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Creating an Intelligent Infrastructure for ERP Systems



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Creating an Intelligent Infrastructure for ERP Systems The Role of RFID Technology Edmund W Schuster schuster ed w info David L Brock dlb mit edu At its core ERP is essentially a large database As increasing amounts of data become available through new technologies such as RFID the nature of ERP and the infrastructure needed to support the system will change dramatically This article explores just a few of the issues that will surround this change Simply stated an enterprise resource planning ERP system identifies and plans the resources needed to take make ship and account for customer orders 1 To achieve these important tasks ERP uses a variety of information technologies such as graphical user interfaces relational databases advanced computer languages and computer assisted software engineering tools In essence implementers of ERP systems seek to plan and control all the resources in a manufacturing or service oriented company The development of ERP systems traces to the early foundations of material requirements planning MRP and the advent of the widespread use of computers that have defined the information revolution of the past 60 years Initially one of the most important aspects of MRP involved the entry of data such as inventory for each component location within the manufacturing operation bill of material and cost data and customer due dates In many respects MRP the subsequent development of manufacturing resource planning MRPII and ERP represents increasingly sophisticated databases that over time have improved tactical and strategic business planning The result of this dramatic increase in the amount of data and information available to planners has been much improved inventory management and better utilization of important assets such as manufacturing capacity It is hard to imagine how a modern business could be successful without the data management capabilities of an ERP system Essentially an ERP system serves an uncertainty absorption function 6 It



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