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PeopleSoft Aims At Lean Manufacturing

An upgrade of its EnterpriseOne software adds features to help companies build to demand.

PeopleSoft Inc. on Thursday announced an upgrade to its EnterpriseOne software, adding features to help companies build products to actual demand rather than forecasts. That includes supplier self-service portals that support real-time inventory alerts and production schedule-sharing. It also includes a "Kanban" lean-manufacturing procurement module to enable pull-based replenishment at each stage of the assembly process and a demand-scheduling execution app to match manufacturers' and customers' forecasts and schedules.

Rick Bergquist, PeopleSoft's chief technology officer, says companies today really need to re-examine and change the way they build products. "Companies used to build excess inventory in hopes that it would sell," he says. "Today you have to be much more demand-driven."

Other enhancements to Enterprise 8.10 include a customer self-service portal with new analysis and demand collaboration capabilities that increase visibility into fluctuating customer orders and requirements. The new release follows improvements revealed late last month to PeopleSoft's supply-chain-planning tools, including PeopleSoft Order Promising for Configurable Products, which is designed to give greater visibility into supplier-owned or raw inventories to make more-accurate delivery promises.

In addition, the new version of EnterpriseOne is designed to help companies improve business performance by leveraging new modules that focus attention on finances, asset management, recruiting, and real estate. The suite lets companies more easily manage equipment maintenance, generate multiyear forecasts and budgets by units, and automate job posting for real-time recruiting on the Web. Additional functionality helps companies comply with government guidelines and mandates, and the suite includes budgeting and analysis tools for real-estate transactions.

The company says PeopleSoft Enterprise 8.10 will be generally available in May.

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