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Learn more about NetSuite accounting / ERP, CRM and ecommerce solutions

Business Solutions Glossary of Terms


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Keyword

 

Definition

 
Application Programming Interface   An API, or application programming interface, consists of protocols that enable communication between different software applications. An API can either be language-dependent or independent. Within the context of cloud computing, the structure of an API is extremely important for the Platform as a Service (PaaS) layer.  
API   See application programming interface  
BI   See business intelligence.  
Business Intelligence   Business intelligence (BI) refers to software used to extract and analyse business performance metrics, such as financial, sales, service or marketing performance. A good BI software package has built-in real-time dashboards, reporting and analysis that allows users to identify exceptions, trends and opportunities, and to drill down to any underlying transactions for greater detail.  
Cloud Computing   Cloud computing is a methodology that supports an on-demand, shared pool of computing resources. These computing resources can range anywhere from Cloud computing can be broken down into three sub-components: Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).  
CRM   See customer relationship management.  
Customer Relationship Management   Customer relationship management (CRM) is a software solution that provides a holistic view of a company's customers and prospects, and organises, automates and synchronises sales, marketing, customer service and technical support activities. Sales force automation (SFA) is a subset of CRM.  
EDI   See electronic data interchange.  
Electronic Data Interchange   Electronic data interchange (EDI) is a family of standards that replaces human-readable, paper or electronic-based documents with machine-readable, electronically coded documents. With EDI, the sending computer creates the message and the receiving computer interprets the message without the need for human involvement.  
Enterprise Resource Management   Enterprise resource management (ERM) is the same as enterprise resource planning, or ERP. ERM software manages all the assets and resources of a company, such as general ledger, financials, accounts payable, accounts receivable, inventory management, order management, manufacturing, inventory and human resources.  
Enterprise Resource Planning   Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is the same as enterprise resource management, or ERM. ERP software manages all the assets and resources of a company, such as general ledger, financials, accounts payable, accounts receivable, inventory management, order management, manufacturing, inventory and human resources.  
ERP   See enterprise resource management.  
ERP   See enterprise resource planning  
Financial Management System   A financial management system integrates several financial functions, such as accounting, fixed asset management, revenue recognition, and payment management together. By integrating these key components together, a FMS ensures real-time visibility into the financial state of a company as well as accelerated financial close times.  
FMS   See financial management system.  
HCM   See human capital management.  
Human Capital Management   Human capital management (HCM) is a broad set of software capabilities that encompasses employee resource management, payroll management, and incentive compensation management. HCM is intended to maximise employee productivity and collaboration, and manage employee information efficiently.  
IaaS   See Infrastructure as a Service.  
ICM   See incentive compensation management.  
Incentive Compensation Management   Incentive compensation management (ICM) applications allow the creation, deployment and calculation of sales commissions. Good ICM functionality includes the ability to configure sophisticated sales commission rules based on quotas, revenue, quantity, profitability, and other criteria, as well as allow salespeople to quickly forecast their earnings.  
Infrastructure as a Service   Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) consists of the physical server hardware, storage and networking delivered as a service. Pricing is metered such that users pay only for what they use.  
Java   Java is a programming language originally developed at Sun Microsystems. Its object-oriented design allows programmers to create data types and define the types of operations that can be applied to them. As a result of this design, it is easy to create modules consisting of several data structures and not have to modify them when new objects are introduced, since newer objects can simply inherit features from other objects.  
JavaScript   JavaScript is a scripting language that was developed by Netscape. Although it shares many of the same features and structures of Java, it was developed independently of it. JavaScript allows dynamic content to be authored on web pages and is also used for PDF documents, and desktop widgets.  
Key Performance Indicators   A key performance indicator is a quantitative measure used by companies to evaluate the success or failure of their activities. This evaluation is normally measured against a benchmark that is specific to the line of business, and shows key variances and period-on-period trends.  
KPI   See key performance indicators.  
Marketing Automation   Marketing automation deals with the automating, tracking, and analysis of various marketing processes such as lead management, campaign management and email marketing. With some software, marketing automation is a subset of a CRM solution.  
Materials Requirements Planning   MRP stands for materials requirements planning and refers to software that manages the bill-of-materials (BOM), demand and inventory planning, shop floor control, capacity planning and other manufacturing activities. Best-in-class MRP software usually has the capability to extend this functionality to multiple plants in different locations.  
MRP   See materials requirements planning.  
Marketing Automation   Marketing automation deals with the automating, tracking, and analysis of various marketing processes such as lead management, campaign management and email marketing. With some software, marketing automation is a subset of a CRM solution.  
On-Demand Computing   On-demand computing is a characteristic of cloud computing that pertains to the availability of compute resources, in the form of hardware or software. When on-demand hardware resources are provisioned in the form of a service, they are known as IaaS, while on-demand software resources provisioned as a service can take the form of SaaS or PaaS.  
Order Management   Order management deals with the activities that take place after a customer places an order—whether that order is placed by a sales person, on a merchant's webstore, or through another sales channel. These activities, in the simplest of cases, generally consist of the merchant picking inventory from the warehouse, shipping it to the customer and sending notifications to the customer along various steps of the shipping process. With more advanced order management systems, orders are electronically routed to suppliers for drop shipping, and shipping processes are often integrated with various package delivery companies.  
PaaS   See Platform as a Service.  
Partner Relationship Management   Partner relationship management (PRM) involves software that improves the communication between a company and its channel partners or suppliers. On the partner side, it includes functionality for loyalty management, lead management, commission management and joint marketing campaign management. On the supplier side, it includes functionality that provides real-time information such as shipping status and delivery times.  
PCI   The Payment Card Industry (PCI) Council was formed by major credit card vendors to provide a framework of specifications for the PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) to ensure the security of credit card information. Organisations that comply with these specifications can become PCI DSS certified.  
Platform as a Service   Platform as a Service (PaaS) refers to the software infrastructure components needed to create and run applications over the internet. These software infrastructure components consist of operating systems, middleware, databases and development tools delivered as a utility (similar to electricity or water) so that users pay only for what they use.  
Point of Sale   Point of sale (POS) refers to the particular location where a sales transaction takes place; POS software handles the collection, storing, managing and sharing of payment, customer, product and service data. Best-in-class POS solutions also include multi-line display and electronic signature capture, receipt printers and terminals to provide a fast POS experience for both cashiers and customers.  
POS   See point of sale.  
PRM   See partner relationship management.  
Professional Services Automation   Professional services automation (PSA) is a solution that caters mainly to consultants and services organisations and includes functionality such as project, resource, timesheet, and expense management, invoicing, and reporting. Advanced PSA solutions are often integrated with CRM, ERP and accounting systems for greater visibility.  
Project-based ERP   Project-based ERP involves tying together project management attributes such as proposal management, resource management, time and expense, and billing into the main ERP system.  
Project Portfolio Management   Project portfolio management (PPM) enables executives and other decision-makers to efficiently view summary information about all ongoing projects and to sort and prioritise each project based on criteria such as estimated cost, duration and business objective.  
PSA   See professional services automation.  
Return Merchandise Authorisation   An RMA, or return merchandise authorisation, is a tracking number provided by a company to customers for returning a product for repair, replacement or a refund, usually because of a defect. Integrating RMA systems with manufacturing systems is very important because it helps manufacturers analyse return rates and engage in the process of continuous improvement across all product lines.  
REST   REST stands for Representational State Transfer and can be based on the XML protocol, although it does not necessarily have to be. A REST architecture captures the current state of a resource, be it data or application functionality, and conveys the state of this resource to the requesting application. The requesting application then has information about the ways in which it can interact with the resource.  
RMA   See return merchandise authorisation.  
SaaS   See Software as a Service.  
Sales Force Automation   Sales force automation (SFA) is a subset of CRM that deals specifically with the automation of sales tasks such as contact, order, and opportunity management, lead tracking, pipeline analysis and forecasting.  
SAS 70 Type I & II   The Statement of Auditing Standards, No. 70, is an auditing statement put forth by the Auditing Standards Board of the AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants). It provides guidance to auditors when assessing the internal controls of a service-based organisation. The difference between a Type I and Type II report is the time period for which the audit was done. Type I refers to a specific date when the audit was performed while Type II is for a time interval between which audits were performed.  
SCM   See supply chain management.  
SCRM   See social CRM.  
SDK   See software development kit.  
Search Engine Optimisation   Search engine optimisation (SEO) involves strategies and techniques designed to elevate the position of a website or web page in the set of results that a search engine presents to a user. These techniques may involve editing a website's content to increase the relevancy of specific keywords, crosslinking web pages and providing descriptive titles in the web page's headers.  
Service-Oriented Architecture   A service-oriented architecture (SOA) is at the heart of modern distributed computing. In this methodology, an application's business logic is modularised and is presented as a service to the end-consumer. Applications can be built by composing different services without the need to worry about the underlying platform or language used to implement the service.  
Services Resource Planning   Services resource planning (SRP) is a concept that integrates PSA, CRM and ERP to provide an end-to-end business software solution for services businesses.  
SFA   See sales force automation.  
SOA   See service-oriented architecture.  
SOAP   SOAP, or Simple Object Access Protocol, is an XML-based protocol that exchanges information over the internet using HTTP between applications. It is platform-, application- and language-agnostic and is popular in implementing web services.  
Social Commerce   Social commerce is a subset of ecommerce that specifically deals with influencing a buyer's decision making process through popular social networks, or user-generated review content about the product or service. Social networking attributes such as Facebook likes, Twitter tweets, and coupon code sharing through Facebook news feeds may also be used in addition to user reviews in order to influence the buyer.  
Social CRM   Social CRM is an offshoot of CRM used mainly for market research, product launches, and idea and brand management. It has the same objectives as CRM but is designed to leverage social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, amongst others, to engage in a collaborative conversation with customers.  
Software as a Service   Software as a Service (SaaS) refers to applications that are delivered as a service over the Internet, without needing to install and run the applications at the customer's own site. A SaaS solution must be accessible via a web browser, be multi-tenant, have subscription-based pricing and offer automatic version upgrades, patching and security updates.  
Software Development Kit   A software development kit (SDK) is a set of development tools, libraries and reusable code that allow developers to create applications for a certain software package or platform.  
SRP   See services resource planning.  
Suite   A suite refers to a system encompassing multiple functional systems with one shared codebase and database all in a seamless business software system. A suite will typically contain as accounting software, ERP, CRM and HCM, that are connected around a common codebase and database and are able to exchange and process data seamlessly among each other.  
Supply Chain Management   Supply chain management (SCM) is the process of actively managing and optimising the network of interconnected business entities involved in the manufacturing, sourcing, production, logistics and distribution of goods to the end customer.  
Two-Tier ERP   A business or technology strategy that keeps one vendor's ERP for the main corporate headquarters of a corporation, and a different vendor's ERP system at its subsidiaries or divisions. This strategy is mostly deployed by enterprises who are expanding globally and need to have new ERP systems deployed and operational relatively quickly.  
US-EU Safe Harbor   The US-EU Safe Harbor framework provides several principles designed to protect the privacy of customer data and prevent accidental disclosure or loss. Companies that follow these principles are eligible to self-certify in the program.  
Version Lock   Version lock is a condition that occurs when customers are unable to upgrade the older version of their software to the most current version. This occurs because of the inability of customisations on the older version to migrate seamlessly to the newer version.  
Warehouse Management System   A warehouse management system (WMS) is a subset of the supply chain management process and is used to control the movement and storage of materials within a warehouse.  
Web Services   Web services consist of web-based software that exchange data with other applications using standard web protocols such as HTTP, XML and WSDL. Web services can be implemented using either SOAP or REST Each web service is designed to perform a specific set of tasks.  
WMS See warehouse management system.