Cloud Manufacturing Software can reduce confusion, manual effort and improve customer satisfaction. But why one is right for your business?
Different businesses require different types of software that suit their business process. Gone are the days of ‘one size fits all’ platforms that require significant customisation and huge reorganisation before benefits can be enjoyed.
Similarly, there are different types of manufacturing company, with differing processes and demands that any software will have to support.
At a high level, cloud manufacturing software should
- provide details of current orders
- allow for manufacturing tasks to be planned and executed
- enable time, materials and activities to be tracked for each order
- forecast material requirements and issue purchase orders
- schedule work (master production schedule)
- track wastage and problems associated with defects or delays
- link to other business processes such as sales, stock and finance
- overall, give you visibility of what’s happening in your manufacturing operation
Cloud software gives added benefits, such as ease of access, user-friendly interface, and integration with other software such as CRM or finance. Some solutions like Flowlens include CRM and manufacturing software in one.
Cloud Manufacturing Software differs for different styles. High volume manufacturing will have different requirements to lower volume businesses. Equipment manufacturers (OEMs) will differ from component manufacturers, unless of course they make everything in-house.
Flowlens cloud manufacturing software focuses mainly on small to medium sized equipment manufacturers and dealers. This allows us to enhance the capabilities of our product for these businesses, rather than spreading ourselves too thinly. Many alternatives claim to support multiple modes of manufacture, but often you will find that their origins lie in one particular process.
How Do I Know What’s Right For Our Business?
The best place to start is understanding your business process, or to think of it another way, your value chain. What steps happen in your business in order to create value for your customers?
Map these out on a whiteboard, or flowcharting tool if you have one, and then use this as a guide to understand how well potential cloud manufacturing software systems will suit your business.
Download our free playbook on Defining, Choosing and Implementing the right cloud manufacturing software for your business.