Over 600 million apps are downloaded worldwide each day. Moore’s law observes that the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit doubles approximately every two years. With computing moving into nanotechnology, this continues to be true. I recently read that knowledge is doubled at least every year (soon to be measured in hours?). Just a few years ago it was unheard of for a mid-sized manufacturing company to have a terabyte of data. But, now I have a quarter of a terabyte of storage on my iPhone. How do you keep up? How do you keep your business systems up-to-date? How much of your competitive advantage is based on this ever changing technology? How much better are you than your competitors? It’s such a blessing to have all this incredible technology and data storage available. What’s hard is sifting through all the noise and settling on what’s right for your business. You want to upgrade, but is your upgraded business system going to result in “Better, Faster & Cheaper”?Read More
It’s become standard operating procedure to offer maintenance contracts on a variety of electronics that we purchase. Maintenance and warranty offers extend far beyond cars, televisions, and appliances.
You have already committed to . . .Read More
As a distributor, whether that is industrial products, HVAC, electrical or building products, you have new challenges to face as the next generation of buyer comes to the counter. This next generation of buyer has grown up differently than you customers of the past and they have different expectations.
Buyers today want choices and customization, off the shelf and generic does not excite them nor are they willing to have loyalty to you if you just supply commodities. If they do business with you, can you provide them a broad portfolio of solutions configured the way they want?
Buyers today expect visualization. They have grown up with computers that present high resolution displays so they can experience life virtually. Can you present your products in such a way that they are stimulated to buy?
Buyers today areRead More
Selecting a new ERP software often requires more than just research, demos, and budgets. Often, it is the team that we assemble for a project that determines its success.
Team sports are a prime example of how this works. If you have a basketball, baseball, or football team that doesn’t recognize and utilize the strengths of each player then you typically end up with dysfunction. Every member of a team has a role to play in reaching the goal of a winning season. An ERP selection committee is much like a sports team with the goal of a winning season.
Assembling a winning team does not necessarily mean you focus solely on power users or department managers. In fact, itRead More
The manufacturing of unique products and the consumer demands for increased variants and features and options are requiring the need for change within business operating software. If you are still focused on core ERP to make efficiency improvements, cost reductions and streamlining your supply chain, you are only going to get half way to optimal success. You must start looking forward to how you are interacting with your customers and meeting their demands for unique products. The new millennial buyers are thinking differently and expect their products to be built the way they want. Let’s take a look at what you should be looking at for the future if you are going to lead the market through the offering of configured to order products, versus becoming commoditized and marginalized.Read More
I just returned from the 2016 IBEX boat show in Tampa, getting out right before the hurricane, and the winds outside could not compare to the energy and invigoration of the marine suppliers and buyers on the exhibit floor. The industry is definitely alive and well which is going to push the limits of the boat industry supply chain if the upward trends continue. We all keenly remember the near death of the industry just a few years ago and during that time it was a survival mode operation only. Little investment was made in business systems technology, supply chain optimization and systematic efficiency improvement.
Turning to today where the industry has been seeing near 20% annual growth in many segments, this...
With the economy on a continued recovery the demand for boats, especially small to mid-sized styles is increasing dramatically according to the recent NMMA U.S. RECREATIONAL BOATING STATISTICAL ABSTRACT. While not yet back to pre-2007 numbers, it’s still significant growth. This level of growth has opened up the need for boat builders to become more efficient and streamlining of production. Prior to 2006, many builders just made capital investments in plants and equipment which during the downturn put many of them out of business. Cash flow dried up and the capital equipment became a major liability.
Learning from the missteps of the past during those pre-2006 growth years, how can the smart boat builder gain production levels to meet today’s demand without breaking the bank with capital investment? Other industries have faced similar issues such as the automotive markets. Suppliers to the automotive industries have felt the same pain and been in the same scenario. So what did they do to avoid the problems of the past?
Production efficiency in boat assembly can be increased and optimized thorough the use of ...Read More
If you took advantage of the Labor Day holiday to spend some time on the water, chances are you saw a lot of boaters. The number of boats on lakes, waterways, and oceans during holiday weekend is incredible. It makes you wonder how many people own the boat they are driving or are they renting it for the weekend. Regardless, of the number of boats on the water and who owns them, boating is a huge industry with many possibilities.
If you are in the market for a boat, and looking to join the ranks of other boaters, how do you know what you want? If you look...Read More
The FAA estimates that nearly 100,000 aircraft will need to equip with ADS-B Out between now and 2020, but does the U.S. aviation industry have the time and resources to get them done in time? (As reported in Avionics Today)
Companies that supply advanced navigation and electronics systems for private, commercial and military are facing ever increasing challenges to meeting regulatory requirements such as the new requirements for ADS-B. Requirements such as this not only affect the ability for companies to ramp up to the production demand but also the engineering, ERP and business systems that are used to design and build these products. Extending from . . .Read More
Take a step outside and listen to what you hear, take a deep breath and take in the smells around you. If you are like some of the rural population in the United States, that is a refreshing moment. However if you live in an urban or city with a high population, it’s not refreshing. You will more likely hear the din of traffic, harsh sounds of diesel city buses, their engines clamoring and with the stench of diesel exhaust. In extreme cities such as Mexico City, and multiple cities in China and India this is more than just an annoyance, it’s a major heath issue.
Cheap fuel of the...Read More
We all know that to be ahead of our competition we need to get there fast. The question I would pose, “Is it necessary for ALL things”? We realize that technology has driven the universe to run at a much faster pace. We think we need it now - not later. So does that mean that we should all be doing things exactly the same way? Should everything have a cookie cutter approach? Does one size fit all?Read More
ERP Software isn’t just for big companies anymore. There has often been the perception that investing in ERP Software is impossible for smaller companies. However, an examination of the current ERP Software landscape would probably surprise small businesses that have shied away from investing in ERP software in the past.
There are two substantial concerns for small businesses when it comes to ERP Software.
The first concern focuses on . . .Read More
The interactive online buying experience is becoming a part of our day to day purchasing experiences. Car manufacturers have been relying on this interactive; “build your model” feature for quite some time. Another early adopter of this technology was the fast food pizza industry. When was the last time that you actually called your local store to order a pizza? As consumers, we have been introduced and adopted the “build your own” retail experience.
These innovative ways to shop on a personal level are slowly influencing the manufacturing industry . . .Read More
Companies that supply components and complete systems for military and defense electronics are facing ever increasing challenges with meeting regulatory requirements such as the ones referenced above from May 12. Regulations such as this not only affect the design and packaging of components and systems but the engineering, ERP, and business systems that are used to design and build these products.
Companies that do not have in place proper. . .Read More
To achieve a successful ERP Project implementation, you must begin with the end in mind. The end in mind should be that the new ERP system supports your business processes and is aligned to meet your organizational objectives/goals. This is nearly an impossible undertaking without creating the proper Project Teams up front. Regardless of project size, it is highly recommended that three distinct Project Teams be created:Read More
As a consultant and software expert on a large ERP implementation project some years ago, I was asked regularly how to accomplish a task or enter data in the new system. When I saw that some people would just take my advice and run with it, I started adding the comment “Trust Me”. This would give them pause, and often responded with “Ok, you want me to fully test this, right?” Of course I did! While my advice may have been sound, fully testing data and validating processes are critical aspects of any ERP implementation.
So, how do build that trust? You’ve invested in a good solid Enterprise Resources Planning (ERP) system. You’ve tagged the best . . .Read More
Once upon a time, there was a business that was trying to grow and update its current operations. One of the items to be updated was the software that the company was using for its core operations. The software was several years old, and the promised update had been postponed multiple times, leading the company to make the decision that it was time to scrap the software.
There were multiple departments that weren’t even utilizing the legacy software because the . . .Read More
Executive buy-in is terminology that often gets tossed around when exploring and / or implementing an ERP project. Typically, the executive management will not be involved with the day to day implementation. In fact, there may be limited executive representation throughout the ERP selection process. Typically, the ERP selection team should primarily be comprised of the company power users from each department, and company leaders.
So, what role does the executive management team play? Executives have a . . .Read More
I remember a few years ago when “You Might Be a Redneck” jokes were all over the place. There are stores that sprung up in strip malls and shopping outlets simply due to the demand for the Jeff Foxworthy Redneck joke special.
So what do these jokes have to do with ERP? If you find yourself making a list of questions that start with the phrase, “My ERP may need replacing because…”, then you have officially categorized your business like . . .
Over the years whether being a consultant for ERP implementations or an actual end user in ERP implementations, I have seen a common thread for the successes or not so successful implementations.
Oh, yes, I have heard and do realize that one of the most important messages is COMMITMENT from TOP DOWN. We have all heard and to some extend it is true, people . . .Read More