Hi Everyone,

Here is a common question:

“We are currently looking for an ERP System for a job shop manufacturing environment. Many of the ones we look at are weak in accounting, or do not have the needed flexibility. Does anyone have any experience with some of the bigger ERP players?”

Here is my reply:

The more I use ADempiere, open source ERP, the more I love it. As a Director of IT, I used it to replace Microsoft Dynamics for a reverse logistics and distribution company. We went live in 2008, and the system has performs admirably. To give you an idea of the scope:

  • There are about 110 concurrent users
  • We maintain 4 different sets of books across 8 countries
  • There are two primary distribution centers

Do not be misled by the fact that it is free and open source. It is a very powerful ERP system that is capable of handling high volumes and complexity. I have worked with a company using the same code base that puts over 12M lines to the GL per year and $400M to revenue.

Here is a list of ADempiere accounting related posts. Some are tutorials and videos.

Regarding shop floor manufacturing, it has it pluses and minuses. There are two ways to execute manufacturing. The simple way is using the feature called Production. It takes a simple BOM and uses backflush to produce a finished good. The more sophisticated way is to use the MRP/CRP/DRP capabilities to perform more complex manufacturing. The biggest challenge when using the MRP tools is dumbing the system down to an acceptable and manageable level.

Here are some manufacturing demonstration videos using ADempiere and iDempiere:

  1. Introduction to ADempiere and iDempiere Manufacturing
  2. Simple Manufacturing Demonstration in ADempiere and iDempiere
  3. Light Manufacturing Demonstration using ADempiere and iDempiere
  4. Open Source ERP Manufacturing Feasibility Study – Perishable Goods

I do not mean to seem irreverent toward Microsoft Dynamics; however, 110 concurrent users is amazingly expensive (see open source ROI). If you can use solve a problem with free software, you change the dynamics for your company. At a minimum, you can use the ‘free’ card when negotiating with the bigger ERP players. It is worth a look IMHO. Here is a discussion of choosing the right MRP.

Regarding accounting abilities, here is a link that explains how ADempiere and Tier 1 ERP accounting works.

I hope this helps!!

Please note that iDempiere is a fork or copy from ADempiere. iDempiere has most of the abilities mentioned above.

About Chuck Boecking: I am an ERP educator. I believe that open source ERP have achieved mainstream capabilities, and as a result, more companies can create greater efficiency across their organization. I started using the iDempiere code base in 2003. Back then, it was called Compiere. In 2006, I started my first multi-million dollar installation. Since then, ADempiere has helped me create great success with distribution and manufacturing companies all over the world. My vision of success is to find companies that can best use open source ERP to help them achieve a single, global instance that drives a discontinuous increase in profitability. I believe that organizations win when they own their technology.

If you have questions, comments or concerns, let me know. I definitely want your feedback.

You can contact me by phone using 512.850.6068.

My email is chuck@chuboe.com.

You can complete the form on this page.

Thank you for taking the time. I look forward to speaking with you.

Chuck Boecking




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