Engineer-to-order manufacturers are unique
Engineer-to-order manufacturers seldom make the same product twice, which makes them unique when compared with their make-to-stock and make-to-order counterparts.
These engineer-to-order manufacturers are project oriented and manage front-end loaded engineering efforts. They handle manufacturing processes, actual costing environments, potentially unique revenue recognition requirements, and installation and potential after-market service requirements.
Engineer-to-order companies need a robust ERP solution to support their specific manufacturing mode. Infor’s CloudSuite Industrial (Syteline) is a strong solution as it is purposely built to address and manage the engineer-to-order processes and requirements that manufacturers need to effectively run their businesses.
Related: Infor Syteline Review
Below are three engineer-to-order examples of how manufacturers can leverage CloudSuite Industrial for their needs.
Many engineer-to-order manufacturers are very project oriented in how they address their process. They use the Project module in Infor CloudSuite Industrial, where you can track all activities and associate all costs with the project. The Project module can capture time and costs associated with the engineering effort, the multiple manufacturing work orders tied to the project, and service work for install and training of the project’s finished good.
Additional critical functionality for engineer-to-order manufacturers includes CloudSuite Industrial’s ability track, drive, and recognize milestone or progress billing.
Many manufacturers also use the percent complete revenue recognition and rely on other important engineer-to-order metrics in the CloudSuite Industrial ERP application, including the actuals to budget KPI and the cost to complete KPI.
Typically, project-based engineer-to-order manufacturers also have to provide visibility of the project with customers. To do this, manufacturers leverage CloudSuite Industrial’s two-way integration with Microsoft Project. Microsoft Project’s Gantt chart and tasks can be easily shared with customers, while project and program managers can just as easily make changes in Microsoft Project and push them back into the CloudSuite Industrial ERP application.
CAD integration with the Infor CloudSuite Industrial ERP is a very important aspect of addressing engineer-to-order business requirements. Infor CloudSuite Industrial uses CADLink to establish a two-way integration with all leading CAD packages. This integration reduces the need for redundant entry of bill of materials and routing (and specifications) in both CAD and ERP applications. This saves time and reduces mistakes during the engineering effort. The time gained can be leveraged by the production team, resulting in shortened overall lead times and improved quality of the finished good. For more information, please visit CADLink.
Solid engineer-to-order processes require a focus on manufacturing costs. Companies typically use actual costing because this is key to tracking job and overall project profitability. Actual costing is also essential to drive progress billing and percent complete revenue recognition. Infor CloudSuite Industrial ERP does an extremely good job of supporting the integration required to address the actual costing environment.
Other examples of CloudSuite Industrial’s costing strength include the ability to purchase directly to the job or project where actual material costs hit work in process (WIP) immediately upon receipt. The same concept can be applied to outside processes, such as heat treating, plating, painting, and other common outside services. Labor transactions are captured immediately as they incur using Infor Factory Track, which allows for production workers to clock in and out of jobs using a variety of methods—touch screens, tablets, mobile devices, or PCs—via the easy-to-use, browser-based interface. Additionally, field service teams can remotely log time against the jobs and projects in real time, as well as issue materials, and capture and record travel expenses.
There are many other engineer-to-order examples, but most have similar business process requirements that are fully supported with Infor’s CloudSuite Industrial ERP. For more information, please visit Infor CloudSuite Industrial or reach out to Visual South to talk.