Needless to say, most small business owners dream of organizing their manufacturing firms. This means simple things such as meeting order deadlines, sorting out defective products, and having staff know what needs to be done.
Suppose a small manufacturing company receives more and more orders. In this case, you need a planning tool or manufacturing software that helps you approach the situation and organise everything.
The truth is that most small manufacturing companies don’t need advanced planning systems or have something other than advanced ERP systems in mind when considering such planning tools.
“Amazing” effects of introducing MES system in small and medium-sized enterprises
In manufacturing, you earn money on the shop floor. This is why having all the details of the entire manufacturing process available in real-time is critical to companies’ continued growth, success and profitability.
Inefficiencies from lost paperwork, customer tracking, workflow bottlenecks and financial reconciliations hurt your bottom line. This daily chaos leads to mistakes, missed reminders, and service delays. Not to mention dissatisfied customers who immediately go to Google to find local competitors or write bad reviews of your business. Being overwhelmed by the daily problems of being stuck in the workshop hinders revenue and growth. Deploying MES software in a small company immediately produces that amazing effect, as the changes and benefits are visible from day one.
Even having all the information in one place is an impressive step forward for small businesses. No more sifting through tons of paperwork for missing orders or moving from person to person trying to figure out what to produce and how. Once the order list with all items is complete, you can check the production process, track the work in progress, and create schedules and reports for clear communication between production line operators and managers.
You can also check the following:
- Current production
- List of production tasks
This is excellent progress. With minor improvements, company owners can finally stop worrying about their production floors and start thinking about how to grow their business. Time is money. In this case, free time. Shock therapy can work surprisingly well. It’s good to see how seriously your business is struggling (or how far behind it is) to sort things out and finally put things right. It is clear that these changes are necessary if they make production more efficient. They promise growth, and that’s the way to go.
The second impressive effect of deploying manufacturing MES in a small company relates to introducing production control. It sounds trivial, but it’s a whole new game that lets you see exactly what’s going on on the manufacturing floor.
The problem with most production schedules is someone spends hours planning everything, but after a few days, that schedule doesn’t meet the actual production needs. As a result, no one pays attention to it, and the “planner” job is pointless because the plan is outdated. The Information about how long it took to produce a particular item (lead time) is missing. The more detailed the production plan and the more diversified the products, the faster they become obsolete and unusable.
The third impressive effect of deploying a manufacturing software system is smooth communication between the shop floor and management. Again, you might be surprised to learn that communication, not planning and scheduling, determines a manufacturing company’s success. A common practice in small businesses is for owners or managers to have notebooks or use Excel files to bring their complex plans to the shop floor.
Unfortunately, a piece of paper with essential planning tips is left stuck to a corkboard for anyone to change, draw, cross out and update. In the worst case, the paper will be lost, and the owner will pass the information from person to person at the production site. Employees are overwhelmed because they don’t know what to do, and even an initially perfect plan is ruined. Even the simplest tools that tell people what to do have a “wow” effect. Today’s market is demanding, and more and more companies are offering different products to remain flexible and competitive. This explicitly excludes long-term and complex planning solutions. It is simply not possible. That’s why lean methods are so popular. Having a transparent production plan that controls the shop floor and shows real-time progress makes a lot more sense than using an automated scheduling engine that is less flexible and doesn’t fit the needs of a small manufacturing company.