The programming language is the most valuable feature for me. I'm all about flexibility so that I can respond to what my users need. The fact that we have the capabilities to do our own customizations is huge. The programming language is certainly understandable and manageable for someone at my level. I'm not a programmer all the time but I make mods to the software to support the needs of the business. The interface for making the mods and things like that is straightforward enough and it works. That's very handy.
Improvements to My Organization:
We're a very small company, so having one product that can run basically almost every aspect of our business is very valuable. There's one thing to manage, one conference to attend. We run everything. We don't have very many third-party apps bolted on.
There's also a time-savings element, and a frustration with the data interface. I've been in the industry for a long time and came before JD Edwards from a situation where we had a number of so-called best-of-breed. Then as IT, you're constantly moving data back and forth and that lends its own set of complications and problems and disconnects. JD Edwards has mitigated a lot of that.
Room for Improvement:
I have found a couple of bugs in my career, but more often it's just a missing functionality or inconsistent interface. I think their Transportation Management module, that's one of the bolt-ons that we have, is very limited. That would probably be my main complaint. We had to buy another solution to address that.
I'm part of the TechSig and I thought it was kind of funny that the top thing on our TechSig list is to bypass the OK button because every time you run a report, it comes up to the "do you want to change your printer?" screen and a user must click OK. It is one of those silly things and it's just an extra click, but it's unnecessary. Yet, it's been there for 20 years probably! That's just a small example.
Use of Solution:
We implemented it in 2001.
We've had no real issues with deployment.
I would have to say no, definitely no major issues with stability.
As far as scalability goes, we're a very small company, but we were able to implement the portions of the program that we needed. Other than that okay button for the printing, we're able to bypass features that we don't need because we're not a big company. And because of the way it's designed with processing options and version and things like that, we can tailor it for our business needs. As we've grown, we've added new functionalities and we've done a few mods.
So it's been growing with us. I think we have a long ways to go. We're still a small company and we were probably the smallest customer at the time when we implemented. We're probably not anymore, but we're still very small as far as the arena, so we have a long ways to go before we outgrow it.
At the time, JD Edwards had completely rewritten their software, and I understand that now. I hadn't been exposed to it before. It was very cohesive at the time, I thought, for software. Sometimes you use software and you can almost tell, "oh, this module was bolted on and re-patched, but it clearly was written by a different group with a different focus." Whereas, JD Edwards at the time was all written fairly together with a new vision. I would say that the implementation was pretty good.
It's definitely fulfilled most of our business needs. The flexibility is really number one up there. I have only worked a little bit with other ERP systems, such as SAP, and JD Edwards surpasses that.
When you're comparing JD Edwards to any other tool, look at the flexibility. Look at the capabilities to change it, for it to grow with you as a company, for it to support business needs that you don't need now, but you're going to need in the future. That's very important.