ERP Glossary - B: Beta Tests to Bond

Beta test

Refers to the final round of software testing, in which software deemed ready for commercialization is released to a small number of real external customers, who typically will uncover bugs not discovered in development testing.

BI (Business Intelligence)

ERP BI transform transactional data from ERP systems into actionable business information. An example would be, combining all of the invoice transactions in a way that allows easy revenue analysis by product, by customer, by region, or by salesperson.

Bill of Material

A written outline of the name and quantity of components required to construct a part. A bill of materials can be one level ( a car requires one engine, two headlights, and four tires), or multi-level, ( a car requires one engine; one engine requires six cylinders, six sparkplugs, one air filter etc....).

Blanket Order

A binding external order for a large quantity of material in which the delivery dates, and quantities for each delivery date are to be determined in the future. Blanket orders can be used to improve service for the buyer while reducing risk for the manufacturer, when the demand pattern is highly variable or otherwise uncertain.

BOH (Balance On Hand)

The amount of stock showing in inventory. BOH is the quantity used in the fundamental planning equation.

BOL (Bill of Lading)

A legal document specifying what, and how much of a product a transport is carrying. The Bill of Lading must be co-signed by the shipper and the transporter when the goods are finished loading, and it must be counter signed by the receiver to acknowledge the receipt of goods.


The financial instrument which is sold when companies or governments wish to borrow money on the open market. A bond is a promise to pay a periodic fixed rate of interest as well as return of the original principle at the maturity of the bond. In the UK, what the US calls bonds are more generally referred to as "debentures".

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Tom Feltham

About the author…

Tom Feltham was Editor at ERP Focus for three years from 2013-2016. Tom still keeps tabs on the ERP software market and occasionally puts pen to paper when inspiration strikes.

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Tom Feltham