 percent stake in DreamOrbit Softech, a provider of software engineering services, for an undisclosed amount. DreamOrbit develops IoT-based solutions for logistics services providers including freight and supply chain management software. With the acquisition, Saksoft hopes to strengthen its IoT offerings.

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