There is little doubt that ERP (enterprise resource planning) systems are complex and time-consuming to implement. However, any discrete manufacturing operation is complex and requires time, effort, and the attention of multiple parties to properly execute and control such operations. Engineers need to set up and maintain bills-of-materials; purchasing needs to acquire raw materials; warehouse personnel need to store, dispense, and keep track of materials; and production needs to plan and schedule manufacturing activities. Finally, accountants need to assign costs to these activities and summarize them in a language and format everyone can understand.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) often do not have the necessary IT resources or infrastructure to install robust ERP solutions. However, to equate a lack of resources with a lack of need for robust ERP software is a fallacy. The advent of cloud computing has made robust ERP solutions available for SMEs, including those with discrete manufacturing operations. Cloud-based ERP can provide sophisticated software solutions to companies without the need to build and maintain an IT infrastructure or support staff. A cloud-based ERP system can automate all the activities necessary for discrete manufacturers to plan, make, sell, and deliver their products to customers.
Perhaps more importantly, a cloud-based ERP system can integrate these activities, eliminating manual transactions and paperwork and improving the timeliness and flow of information between all of the parties involved in the manufacturing cycle.
Too often the sales volume of an organization is used to measure size as well as complexity. Any discrete manufacturing operation is, by its very nature, complex — complex enough to justify the implementation of a robust, integrated ERP system. Smaller discrete manufacturers should look to simplify their processes and reduce costs via the cloud.
Learn more about Acumatica’s cloud-based ERP for discrete manufacturers.