Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains has many years of successful implementation in multiple horizontal markets. In today's small article we'll share our experience of implementing and customizing Microsoft Great Plains, formerly Great Plains eEnterprise/Dynamics in beverage production and distribution industries. These examples will cover two scenarios: US regional distribution and International fruit punch production and sales in US, Latin America and Europe. We'll try to be industry specific and at the same time technical ? using Microsoft Great Plains technical & customization terminology to address both ? decision makers and technical consultant / programmer.
? Concentrate and Output. Usually company sells concentrate to small and mid-size production facilities, where fruit punch or soda is produced and company control the produced volume in Gallons or Liters. In Great Plains you should have light production customization, the natural way is to build it upon Bill of Materials (BM) module. This production is very simple ? you put some labor units and portion of concentrate or powder to produce one Gallon / Liter of punch/soda.
? Marketing Reports. Beverage produces are fiercely competing with each other for the market share. In the case of fruit punch or soda ? competition moves to emerging markets, such as East Europe or Latin / South America. Company has to control sales dynamics via monthly marketing reports, where marketing people can compare sales comparing to the same period of the last year. You have two options ? first is to create data warehouse on SOP30200 and SOP30300 tables (Great Plains Sales Order Processing module) using MS SQL Server Datawarehousing, Cognos or other datamining tool and second ? use set of Crystal Reports. Datawarehousing approach requires user training and might be a bit less precise, Crystal Reports are very precise ? but might be less flexible.
? EDI. Electronic Document Interchange ? in the case of US regional beverage distributor/wholesaler (beer, wine, soda, strong lemonade), we usually see UNIX ordering system, working with EDI orders. In this case Great Plains has to be integrated with this IBM AS/400/RS6000 box and as company manager you should be looking for Microsoft Business Solutions VAR/Partner, who has experience dealing with multiple platforms: UNIX/Linux/Windows/Oracle/Sun Solaris
? Advertisement Expense Allocation. Beverage producer usually launches TV ads on local markets, especially difficult is to track ads efficiency on the emerging markets: Central America, Caribbean, Africa, South East Asia, Russia. You need to establish variable or fixed allocation accounts mechanisms for ads expense tracking
Good luck with implementation, customization and integration and if you have issues or concerns ? we are here to help! If you want us to do the job - give us a call 866-528-0577 or 630-961-5918! [email protected]
Andrew is Great Plains specialist in Alba Spectrum Technologies (http://www.albaspectrum.com) ? Microsoft Great Plains, Navision, Microsoft CRM Partner, serving clients in California, Minnesota, Illinois, Washington, Florida, Arizona, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Canada, UK, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Russia