The metal fabrication industry is an industry that demands fast-paced processes but with extreme efficiency and accuracy at the same time. Most of the metal fabricators are a small to a medium-sized industry which acts as an Original Equipment Manufacturer for the large industry like Automotive, Heavy Machinery, and Furniture etc. Metal fabricators and extruders produce several items for different clients produced through a series of processes for a variety of clients. Hence it becomes difficult to manage the production of several different items in the same facility without any scope of error. Moreover, clients nowadays demand quick changes in design, last-minute orders and shorter lead time. Fierce competition, thin margins, and strict quality compliance add a cherry to the cake.
Thankfully, we have state-of-the-art ERP software called SAP Business One which can streamline even the most complex process of the metal fabrication industry resulting in increased efficiency, reduced lead times and increased revenues.
One of the most important features that an ERP for the metal fabrication industry should have is its integration with CAD software. Metal fabricators rely on CAD drawings of items to generate Bill of Materials which acts as an input for other functions like raw material ordering, generating job card and billing purposes. SAP B1 can be readily integrated with any CAD software such that it automates the generation of BOM from the CAD design. This is helpful in case of a custom job where the client needs to change the design midway. SAP Business One instantly identifies the changes in CAD design, updates the BOM and transmits to other functions.
Another area where ERP for Small Business proves helpful in the metal fabrication industry is the optimization of resources. As we established the fact that most metal fabricators supply different components to a variety of clients. Hence, it is imperative to optimally utilize your capacity to be able to make justice to all clients. SAP Business One analyses the machine requirement of various jobs of different items/ assemblies and does job scheduling in such a manner that it utilizes all machines efficiently thereby maximizing the output.
Metal fabricators supply large enterprises that use these parts in high-value products like Automotive, Heavy Machinery, etc. Strict quality measures are at the core of such industries which rises to another level for industries like Aerospace, Aviation. Metal fabricators not only need to enforce strict quality checks but also maintain proper documentation that proves statutory inspection at various stages of production. For example, if a certain model of automotive is recalled for defective performance, the OEM may want to trace back all the suppliers who supplied raw material/ sub-assemblies and alert all other clients who have been delivered the same batch of items.
From the above discussion, we can conclude that metal fabricators face various challenges in sustaining their profits owing to business complexities, high-value clients, thin margins and increasing globalization. But all these challenges can be minimized by deploying an advanced ERP for manufacturing system like SAP Business One which can streamline their business and keep them relevant to their clients not only today but even in times to come.