ERP – Enterprise resource planning

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Theoretical framework

In this chapter the evolution of ERP solutions will be presented with the help of the theo-ries related to Enterprise systems or ERP, mobility and Mobile ERP. We will divide our work into subsections of ERP, Mobility and Mobile ERP. In all three subsections the re-search domain will be described as well as the added value for companies.

ERP – Enterprise resource planning
Evolution of the field of ERP

To understand the evolution of the integrated ERP system, we need a brief overview of the development of information technologies that led to the emergence and progress of inte-grated systems. The history of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) started from the early attempts of calculating machines in the 1940s, but the “birth date” of ERPs was in 1960 as Material requirements planning (MRP) (Shaul, 2011).

Inventory control packages and MRP

The end of World War II is considered as the point of onset of information technology. The first computers used in business practices were mainframe computers in 1960. These computers were kept in climate controlled rooms for operational and security purposes. Programs were executed using cards or magnetic tape; it could take hours until the infor-mation was processed by the computer (Shaul, 2011).
In the 1960s, computers became smaller, cheaper and faster. Material requirements plan-ning (MRP) was the first method used to manage manufacturing, and was created to meet the need to manage demand and ordering which grew. The birth of the method also arised because of the need to transfer the management from paper into computers. Even though MRP systems are software-based, it was also possible to conduct MRP paper based (Shaul, 2011). The first Material Requirements Planning (MRP) was developed in 1964, by Joseph Orlicky, as a response to the TOYOTA Manufacturing Program. The software was imple-mented by Black & Decker, with Dick Alban as project leader.
Meanwhile in 1972 in Mannheim, Germany, a new enterprise was born in order to produce market standardized software for integrated business solutions. Four out of five engineers who founded Systemanalyse und Programmentwicklung (SAP) came from IBM. With time, SAP evolved and became one of the largest ERP vendors.
In 1975, the company Lawson Software was born because the founders saw an opportunity of other production planning and inventory control systems with pre-packed solutions as an alternative to the customized one existing in the market. In 1977, Jack Thompson, Dan Gregory and Ed McVaney formed JD Edwards. The same year, Larry Ellison launched Or-acle Corporation. In 1978, Jan Baan started The Baan Corporation to provide financial and administrative consulting services. The company began to use UNIX as their main operat-ing system in 1981 and in 1982, delivered its first software product.


In 1981, the MRP developed by Joe Orlicky evolved into Oliver Wight’s manufacturing re-source planning (MRP II). MRP II was developed in order to bring both demand and time phasing into the planning process. In the same period, accounting solutions where gaining importance and were integrated in the MRP to manage the billing of the material, the in-ventory and to be able to calculate materials requirements and schedule them. In 1983, Or-acle offered both a VAX mode database as well as a database written entirely in C (for portability). Two years later, in 1985, JD Edwards was recognized as an industry-leading supplier of applications software for the IBM AS/400 computer, a direct descendant of the System/38.
In 1987, PeopleSoft was founded by Dave Duffield and Ken Morris. The company devel-oped its Human Resource Management System in 1988.
In 1990, Baan software was rolled out to thirty-five countries through indirect sales chan-nels. 1990 was also the year the term ERP was coined by Gartner Group. The acronym ERP (enterprise resource planning) was an extension of material requirements planning (MRP). By the mid–1990s, ERP systems addressed all core functions of an enterprise. Be-yond corporations, governments and non–profit organizations also began to employ ERP systems. In 1991, ERP uses multi-module application software for improving the perfor-mance of internal business processes. ERP systems integrate business activities across func-tional departments.
In 1992, SAP released R/3 – a radically re -written client/server version of its ERP suite. Legacy mainframe systems remain active in many companies today, but the market for new manufacturing software systems would become a primarily client/server opportunity (Sin-gleton, 2013).

ERP II: Internet-based solutions

In 2000, most ERP systems enhanced their products to become internet enabled so that customers worldwide could have direct access to suppliers’ ERP systems. Today, ERP re-mains the broadest descriptor of enterprise software applications in manufacturing and be-yond (Singleton, 2013).
In 2000, the introduction of the web browser and the dramatic growth of the Internet led to “Web-Based Computing”. Same year, the enterprise software footprint expanded further as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) emerged as a new class of manufacturing software application (Singleton, 2013).
In December 2000, Microsoft entered the ERP Market, acquiring accounting systems ven-dor Great Plains Software. While Great Plains was targeted at small and medium size com-panies, Microsoft would soon move up market by acquiring another vendor, Navision. To-day, Microsoft is a major player in manufacturing through its rebranded Dynamics product line (Singleton, 2013).
In 2002, most ERP systems enhanced their products and became “Internet Enabled” so that customers worldwide could have direct access to the supplier’s ERP system. In 2004, Services Oriented Architecture (SOA) became a standard that ERP vendors work towards. This software architecture allowed different systems to communicate between one another.
Between 2003 and 2007 the industry consolidation accelerated, starting with PeopleSoft’s friendly acquisition of JD Edwards in 2003. Shortly after that, Oracle made a hostile bid to acquire PeopleSoft (and JD Edwards). The deal closed in 2005 and Oracle has since ac-quired roughly 30 other manufacturing software vendors. Private equity firms also entered the market, « rolling up » scores of vendors – Infor emerging as the dominant example of this strategy. Sage Software also acquired roughly 40 products and companies.
In 2005, many vendors owned numerous application « code bases » – different programming languages, data models, and user interfaces. Most of the major vendors were engaged in multi -year engineering efforts to merge their acquired products into seamless, manageable code bases. Microsoft had Project Green. Oracle has Fusion. Even relatively in acquisitive SAP was evolving its own « service-oriented architecture ».
In 2006 Software as a Service (SaaS) became a reality, and ERP systems began their widely implementation (Singleton, 2013).
In 2007, the market leader in Business Intelligence (BI) software, Business Objects had been acquired by SAP for $6.8 billion. Business Object most interesting feature was the re-porting and analysis tool that allowed companies to analyse the data they collect and man-age in their transactional enterprise systems. Currently, almost all vendors offer a form of BI in order to keep up with the competition. Some are combining operational strategic planning functionality with the BI in order to create a new category of software application referred to as Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) (Singleton, 2013).

Alternative ERP solutions

In 2009 “Cloud Computing” emerged as the next architectural shift in the manufacturing software market. Building on the tenets of a web-based architecture, cloud computing is built on a web-based architecture and the concept refers to the integration and manage-ment of manufacturing software across powerful data centres. The resulted integration and costs of ownership advantages forced manufacturing software vendors to rethink their de-ployment models.
The next step into making their systems easier to use and less expensive to implement and maintain is mobile ERPs which can be used at any time with the help of a gadget.
The reasons behind this solution are firstly because time is important, but also about effi-ciency. In some domains, those can make or break a business. If a company sales team doesn’t upload on time what was ordered, chain problems can appear, from stock to manu-facturing issues, and in that way possibly breaking the business deal. The second reason is that a lot of applications have moved on to mobile application and of course it should be the next step for ERPs, in order to keep their competitive edge. Another aspect of mobile ERP is that even though real -time was not before necessary, it should be a requirement now both for efficiency issues but also for technical issues, this way any problem and solu-tion for it can be check at any moment (Willis, 2002).

1 Introduction
1.1 Background
1.2 Problem
1.3 Purpose
1.4 Research question
1.5 Definitions
1.6 Delimitations
2 Theoretical framework 
2.1 ERP – Enterprise resource planning
2.2 Mobility
2.3 ERP mobility
3 Methods
3.1 Research design
3.2 To design a literature review
3.3 Framework for the literature review
3.4 Research methods used for data collection
4 Findings and analysis 
4.1 Results of data collection
4.2 Analysis of found research publication
4.3 Summary of the analysis topic by topic
5 Discussion
5.1 Conclusions
5.2 Further research
Mobile ERP A literature review on the concept of Mobile ERP systems Paper within

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