Five chemical manufacturing ERPs for your selection shortlist

As we have discussed in the past, like all other niche-ERP variants, Chemical manufacturers typically offer common ERP capabilities, while at the same time including discrete functionalities depending on the system brand. This sensitivity is further complicated by requirements associated with sub-niche production categories ranging from; discrete, process, mixed-mode, and engineer-to-order, to make-to-order, repetitive, and finally job shop manufacturing.

The total granularity of each category defines a ‘right fit’ for each customer. Consequently, and due to editorial length constraints, I have defined a single set of research filters in order to establish a reasonable set of comparisons. Bear in mind, that my suggestions are not intended to define a universal ‘best pick’ since every enterprise requirement is different; but simply offer some guidance as you work your own problem, in your own way.

1. IQMS - EnterpriseIQ

IQMS is a lead creator of a single vendor software solutions. This single-vision approach enables end-to end chemical enterprise operations, thereby allowing the enterprise to realize enhanced profit, without the need for multi-vendor involvement.

Their EnterpriseIQ ERP is a fully-integrated modular solution which will suit larger enterprises.

Key features for chemical manufacturers include:

  • Production planning
  • Product lifecycle management
  • Capacity planning
  • Automated workflow
  • Production activity monitoring

Fact file

Number of installations: 1200+
User Range: 5 - Unlimited
Platforms: Cloud-Based (Saas), MS SQL Server, ODBC Compliant, Oracle, Amazon Web services (Cloud)
Server OS: Windows, Linux, Unix, .NET

2. SYSPRO

SYSPRO is a fully integrated ERP business software solution that provides complete control over the planning and management of all facets of business including accounting, manufacturing and distribution operations in a variety of industries including the chemical, mixed-mode manufacturing segment.

Guide: seven steps to selecting process manufacturing ERP

Ideal for midmarket firms who want a flexible solution that can grow with them, SYSPRO's powerful financial features, modular structure and vast array of features make it worth a look. 

Key features for chemical manufacturers include:

  • Multi-level formula management
  • Revision history management
  • Design/formula security controls
  • Automated workflow

Fact file

Version: 7.0
Number of Installations: 15,000+
User Range: 25 -1000
Platforms: Cloud-Based (Saas), MS SQL Server, Other, Universally Compatible w/all Data Base Platforms
Server OS: MS Windows

3. Sage ERP X3

Sage ERP X3 is a powerful business management oriented to empowering mid-sized and large-scale firms with an ability to grow competitively at an affordable price point. 

Sage ERP X3 provides a host of functions that encompass all business processes. Its compact software design supports industry specific processes and provides end-to-end visibility across finance, sales, customer service, purchasing, inventory and manufacturing for chemical operators.

Key features for chemical manufacturers include:

  • Revision history management
  • Design/formula security controls
  • Automated workflow

Fact file

Version: 7
Number of Installations: 3,300+
User Range: 20 -1000+
Platforms: Cloud-Based (Saas), MS SQL Server, Oracle
Server OS: Windows, Linux, Unix

4. IFS

IFS is a leading enterprise applications company based on agile precepts. The company’s component architecture provides solutions that are easier to implement, run, and upgrade, while giving customers the flexibility to respond quickly to market dynamics. IFS North America serves medium-size to large companies in a variety of key industries including chemical manufacturing.

Key features for chemical manufacturers include:

  • Production planning
  • Revision history management
  • Automated workflow

Fact file

Version: 9.0
Number of Installations: 2000+
User Range: 40 - 5000
Platforms: Cloud-Based (Saas), Oracle, MySQL
Server OS: Compatible with all operating systems

5. Microsoft Dynamics AX

Microsoft Dynamics AX (formerly Axapta) is a multilingual and multicurrency ERP suite targeting mid and large-scale manufacturing firms.

The company’s core strengths in include provides powerful segment-specific functionality. Microsoft Dynamics AX  integrates with Microsoft Office, Microsoft SQL Server, BizTalk Server, Microsoft SharePoint, and Windows to connect customers, vendors, and employees, and integrations can be tailored to support manufacturing requirements.

The platform supports build-to-order, engineer-to-order, and build-to-forecast models across both discrete and batch-process manufacturing modes and is particularly suited for mixed-mode manufacturing environments in the Chemical segment. 

Key features for chemical manufacturers include:

  • Universal microsoft product compliance
  • Production planning
  • Revision history management
  • Design/formula security controls
  • Automated workflow

Fact file

Version: AX 7 2016
Number of Installations: 9,300+
User Range: 5-2,250
Platforms: Cloud-Based (Saas), MS SQL Server, Oracle, Microsoft Azure
Server OS: Windows

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Rick Carlton

About the author…

Rick Carlton dba PRRACEwire, has worked as a tech journalist, writer, researcher, editor and publisher for many years. In addition to his editorial work, Rick has also served as a C-Level executive/consultant for a wide-range of private and public sector U.S. and International companies.

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Rick Carlton