Offerings From SAP, Manugistics and Sun Bring Efficiency to Manufacturers

Software and technology bundles due to be introduced by SAP AG, Manugistics Group Inc. and Sun Microsystems Inc.

Software and technology bundles due to be introduced by SAP AG, Manugistics Group Inc. and Sun Microsystems Inc. at this weeks National Manufacturing Week trade show in Chicago aim to make life easier for IT managers at manufacturing companies.

SAP, of Walldorf, Germany, will introduce upgrades to its manufacturing automation software as well as new iterations of its standard enterprise software for small and midsize manufacturers in vertical markets.

The developer is taking the Industrial Machinery and Components module of its Engineering and Construction suite and making it a stand-alone offering. The goal of the software is to provide a real-time view into operations on the shop floor, which lessens discrepancies between supply chain planning and execution, officials said. One way it does this is by providing alerts when plans are not being adhered to.

In addition, SAP will announce availability of MySAP All-in-One software packages for small and midsize manufacturers of consumer packaged goods in the cosmetics and food vertical markets, as well as for semiconductor makers. While they are not specifically for manufacturers, SAP will also roll out solutions for computer resellers and technical service providers.

The packages define and automate a variety of processes, such as taking an order, that are based on best practices for the industry addressed, according to officials.

The five new packages join 20 other All-in-One offerings already available. SAP plans to have 40 such packages available by the end of the year. Each is deployed by an SAP reseller partner with vertical-industry expertise.

Separately, Manugistics, of Rockville, Md., and Sun, of Santa Clara, Calif., will introduce a bundle of the formers Collaborative Supply Planning software preconfigured on Sun hardware. The bundle will be targeted at discrete manufacturing companies, such as those that make high-tech, automobile and medical device products, and provides capabilities for members in a supply chain to share planning information to make production more efficient. The software has been optimized to run on Sun hardware.

In addition to the bundle, Sun will offer to host the Manugistics supply chain planning software in its data centers. Regardless of whether the software is hosted or run by the customer, the companies promise a rapid implementation with a quicker return on investment.

Sun itself has deployed the Manugistics software.