Many industries throughout the world, including the manufacturing industry, are nowadays facing great challenges. Coronavirus pandemic has had substantial influence on productivity, supply chains and control of resources. As reported at the end of 2021, most countries, including USA, had been struggling with inventory shortages.
How to stay at top level productivity in these difficult times? As long as problems such us manufacturing shutdowns and labor shortages cannot be helped, still a lot of wholesalers and manufacturing companies can overcome the supply chain disruptions and inventory constraints with the right tools in hand. A modern and open cloud ERP software – Microsoft Dynamics 365 – is clearly one of them.
Why do we recommend Microsoft Dynamics 365 for manufacturing industry? Because for many manufacturers, a customized and proven end-to-end business platform is something that matters more and more as it gives them competitive edge and largely enhances and secures their operations.
Modern technology such as Dynamics 365 gives you a possibility to predict, forecast and monitor inventory levels precisely and easily. Which problems exactly can you solve with this software? Let’s take a look at most important ones.
1. Fluctuating demand
It often happens that manufacturers face such high demand that they need to increase their capacity accordingly. Demand-driven business, however, limits resources for other critical processes and at the same time requires that machinery be upgraded and raw materials ordered. With unpredictable rises and falls in demand, a solid and robust ERP system with efficient inventory control measures in place is a must. It prevents overstocks and undersupplies and takes the pressure of manufacturers taking down stock manually.
2. Manual processes
Manual stock taking, replenishing and documenting inventory should be a thing of the past. Automation efforts are crucial when thinking about increasing efficiency but also reducing production costs. What is more, an intelligent system such as Dynamics 365 helps analyze and aggregate real-time data and turn it into meaningful actions. Through digitizing their operations, manufacturers can find practical solutions to inventory monitoring, quality and equipment maintenance problems.
3. Poor order management
Order inventory in the wrong quantities and in the wrong times causes not only customer dissatisfaction but also makes you under- or over-stocked. It can therefore largely decrease profitability and is often one of the main reasons small businesses fail. With comprehensive ERP platform, you can manage entire purchase process from one point and make sure all quality checks regarding inventory control are in place. Additionally, with the possibility of integrating a third-party MES manufacturing solutions with Dynamics 365, you take extra care of your records being up-to-date when it comes to order processing.
4. Supply chain complexity
Globalization has, on the one hand facilitated wider product availability, on the other hand made, it made it more and more difficult for companies to manufacture and deliver products at affordable prices. Natural disasters, political situation, changing industrial landscape and also the fact that supply chain process may take part in different parts of the globe (acquisition and shipment of materials, fabrication, assembly and packaging) – all make the supply chain more and more complex and challenging. This requires not only careful management but also clear visibility throughout the process which Dynamics 365 offers. A comprehensive, hyper-automated, reliable and software that also allows interoperability across plants can decrease your production costs and impacts the final prices of ready-to-go products.
5. Lack of skilled labor
According to recent studies, by 2025 there will have been more than 2 million unfilled manufacturing positions. Finding skilled employees for various manufacturing tasks is more and more challenging, especially when it comes to inventory specialists. Technology and automation offered by ERP system such as Dynamics 365 can help manufacturers in this area to a large extent. They are able to utilize their current resources at lower costs, at full capacity and more efficiently. Modern ERP system also allows to identify and allocate their resources where those are most required.
6. Challenging stock control
Solid inventory control measures are indispensable in warehouse (stock) management, especially in food and beverage, pharmaceutical or process industries. Effective asset inventory management system that you can utilize via Dynamics 365 allows you to keep accurate and timely records of all parameters that may affect both quality and safety of products to be sold and also ensures exact visibility of warehouse locations. Real-time inventory visibility into siloed data makes it possible to plan, allocate and utilize all the resources and additionally speeds up picking and order fulfilment.
7. Inaccurate data
Mismanaged warehouse is often a result of a number of issues such as disconnected systems, manual operations and outdated software. They all lead to inventory control data being out-of-sync with day-to-day processes which, in turn, brings lower profits, causes waste of resources and impacts customer experience. Dynamics 365 lets you eliminate data siloes as well as error-prone data entry, introduces a priority-based planning and most importantly, automates and synchronizes data exchange so that it is always current and accurate.