From ordering raw materials, through to manufacturing goods, all the way to shipping and invoicing customers for those goods, manufacturers face complex workflows. They also often need to maintain compliance with relevant safety regulations. Discrete manufacturers have various models, too: make-to-stock, make-to-order, and various others. Process manufacturers have to manage recipes and BOMs. Inventory management and machine maintenance must also be considered. 

That’s why using a manufacturing-specific ERP software solution can help manufacturers leverage automation, data analysis, and holistic visibility to operate leaner, optimize their workflows, stay compliant, and grow their bottom line.

Combatting Common Manufacturing Challenges


  • Managing Inventory

    For a manufacturing company keeping track of your inventory can be a major challenge. Having the right inventory means that you have sufficient supply to effectively meet the needs of your customers. If you have poor inventory management, it can have disastrous effects on your organization’s revenue. Modern ERP manufacturing management software offer you the visibility and inventory counts that are required to have more efficient production planning.

  • Lack of Updates and Control

    For raw materials and finished goods, lot traceability must be done. However, with the lack of visibility during production and manual processes in place there are inefficiencies and errors that arise. The right manufacturing ERP solution allows companies to access their real-time production information for status updates and inventory management.

  • Material Requirement Planning

    To be effective with your production planning, manufacturing companies must utilize historical data to assist with their forecasts; however for some this can be a significant challenge. Material Requirement Planning (MRP) is a critical component of manufacturing ERP software that helps solve these challenges of resource management. MRP can help you optimize the utilization of your resources to grow your company.

  • Reporting and Complying

    Industry standards and regulations are frequently updated, making it a new challenge for manufacturers each year. There is also growing demand for manufacturing companies to have strong reporting, especially if you manufacture consumer goods. Manual processes of sorting through large volumes of data can be a time consuming task. With an ERP system you can gain the ability to track and easily comply with standards through transparent data across your organization. An ERP can provide reporting, documenting and financial tools that make this process easy and accurate.

  • Lack of Real-time Information

    Due to manual processes and poor visibility, communication and access to the right information throughout your organization can be a challenge and sometimes cost your company revenue. With a manufacturing ERP, you can gain access to real-time data which is critical to the production process and can help eliminate revenue loss. The higher quality of data you receive, the better quality decisions you can make.

Benefits of Manufacturing ERP

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  • Material Requirement Planning

    With a modern manufacturing ERP software system you can hold your company accountable and meet your schedule by planning ahead for your required material and generate time-phased manufacturing & purchasing plans. Benefit from maintaining the optimum amount of inventory based on forecast and customer demand and avoid shortages.

  • Material and Lot/Serial Tracking

    Give your manufacturing company the ability to trace inventory and categorize items through a lot or serial number with a new ERP solution. Maintain full traceability throughout the lifecycle of your items. Capture and view all this information in real-time, and have the confidence that it is backed up in the cloud.

  • Track your Costs and Create Accurate Estimates

    For engineering and operations within a manufacturing company, project costing is essential. Select ERP solutions have a Bill of Material (BOM) and routing modules that can help you track raw material, purchased items, labor, and production overhead. This gives your organization the ability to design and estimate current and future products with accurate cost data, and make revisions to develop the most cost-effective recipes for products.

  • Manage Product Complexity

    Your manufacturing company can have a variety of products that range from simple to complex. With a modern manufacturing management software you can have an easy and accurate method to track what you’re designing, assembling, blending, and fabricating. Gain the ability to do complex product structuring with multi-level bills of material, detailed routings, and multiple revisions to any product.

  • Single Source of Data

    Manufacturing companies utilize multiple applications, but with the right ERP system you will only need one single source of data. Say goodbye to merging and pulling together multiple parts of information from multiple spreadsheets, batch tickets, accounting sources, sales orders, or other sources, just to get a better understanding of your company. Eliminate time consuming tasks and get a better control of your company with a modern ERP system.

  • Barcode Integration

    Manual inventory counts and tracking is prone to errors. Modern ERP software can have barcode integration to help eliminate manual processes. Use barcode data collection to record labor and material transactions as well as inventory transactions including issue receipts, cycle counting and physical inventory. Barcode integration will both improve data accuracy and save time.

  • Integrated Bill of Material and Routing

    With manufacturing ERP software, efficiently plan and manage inventory, cost and document manufacturing processes for your bills of material while maintaining full version control, pending changes, and routings. Additionally, you can connect materials, work instructions and overhead costs to an operation to accommodate time-phased release of materials.

Manufacturing Industry Resources

Key Performance Indicators for Manufacturing

Every manufacturing company, in all industry segments, rely on measurements to monitor business activities and performance, document success and challenges. Smart management incorporates those measurements into valuable intelligence that helps run the business more efficiently.

Download this guide to learn about key KPI’s in the manufacturing industry and how measuring and  analyzing them can boost your company’s success.

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