- June 02, 2016
By Robert Waugh, HighJump An ERP system is a significant investment, yet many manufacturing operations don‚Äôt take full advantage of its capabilities. This article discusses the benefits of ERP systems in manufacturing
By Robert Waugh, Regional Manager, HighJump
An ERP system is a significant investment, yet many manufacturing operations don’t take full advantage of its capabilities. By leveraging connectivity software to collect and communicate real-time data from the warehouse management system to the ERP, organizations gain greater insight into their operations with more accurate information, broadened visibility, and optimized processes that maximize their ERP investment.
You rely on a lot of software to run your operations, and that software relies on good data and inputs in order to deliver maximum value to you. Your ERP, in particular, has to be fed the right data or it won’t be able to provide the information you need to make smart business decisions. That means real-time, accurate information flowing from your warehouse management system (WMS) to your ERP. Without it, how can you know what’s truly happening on your shop floor, have a good understanding of inventory levels, or confidently make decisions about your operations? How can you accurately plan and forecast if you don’t know the quantity and type of your raw materials at any given time?
Connectivity software that blends the sophistication of a warehouse management system with the simplicity of an automated data collection solution allow you to connect, collect and control every aspect of your ERP’s receiving, order fulfillment and inventory control functions. Let’s take a look at why gathering data at its origin and feeding it to your ERP in real time can deliver more benefits across more areas of your operation – and maximize your system investment.
The power of connection
With robust connectivity software sending WMS data to your ERP in real-time, you’re eliminating the lag-time between systems, broadening your visibility and optimizing system workflows and procedures. More than simply allowing you to scan and input data from handheld devices, connectivity software can span the divide between key supply chain systems.
Streamlined, accurate data
No matter how many features and functions your back-end system has, it must run on good data to be effective. And yet, many manufacturing operations are still stuck with manually entering data into their ERP systems. This makes the environment ripe for errors and inaccuracies, not to mention delays because the output depends on the timeliness of the input.
By ensuring that automated, real-time data is fed to the ERP, you will improve the information accuracy of your system, along with cutting the complexity around how your data is handled and actioned upon. Fewer steps and fewer chances for errors means keeping core systems in check.
Greater visibility and speed
The need for cradle-to-grave product traceability is not going away; consumers and regulators will only require more detail and more proof that you know exactly what’s in your products at all times.
Manufacturing operations have to prove what components are used in production throughout the supply chain and what’s being given to the customer – and sometimes reports are required within hours, not days. With a connectivity tool, you can make traceability faster and more manageable, and confidently report on every step – from raw material receipts to finish goods shipment.
Optimize processes to maximize your investment
By cutting out the need for manual data entry, the inevitable human errors and the slower outputs, you can optimize your warehouse processes and get more value out of your ERP. Now, you can more quickly identify trouble areas on the shop floor, assist employees that may need more training to meet productivity goals, or more accurately forecast what you will need to meet inventory demand. Connectivity and automation tools that are built for your back-end application can be especially helpful by spotlighting new ways to further leverage the ERP investment you’ve already made.
Why invest in the best ERP but not take full advantage of it? As the backbone of your business, it will help you make informed business decisions only if it has a clear, up-to-the-minute view of your operations. Collecting and connecting accurate data in real-time gives you more control over the key inputs that lead to the best outputs.
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