What is Smart Planning?
In an ever-changing market, the only constant that manufacturers face is change. Especially in these challenging times, the ability to adapt and make use of technology to plan out your business operations is essential to survive and stay competitive.
Business owners would agree that planning is essential to the success of an organization. As they say, you plan to fail if you fail to plan. However, if you continue to do your planning manually, then you are not too far off from being left behind either. Which brings us to our topic of the day, Smart Planning.
There are many buzzwords that come to mind on the subject of Industry 4.0. Smart Planning comes to mind, but what exactly does it entail? Essentially Smart Planning enhances your manufacturing competitiveness by facilitating the adoption of smart manufacturing systems.
Many companies struggle to manage their production systems, inventory levels, and a huge number of differing parties that range from customers, suppliers and third-party service providers.
These smart systems are fully integrated, collaborative systems that respond in real time to meet the dynamism required in production, customer and partner management as well as inventory management from a single source of data.
A modern system not only digitizes your essential documents such as quotations, purchase orders, invoices to name a few. It also automates the documentation process by keeping a single source of the truth that is accessible by everyone in the company, sending out reminders to follow-up on orders or payments; some systems can also make suggestions on which suppliers you should order your materials from based on delivery time, production capacity and order quantities.
In such a competitive business landscape, customers demand fast responses, if not they may look for your competitor instead. And it can be challenging to be quick, accurate and detailed all at the same time. With the aid of smart systems, pre-calculations are done by the system, and it also provides detailed breakdown of costing information. This allows efficient analysis to be done quickly and accurately before quotations are generated and sent to customers, effectively cutting down on errors that may cost huge losses to the company.
Having completed the preliminary phase of securing an order or contract, you would then need to manufacture the products for your customers. However, before production can begin, requirements planning need to be done first.
Smart Production Planning makes use of technology to make manufacturing order suggestions based on inventory, and safety stocks. An intelligent system will also give you comprehensive forecasts depending on control method and linked requirements.
Doing all this planning work traditionally would require data input from different departments and various individuals. The collected data may also come in different forms such as excel files, physical documents or worse, based off the memory of your colleagues.
As you can imagine, compiling all this data into coherent and actionable information will not only be challenging, but also extremely time consuming. Also, there is the chance of having inaccurate data in your manufacturing plan.
A simple mistake in your planning data can snowball into dire consequences such as missed delivery dates. This makes the ability to do smart planning all the more important, as it can make or break the confidence customers have in your business.
Smart systems give you the confidence to make promises to customers as it will be able to help you to check how delays and bottlenecks in your production line affect delivery dates.
By being able to identify where production bottlenecks are taking place, you can take immediate action to alleviate any negative effects it will have on your final delivery date. On time delivery is vital to keep customers happy, and serious businesses should always strive to achieve this.
As we have seen, Smart Planning encompasses tasks from the beginning of the business flow till the end of the manufacturing flow. By utilizing modern ERP Systems such as MONITOR ERP, you gain a 360˚ view of all sales orders that allow you to stay on top of delivery dates and potential delays.
With a fully digital system, you will be able to speed up accuracy and response time when generating quotations and calculating estimated delivery dates for your customers. Have the confidence to not only make promises to customers but also have the ability to make good on those promises by delivering each order on time.
Finally, you will also be able to know the exact inventory levels in your stock. Know when to order materials and from the best supplier with system recommendations that are calculated based on real world metrics. MONITOR ERP helps you keep promised service levels at minimum cost, while elevating your business reputation to new heights by gaining customer trust.
Smart Planning is the way forward to not only keep your factory relevant, but also to grow your business in the Industry 4.0 revolution.
If you are interested to learn how you too can implement Smart Planning at your factory, then don’t miss out on our upcoming webinar titled ‘Deliver on Time with Smart Planning’ that is happening on 16 July, 2020.
Learn more about the webinar by clicking on the blue button below.