Microsoft Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management brought cutting-edge features to the supply chain landscape. Integration of ERP and more traditional shop floor manufacturing systems is the next step that manufacturers have been looking for. However, there are several challenges when ERP systems integrate with Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) that manufacturers use to control their manufacturing, machine equipment, and personnel.
MES VERSUS ERP IN BRIEF
A Manufacturing Execution System (MES) provides insight into factory operations and facilitates better planning, loss reduction, and reporting capabilities. Simply put, it increases productivity at minimal expenditure. On the other hand, an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is software that manages critical business activities such as plant scheduling, order processing, inventory management, and customer service. An ERP optimizes business performance and streamlines business processes, whereas an MES software helps companies track and monitor their raw materials and goods.
MES AND ERP INTEGRATION
Integrating the MES and ERP systems is a complex process that enables a 360-degree view of the production floor. This degree of vertical integration is not easy The following are challenges you will likely face when integrating Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management and MES systems.
- Budget: An integration process is time-consuming and complex and can incur heavy expenses.
- Bugs and errors: During an integration process, troubleshooting issues become unmanageable because of error messages, validation failures, and distortion in data synchrony.
- Personalized notifications: Notifications about integration issues are prone to delays in identifying the correct project owner or lead with whom to report the problem might take time.
- Signal replay: Signal replays are needed when you track failures in incoming or outgoing data. Replaying or archiving signals is impossible when the feature is not implemented in the integration.
- Deliveries: When two systems integrate, each has its unique sets of software deliveries and releases. Updates to one system might not happen simultaneously when a related update is instituted to the other system, resulting in misalignment.
- Signal spikes: There is a high probability of spikes in signals if the production floor reports exceed certain levels. Signal spikes happen when large amounts of data need to be processed in a compressed time frame.
- Confined processes: An integration is usually limited to two systems. An entirely new integration implementation process is necessary if other production sites are involved.
- Siloed data: Redundant data in both systems may overlap and make the process cumbersome. As a result, a holistic view of the production orders on the shop floors will be adversely affected.
An integrated system eliminates the need for manual data entry as data exchange happens automatically in real-time. The process avoids data redundancy and maintains the same data in both systems; data fed to the MES system is simultaneously provided to the Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management. In addition, other critical business processes can access crucial data—such as updated inventory records—in real-time.
Microsoft introduced integration components such as Aegis Factorylogix and Oqton that are common to all MES providers and seamlessly integrate into Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management. MES solutions work on Microsoft’s API-based Smart supply-chain interface and provide real-time visibility of manufacturing processes and complex work orders.
The Oqton integration platform optimizes workflows from beginning to end and solves complex and intangible integration problems such as additive manufacturing and post-processing. It has become the most sought-after solution across several industries such as dentistry, healthcare, biotech, aerospace, and automotive. Furthermore, its brilliant integration with native Microsoft products makes it a comprehensive and scalable solution for modern-day demands. Its automation features and Dynamics 365 SCM functionalities enable manufacturers to control the production workflow completely.
A CLOSER LOOK INTO YOUR AT YOUR MANUFACTURING FLOOR
Integrated MES and ERP systems enable a closer look and higher precision into your manufacturing floor; data siloes are a thing of the past. Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management helps you address your challenges and provides the necessary support to achieve profitable, productive, and efficient results.
In manufacturing, MES and ERP systems have entirely different functionalities that, when combined, offer a seamless operational flow. For example, ERPs often form the top layer to carry out orders and maintain inventory, while an MES system monitors floor operation in real-time. When MES and ERP systems work together, they provide better insight into manufacturing processes than separately. If you’re a manufacturer, this could be the boost you’ve been looking for!
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