With National Manufacturing Day on Friday, 2nd October we are looking at what the UK manufacturing sector means to us here at etac solutions.

The UK manufacturing sector is hugely important to our economy. It accounts for £192 billion of output a year, employs 2.7 million people, and the UK is in the top ten manufacturing nations at ninth place.

The pandemic has demonstrated how agile manufacturers need to be. With demand changing constantly, challenging logistics, and an influx of new red tape – the playing field keeps changing.

The good news is ERP systems help businesses stay agile to a changing marketplace.

Those systems not only connect different departments, they can produce the real time data that helps you stay on top of those changes and define strategic goals to help stay ahead of your competitors.

Here we look at some common issues within manufacturing, and how ERP solutions can help.

Growing Pains

As manufacturing companies grow, often they will have adopted a number of different software programmes that are not efficiently integrated. Legacy systems become out-dated and obsolete, and will be generating large quantities of unstructured data.

Sometimes older legacy systems will provide everything a business needs, but more often than not businesses will need to look at a system that uses up to date technology, that brings unity across departments and offers flexibility to growth.

This can either be resolved with a tailored upgrade or a complete replacement of the legacy system.

Having a whole new system isn’t the right answer for everyone. Not only does it take time to implement that could be disruptive, it could be more expensive. Therefore we would always explore doing a comprehensive upgrade in order to find the right option for our clients.

In businesses where processes are continually reimagined to keep up with business growth, changes in demand, new legislation etc., the ability of ERP services to accommodate change is crucial. ERP can give you the tools, data and versatility to adapt quickly.

Merging Businesses

Mergers and acquisitions are commonplace in the manufacturing sector, and integrating the two sounds like a big headache – different software, different locations, even different languages! 

Merging two companies is a little like why we all love ERP solutions. It brings together departments in an efficient way to create better financial results.

However, a job on this scale won’t be quick, but it can be painless thanks to ERP solutions.

It will either need a major integration one side of the merger, or a huge overall change. Choosing the right way of implementing a new system will need careful planning – which is what we love doing here at etac

Synergy across oceans

Some manufacturing companies will outsource production facilities to save costs. This can create communication problems and a rise in logistical issues, e.g. delivery times, quality control issues and cumbersome supply chains leading to inadequate response time.

ERP software is primed to solve these problems by integrating everyone within the supply chain and being able to handle large amounts of data that can be shared on a cloud enabled system.

From the foundations up

For some companies, cloud solutions may not work due to the IT infrastructure, where previous investments result in a company needing to have an on premise solution to retain their existing functional components. In this instance we would suggest a tailored solution that can work around the existing infrastructure limitations, to still provide transformative results.

Our manufacturing firms can no longer rely on inflexible systems when competing with other businesses on a global scale.

We believe the ERP solutions from Microsoft can offer the agility, versatility, flexibility and accessibility to help manufacturing businesses thrive.

For more information about our services, call us today on 01952 897 010.

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