Advanced Planning and Scheduling Software (APS)

Advanced Planning and Scheduling software (APS) is often a core module within many larger ERP business applications, but sometimes, manufacturers require specialized APS software to manage their specific business needs. This article highlights the embedded APS capabilities within the four ERP products available from e2b teknologies (Epicor ERP, Sage ERP X3, Sage 100 ERP, and Sage 500 ERP) with an overview of third party solutions available for advanced or specialized APS capabilities. It also provides a summary of some of the major features and benefits of implementing APS software.
Epicor moved us away from constrained scheduling methods and towards a robust forecasting and scheduling process that suite both day-today and long-range business needs.”

-Howe Corporation-
There are several advantages of having a solid advanced planning and scheduling software product integrated with your ERP business, such as:

Epicor ERP is our flagship product for discrete manufacturing industries and offers a world-class APS software with integrated preventative maintenance management designed for companies in a variety of industries including automotive, industrial, high tech and electronics, capital equipment, medical device, and more. APS is tightly integrated to material requirements planning (MRP) with multi-level capable to promise features from sales order entry.

Companies like Symmetry Medical, Howe Corporation, Chirch Global Manufacturing, Epicor ERP’s APS system is truly top-notch and better than most best of breed solutions with the added benefit of being 100% embedded in material planning, preventative maintenance, engineering change management, and sales order processes providing a 360 degree view of your business as it relates to production scheduling.
“Our instrument division is 40% of our business, with an average lot size of 34 units, so it is a very complex manufacturing scheduling environment… we really look to Epicor to help us with advanced scheduling.”

– Symmetry Medical-

Some of the major features available in enterprise class APS software include:

Sage ERP X3 is another core ERP solution available from e2b teknologies. Unlike Epicor, Sage ERP X3 does not provide “native” APS features. However, a number of third party products are available with deep integration to the ERP system providing similar features as those found in Epicor’s APS module.

Demand forecasts for Sage ERP X3 are provided by Demand Planning and traditional APS scheduling is available from the endorsed APS solution provider, Preactor APS 400 which is by far one of the best options available on the market for best-of-breed APS.

Sage 500 ERP includes a module called Advanced Planning & Scheduling which has some nice features to schedule work order steps. It is integrated with the Sage 500 ERP Material Requirements Planning (MRP) module and has some basic capable to promise (CTP) features as well. The APS software within Sage 500 ERP is good for most manufacturers with basic needs but does have some limitations. Companies using Sage 500 ERP that require more advanced APS software should consider Preactor and Planet Together – the two leading third party APS solutions available for Sage 500 ERP. A brochure is available with more information or you may want to watch our overview video here.

Sage 100 ERP is a nice solution for smaller and less sophisticated manufacturers. However, there are only a few very basic APS capabilities available within Sage 100 ERP such as work order schedule reports. Preactor is also available as an integrated APS solution for Sage 100 ERP customers that need a more sophisticated scheduling and resource management application. Galaxy APS by Planet Together is an alternative third party APS solution available for both Sage 100 ERP as well as Epicor and Sage ERP X3.

You may be using other APS solutions already and considering a change to Sage ERP X3, Epicor ERP, or Sage 100 ERP. If you love your advanced planning and scheduling software solution then you may not have to throw it out when you replace your core business software. e2b teknologies specializes in business software integration and can work with you to integrate your favorite APS software with any of the ERP products we represent. Contact us today for more information.

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