Top apparel ERP systems for your software shortlist


As an apparel manufacturer, you're looking for the best solution that can handle your processes from design all the way through to shipping to your suppliers. A specialist apparel ERP seems like the obvious choice - a system built for a business just like yours.

When considering apparel ERP systems, you should consider what modules and functionality each system will offer your business - will the ERP support ordering materials direct from suppliers? Can you separate material orders based on color codes as well as product codes? Can your system work with suppliers to get the best bulk deals, and can your system re-order stock based on expected orders so you're not left short of stock during peak order times?

The apparel industry is unique in that there are many seasons, patterns, and different types of garment that needs to be manufactured and distributed across the country and your ERP needs to be able to handle this complexity. You should remember when selecting your apparel ERP to consider the impact that the system will have on your whole business and treat lightly - an ERP isn't a fast fashion system. 


What is apparel ERP software?

Apparel ERP software is a specialist system designed to manage the process of manufacturing clothing from start to finish including managing ordering, materials, design, and the shipping and distribution of the items.

Which software is used in garment industry?

Lots of apparel manufacturers use ERP to track their production from the design, materials, manufacturing, and distribution. An ERP built for the garment industry is a good start when considering systems, there are many purpose-built ERPs for the fashion industry on the market currently. However, it is worth considering solutions that support general manufacturing as these systems are robust and capable of handling most processes.

ERP solutions for the apparel industry 

ERP is used in the apparel industry for garment manufacturing processes, design, material management, shipping and distribution, and workflow management. A fashion ERP provides a centralized database of all the business processes and goings-on.

Our list of top ERP for the apparel industry includes:

  • FDM4
  • INFOR Fashion
  • Apparel Connect
  • A2000
  • PolyPM

Check out our top 10 apparel ERP software white paper to find the best ERP for the fashion industry

Consequently, here are five of today’s better known fashion-based ERP platforms:

1. FDM4

This fully-integrated system leverages fashion ERP to the next level by allowing enterprise-scale apparel manufacturers to work smarter, faster, and more efficiently across the global market. The system was designed specifically by fashion users, and involves a comprehensive matrix of processes allowing the company to handle purchasing, inventory, customer orders, sales fulfillment, billing and financial reporting; all based on the particular needs of fashion-required operations.

2. INFOR Fashion

Infor Fashion provides for end-to-end resources management operations specifically based on fashion industry requirements. The system is individually configurable that encompasses the entire fashion process chain ranging from design, materials sourcing, and product distribution, to manufacturing, private brand wholesale and retailing.

Compare more fashion and apparel ERPs with this free online comparison tool

3. Apparel Connect

Apparel Connect ERP defines itself as a “complete garment manufacturing system.” The platform was developed specifically by garment manufacturers, in direct-support of global buying houses. The system allows the apparel enterprise to operate seamlessly due to its highly-granular toolset including; product development, marking and cut processing, order management, WIP processing, demand-based bill-of-materials processing, inventory control, purchasing, BI reporting, production planning, carton packing, CMT & outsourcing operations, task management processing, AQL and QC.

4. A2000

This 15 year-old ERP provider produces a market-leading fashion solution specifically oriented to the unique needs of apparel enterprises. The system is fully-integrated and includes; PLM processing, advanced warehouse management capabilities, order processing, financials reporting, and inventory management; in addition to discrete modules for catalogs and telemarketing. The system is also mobility-adept, in addition to a unique capability to develop and deliver internally produced social-network communications.

5. PolyPM

This system offers an integrated ERP and product lifecycle management (PLM) capability designed and manufactured specifically for the apparel industry. The platform is comprehensive and ranges in value from style development to product execution, and finally global buyer distribution. Some of the system’s more unique features include; cut planning, fabric inspection, CMT production and two-dimensional size ranging, in addition to more accepted manufacturing processes such as BOM, PSV, and the inclusion of a comprehensive order auditing capability.  

Although these five systems are only a short list of what’s out in the apparel and fashion segments, you should be able to get started regardless.

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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

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