Protecting your Margins with To-Increase Discrete Manufacturing

May 23, 2013 8:14:00 AM

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Today’s advanced discrete manufacturer works in a dynamic environment where today’s specialized, smaller-form factor, higher-density products require costly, complex manufacturing technologies that can easily cause costs to spin out of control. The result is often razor-thin – or even nonexistent – margins that draw a fine line between a company’s success or failure.

There are three major areas of discrete manufacturing and supply chain management that can significantly impact profit margins. They are:

Inventory maintenance and optimization

Excessive inventory can be a real profit-killer for any manufacturer, but controlling it effectively can be a risky balancing act that weighs carrying too much costly product against potentially less-than-satisfactory customer relations if customers experience too many out-of-stock delays.

Effective inventory control methodologies, such as Kanban scheduling systems and just-in-time (JIT) delivery strategies, have gone a long way in resolving the excessive inventory dilemma. Still, careful inventory management and optimization is especially important for advanced discrete manufacturing companies so they don’t get caught holding too much inventory if product and manufacturing needs change rapidly.


Today’s volatile economy can make pricing a nightmare for advanced discrete manufacturers. However, Big Data and the latest advances in ADM technology and IT systems can help companies analyze and integrate data from across platforms, suppliers, and customers to quickly and accurately evaluate a host of factors including market conditions, material costs, and customer preferences. The ability to do all this is crucial for determining accurate and realistic pricing in the ever-changing advanced discrete manufacturing environment.

Partnering and collaboration

Effective supply chain management is a key element to achieving and maintaining desired profit margins. Today, more and more advanced discrete manufacturers are opting to develop sales and distribution partnerships to avoid the pitfalls of core competency dilution. Unstable transportation costs, volatile international relations, and domestic economic turmoil are all factors that can dramatically affect sales and distribution which, in turn, can affect the bottom line. By collaborating with the right supply chain partners, advanced discrete manufacturers can offload some of the risks and distractions associated with handling all aspects of sales and distribution. ADM companies must gain and maintain visibility into every aspect of the supply chain to carefully monitor and control costs to not just protect, but increase, profit margins.

A good ADM solutions platform can go a long way toward helping monitor and manage the three major areas we’ve discussed here. By carefully controlling inventory, pricing, and supply chain partnerships, virtually any advanced discrete manufacturer can more effectively drive profitability.

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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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