Real-time is a commonly used yet loosely defined buzz word in the manufacturing industry. As a manufacturer, what does real-time mean to me and how is information flowing through my shop floor to the front office? What does this mean in terms of ERP (enterprise resource planning) solutions and what does it take to be considered a real-time solution? More importantly, why would I need this? For this article, we shall define an ERP system with real-time capabilities to mean that the ERP system has the ability to update information throughout the system and across your company as the new information is entered instantaneously. Following the definition, an explanation into the benefits of real-time capability and the specific areas of a system where real-time is impactful will be provided. Continue reading
With the Presidential election just a few mere weeks away, there are a lot of rumors about what is to come in the manufacturing industry. Will there be significant change, funds added, or funds cut, especially in the aerospace and defense industries?
Many manufacturers have spoken out, including customers and prospects of ours, who are genuinely worried and have cut back on certain expenditures in order to minimize risk for 2013. With that said, the one trend which remains true is, regardless of what happens in the marketplace, more and more manufacturers are realizing that in order to continue growing and competing at a high level, they need a manufacturing system in place to help with their visibility on their shop floor through the front office and to increase quality, on-time delivery, and cash flow, amongst many other areas. Continue reading
If you are in manufacturing, your inventory data, customer & prospect records, and all other databases on your server, are probably the most vital commodity to you, after what’s actually out on your shop floor. After all is said and done, you want to sit back, relax (term used very lightly in manufacturing), and not have to worry that your extremely important server could crash from under you, and without warning. Unfortunately, like any other tangible good, this can happen without proper maintenance. These unexpected crashes are even more common in those manufacturers that are small to mid-sized (SMBs) who do not have the luxury of an IT (information technology) department and/or IT director. There is good news, though. There are opportunities to outsource professional services that can monitor your company’s technological behavior, on a daily basis, for tens of thousands less than it would take to hire a full-time staff member. Continue reading
Internal issues that many manufacturing companies face, often surround the idea that companies know the problems that lie in front of them, but they do not necessarily understand the root cause. More importantly, they often do not know the crucial next steps in order to rectify and grow beyond these issues. In past blogs, we’ve addressed this as an important factor in recognizing that a serious change needs to occur, but this article will attempt to dig deeper to understand whether or not your current point (manual) or automated solution is standing the test of time. Continue reading