3i Infotech ORION Review

We can configure modules using parameters. The system has enough controls, but still there is scope for improvement.

What is most valuable?

  • Module configuration using parameters
  • Excellent database table structure
  • Administrator, Configuration and Customiser tools for quick implementation and configuration
  • Easy navigation through data entry screens
  • Instances for defaulting data entry screens

How has it helped my organization?

After the Orion implementation, our finance team could prepare profit/loss statements and the balance sheets 3-4 days after a closing month. These three to four days are used by the finance team to compile provisions and bank charge entries in the system, as bank statements come to us 2-3 days after the month ends. The sales, inventory, finance reports were not changing like earlier as data was locked after entries.

Overall, this software helps the IT department to control the process. It helps management to ensure that people are following the processes, thereby improving efficiency and cost savings.

What needs improvement?

The system has enough controls, but still there is scope for improvement.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using this solution since 2006.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have not had stability issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not had scalability issues, so far.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Before 2005, we were using a DOS based software. This software was installed way back before I joined. It was based on a distributed database and needed to be consolidated every alternate day and many times at the end of the month due to mismatches.

Also, the depots could change the documents after sending data to head office. This created a problem of mismatch between head office data and warehouse data. Also, there was no control on inventory as it allows negative stock invoicing. This allows the depot to do invoicing without stock receipt entries. Warehouses enter all receipts at the month end in which they forgot to enter a few.

For the sales module, the software did not have the option for rate updates by customer type, by state, etc. Also, the schemes (free quantity along with the main product) and taxes were not automatic.

At the head office, the posting was a manual process for inventory, sales, and finance. The software also did not have a proper stock transfer issue and receipt process. At that time, we had 14 warehouses and three modules each for a single warehouse to be posted manually. It was a tedious task.

Due to all these problems, it was difficult to process financial data when it is required urgently. We used to prepare profit/loss statements and the balance sheet on the 20th of the next month for previous month. All these problems necessitated the need to install a new Integrated ERP system for getting data and information on time for the management to make informed decisions.

We made a panel consisting of key department people to review various software systems. Orion was one of three that we shortlisted.

We selected Orion for a few main reasons:

  • All of our requirements were available
  • It uses Oracle
  • It provides complete control of information
  • Documents are strictly locked after processing
  • All module configurations are parameterized

The IT team got trained on Orion at their office and we mapped our processes in the system with the help of 3i-Infotech’s consultants. This helped our IT team to understand the software. The rollout was smooth, as we ran the software parallel with old software for six months. This parallel run helped users to get used to the software without any additional pressure.

How was the initial setup?

I performed the installation and setup by myself along with my team, with the support from a 3i-Infotech technical team. It was not difficult.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It is an affordable ERP system and rich in functionality. It provides good control of processes.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated four or five other tools.

What other advice do I have?

The IT team should do the system study properly and document everything. If there is no technical functional person in house, hire one. The IT team should be involved in the implementation rather than leaving it to functional people or consultants, if you want the project to be successful. Make clear deadlines for all internal teams and follow up. IT should test the system before giving to users for UAT. It looks difficult and unconventional, but that will take you to the destination in time.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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