The manufacturing industry is not the same as it was a decade ago. New technologies and a changing economy have led manufacturers to Enterprise Resource Planning systems, looking to reduce costs and streamline business processes.

No longer just for companies with deep pockets and huge IT departments, manufacturing ERP software is accessible and affordable for all manufacturers, regardless of size.

There are 2 sides to every ERP solution – technology and processes. So let’s take a closer look at the technological trends in the manufacturing industry and the challenges solved with modern ERP system software.

Emerging Trends in Technology & Challenges

Trend 1: The Cloud ERP Solution

In an era of Enterprise Resource Planning and technology where “the cloud” is the hottest trend, most manufacturers will have piloted or will be using cloud-based applications rather than traditional on-premise solutions … and for good reason.

The benefits of ERP in the cloud are pretty impressive. With cloud-based ERP solutions, manufacturers can easily access software applications using any internet-enabled device and the proper login credentials.

Manufacturers can access new features and technology that come with a much faster implementation time, lower initial costs, and greater control over IT expenses. All of which make it easier to grow while keeping some powder dry for raw materials and operational costs.

Trend 2: Business Intelligence Reporting

Manufacturing companies store more data than organizations in any other sector. Business Intelligence reporting gives manufacturers visibility into all of that data and enables them to make more informed decisions based on that information. This meaningful use of data provides visibility and insight across business operations – from the shop floor to the executive office – driving extraordinary gains in productivity, growth, and profitability.

Bottom line: meaningful business analytics enable manufacturers to be proactive, rather than reactive.

Trend 3: Going Mobile with ERP

Mobility allows managers and staff to use smartphones, tablets, and mobile devices to interact with the manufacturing ERP system from any location. More and more manufacturers are granting employees access to company data on the go.

Today’s modern Enterprise Resource Planning solutions for manufacturers allow employees to use mobile devices to provide continuous real-time information from the system to eliminate inaccuracies. Employees can also access company data and analytics anytime on the shop floor to make better decisions.

As new technologies become more widely adopted and utilized, common business challenges become easier to manage. Today’s modern business management solution has been incorporated with the above technological trends to help manufacturers solve common industry challenges. Here are the top 4 manufacturing challenges that are solved with a modern ERP solution.

Challenge 1: Continuous Innovation

Manufacturers in every sector face intense competition. To gain a competitive advantage and achieve sustainable growth, manufacturers need to continuously innovate and improve business processes. According to recent surveys, these same manufacturers are hungry for tools and technology that allow them to collaborate, share knowledge, and speed up problem-solving – all of which are important elements of innovation.

ERP web portals can be used to share information and speed up problem-solving among employees, suppliers, partners, and customers. Organizations can then develop new products and processes that reduce costs and power revenue growth.

Challenge 2: Streamline Processes

Manufacturers must streamline processes to operate efficiently, respond faster to customer demands, and bring products to market more quickly. Enterprise Resource Planning solutions automate and streamline workflows throughout the enterprise and supply chain. They eliminate duplicate data entry and manual re-keying, improve accuracy, and support rapid change and growth. Modern software programs for manufacturers can help improve efficiency, speed up turnaround times, and increase productivity.

Challenge 3: Real-Time Analytics

To improve innovation and speed decision-making, manufacturers need real-time visibility into their operations to answer key questions. Waiting for IT to pull data together and generate reports well after the fact won’t cut it anymore.

Business Intelligence and analytics tools, including automated exception alerts and triggers via email, provide the real-time data manufacturers need to make quick decisions and optimize order management, inventory management, production control processes, and reduce costs.

Challenge 4: Compliance

Manufacturers must ensure that processes comply with regulations or face hefty penalties. ERP software programs for manufacturers automates and standardizes processes to ensure compliance, while audit trails provide compliance documentation and reporting.

Modern manufacturing ERP systems have come a long way since a decade ago. With affordable technologies and more control, manufacturers everywhere are turning industry challenges into competitive advantages.

Are you ready for a manufacturing ERP system?

Learn more about how modern Enterprise Resource Planning systems for manufacturers can help your company. Contact us for more information on ERP for manufacturers.