Utilizing a Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) allows manufacturing plants to control and monitor production processes that lead to the conversion of raw materials into finished products and help production decision makers make important decisions or detect potential problems as soon as possible, leading to increased production efficiency.1
Although a MES is a robust, powerful tool in managing manufacturing, it remains a disparate platform from the rest of the organization’s business functions, such as customer service, finance, orders, etc. With various organizational processes disconnected from one another, a company lacks real-time tracing and transparency. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems solve this issue.
The concept of ERP dates back to the early 1900s, with rudimentary, paper-based versions being utilized to manage production scheduling. Beginning in the 1990s, with fast growth of technology and the internet, ERP evolved dramatically to become comprehensive, integrated platforms that manage every aspect of a business dealing in production and/or distribution.2
ERP systems are beneficial and are being utilized in a myriad of industries including banking, casinos and gaming, communications, education, federal government, healthcare, hospitality, life sciences, professional services, oil and gas, restaurants, retail, and utilities.3
ERP systems can support all aspects of a business including customer service, financial management, human resources, supply chain management, and manufacturing. An ERP system is the next logical step in optimizing the performance, efficiency, and customer service of your organization.4
By integrating ERP with MES, organizations can decrease the amount of time it takes to fulfill orders and reduce the time inventories are kept at the warehouse. The ability to manage schedules via production planning to incorporate the latest changes to production on the shop floor means that realistic expectations are set. Inbound inventory and outbound inventory’s visibility are dramatically increased.5
Business process modeling is a critical component for effective business process management. In an integrated MES/ERP system, managers can apply process modeling to the entire line of management, sales, customer services, operations, and manufacturing, shaping each part of the business process tightly to guarantee ideal implementation from the start. ERP systems eliminate manual processes and streamline new processes. By consistently modeling new business processes, the organization becomes more responsive and flexible as markets and industries evolve.
Quality of materials and products can be assured through tight data integration. Defective products can be identified quickly through a MES’s product tracking, genealogy, and quality management. When integrated with an ERP system, defects are quickly found and returned to the supplier. Other management practices can be applied by selecting the appropriate suppliers to source parts and dynamically optimize sourcing alongside manufacturing.
Managing inventory in uncertain times can be incredibly tricky. Keeping too much or too little inventory can be costly. Delays in delivery schedules, production schedules can impact the integrity of the business. Consistency is key when it comes to planning for future demand. An integrated ERP/MES system allows the ERP software to forward changes in demand directly to production planning. This makes production volumes more responsive to demand and ultimately aligns expectations closer to forecasts.
When faced with a customer issue regarding a product or delivery, the ability to track the life cycle of parts or batches can resolve this issue quickly and appropriately. Customer service staff can identify where in the pipeline the issue originated and use this information to not only address the customer’s complaint, but also improve processes to prevent the issue from happening in the future.
xTuple ERP by CAI is designed with small to mid-sized manufacturers in mind with innovative integrations that help manufacturers and distributors manage warehouses, inventory, supply chain and logistics. As a best-in-breed ERP, xTuple delivers the benefits of modern enterprise resource planning - visibility into what you need, when, and where you need it. Created for manufacturers, xTuple helps you crack new markets, maximize sales, increase cashflow, simplify inventory, and mitigate supply chain disruptions. xTuple is the modern ERP technology you need to achieve sustainable growth and a competitive edge — with simple, intuitive, user-friendly tools that future-proof your expansion.6
Find out more about how xTuple ERP can satisfy your organization’s needs by contacting us today. Click here to schedule a personalized demo of the platform.
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"xTuple" (verb) — to grow; to increase exponentially. Our mission is to help manufacturing and inventory-centric companies use management software and best practices to grow their business profitably.