Industrial manufacturing is a term that cuts across multiple sectors including everything from the manufacturing of machinery equipment to semiconductor electronics and everything in between. In a competitive, and highly diverse market, businesses in this sector are constantly being forced to re-evaluate how they market, sell, and price solutions for their customers, while working closely with their own people to deliver new strategies through new people, processes and technology. But how do you master the complexities of industrial manufacturing, drive efficiency throughout your organisation, increase productivity and control costs? And what role can an ERP solution play in facilitating all of this?
Using ERP to aid lean manufacturing
ERP has been a mainstay in the global manufacturing market for many years, and is continuing to help businesses to improve productivity and manage business critical operations today. But recently, ERP has found a new way to help manufacturing businesses to build a competitive edge. For many, ERP vs lean is a battle that cannot be a compromise, with ERP’s roots cemented in materials planning and production scheduling, and lean’s roots more affiliated with keeping inventory to a minimum and replenishing parts when needed – a real chalk and cheese scenario. But when used effectively, ERP solutions such as SYSPRO, can be a key facilitator of lean manufacturing operations.
When tasked with managing inventory at as minimum a level as possible, manufacturing software can play a major role as a records-orientated system, recording orders processed, materials consumed and finished products shipped, which, with a bit of reverse engineering, can trigger notifications when inventory levels need to be replenished and when additional resource is required for a job.
ERP can be used to build and manage the production schedule in an industrial manufacturing business, managing custom-flow assembly lines to have raw materials brought to the line as and when required, reducing the number of manual processes required, and ensuring that inventory is never wasted.
Using ERP to keep industrial equipment operating at optimum levels
Industrial manufacturing relies as much on its capital machinery as it does its people and the two need to work efficiently together in order to have a high performing business. Not only can ERP help to manage your human resources, analyse periods of high productivity and assess whether or not your people have the right tools to be able to fulfil an order, but it can also leverage operational equipment effectiveness to ensure your machinery is operating efficiently too.
ERP makes operational data more visible so you can work to prevent areas of machinery downtime and ensure better maintenance. When a critical component fails in a machine, schedules can become disrupted and this creates a knock-on effect on the wider supply chain, forcing production managers to delay their schedules in order to get a machine quickly repaired again. As with most situations, prevention is better than cure, so imagine having complete visibility of everything happening on the shop floor. Imagine if you could manage throughput and disruptions to give your business a clearer idea of capacity levels at any one moment in time – that’s the visibility that ERP can provide.
Ensuring your products are always of the highest quality
In such a competitive industry, any product created by an industrial manufacturing business must be manufactured to the highest quality, in order to retain competitive edge. ERP is a key component in helping any industrial manufacturing business to maintain high quality standards and solid compliance audit trails. With the functionality to allow you to track your inventory levels, capture data direct from the shop floor and integrate it with other information running through the system, you can ensure that you are monitoring quality from the moment a part enters your manufacturing process, right through to testing the final product and preparing it for distribution.