🏆 10 Best Material Requirements Planning (MRP) Software in 2023
1. 🥇Streamline 👈 our expert’s choice
Price: The free edition is free forever
Overview: Streamline is the world’s leading MRP Software Platform for manufacturers, distributors, retailers, e-commerce, brands, and 3PL.
Headquartered in New York, Streamline has 200+ partners and 1200+ businesses that use its platform worldwide. Streamline’s AI-powered software platform helps manufacturers, retailers, and distributors grow efficiently and double their profits.
- Easy setup, in my experience.
- Up to 99+% inventory availability with Dynamic Simulation.
- Very high forecast accuracy using AI-based forecasting.
- Up to 98% reduction in stockouts.
- Up to 50% reduction in excess inventory.
- Up to 90% reduction in time spent on forecasting, planning, and ordering.
- 100% ROI in the first 3 months. Up to 56X ROI in the first year, in my experience.
Cons: The free version has some limitations.
Platform: Web-based, macOS or Windows.
Deployment options: Cloud or On-premise.
User-review rating: 5/5.
Expert rating: Superb!
Price: The free version is free forever or Request pricing.
Demo: Book a demo.
“If you are using Excel spreadsheets for Demand & Supply planning, move quickly to this software that will certainly make your planning much more efficient, capitalize benefits very fast, and make your life much easier.”
Material requirements planning can be defined as a system for calculating the components and materials needed to manufacture a product. It (MRP) consists of three primary steps:
- Taking inventory of the materials and components on hand;
- Identifying which additional ones are needed;
- Scheduling product production or purchase.
Benefits of the Streamline’s Material Requirements Planning (MRP) solution:
1. Fast and intuitive user interface
Streamline software is efficient and effective. Therefore you can concentrate on long terms goals and business development.
2. Seamless integration of company data sources
Bidirectional connectivity allows you to pull in data from your sales system into Streamline, as well as automatically export the forecasted order information back to your ERP system.
3. The smooth and fast implementation process
A successful implementation requires the coordination of many variable factors. The Streamline team is well aware of the gamut of sales and ERP systems available on the market nowadays. Thus, they will make sure you and your team are ready to go on promptly.
4. The ideal fit of the business process in your company
MRP Software needs to be aligned with your business goals and all of your company’s other processes.
There are many factors to consider when choosing the MRP Software system for your company. These might include the total cost of ownership of the selected solution, reliability, high-quality support, and finally, your ability to evaluate all features before making the decision.
5. Syncing ordering dates across SKUs
What do you do if your Min/Max replenishment strategy built-in into the ERP system throws a purchasing signal for one SKU, but other SKUs of the same supplier do not need replenishment yet? Min/Max ordering signals come per item while businesses issue purchase orders per supplier. So you either ignore the alert and have a shortage later or purchase a full container excessively. As opposed to ERP methods, Streamline raises purchasing signals per supplier. Streamline software predicts all purchasing signals during the next order cycle via a discrete-event simulation and purchases beforehand to have a smooth purchasing process with constant order cycle, or purchasing full containers (order cycle is variable), or EOQ.
6. Replacing formulas with Discrete-event simulation
Inventory replenishment is based on calculating future inventory levels during the next lead time and sometimes beyond that. That means your formula needs to account for numerous upcoming consumption and replenishment events. Sometimes it’s doable, but once you start dealing with event schedules like a shipment schedule or multiple orders in transit Excel gives up almost immediately.
While our competitors usually simplify calculations without colliding events realistically, Streamline creates a timeline with a one-day resolution and puts all schedules onto the timeline. Then Streamline executes the event sequence giving us the most accurate information about the company’s inventory levels with one-day precision. Sometimes it’s just a more precise method compared to replenishment formulas, but in many cases, it’s the only way to accommodate for the real-world supply chain complexity.
7. Using AI (Artificial intelligence) to forecast demand
Estimating seasonality, price elasticity, or top-down forecasting is not enough nowadays. Market changes very dynamically, and it’s hard to predict if your history of sales is yet relevant enough to the current situation and can be used to extrapolate into the future. That’s an area where we use our proprietary AI, so we only apply time series forecasting techniques, predictors, and level changes if AI says it’s appropriate to apply – just like if you are keeping an eye on every SKU every day.
8. Group EOQ (Economic order quantity)
Are you using EOQ in your work? If not, it is worth giving EOQ a closer look as this inventory planning concept significantly reduces your holding and ordering costs. Unfortunately, classic EOQ is calculated per SKU and not a group of SKUs. In a real-world supply chain, purchase orders contain several SKUs, if not hundreds. While Streamline supports classic EOQ calculation, it also offers group EOQ that goes far beyond the traditional approach making EOQ applicable to purchase orders with groups of SKUs.
That becomes possible thanks to the ability of Streamline to sync the order date for a group of items. Then Streamline moves the synchronization barrier back and forth to find the best order cycle for the group of SKUs and automatically minimizes the combination of holding and ordering costs.
Price: Request pricing.
Demo: Get a demo.
MRP in Streamline
Let us take a closer look at Streamline features specific to MRP:
- Accurate Demand Forecast
- Projected Inventory Levels
- Order Planning
- Stockout/Overstock alerts
- Inventory Optimization
Get a demo with Streamline experts to see how you can improve the material requirements planning process in your company.
Too much manual work in Excel?
See what Streamline can do for you
- 99+% inventory availability.
- Up to 99% forecast accuracy.
- Up to 98% reduction in stockouts.
- Up to 50% reduction in excess inventory.
- 1-5 percentage points margin improvement.
- Up to 56X ROI in one year. 100% ROI in the first 3 months.
- Up to 90% reduction in time spent on forecasting, planning, and ordering.
Watch the MRP capabilities video
Learn and see in action the key features and benefits of GMDH Streamline software.
Streamline Overall Rating
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2. SAP Integrated Business Planning
SAP Integrated Business Planning software offers planning and consolidation solutions that provide clients with financial forecasting, budgeting, scenario planning, consolidation and collaboration tools. It is absolutely possible to use this ERP for supply chain processes. Advantages and disadvantages of this solution were gathered on Capterra and G2 review platforms and listed below.
Pros of using SAP
- “As this is still a small group, I became familiar with their staff and made the support even more personable. Very easy to use, as you are basically setting up your hierarchies in Excel.”
- “Overall extremely pleased with the application. It was seamless in terms of installation and deployment.”
Cons of using SAP
- “Limited documentation on scripts. Training on scripts is very specialized and intensive.”
- “The user interface seems outdated. The functionality is confusing for beginners and we have to spend a lot of time training new employees.”
“The planning capability provides additional value to our supply chain”
3. Blue Yonder Demand Planning
Blue Yonder is a software company that provides supply chain management, manufacturing planning, retail planning, store operations and category management in a software called Luminate Platform.
Pros of using Luminate Platform
- “I like that this connects all of the specialists in our company and allows us to collaborate on projects.”
- “I think it is a good tool and if you have a great training you can enjoy the experience better.”
Cons of using Luminate Platform
- “Slow and inefficiently developed but serves the purpose. Tough training and poor and costly support.”
- “Essential for demand forecasting and management.”
“Poor design but good functionality”
“Design is outdates and clunky. Slow and inefficiently developed but serves the purpose. Tough training and poor and costly support. Would like to see web version with updated design parameters.”
“Good Product overall, outdated interface”
“I like the functionality of JDA`s product, and the fact that it`s mobile-friendly. Our associates are able to view their timecsrds and request time off from the mobile app.”
4. Kinaxis RapidResponse
Kinaxis is helping companies to reorganize their supply chain planning. Kinaxis RapidResponse is a cloud-based supply chain management software that connects your data, processes and people into a single harmonious environment. RapidResponse’s collection of cloud-based supply chain and S&OP applications supports organizations in high-tech electronics, aerospace & defense, automotive, life sciences and industrial.
Pros using RapidResponse
- “Is a fantastic tool to use in planning your business. There are many customizable reports and exception base planning.”
- “Kinaxis is the best planning simulation tool for our Supply chain Management’s next generation all over the world.”
Cons using RapidResponse
- “As i have started using upgraded version for one month, struggles to navigate through the resources. Might be i will get use to it.”
- “Need to more user-friendly for Rapid response administrators. Need to have a feature to kill any long query from the backend, still, we are depending on the front-end of the application to kill.”
“kinaxis – Fast and accurate Analytical Planning”
“When we are using the legacy planning system, the Workflow will take nearly 9-11 hours to complete, so the user need to wait till that time to view the data. But after migrated to kinaxis it took just 1 hour to complete our workflow. Most of the calculation are performed by kinaxis using analytical engine and the what if Analysis allows the planner to compare multiple scenarios against one scenario.”
“Kinaxis – Rapid response – the next Generation’s SCM planning Giant tool!!”
“Overall RR is flexible and user friendly for usage. As a project manager I see good performance with other SCM tools which in turn makes user community more happy.”
5. Oracle Demantra
Oracle Demantra is a demand management and supply chain management tool provided by Oracle. It helps in enabling automated forecast processes that simultaneously maps demand forecasting against factors such as supply restrictions, customer commitments and inventory counts.
Pros of using Oracle Demantra
- “The ability to pivot the series rather fluidly. It’s almost like a field list selection box for an Excel pivot table.”
- “It is an easier to use tool more in the form of a spreadsheet and in which data can be easily downloaded and uploaded. Also it has a inbuilt capabilities to integrate with other Oracle modules like advanced supply chain planning and order management.”
Cons of using Oracle Demantra
- “Chaining and Member Management. For NPI and other related scenarios, it’s difficult for users to go through such a complex process.”
- “Issue with general levels like we were not able to consider historical data loaded in a general level to generate Forecast from a different forecasting profile. Example: Quantity_Form in Engine profile should be flexible enough to consider the data/column from General Level data table just like it takes from Sales_Data table.”
“Functional Tool. Needs more customization options and stability”
What do you like best?
The ability to pivot the series rather fluidly. It`s almost like a field list selection box for an Excel pivot table
What do you dislike?
Using 18.104.22.168. It has a hard time pulling large data sets. Sometimes I want the ability to compile a tabular kind of table structure so I can export the values and manipulate it somewhere else. NOt that I wouldn`t love to use Oracle`s BI, but business security limitations sometimes make it hard. If the records exceed a couple thousand lines with about 10 fields, it really has a hard time and often crashes. Also, in the chart functionality, I would have expected some more color, shape, chart customization options. After all it`s supposed to be your tool to sort through demand effectively.
“Demantra Review by Himanshu Yadav”
” 1. User friendly layout to review the data.
2. Using embedded feature, multiple dimensions data can be reviewed at one go.
3. Forecasting Techniques and flexibility to add Causal Factors.
4. Graphical representation option in Worksheet
6. Logility Solutions
SkuBrain by Logility is a web based demand forecasting and inventory optimization solution. It uses sales history to predict future demand for your products and then makes recommendations, based on current stock levels, as to what you should buy in order to be able to meet that demand or which products might be overstocked. SkuBrain delivers sales and production forecasting, inventory optimization, and replenishment planning for small to midsize suppliers, distributors, and retailers.
Pros of using SkuBrain
- “Easy to use. The learning algorithms help breweries optimize projected production, and can easily push or pull data through live integrations or .CSV files. By connecting complimentary systems and sources such as VIP users can automatically import historical depletion and streamline data review without having to save multiple versions through an import export process.”
- “Responsive team and customer service.”
Cons using SkuBrain
- “No Import/Export Management, Shipping and Transportation Management”
- “No in-person training available”
Highly sophisticated forecasting for a simple heirarchy of products, means a great value. SkuBrain is easy to use, with a simple user interface. And continual evolution of the product means the team is behind the product and we can expect more from it over time.”
7. NetSuite Demand Planning
NetSuite is a software powered by Oracle. This is a powerful software with a lot of features which are good and bad at the same time. From pre-revenue startups to small and mid-size organizations, fast-growing businesses use NetSuite to automate core processes and get real-time insights into operational and financial performance.
Pros of using NetSuite
- “The business intelligence and reporting is excellent and it is easy to expand the use of the software and add new companies as business grows.”
- “All inclusive one stop ERP system good for small companies and scalable for the future. Reporting/view features are nice and reminders on the homepage & personalized dashboard are a good touch.”
Cons using NetSuite
- “Also, too many unexpected error messages and error messages that misrepresent the actual problem. These force us to google for answers.”
- “It is absolutely a nightmare to implement. It is way too complicated to function well. You need to be a developer to be able to do even the most basic augmentations. You might as well just build your own system from the ground up and save yourself the expensive NetSuite bill. The cost is huge and you can’t make adjustments to licenses without long contracts.”
“Great Value Cloudbased ERP – Best cloud solution on the market”
“Great experience overall. Time to implement took 6 month, but could have completed in 4. We waited longer to get system configured to meet more of our needs. Have maintained our subscription since 2013 and really like the ease of configuration and always being on the lates version and can take advantage of improvements without added cost for the most part. The business intelligence and reporting is excellent and it is easy to expand the use of the software and add new companies as business grows.”
“Don`t Use NetSuite”
“Implementation was a nightmare. During Go Live, they lost us tens of thousands of dollars by deleting dozens of sales by accident. Every aspect of it is not user friendly and requires extensive coding knowledge. It is completely the wrong choice for smaller businesses.”
8. Relex Solutions
Relex is a 100% retail-oriented solution. It helps retailers to be more competitive with cloud-native retail planning solutions. RELEX helps businesses plan better using accurate forecasting and replenishment, profitable use of retail space, and optimized workforce planning.
Pros of using RELEX
- INDEPENDENCE FOR BUSINESS – thanks to its ease-of-use and configuration – a process owner/super-user can easily conduct the needed configurations to achieve the desired results without being dependent on developers or IT department
- Usability and flexibility. To be able to customize our own environment as a user and company is very valuable and somewhat rare.
Cons using RELEX
- “The one challenge RELEX presents is due to the amazing flexibility there needs to be strong governance structure to maintain process control, best practices and keeping training materials updated. Being a cloud based it’s not a real time system however through multiple feeds and RELEX’s speed of consumption and calculation it’s close.”
- “Interface isn’t friendly for small monitors/screens. It would be really helpful if we had the ability to click/drag to expand the homeview. Also, it would be helpful if the column headers auto-wrapped so it didn’t cut values off. The ability to have 2 RELEX internet windows up at once would be really helpful too. Alphabetically sorting the dimensions/parameters/metrics would be a HUGE help.”
“The experiance with RELEX team has been refreshingly different than with any other software company”
- The flexibility of the system to be configured at multiple levels to achieve desired result. I have found if I can drem it, the functionality is likely available through configurations adjustments.
- Most processes are automated with exception based alerts to address outliers.
- We feed all key information to RELEX so seldom does a user need to go to other systems to get data.
- The ability to consume big data quickly, produce reports ad hock or scheduled and auto send to others.
- The forecast accuracy was solid right out of the box and through exception base process resolve item with forecast accuracy below 80%. It`s easy to send forecasts to vendors too. Still learning how but have strong support from RELEX in doing that.
- The user interface is also configurable allowing user to add or remove attributes as needed. Easy to navigate especially if the user is familiar with excel.
- The flexibility of formats RELEX can accept for data feeds and history loads made our IT teams work easier than expected.
- The team behind the software has been fantastic in supporting the business and IT throughout the implementation and rollout
- Truck building logic works well (Accurate master data is required)
Cons: The one challenge RELEX presents is due to the amazing flexibility there needs to be strong governance structure to maintain process control, best practices and keeping training materials updated. Being a cloud based it`s not real time system however through multiple feeds and RELEX`s speed of consumption and calculation it`s close.
Anaplan is an American planning software company headquartered in San Francisco, California. Anaplan sells subscriptions for cloud-based business-planning software and provides data for decision-making purposes.
Pros using Anaplan
- “This software is great for companies looking for what-if scenario planning, forecasting and budgeting, workforce planning and tracking competitor data. It really has the all in one functionality for companies looking for a clean overview of their business.”
- “UI is like a spreadsheet for sure.”
Cons using Anaplan
- Initial setup requires a lot of learning and time. Their training session is several days and still requires additional follow up work and communication with their implementation team.
- “Graphs and data visualization is also far lacking compared with Tableau or even Excel.”
“Anaplan is a huge time saver”
Pros: Before Anaplan, we were on excel documents that required many versions and iterations. We started with financial planning as a model and have since expanded into other solutions for issues that have arisen. The goal is to continue to plug new models into this tool, like many power users I’ve seen at Anaplan conferences, in order to get all of our data on one platform.
Cons: Initial set up requires a lot of learning and time. Their training session is several days and still requires additional follow up work and communication with their implementation team. Graphs and data visualization is also far lacking compared with Tableau or even Excel.
10. Infor CloudSuite SCP
Infor CloudSuite Supply Chain Planning is an integrated planning platform that enables companies to create, manage, collaborate, and coordinate plans across their supply chain—from demand plan creation through supply-side response, and from detailed, operational-response planning to strategic business planning.
Pros using Infor CloudSuite Supply Chain Planning
- “Ability to look more in-depth with data, better visualization tools”
- “Good visibility of the manufacturing process from beginning to end. Easy to process purchase orders for invoicing customers”
Cons using Infor CloudSuite Supply Chain Planning
- “It takes up a little too much time to review the forms. When dealing with multiple currencies, there is too much manual work to do. Learning curve is very steep. There are many things that you figure out on your own.”
- “Data entry errors are hard to trace. Training is complicated and requires a lot of upfront data entry”
About the Author:
Alex Koshulko, Ph.D. in Mathematical Modeling, CEO and Co-founder at GMDH, supply chain planning expert with more than 10 years of experience in demand forecasting, inventory planning, and optimization.