Presented below is a list of selected terms and jargon used in the accounting software industry. Do you have a term that we’ve missed? If so, e-mail us by clicking here.

ASP This acronym refers to “Application Service Provider”. ASPs generally load an application (like Oracle Small Business Suite or SAP) on a remote server, and then allow customers to access that application for a monthly or annual rental fee. This service is also referred to as “Hosting”. Popular ASPs include IBM, EDS, Future-Link, and the Taylor Group.
Client Server This term describes an accounting system (or any program) that is designed to process data at both the client computer (workstation) and the server (file server). The result is that the server is able to perform much of the calculations, sorts, and computations at the server level and then send the results to the workstation. The effect of client server is to dramatically reduce the amount of traffic on local area networks and wide area networks, and thus increase speed in heavy traffic environments. Client server technology is essential when operating a system through low bandwidth connections such as a telephone line and in situations with very large volumes of data.
CRM This acronym refers to “Customer Relationship Management”. Originally referred to as “Contact Management” and then as “Sales Force Automation”, CRM encompasses a wide assortment of capabilities designed to help a company better manage their customers.
Discrete Manufacturing This term refers to the manufacturing of specific unique items to exacting specifications such as a custom-made cabinet or a new sophisticated carburetor. Discrete manufacturing is used heavily by the engineering, automotive, electronics, and aerospace industries, among others.
Eat Your Own Dog Food This is a term used by the industry to describe the fact that the accounting vendor uses its’ own software to run its’ business.
ERP This is an acronym for “Enterprise Resource Planning”. Once you get above a certain price, high end accounting software packages are generally referred to as ERP Systems.
Front Office Automation Closely related to CRM, this refers to applications that are designed to be used when working with a customer, the results of which are transmitted seamlessly back to the back office applications (general ledger). For example, the radio clipboard used by a UPS delivery person to capture the customer’s signature and transmit it back to headquarters is an example of front office automation.
Hosting See ASP above
Integrated This term means that the data from one module or system flows directly to another module or system without rekeying the data. Seamless integration means that the data flows automatically with no action required by the user.
JBOPS This term is an acronym that refers to the top ERP products JD Edwards, Baan, Oracle Financials, PeopleSoft, and SAP.
JBLOPS This is the acronym we use here at Accounting Software World to refer to the JBOPS – including Lawson Software.
Just-In-Time Refers to the process of ordering inventory so that it arrives just-in-time for you to use it. This reduces the cost of carrying excessive levels of inventory that are not needed by reducing interest expense and warehousing costs.
PP This acronym refers to “Production Planning” in which complex calculations are used to schedule various production processes and order raw materials just-in-time.
Screen Scrape This term is used to describe an older DOS-based accounting system that has implemented a Windows front end on top of the older technology. The resulting product looks like a Windows product, but is really still a DOS-based product underneath.
SME This acronym refers to the “Small to Medium Enterprise Market” generally defined as companies with revenue ranging from $50 million to $500 million.
SCM This acronym refers to “Supply Chain Management”. This refers to a companies suppliers, the suppliers’ suppliers, and so on. Accounting systems that support the “Supply Chain” provide the ability to link their systems seamlessly into it’s suppliers and customer up and down the chain.