In a recent live demo session with enterprise resource planning (ERP) software vendor Ability, I had the chance to get an in-depth look at Ability 585 ERP. It’s not every day that a product’s capabilities exceed my expectations, but this was the certainly the case with Ability 585 ERP, which is now TEC Certified for ERP for Manufacturing (SMB).
Ability’s core principle is to provide ERP software that is powerful yet affordable for manufacturers of small or medium size. Ability 585 ERP caters to manufacturers, such as in aerospace, that have strong two-way traceability needs, auditing requirements, and multiple certification and guideline compliance.
As promised by the company, the system turned out to be easy and intuitive to learn and use. As a manufacturing–centered product, Ability 585 ERP can be a very attractive proposition for small and medium manufacturers that are looking for an affordable but decent ERP system with many functions and features available out of the box.
The company has an interesting history that sheds some light on the product’s development and focus. More than 15 years ago, the aerospace parts manufacturer could not find a materials requirements planning MRP/ERP system unique to the aerospace parts industry that addressed its manufacturing requirements, and, that would also be affordable. So, the company decided to create such a system to meet its unique aerospace parts manufacturer needs.
The software was developed with the close eye on requirements and convenience for not only managers and business owners, but also end users—who directly interface with the system on a regular basis and execute manufacturing, purchasing, and other business processes. The system’s ease of use and quick data availability, along with positive feedback from auditors and very satisfied customers, prompted the company 3 years ago to develop the product to make it suitable for non-aerospace manufacturers and bring it to market.
Since its creation, Ability LLC Company has operated as an ERP software vendor, and has been actively adding to its customer base and expanding into new vertical industries, such as FDA-regulated products, and furniture and exhibition equipment manufacturing, as well as services.
Still, the software development process at Ability is organized in a way that depends to a large extent on opinions and input from people who use the software every day on the shop floor and other departments. It’s built around their needs instead of the traditional software approach, where ERP companies push their own ideas on technical issues and user interface down to the end user. I believe that even this single difference in development concept deserves to be noticed. I don’t think that many of today’s software vendors can attest to this characteristic quality.
Another distinct quality of this software solution provider lies in its blend of business youth—and, therefore, extremely high level of attention to every new client—and proven maturity of the Ability 585 ERP product over a period of 15 years. This infrequently seen combination of qualities makes the software’s value proposition quite attractive to its target audience. No questions, larger software vendors develop, sell, and implement great products, but they usually aren’t able to provide the same devotion to the client’s needs, simply due to their size and number of current customers.
Look for the TEC Certification Report on Ability 585 ERP with more on the product background, highlights, features and functions, competitive strengths and weaknesses, which will be available in the upcoming weeks at: