what SAP is in business logistics and supply chain


what SAP is in business logistics and supply chain

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SAP is a software that integrates the planning and operations for sales, purchases, manufacturing, shipping, and warehouse operations all in one program.

In my old warehouse, the warehouse management module was sophisticated enough to plan the work of individual forklifts so that they rarely get into each other’s way. The boss assigned a priority and input the work orders, and the system distributed everything to maximize output and minimize empty handed return trips or forklifts waiting for another to clear the way.

There was also a module that predicted automatically, for the orders assembled by hand, how long they will take to do and how many employees you will need on the floor to complete them with whichever is your target amount of overtime.

Once you’ve got all that running your warehouse or factory, it can also automatically order all the base materials you’ll need to operate the whole business with minimal human supervision. Once you’re there, you can also buy modules that will handle shipping routes and tell you how much you’re spending in gas.

At the end of the day, it becomes one big tantacular monster which makes your business more efficient, but also requires competent technicians to keep everything running smoothly. It also leaves you vulnerable to power or network outages. Those leave you completely unable to do any work in most cases. There was this one time where our server died, and we knew which vans were incoming. We actually manually received everything and just noted down pallet numbers, van IDs, and localizations to be input later, then got in trouble because we’re not supposed to do things manually lol.

Edit: The biggest advantage of SAP is that everyone from IT personel to worker drones can be trained on the same software. All the different modules fit with each other like a jigsaw puzzle, made by the same company, operating on the same standards. Ther old way is to have different softwares by different makers all installed on the same server and train your IT staff on all of them, requiring many more certifications and so much more work when these softwares refuse to communicate or work together well. The entry price is higher, but once you grow a certain size, it becomes the only efficient way to go.