One of the most frequently asked questions I get is “which open source ERP solution is the best”. There is no straight forward answer, but to solve this problem, I’ll try to use a very common technique – break a large problem to smaller ones. I’ll be reviewing the leading open source ERP software solutions by different modules – manufacturing, sales, accounting, e-commerce, warehouse management etc. That will make it easy for anyone looking to implement one of the review ERP systems .
We will start with reviews of the manufacturing module of Compiere, and in future posts we will cover support for manufacturing by other ERP vendors.
Compiere provides a comprehensive manufacturing solutions. Basic manufacturing functionality is fully supported. Like any other ERP manufacturing solution, you first have to setup the manufacturing module, describing your shop-floor’s objects and processes. That means defining work centers, Bill Of Material, routing and costing information.
Once these are all setup, you can start working with the basic working units of any manufacturing software – your work orders. Compiere manufacturing supports make to order (as demod here) WO, manual creation of WO and automatic work order generation by MRP. The work order life cycle is fully supported, from drafting, to releasing, to executing.
What I found most impressive about Compiere’s manufacturing is the level of integration between the different modules, which is the major selling point of any ERP. When a BOM is exploded for the product you manufacture, each consumed material stock level are automatically updated. Posting to accounting is a one click action. Resource allocation (man work hours) are also charged to the WO.
There are two shortcomings I can identify in Compiere manufacturing – it does not support process manufacturing, and it is not free. If want to use this module, you have to pay separately and you must sign up to either the professional or enterprise edition of Compiere.
Pros: comprehensive support for discrete manufacturing, tight integration with other Compiere ERP modules.
Cons: Non-free and requires a paid subscription, no support for process manufacturing.
Demo: Compiere Manufacturing