Optimizing heavy equipment manufacturing ERP

Apr 18, 2018 7:43:46 AM

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Heavy equipment manufacturers make large and complex products, many of them engineer-to-order (ETO) items that often comprise standardized parts and components. Engineering and production need to sync and streamline data and design hand-offs to make sure their output is what the customer wants.However, customers’ requirements may change even when their equipment is already undergoing production. Heavy equipment manufacturers need to have the flexibility to make rapid engineering adjustments and feed them into production without stopping the flow, ruining their margins, or causing waste. A connected, modern manufacturing ERP system can make a huge difference in keeping their efforts productive.Five capabilities are particularly crucial in heavy equipment manufacturing ERP:

  • #1: Engineering management

    In many heavy equipment manufacturing companies, teams anywhere in the world collaborate to serve customers in a volatile, global economy. The engineering management component of your manufacturing software helps you keep track of changing requirements and scope adjustments along with your resolution for them.In today’s ERP, you can to a high degree standardize and automate the steps of change management and approval, and maintain a smooth workflow from engineering change requests to engineering change orders. To ensure efficient communications and close alignment between engineering and production, ERP should integrate with the product life-cycle management (PLM) system used by engineers.

  • #2: Product configuration management

    Configuration management lets you project how you are going to meet customer requirements, including all standard and unique production details. You create a viable list of product components after addressing engineering constraints and build an accurate customer quote based.The configuration management tool in your heavy equipment manufacturing ERP has to interface with product engineering to support the full configure, price, quote (CPQ) process and refresh data. This is where you establish engineering bills-of-material (EBOM), which often see multiple, customer-prompted revisions before they turn into manufacturing bills-of-materials (MBOM). Given current, reliable configuration source data, quoting errors are unlikely.Product configuration should connect with the financials and sales modules in your ERP system, so forecasting and planning can rely on dependable revenue and profit projections. Manufacturing ERP can allow seamless transitions among BOM iterations and from engineering, to CPQ, to production.

  • #3: Project management

    Many heavy equipment manufacturers don’t produce standardized items, but run their business based on ERP-facilitated projects. Engineering designs, quotes, EBOMs and MBOMs, and production support specific project goals for profitability, quality, budgets, and delivery schedules.Today’s manufacturing software lets you control the many moving elements of production projects, with planning and tracking functionality for all resources, materials, milestones, and activities. You can simplify planning with visually optimized, intuitive tools that translate engineering and quote details into project workflows. You can save projects as templates and re-purpose them, improving your delivery over time.Heavy equipment manufacturing ERP gives you the visibility to make immediate adjustments if customer needs change, and calculates the consequences for finance and resource management. It also should support your preferred project management methodology and accounting practice, such as earned value management (EVM).

  • #4: Asset management

    Your manufacturing ERP solution gives you a framework for collecting and analyzing all the data and histories associated with your production machinery, equipment, specialized vehicles, fleets, facilities, and other industrial assets. Cloud analytics tools can enhance the ERP software to make it easier to understand this data and ensure the best possible returns from your assets.Based on data insight, you can perform preventive maintenance. You keep machinery running at best performance levels without unplanned disruptions that cut into your productivity or jeopardize customer commitments. Heavy equipment manufacturing ERP also lets you track asset-related KPIs, including Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE).

  • #5: Asset service management

    Even if you do nothing more than provide warranty services under contract, ERP helps you keep service financials in the black and lets you get the right technicians to customer sites at the right times. If you offer more comprehensive services to improve the business outcomes your customers achieve with your products, a modern ERP solution is essential in targeting the right customers and delivering services in a profitable and efficient manner.Your field service technicians can go from one assignment to the next without spending unproductive time recording their activities and researching customer data at an office location. Cloud-based manufacturing ERP is perfect for mobile access from anywhere.

With these five capabilities in your manufacturing operation, you can reach revenue, growth, and customer retention goals faster and easier. Some manufacturers accomplish this in an ERP environment optimized for heavy equipment manufacturing, integrating Microsoft Dynamics 365 and the To-Increase manufacturing suite. It provides these essential capabilities and much more.If you want to make a closer match between your requirements and what your manufacturing ERP solution needs to provide, Download Our ERP Essentials Checklist below

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About Author
Luciano Cunha

Luciano Cunha

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) For Luciano, being responsible for To-Increase’s global sales and marketing means unleashing the company’s insight, innovation, and creativity to tell our story and help customers achieve their goals. On the road much of the time, he travels the world to meet with customers, understand their challenges and ambitions, and find the most effective ways to help them advance. Luciano develops and mentors our marketing and sales team, and creates strategies to help the To-Increase worldwide partner channel thrive and grow.
Making Customer Needs the Main Business Driver Luciano and his team have daily conversations with the To-Increase research and development organization to bring customers’ requirements and concerns into the road maps and design of our solutions. Luciano brings his insight to the marketing group to make sure the company’s communications resonate with customers and speak directly to their experience.
“I’m awed by customers’ innovative spirit in taking business management technology past its limits and by their generosity in letting us participate and empower them. I hope to transform our organization to become even more customer-centric than we are today. That means making more resources available to spend productive time with both our customers and partners, so we can ensure that we place into customer businesses effective solutions that fit the evolutionary stage of their operation and the way their people and processes work.”
Empowering a Global Channel
Because To-Increase only sells through partners, readying the channel to be successful in helping customers is a business-critical effort. Luciano aims to meet partners where their interests are. Partners who consider the relationship with To-Increase strategic can rely on our industry specialists to work with them as they plan their growth and serve customers. If partners prefer a less collaborative relationship, they still receive the rich To-Increase expertise and resources to ensure they win the business, perform a successful deployment, and retain a satisfied customer. In working with partners and their customers, Luciano brings to bear his experience of many years of creating successful, customer-focused business development and marketing strategies in many of the world’s countries and regions.
Enabling Customer Success in Challenging Business Environments
Looking into the near future, Luciano expects that customers will continue to expect To-Increase to help them make business sense of unfolding trends and technologies. For example, the internet of things (IoT) will thoroughly revolutionize manufacturing, engineering, and supply chains. Big data will be meaningful and valuable when decision-makers can use technology solutions to transform it into actionable business intelligence that supports key roles and business processes. Mobility will help companies become digital enterprises and move business processes forward from any location, at any time. Team To-Increase harnesses innovation to help customers translate the promise of these technologies into business results.
Before his current role, Luciano for several years was one of To-Increase’s global industry directors, responsible for our industry solutions. His experience also spans more than 17 years in IT and manufacturing management roles. These positions took him into various areas at IBM Brazil, serving as product manager for several software development companies, and included working in senior management at a manufacturing organization in the U.S.
Luciano is married with two young children. Away from work, he enjoys participating in a soccer class together with his son and daughter as well as taking relaxing walks in natural environments with his family.

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