We continue our series of reviews of ERP manufacturing modules by the leading open source ERP vendors. Last time we covered Compiere’s manufacturing module, and this time we’ll review Opnebravo’s manufacturing, called Production Management.
Openbravo, similar to Compiere, provides a comprehensive manufacturing solution for discrete industries. All the usual suspects are supported – configuration of work centers, operations, machines, cost centers are all done in the manufacturing module.
In the product level, you will define your B.O.M and relevant costing. Openbravo provides a details costing mechanism, where you can load cost of just about every operation and resource used in your production run. It’s important to note that costing is a real challenge every manufacturer faces – not only in terms of functionality required from the software solution used, but also in terms of how to load different expanses to accurately reflect production costs and later calculate actual sales margins. Openbravo does a good job of providing a flexible costing framework.
Openbravo also support make to order WO, manual creation of WO and a basic MRP (we will compare MRP solutions in a different series of posts).
In terms of functionality, Openbravo provides similar levels of functionality to what is offered by Compiere. I liked the Compiere user interface better - in compiere, it’s much easier to find out what the status of each work order is, see the different operations forming the routing of the order and in general, to find your way around the relevant screens. Working on several ERP manufacturing solutions in the past, I felt more at home with Compiere’s manufacturing module UI.
However, Openbravo production management has two very important advantages over Compiere manufacturing: it’s a true open source module, with very detailed, public documentation, and more importantly, it’s completly free! Well, it’s not really free, as any real world ERP implementation is never free(support and customization costs, to remind you). But Openbravo doesn’t make you pay separately for their manufacturing module, as does Compiere. Care to try Openbravo’s production management module? you can just download and install Openbravo ERP and production management is there, no extra costs, no special licenses.
Pros: Fully functional manufacturing module suitable for discrete manufacturing, free, great documentation.
Cons: Cumbersome UI.