ERP systems in the manufacturing industry have been coming into their own as of late, as software such as Dynamics NAV and others have been allowing organizations to update their company's strategy. Industry professional Pat Garrehy wrote on Mnaufacturing.net that an ERP solution needs to have the integrity, performance and flexibility that a traditional solution provides but should also be able to improve its workability within the company and give better customer service.
Gerrehy said there are some questions organizations should ask of their ERP providers, including:
- How does the software help track the materials shipped by vendors to contractors?
- Can this solution integrate multiple parts into a single order for an easier workflow?
- Is there access for suppliers to update purchase order details?
- What are the collaborative aspects of the program? How does communication work?
After taking care of these areas of manufacturing, the company should look to see what the IT department has to say. While IT ideally wants to be in control of customizations and release parts of ERP without compromises, there will likely have to be another deal struck within the company.
"IT is now informed and knows that this type of customization to a software product can only really be achieved on a public cloud platform that promotes 'best of breed' and 'encourages' that all software developers that reside on their public platform abide by a set of rules which make it conducive for others to extend their software package," Gerrehy wrote
Top trends to look for in new ERP
Kim MacIntosh wrote on Manufacturing Business Technology that two of the things organization should look for in their newest ERP updates are improvements to mobility and supply chain visibility. Mobile devices are still changing the industry, she said, but manufacturers are still early in adoption, so getting after it now may be ideal for companies that want to get themselves ahead of the competition. As supply chain visibility is concerned, she said it has gone from something that is simply nice to have to an essential part of the business.
ERP in the supply chain and manufacturing industry has come a long way in recent years, she said, so organizations should look for a solution that offers tracking and analytic capabilities to improve margins and get more control over operations.
Learn how to define your ERP strategy by downloading the white paper entitled "ERP in Manufacturing: Defining the ERP Strategy" from the DMS website today.