From Start to Finish: How ERP supports your manufacturing process

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions are essential for manufacturers, no matter their size, scope or the end-products that roll off their assembly line. An ERP system helps manufacturers automate multiple and often complex processes, from procuring raw materials until the finished product is delivered to the customer’s door. Simply put, it gives businesses a holistic view of their production facility, so they can run leaner, strengthen customer loyalty, and increase their bottom line.

When it comes to manufacturing, ERP helps you to plan and manage your operational workflows while simultaneously automating multiple business processes, such as your financials, supply chain, business intelligence, commerce, human resources, sales and marketing, shipping and deliveries, and customer relationship management (CRM).

But the real power behind ERP for manufacturing is its ability to give you full visibility of your product lines, improved response times, seamless workflow synchronization with real-time alerts at every stage, and that it simplifies all your complex production processes.

Let’s take a closer look at how ERP supports your manufacturing process, from the get-go, all the way through to product completion and delivery.

  1. Automate the implementation of routing. Routing describes how your product must be assembled and lists all the steps necessary to build your product once you have your raw materials ready. ERP automates implementation of routing and regular quality checks so that progress can be constantly monitored.
  1. Manage your stock efficiently. During manufacturing, one of the first steps is to create a Bill of Materials (BOM), which describes everything that is required to manufacture your product. As and when raw materials described in BOM are procured, ERP automatically updates financial information pertaining to purchases made. This helps you to account for all the expenses right from the outset.
  1. Trace origin of procured materials. To keep the manufacturing process smooth and free from defects caused by faulty raw materials and spares, it’s important to be able to trace objects down to their lot. ERP maintains a record of the origin of every piece of raw material, and retrieving such information is fast and easy.
  1. Automate manufacturing orders. Many manufacturers find it difficult to keep pace with incoming orders and ensuring that all the raw materials are readily available. ERP helps ensure that stocks are replenished as and when orders arrive so that manufacturing can continue uninterrupted. If you receive multiple work orders, an ERP can intelligently create master production schedules with updated information. A master production schedule takes various factors into account such as the capacity of the production line, bandwidth for workload, and staff availability.
  1. Consistent support for product lifecycle management. ERP is an excellent tool to automate product lifecycle management. If a product needs to be altered or changed because of customer dissatisfaction, ERP can relay such information to modify an existing BOM. This ensures that Engineering Change Orders (ECOs) are automatically updated, avoiding bottlenecks and delays.
  1. Improve communication within the organization. The success of any manufacturing project depends on the ability of various entities to communicate effectively in a timely manner. ERP helps improve communication between various departments, from inventory management to shipping and delivery. This bolsters work culture and performance, while ensuring productivity levels remain high. What’s more, ERP can be used to manage specific projects, down to individual employee performance, and even track time and attendance.
  1. Benefits of ERP post manufacturing. Once a product has been manufactured and packaged, ERP also takes care of shipping and deliveries. It automates the process of tracking deliveries and providing after sales support. In fact, thanks to artificial intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and advanced robotics integrated into an ERP system, select compatible products can be repaired and serviced remotely at the customer’s site. As customers receive their products on time and enjoy the benefits of top-notch service and support, customer satisfaction and customer loyalty grows.

Choose an ERP solution tailored to meet manufacturers’ “real” needs

An ERP system is essential to gain a comprehensive view of your product lines and enhance overall response times. It improves agility and ensures a seamless workflow. Modern ERP solutions also deliver real-time alerts at each stage of the production process directly from a mobile device or tablet, an essential tool for shop floor managers, inventory and distribution teams, and drivers.

It’s important to note that a standard or basic ERP system is not sufficient for manufacturing. A dedicated ERP for manufacturers integrates multiple processes, including production, sales and marketing, financials, project and workforce management, and more, to ensure seamless production. From procuring raw materials to delivering finished goods, and providing post-sales support and services, manufacturing ERP handles your business operations – from start to finish.

To learn more about how an ERP system can power your manufacturing business, contact us for a no-obligation call with one of our ERP implementation experts.

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The Author
Todd McElroy
Head of Sales, Priority U.S.

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