The Industrial Manufacturing industry faces unique supply chain challenges. Long lead times, low volumes and fluctuations in demand are all issues that managers have to address in order to make sure their operations are as efficient as possible and are able to respond to customer demand more quickly. The somewhat volatile economy of the last decade has proven a burden on operations managers, as they try to figure out how much inventory to keep on hand and how much should be moving through their supply chains.
The Industrial Manufacturing industry serves as an umbrella that covers a number of specific verticals. Some of those are:
- Durable Goods
- Heavy Equipment and Machinery Manufacturing
- Industrial Products
- Mining & Metals
Each of these markets faces key challenges, and it’s up to supply chain managers to parse through the data and determine how they can shorten lead times and reduce excess inventory.
At Inspirage, we are dedicated to helping supply chain managers foster better operations and create sustainable practices. Our solutions are tailor-made to fit your specific business challenges, providing real, actionable insight into your processes. What’s more, our experts provide key manufacturing consulting in addition to your Oracle tools – bringing greater value to these deployments.
The challenges facing the Industrial Manufacturing industry are primarily based in inventory management issues and pressures to fulfill global demand, all while the economy continues to fluctuate.
Here are only a few of the problems that need to be addressed before the supply chain can be effective:
- Global competitive pressures are driving down profit margins.
- There is an increased customer demand for customized product features and made-to-order items, more so than ever before.
- Long lead times for parts from suppliers.
- Complex after-sales service requirements and the need to maintain an efficient inventory of spare parts.
- High demand variability.
- Complex needs for product lifecycle management.
- Inefficient manufacturing processes.
Challenge Spotlight: Inventory Management
Managing huge inventories is one of the biggest problems facing industrial manufacturers. When the economy slows and the demand just isn’t there, inventory fills the pipeline from the warehouse all the way back to the manufacturing floor.
There are several possible causes for this inventory issue:
- Varying demand and economic insecurity
- Longer lead times
- Lack of supply chain visibility
- Lack of collaboration between partners within a specific vertical or supply chain
- Varying quality and reliability of supplier service
These factors all boil down to supply chain managers either not having enough data to paint a clear picture of their operations or having enough data but not knowing what to do with it. In order to create a sustainable supply chain, managers need to plan more effectively, but they also need to foster an environment wherein each partner within the operation has ownership.
Our pre-built, industry-tailored solutions offer supply chain managers a way to jump start projects, reduce risks and improve the overall value of their operations.
Here are just a few of our solutions that have been built to address specific issues within the Industrial Manufacturing industry:
Having an optimized inventory is a key goal of companies in this vertical. Increasing competition, product proliferation and rising service level expectations, along with fluctuating demand and shorter product lifecycles, have created a game of constant tug-of-war between having a well-stocked inventory and one that is overstocked. Overcoming this challenge can be quite the headache for inventory managers. Many companies are now turning to inventory optimization technology, but they don’t always use these tools to their full potential.
To solve this issue, Inspirage has developed a comprehensive solution for inventory optimization that leverages the Oracle Inventory Optimization application. With this, we can help you implement consistent and timely processes that are not only effective at creating a more responsive value chain, but that also encourage more cost-effective operations.
Key benefits of this solution include:
- Lower inventory costs
- More sustainable practices
- Achieve target (and optimal) inventory levels
For more information about our Inventory Optimization solution, check out our datasheet.
Service Lifecycle Management
The rapid increase in demand for customized products has made the job of Customer Service organizations – that is, keeping customers happy – more difficult in recent years. Shortening high-tech product lifecycles has compounded this issue, presenting a challenge for managers in terms of how to plan and execute product services.
Inspirage has developed a comprehensive Service Lifecycle Management (SLM) solution that encompasses a broad set of integrated enterprise business processes. This solution provides the data and processes necessary to influence the manufacturing material selection as part of the product design for service processes. Areas such as Product Lifecycle Management, Enterprise Asset Management and Supply Chain Management all fall under the umbrella of Service Lifecycle Management.
To learn more about this featured solution, check out our SLM datasheet.
Industrial Manufacturing organizations have to deal with huge inventories and massive volumes of parts, which all require a detailed schedule of how much to produce and when. In order to identify critical resources that impact on-time delivery and deal with a number of scheduling and planning snafus, a Master Schedule is created.
Inspirage has developed a tool that can help you create your Master Schedule. Our Master Production Scheduling Workbench will help you plan and evaluate your master schedules in minutes. This solution works as a complementary component to the overall Advanced Supply Chain Planning (ASCP) solution offered by Oracle.
For more information, download our MSP Workbench datasheet.
This manufacturer of flexographic printing presses turned to Inspirage for help staying on time in both the manufacturing and procurement sides of the business. Inspirage was able to help Mark Andy implement its Oracle ASCP solution and, ultimately, cut down planning time by 40 percent, among other key outcomes. For more information, check out our video.
Neenah Paper provides premium image and performance-based paper products. After nearly two years of investigation and discussion with several implementation partners, Neenah Paper made the decision to have Inspirage assist them in a pre-implementation study to evaluate product fit. During that process, they decided that the most important modules to focus on were Demantra and ASCP. Inspirage was then chosen to help the company implement Oracle Demantra Demand Management and Oracle Advanced Supply Chain Planning applications. Neenah paper adopted the Inspirage implementation strategy of plan, prototype and implement. They felt this gave them a chance to design a better product by defining the objectives, test our decisions and plan in a real system environment, and then implement a proven solution. To learn more, read the story in the Winter 2012 issue of OAUG Insight.
USG is the largest manufacturer of wallboard in the U.S., and the second largest supplier of ceiling tiles. The company has over 40 plants in North America. USG partnered with Inspirage to facilitate the implementation of Value Chain Planning and Demantra applications. Check out the video here for more details.
Prepare Your Supply Chain
With our tailor-made solutions for the Industrial Manufacturing industry, our customers can regain control of their inventory optimization processes and be better prepared to meet fluctuating consumer demand. For more information about our customers’ success with our manufacturing consulting services or to schedule a demo, contact the experts at Inspirage today.