Managing resilience in today’s changing and somewhat unpredictable environment has become a real challenge.
Manufacturing companies are facing disruptions in their supply chains for a variety of reasons, as well as escalating costs (particularly energy), whilst inflation is impacting both customer and end consumer demand.
In addition, changes due to Brexit continue to impact UK manufacturers and distributors, including additional legal, regulatory and financial requirements and costs for those managing their business across borders; not to mention that it’s created a lack of skilled employees in some key sectors like IT which is creating internal resource problems for managing company systems.
To continue to perform efficiently, and gain any possible productivity improvements, manufacturers have had to transform their business operations and processes with upgraded or new technologies.
In this article, we share the key tools and functionalities from Microsoft Dynamics 365 to help support manufacturers with their business resilience. As Harvard Business Review recently suggests one of the best things any company can do during a downturn is accelerate digital transformation.
Whilst digital transformation cannot solve all the problems companies are facing, it can help mitigate many of them.
5 Tools and Functionalities for Managing Manufacturing Businesses in 2022
1. Internet of Things Intelligence
The Industrial Internet of Things is the use of smart sensors to track how goods are manufactured, allowing businesses to enhance manufacturing and industrial processes and simplify supply chains.
IoT intelligence can be found as an add-on for many ERP systems including Dynamics 365. It integrates Internet of Things (IoT) signals with data in the ERP (Finance and Operations modules) to produce actionable insights, such as production delays, equipment downtime, or product quality deviations.
2. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Using AI in manufacturing involves using game-changing technology to streamline factory processes and enable everyone to make better and faster impactful decisions by converting business data into in-depth insights.
The new generation of cloud ERP and supply chain applications are powered by AI and machine learning functionalities.
Microsoft is currently working on delivering a new AI solution for the Supply Chain (Supply Chain Insights) that integrates seamlessly with the Dynamics 365 ERP and helps companies identify risks by presenting an overview of the supply chain and associated risks via a map and dashboards that are powered by AI, combining user data with data about external factors. This functionality should be available this year (2022).
3. Warehouse management system (WMS)
A WMS enhances inventory management by allowing manufacturers to proactively manage their stock with complete accuracy as well as link to the company’s financial reporting. With the information that is updated in real-time, companies, can track all the materials in the warehouse and dynamically rebalance production schedules. Some ERP systems, (such as Dynamics 365 F&O), have a robust embedded WMS solution that helps optimise and streamline warehouse processes, while being fully integrated with other key business processes such as transportation, manufacturing, quality control, purchases and transfers, as well as sales and returns.
4. Virtual reality
For the last few years, manufacturing companies have been experiencing a shortage of skilled workers and overproduction time. For a number of manufacturing businesses virtual reality enables employees to rectify errors at the primary stage of product development, reducing production time and costs. It also enables companies to optimise their floor area before physically moving or changing equipment.
5. Supply chain visibility
Visibility into supply chains is so critical right now, enabling manufacturers to track different goods or services in transit, and have a clear view of the inventory and activity. Greater visibility translates to fewer disruptions, accelerated order fulfilment and increased customer satisfaction (or at least a way to better manage customer expectations that are affected by the global supply chain issues). End-to-end supply chain visibility is enabled by supply chain management technology, like D365 F&O, which provides a real-time view of production and inventory.
Developing business resilience with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations.
Difficult economic climates require better digital systems to build resilience and mitigate risks. Cloud-based modern ERP systems, such as Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations, can help organisations build stronger businesses by keeping critical manufacturing and warehouse processes running 24/7 and informing management better. It is an agile solution that can integrate with AI and Virtual Reality technologies and unify data from multiple sources in real-time.
Utilising such a platform can help secure efficiencies and effectiveness at even a micro-level helping to mitigate adversity, and proactively detect opportunities all the way from planning to procurement to manufacturing to distribution, order orchestration, and delivery: all critical when it comes to securing any competitive advantage and staying on top in a downturn.
Streamline your business with Dynamo
If your business is looking for a powerful solution to enhance supply chain visibility and increase productivity, contact us today to discuss how we can build you a strong solution for business resilience with Microsoft D365. Dynamo Global is a trusted Gold Microsoft Partner that has many years of experience delivering valuable ERP solutions to manufacturing and distribution clients around the world.
For more information about us, do visit our website.