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Technology Guide for Printers

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN MIS, A WMS, AND AN ERP? ARE THEY  THE SAME?

What software do I need for my printing company or label converting business?If you’re researching software to digitize and streamline your print business, you may have been confused by all the different terms and abbreviations we suppliers may use.

Let us explain what they all mean, so you can find the right software for your print business.

 

MOST COMMON PHRASES

First of all, let’s get out the three main phrases you might have heard about:

  1. Management Information System (MIS) – A print MIS is the most common phrase used when referring to the software used by printing companies to manage their business. They are a complete end-to-end solution for everything from sales and marketing, to production and delivery and everything in between.

  2. Workflow Management Software (sometimes also called Management Workflow Software) - A WMS or MWS is just another name for a print MIS and is used by MIS providers as a way of getting across the end-to-end functionality their software provides.

  3. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) – You may also see this term used interchangeably with ‘MIS’ and ‘WMS’ because it also describes software that organizations use to manage day-to-day business activities. Indeed there are some very large printing companies that use ERP solutions. However, they are not print-specific solutions and were developed for larger manufacturing operations.

WHAT TERMS DO THARSTERN USE?

We refer to our software as 'Business Workflow Software' because it covers every aspect of a business workflow - from sales and estimating, to production and delivery.

While it’s clear that Business Workflow Software is a better description for what our software does, you will find us using both phrases still, for SEO purposes – that’s because there are around 2,400 monthly Google searches for the phrase “Management Information System” and only 10 a month for the phrase “Business Workflow Software”. So while we might not agree with the limits of the phrase “print MIS” we know that’s how the market describes our product, and so we roll with it!

Monthly-searches-(For-MIS-ERP-WMS-article)

MISUSED PHRASES

You may also see the below phrases being used intermittently in place of “Print MIS” or “Workflow Management Software”, but these are actually different types of software applications used for different purposes:

  • “Productivity Software for Printers” – Refers to any piece of software used to create or modify a document, image, audio, or video clip including business suites such as Microsoft Office.
  • “Business Management System” – This is related to the executive management of a business and includes tools used in the development and execution of business strategies and plans.
  • “Print Management Software” – This can be used in any industry to manage and optimize office document printers.

We have created a guide to help you learn more about the key software solutions that are used in the printing, packaging, and label industries. The most important piece of software for a print provider is an MIS solution, and we have started with an explanation of what this does, along with the different phrases to describe it. We’ve also included details of all the main types of software applications that connect to an MIS solution, and how each integration works.

👈 Use the menu to the left to browse types of software.