Manufacturers are a special breed. You face unique technology challenges due to the nature of your business, industry, systems and processes—areas your IT service company should be experienced in, too. Top tech challenges include:
1 – Advancing Technology
To state the obvious, technology is constantly evolving, leaving manufacturers in an endless budgetary tug-of-war between implementing the new systems and processes, while maintaining the old, staying at the front edge—or at minimum, compatible with—the latest software and hardware to keep your line running.
2 – Aging Equipment
Maintaining software to run older tools still in use—until budget allows for their replacement—is a real-world issue our manufacturers face. We saved a manufacturing client nearly $40K to bring a production tool back online with a creative out-of-box solution. (More on how in a later post.)
3 – Electronic Burnout
Sensitive electronics often operate in less-than-ideal conditions on the floor, leading to premature failure. For one of our manufacturing clients, heavy use of lubricants drenched everything in a fine coating of oil—so until working with us, they frequently replaced factory floor computers. For a soda company’s sticky environment, we provided sealed computers that could be steam cleaned. Yes, that’s a thing!
4 – Cybersecurity
Ransomware attacks have increased 50%, impacting 18% of all manufacturers. It’s no longer a matter of avoiding “phishy” emails; hackers target remote desktop protocols and employees’ personal electronics on the company’s network. Viruses have shut down production, costing manufacturers thousands. We help implement policies and technology to prevent security breaches like these.
5 – Integration across Systems and Departments
Legacy and custom, homegrown systems are the norm for most manufacturers. The challenge is integrating those systems with the latest applications and platforms, preventing data from being “siloed.” We can help you choose the right ERP system to better plan, purchase and track parts and supplies—while keeping Accounting and Distribution on the same page.
Constantly changing landscapes of compliance, quality management, real-time machine monitoring, supply chain management, and scaling for growth and new distribution channels are just a few more challenges manufacturers face.
“Work with partners to accelerate your IT capabilities,” Kimberly Knickle, VP of Research at IDC Manufacturing Insights, recommends. “External resources and expertise can help you move quickly and effectively, which is essential in today’s global marketplace.”
We evaluate how your people use hardware and software, as well as the environment in which they do so, to better align the most valuable systems in the company with how people actually work, so your business operates more effectively and efficiently—boosting your profits.
Because, we “get” you. Manufacturers engineer and create the best products, getting dusty (or oily or sticky) to make the products the rest of us use. Manufacturing drives the economy: service-based businesses may comprise two-thirds of most economies, but they rely on manufactured goods for their operations as well as their own techy progress.
Consider us your CIO-at-large and trusted IT advisor, ready to offer real-world, real-budget solutions for manufacturers, for the best ROI. Click here to schedule a no-obligation call with one of our tech experts to learn more.