As a discrete manufacturer, you use parts and systems—that you either purchase or manufacture yourself—to assemble individual products, such as furniture, cars, appliances and medical devices. Taking many, separate items to create a single item requires the harmonization of many moving parts, including inventory, supply chain, sales orders, finance and CRM requirements.
Unfortunately, if you’re currently using separate business management solutions to make discrete manufacturing music, you’re likely striking a discordant chord. In other words, these disconnected applications don’t give you the visibility into—or the control of—your warehousing and inventory processes that you need.
So, what’s the answer?
Implementing a comprehensive Warehouse Management System (WMS). Today, we’ll examine what a WMS is and how it helps optimize your fulfillment processes in order for you to meet your customers’ demands for fast, anywhere buying and fulfillment options.
What is a WMS and Why Do Manufacturers Need a WMS?
A WMS is a software system that can help you manage your essential warehousing processes, from inventory and shipping to reporting and supplier management. To be more specific, WMS software facilitates these core processes:
- Tracking products throughout the supply chain.
- Receiving, storing and monitoring inventory.
- Retrieving inventory through the pick-and-pack process;
- Shipping orders.
- Reporting on shipment accuracy.
- Communicating and collaborating with suppliers and transportation vendors.
- Meeting compliance regulations and ensuring product safety.
A WMS automates these processes while supplying manufacturers with role-based dashboards that lets them see what’s happening across the entire warehouse from a single viewpoint. Ultimately, a WMS is a valuable, time-saving tool, but imagine what it can do as an integrated application within a comprehensive, cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution.
The Power of WMS and ERP
A Cloud ERP solution, like Acumatica Cloud ERP, provides manufacturers of all types and sizes with a single, centralized system that team members—from the warehouse to the executive suite—can access. In addition to streamlining workflows and integrating with critical third-party applications, an ERP stores and synchronizes data from every department, which means everyone is working with the same, accurate data.
With an integrated WMS, data from the WMS and other ERP modules (e.g., accounting, human resources, sales, inventory and customer service management) is readily available, giving manufacturers complete visibility into and control over every aspect of their business. The ability to achieve forecasting/planning, analysis tasks and compliance requirements while maximizing warehouse performance is guaranteed.
Manufacturers will also experience:
- Reduced errors through the elimination of manual data entry and by utilizing automated scanners that alert workers to incorrect scans during order fulfillment.
- Automated data capture for routine picking, packaging, PO receiving, putting away, transferring and physical accounting tasks, which saves time and labor.
- Simplified tracking and streamlined picking with the scanning of serial and lot numbers that populate automatically onto a pick list and packing slip, making the process simpler and more efficient.
The two solutions work seamlessly together, enabling manufacturers to deliver superior products to their customers as ordered and on time. Altogether, these and other benefits result in increased customer satisfaction.
Customer Success with NexTec Group and Acumatica’s Manufacturing Software
NexTec Group customer Benoit™ is a leading manufacturer of wellbore and running tools for exploration and production operations for the oil and gas industry. The company was founded nearly 80 years ago and currently operates in two locations, has 500,000 square feet of manufacturing space and generates over $30 million annually.
Though successful, Benoit was not operating as a unified company. It relied on four separate systems to manage its complex manufacturing, inventory control, accounting and distribution needs, but what it needed was a modern business management solution.
According to Kevin Dupre, Manager of Production & Process Strategy, “We were looking for a solution that could bring all our business processes together. Plus, we needed real-time visibility into our operations that just wasn’t possible when our data was spread between applications.”
Dupre and the Benoit team also wanted a solution that could help protect their servers in case of a weather event (the company’s headquarters are in Louisiana) and that could provide reliable, secure remote access to the business software. Based on their list of desired ERP capabilities and their business processes, NexTec had one recommendation: Acumatica Cloud ERP.
Mike Stevens, Benoit’s Director of Production & Process Strategy is glad they took NexTec’s recommendation. “The product’s ease of use, hosted deployment model, and broad-based functionality makes Acumatica a good fit.”
The implementation commenced in the middle of the pandemic, causing neither delay nor downtime. Now, Benoit is reaping the many benefits of modern cloud ERP software, including:
- Visibility into their production orders.
- The ability to capture labor costs for each step of the manufacturing process.
- Automatically calculating their order costs, which has resulted in better pricing decisions.
Stevens says they’re also “building out our user dashboards and exploring the reporting tools available,” planning to launch the Acumatica Customer Portal, and anticipating the implementation of Acumatica’s bar code scanners, enabling staff to enter production data in real time at each workstation.
As Benoit looks towards an amazing future with Acumatica as its manufacturing management software, the Benoit team is excited to learn all the ways they can leverage it further with the help of the NexTec team. Says Dupre: “NexTec is extremely responsive when we have questions or need help troubleshooting something. They are knowledgeable, friendly, straightforward and helpful.” He adds:
“Acumatica and NexTec make a positive impact in our operation, giving us the information and support we need to run the business efficiently, and providing the security of knowing our business data is stored offsite and backed up automatically.”– Kevin Dupre, Benoit’s Manager of Production & Process Strategy
Your Future with Acumatica and Integrated WMS
Like Benoit, Acumatica and an integrated WMS can take your discrete manufacturing business—and any manufacturing business—to new levels of productivity and profitability. It’s the all-in-one tool you can use to manage your warehousing, accounting, sales needs (and more), and we at NexTec can make it a reality.
NexTec Group is a leading business software provider, specializing in ERP and BI software that grows with your business now and in the future. For almost 30 years, we have been helping companies connect data and systems, update out-of-date software, ensure compliance and streamline operations with the goal of saving you money and increasing your profits. NexTec is a gold-certified Acumatica partner with deep experience in manufacturing, field service, distribution, professional services and more.
If you’re interested in learning more about Acumatica and integrated WMS or in scheduling a demonstration, contact us today. We’d love to chat.