Planning for your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)

Published on March 22nd, 2017

Brant Olson, Sales Technician and fenestration ERP expert at WTS Paradigm, was recently featured as a presenter at the ERP: Implementations in Fenestration and Increasing Efficiency panel at FenCon17. The panel attracted a diverse audience of manufacturers at various stages of their ERP journey.

“I think that the biggest takeaway for those that attended was that a well-run, well-executed plan on the front end can make all the difference in the world when it comes to overall satisfaction and productivity after an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is in place.” said Olson.

Why is ERP important?
You know the realities of the building products industry: the ever-changing consumer trends (fueling more and more custom dimensions, colors, and materials) and the fierce competition to provide the lowest price, the quickest shipping, and the best warranty. Now add into the mix inefficient and downright archaic shop-floor processes.

Given these factors, the thought of streamlining the shop floor and increasing your speed to market may seem like an insurmountable challenge.  The good news is that they don’t have to be…and that’s where finding the right ERP solution can help.

Before you begin your search
Perhaps you’ve researched ERP providers or solutions in the past. But looking at what’s out there is just one part of the process. Perhaps more importantly, you need to take a step back and understand what your needs really are. In other words, you should develop a business case around purchasing or replacing an ERP solution before you start your search.

Consider the following questions: What are your business goals, technology goals, and timelines across your organization? Do your Plant Manager and IT Manager have the same goals and expectations? Will your current front-end selling solution integrate properly? These are just a few common areas to iron out on the front end. Implementing a new ERP system doesn’t have to be incredibly complex, but it does take some preparation.

Identify your goals & what defines success
By clearly documenting why your organization would benefit from implementing a new ERP solution, you can lay the groundwork for measuring ROI. Like any other business decision, the costs of the project should support your goals and provide a realistic ROI.

ERP is a long-term investment
Investing in an ERP solution is very similar to other capital expenditures in that it requires an understanding of the long-term value it will provide to the business. The right ERP solution may come with a big price tag, but over the life of that system, it can make your operations more efficient. Just think of how much time and money you can save by eliminating re-keying information, mistakes related to manual data entry, wasted cuts, returns, and shipping miscalculations. The right ERP solution can make your workforce more efficient and to help them focus on what they do best – ensuring that you’re manufacturing the highest quality of products.

Which ERP solution should I choose?

There are many ERP solutions available these days, but ultimately the one you choose should address your company’s unique needs with a comprehensive, robust, adaptable, easy-to-use solution that fits both your size and your budget.

One option to consider is WTS Paradigm’s MasterPointTM ERP solution. Rather than being a generic one-size-fits-all solution, MasterPointTM is specifically designed for the building products industry. This robust solution can help you to manage JIT production, adopt a “paperless shop floor,” reduce lead times, optimize inventory levels, reduce labor costs associated with re-keying orders, and much, much more.

About WTS Paradigm
WTS Paradigm, LLC, is the leading technology solutions provider for the building products industry. Their MasterPointTM ERP system, CenterPoint™ sales tool, and other solutions are specifically designed to help organizations operating in the building products industry to build revenue, increase sales opportunities, and reduce the time from quoting to closing. To learn more, visit wtsparadigm.com.