Epicor ERP for Fabricated Metal Manufacturing
This is a tricky time for metal fabricators. The industry bounced back strong after the recession and is projected to continue growing in the coming years. However, fabricated metal manufacturers are proceeding with caution. Steel and aluminum prices have soared at record rates, causing more buyers to turn to alternative materials such as plastic. Furthermore, these manufacturers only have dwindling labor forces and legacy software to combat these challenges.
To keep up with the competition, metal fabricators must turn to enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. ERP provides manufacturers with control from top to bottom, giving them the agility to respond to market changes and customer demands. Epicor, a leading ERP vendor, includes a wide array of tools designed to optimize production and reduce costs. Below, we list some of the Epicor ERP features that can drive fabricated metal manufacturing growth, even during a difficult market.
Manufacturers across multiple industries are going back to square one to find ways to reduce waste and strengthen cost control. Since fabricators and metal shops make large investments in equipment and require increasingly expensive raw materials, lean manufacturing strategies are critical for streamlining operations and reducing costs. Epicor includes the insights and capabilities to support lean initiatives, including:
- Kanban scheduling
- Automated OEE and other efficiency metrics
- Productivity, downtime, waste and scrap analysis
- Run analysis to determine total cost by breaking down material cost, labor cost, subcontract cost and burden cost
Epicor’s user-friendly dashboards allow users to drill into comprehensive metrics to improve decision making. It also automates pull production and stock replenishment in line with your processes. These functionalities make ERP a core component of lean manufacturing.
For fabricated metal manufacturers, excess inventory can lead to critical issues, such as production inefficiencies and high storage costs. Though product spreadsheets have long served as the primary instruments for inventory tracking, this manual method isn’t scalable. Keeping up with multiple lots and measurements is nearly impossible as your business grows. With Epicor ERP, you gain a sustainable, flexible solution to control inventory. Some of Epicor’s inventory management tools include:
- Real-time inventory metrics
- User-definable lot attributes
- Multiple UOM tracking
- Multidimensional and geometric inventory tracking
- Catchweight and actual weight tracking
A Forrester report found that Epicor enabled businesses to improve inventory accuracy by 10% and reduce inventory counting efforts by 67%. Ditching your spreadsheets and managing your inventory with ERP could be the most cost-effective decision you make for your fabrication business.
Long-term customer relationships are essential for fabricators to succeed, and today’s customers increasingly crave products tailored to their specific needs. However, custom products add considerable complexity to your supply chain. Manufacturers require the visibility and agility to track the details and manage the operations for each order. Epicor ERP offers capabilities to manage complex products, including:
- Multi-level management of assemblies, bill of materials (BOM) and bill of operations (BOO) in one place
- A cutting-edge product configurator to enable on-the-fly configuration and automatically create BOMs, routings, selling prices and part numbers
- CAD integration
- Multi-constraint scheduling
- Job-centric adjustments to support specialized products without creating alternative BOMs
ERP allows fabricators to provide the variety and customization their customers crave without sacrificing productivity. Epicor helps you maintain accuracy, no matter the complexity of your products and processes.
In addition to these challenges, manufacturers of fabricated products also face stringent government and industry regulations. To comply with ISO, AS, TS, QS and other standards, you need the complete traceability and nuanced quality control that only an ERP solution can provide. To help you keep up with strict regulations, Epicor ERP gives you multiple tools, such as:
- Support for a large range of industry standards
- Automatic part qualification and rejection
- Statistical process control (SPC) and statistical quality control (SQC)
- Supplier quality tracking
- Global engines to support international legal, tax and financial requirements
- Management of compliance documentation
- Detailed audit trails
Compliance isn’t getting any easier, but ERP solutions are becoming more advanced to help you abide by rigorous standards and regulations. Epicor supports the unique compliance requirements of metal fabricators.
Increasing market pressures are forcing fabricated metal manufacturers to fine-tune their processes and undergo digital transformation. With Epicor ERP as the backbone of your enterprise, you can meet challenges and grow sustainably. For over 45 years, Epicor has listened to discrete manufacturers and distributors and developed ERP solutions to meet the needs of multiple sectors. You can trust Epicor to support your business.
You can also trust Datix to guide you in all things ERP. We’re an Epicor Gold Partner with over 20 years of experience in providing manufacturing and distribution software. From start to finish, our certified consultants deliver ERP solutions and services to help you at every stage of your company’s development.
Ready to transform your business through software? Reach out to one of our ERP experts today!