On February 6th Global Shop Solutions will be giving our first quarterly webcast. Each quarter, one of these webcasts will be highlighting a business goal and, how Global Shop One-System ERP Solutions™ can help businesses achieve that goal. This week’s topic is “Trust Global Shop for Increased Sales.” (more…)
Archive for the ‘Quality’ Category
Are the functions of a manager truly different in a lean manufacturing environment when compared with a traditional management structure? Of course they are. It is all a matter of the degree to which each incorporates production variables of their specific models that they will differ in some ways, and don’t differ very much at all in other ways. It’s important, though, to understand these differences for seeing what model—lean or traditional—works best in your own shop for managing people and processes.
So what are the differences? In a lean manufacturing environment production is based on real customer demand. In a traditional manufacturing environment production is based on what you hope to sell. (more…)
The management of workflow in the manufacturing business is considered one of the most complex, yet most vital, components for achieving optimum productivity. When workflow management is the product of an integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) system—which is itself embedded in business process management (BPM)—then chances are increased for improvement in production output and bottom-line profitability.
In Part 1 of this two-part blog series, we introduced the concept of integrating ERP and BPM. In Part 1, it was suggested that workflow mapping is an underutilized tool for a continuous improvement approach to manufacturing. Let us now take a look at some specific examples of the BPM concept, and how it is achieved through workflow mapping. (more…)
The goal of an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is to provide an integrated solution to all business areas of a particular enterprise. In the best-case scenario, you have one software system the whole company can access and work with. For example, all the data for finance, sales, accounting, human resources and inventory is managed in one central repository and each business group within the organization accesses only the subset of data that they need. In this two-part blog series, we will examine how ERP works along other aspects of the business for optimizing workflow.
Of course, workflow as a manufacturing business concept is nothing new. Even before the dawn of the computer age, there have always been established procedures for handling operations within a corporate structure. As another example, consider the purchase order: an employee notifies their manager that they require a particular item; the manager then puts in a requisition, which, depending on his level of authority, may need to be bumped further up the management chain until it’s authorized; it is then handed over to the purchasing coordinator and finally purchased. (more…)
When you form solid raw materials to produce things you can easily touch, see, and/or count, you are most likely what is called a discrete manufacturer. Discrete manufacturing is often characterized by the making of individual or separate units, which is typically low in volume and very high in complexity. That is to say, in discrete manufacturing you are often either building single parts or assemblies of several other parts, with such assemblies often themselves even going into the manufacture of ever more complex products or machines.
This concept is distinguished from what is called a process manufacturing model that often involves notions such as formulas and mixing. Such process can be found in the production of items such as pharmaceuticals, fertilizers, foodstuffs, petroleum products, and so forth. (more…)
How do you gauge success in manufacturing? Most would say it’s a factor of profitability, and of course, they would be correct. But, when it gets to the nitty-gritty of making sure profitability is running full-speed ahead, shop performance is going to have a great bearing on just how that profitability is achieved.
Certainly, when it comes to the investment you might make in an enterprise resource planning system (ERP), performance measurement is going to be considered the biggest payback area you can achieve. The stronger an ERP system is in being able to measure performance on a wide variety of cross-operation variables, the better informed you will be about what’s going on within your production area — and where the best improvements will realize the greatest returns in profitability. (more…)
In Part I of our continuing blog article series on getting ERP right the first time you do it, we introduced the concept of ERP as a means to build greater profitability through gains in efficiency. Now, let’s take a look at what is the function of ERP within the manufacturing system, and what benefits can be had through its employment.
In essence, ERP software serves as a central communication point, or hub, for all the activities in a manufacturing business. It consists of different modules that handle everything from estimating and quoting work orders, all the way to final delivery and billing. ERP also handles all the financial aspects of work generation, including purchasing, inventory management, administrative overhead and all the accounting and financial activities. (more…)
Building the most fluid production line has been the goal of manufacturers since time in memoriam. In the modern global economy, where the notion of time has vanished leaving only “now”, success is measure by speed. Depending upon your product, geography even doesn’t make that much of a difference anymore. Transportation and on-shore production have been practically elevated to the level of business arts. To keep the pace, manufacturers must remain moving, and produce quality goods while in motion.
One of the best fitting models for producers today is cell-system manufacturing. Efficient and completely scalable, cell-system manufacturing is an efficient means to provide a continuous flow of produced quality goods as individual pieces, and to have those items continuously moving off the production line and in route to the customer. Also referred to as one-piece flow production, the core value of the model is the concept of motion—motion of materials, motion of parts/assemblies, motion of personnel, and the motion of finished goods out of the plant. (more…)
What’s a manufacturer to do when the economic times turn tough? The talk on the street is that you’ve got to cut here and there, while also going after business in crevasses you’ve never looked. Well, it’s true that in periods of recession a little belt-tightening can be in order, but efficient operation should be the modus operandi of every business even in times of growth. No, when times get tough, the tough get smart — they look beyond the tactical and out into the strategic.
In manufacturing, strategic thinking requires a long-range planning that usually exceeds the capabilities of most basic data processing software like Excel and Peachtree. Enterprise resource planning software systems (ERP) are designed to create efficiencies, and enrich existing ones, so much so that significant improvements in the bottom-line are realized. At the same time, customer relationships are strengthened for long term retention by the manufacturer. (more…)
The advantages of cost reductions, standardized manufacturing processes, and real-time analytical insight have been the goals of enterprise resource planning software since its creation over four decades ago. Engaging as these goals are in principal, there has always been a struggle to make these happen without removing business unit independence within the company, perpetual process standards that result in inferior product and service outcomes, and defining the true measure of payback for ERP systems. Exacerbating the ERP concept even more is the endless enterprise consolidations taking place in the global economy of the 21st century.
Therefore, integrating not only business practices, but also the often divergent IT approaches of two or more merging manufacturers is something that happens with greater frequency, and is something to not be taken lightly. We can call these consolidation efforts wherein executive sponsorship is of absolute necessity in order for the smoothest and seamless change to take place. Furthermore, in many instances such changes involve (more…)