ERP software has become a critical component of the modern manufacturing infrastructure. Given the increasing complexity of operational environments and the number of disparate aspects that must be accounted for, gaining oversight across the entire enterprise has never been more challenging. ERP implementation can significantly aid this process and streamline operations. As such, manufacturers have become much more reliant on these tools for their continued success and viability.

IDC recently conducted a study in order to determine the value presented by ERP solutions in a manufacturing environment. Researchers found that one notable area of deployment that companies may be ignoring is enhancing the client experience. According to the report, some organizations have difficulty implementing ERP as a tool to bolster overall customer satisfaction. Many see it as a method of speeding up the delivery of service, but they also often fail to appreciate the potential for these resources to provide clients with an optimal service and reduce the rate of churn. ERP solutions can be used to ensure that every facet of a delivered good or service meets the client's needs, including the quantity, quality and timing of delivery.

"The role of ERP appears crucial to improving customer experience," the report stated. "Companies on higher levels in the customer experience maturity model have a higher consideration of their ERP as a key tool in delivering a good customer experience." It continued, "The research indicates that an improved customer experience can be gained through investments in modern, fully integrated, flexible and easy to use ERP systems that streamline all operational processes and connect back office with front office by offering integrated CRM, warranty and aftermarket functionalities."

Faulty ERP tools hurt the bottom line
When ERP software becomes unavailable and fails to run properly, businesses can experience costly delays that could affect both the short and long term success of an enterprise. A large number of manufacturers have reported performance issues with their ERP software in recent months. A recent study conducted jointly by Easynet Global Services and Ipanema Technology found that 83 percent of manufacturers were experiencing problems with their IT applications, Manufacturing Digital reported. Of those incidents, 31 percent were in relation to ERP software. Furthermore, 63 percent of the respondents stated that these performance issues were occurring with greater frequency.

"The results of this study suggest that manufacturers are struggling with IT management and fighting to reduce instances of application slowness or non-responsiveness," Easynet Global Services COO Adrian Thirkill stated. "If an ERP system is down for a mere five minutes each day the company is losing around one percent of overall productivity."

It is imperative that manufacturers deploy an ERP solution that provides dependable accessibility. Microsoft Dynamics NAV is an easy-to-use platform that features a network of local partners to assist manufacturers with any issues they may encounter. This way, business leaders can be sure their mission-critical software remains functional and available when called upon. 

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.