Tool-East – Open Source Enterprise Resource Planning and Order Management System for Eastern European Tool and Die Making Workshops
In order to secure their long term success, tool and die making enterprises have to set the course for innovative business strategies early in time. One essential strategy of the future is participation in dynamic business networks. Two major objectives of this strategy are coordination of intra-enterprise order processing and bringing of core capabilities into a flexible network. Tool and die making workshops provide critical support for industry by providing and designing customized mechanical components. It is estimated that within the EU these enterprises, especially the Eastern European, are mostly organized as SMEs. They do not have the financial and human resources for the implementation of complex ERP applications from the powerful software suppliers. Furthermore the functionalities of these standardized applications do not fulfil the specific requirements of the tool and die making industry. The project Tool-East will provide a cost-efficient ERP application for tool and die making workshops on the basis of existing open source ERP applications. Within the project the open source application will be adapted and modified for the specific requirements of this branch. The new adapted and modified ERP application supports the efficient coordination of intra-enterprise order processing and strengthens competition and competitiveness of Eastern European SMEs. Primarily, orders management, work planning, resource allocation and CRM need to be optimised and linked together in a dynamic work environment. Moreover ERP applications are necessary for the electronic collaboration in dynamic business networks. To enable industrial cluster to e-collaboration the consisting process and data standards (for example ROSETTANET, ebXML etc.) will be considered for the Tool-East project. One main challenge of this project is to use open source technology for the development of an integrated business application for tool and die making enterprises with high performance regarding availability, safety and maintainability at the very onset. Further on this will be enriched by enabling coordination between the different players in this sector. Strengthening the open source initiative in general and particularly in this field of business opens an enormous potential for SMEs. A successful case study and dissemination platform in the specific branch addressed in this project paves the way for future initiatives. Since demands for business software from other branches with specific SME structures are predominantly comparable, results from this project can be transferred easily, so that a large impact can be assumed.
DURATION: 1 January 2006 – 30 June 2008