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Burcamp ERP, BI, and Reporting Proficiencies

Robert Burdwell - Saturday, July 28, 2018

We have experience with ERP functional processes (i.e., Order Entry, Inventory, APS, and Production) Data migrations, Dataviews, Mongoose, Birst BI, reporting, and system administration.

We offer a wide range of Web-Based Database Tools and Services. Some tools we use to find data and others we use to research schema relationships. Our ”Data Schema Mapping” webpage will resolve every Data Property to a Database Table Column, whether it is mapped to a Field on a Form, a DataView, or a custom Derived Value. The Support Infrastructure we put in place will also monitor the health and performance of your database in real-time. We have an automated alerting system to notify our on-call staff of issues (at any time day-or-night), so they may research and resolve new issues before your business opens that morning (whenever possible). With our experience and proprietary toolsets, we will analyze how best to query your data in real-time for Live-Reporting and deliver the Instant-Alerts you need to know about to operate your business at top efficiency. All of this is done with minimal impact to your day-to-day Business and Production Applications.

ERP Systems: Infor SyteLine, Infor CloudSuite, SAP, Epicor

Outsourcing Your Data Analytics

Robert Burdwell - Saturday, December 02, 2017

The recent uptick in the usage of big data in business and subsequent demand for data analytics is evident across several industries including industrial and manufacturing.

Data analytics and leveraging findings from it to inform operational decisions have helped companies like FedEx and Walmart gain a competitive advantage over those that aren't as strong in this area. Given this success, IDC says the worldwide market for big data and business analytics will show an annual compounded growth rate (CAGR) of 11.7% from 2016 to 2020.

What is data analytics? 

Data analytics is the pursuit of extracting meaning from raw data using specialized computer systems. These systems transform, organize, and model the data to draw conclusions and identify patterns.

Simply put, data analytics lets us compile information from various software like Customer Relationship Management (CRM) or Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and analyze the data to make informed business decisions related to supply chain planning, inventory management, new product lifecycle management, asset management and more.

There are many benefits of establishing a data analytics mindset for an industrial or manufacturing company including the following:

  • Improve supply chain and inventory management efficiencies
  • Gain competitive advantage in the marketplace
  • Increase revenues while lower costs
  • Make informed organizational and operational decisions
  • Benefits of outsourcing data analytics

Having an in-house analytics team seems like a no-brainer. In a perfect world, yes. If investing in an in-house data analytics team isn't currently feasible, consider outsourcing those skills and services to reap the same rewards.

Critical insights with lower cost and risk associated 

Outsourcing data analytics activities doesn't mean you have to sacrifice value or quality as long as you choose to work with a trusted, experience partner.

The reality is that this skillset is in high demand and the current talent pool can’t accommodate that demand. A 2011 report from McKinsey Global Institute says by 2018, the United States alone could face a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with deep analytical skills as well as 1.5 million managers and analysts with the know-how to use the analysis of big data to make effective decisions.

If you can still have the critical insights associated with the analysis of data without taking on the associated risk and large investment of building out a complete in-house team, why wouldn't you?

Not only can you minimize risk and decrease costs, you can be improving efficiency related to supply chain and inventory management. In the long run - and if done properly - this can lead to lower costs and increase revenue.

Show executive leadership benefits without full investment 

Building a comprehensive, highly-skilled in-house analytics team is a hefty undertaking - in time and money. Getting executive leadership on board can require a strategic roadmap on its own.

Oftentimes gaining leadership buy-in can be a catch-22. They’ll want unwavering confidence in your plan to commit to it along with strong evidence of the return on investment (ROI). You can compile research and reports on success stories and connect your plan back to the business goals, but it might not be enough.

Outsourcing is a great middle ground in which you aren't asking for the full investment of time and resources, but you’re still expecting positive results for operational efficiencies, reduced costs and increase revenue. Something we can all feel confident about leadership being thrilled with.

Expand internal data analytics capabilities 

There are several different ways you can structure a partnership when outsourcing data analytics. For example, if you have in-house analysts they can be focused on developing new, innovative capabilities to gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace while outsourced resources can tackle less strategic (yet still critical) activities like compiling reporting metrics to inform strategic initiatives.

This way, you essentially get the best of both worlds and you don’t necessarily have to give up one for the other. Both team can be working in tandem on parallel tracks to gain momentum and move the needle.

Outsourcing data analytics: A win-win 

When you step back and look at each factor involved in having an in-house data analytics team versus outsourcing to a trusted partner, it’s clear that outsourcing these critical business activities can hugely benefit industrial and manufacturing companies. Outsourcing can provide companies with the insights necessary to make informed decisions that can improve efficiencies, freeing up time to be a strategic player in the increasingly competitive marketplace.

 


 

Internet of Things with Manufacturing

Robert Burdwell - Tuesday, September 05, 2017

The use of smart equipment in the manufacturing sector is increasing by the day, driven by the useful information that such systems convey to users. Consequently, this has led to the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT), manufacturing and the result is growth in various dimensions of this industry. Combining and analyzing the details generated from these systems leads to increased efficiency.


NC Machines

CNC machining is probably the most common term you are likely to encounter in smart manufacturing, and it is important to note that the concept behind it is Numerical Control (NC). It is a form of programmable automation that uses letter, symbols, and numbers, to control processes. The operation of most machine tools in manufacturing engages the use of the programmable automation.


The numbers or characters are used to form the core program that avails instructions necessary to operate different devices, thus giving this concept the name Numerical Control. Changes on program instructions will happen whenever the job at hand changes, to promote flexibility. The Numerical Control approach to Internet of Things (IoT), manufacturing can be applied to such operations as sheet metal working, drafting, inspection, assembly, among others.


Some examples of processes that use NC technology include shaping, turning, milling, and drilling. Each of these processes takes a shorter period to complete, which makes bulk manufacturing cheaper.


Robots


Legacy systems are slowly fading away from the production scene, as establishments embrace industrial robots to achieve faster, and at a reasonable cost. The popularity of robots as part of the Internet of Things (IoT), manufacturing concept, is driven by their ability to take on "human" traits such as testing or inspecting products, assembling minute electronics, or picking and packaging.


Besides, a new generation of robots has invaded the manufacturing arena, running operations in a "collaborative" environment with humans. The result is the emergence of an era of shepherding robots through demonstrations.


Programmable Logic Controllers(PLCs)


A PLC is an industrial computer control system that monitors the state of input devices on a continuous basis. By doing so, you are capable of making decisions through the use of a custom program to control output devices. The value of a PLC is that you can enhance almost every process, production line, and machine function through it.


In turn, this promotes effectiveness in Internet of Things (IoT), manufacturing processes. The other advantage of using PLCs is that you can adjust and replicate the operation or process, as you collect and communicate critical details. Also, the system is modular to allow you to match your input and output devices, in a way that suits your application best.


Sensors


Communication between various systems and applications in manufacturing is impossible without sensors. Internet of Things (IoT), manufacturing, entails sharing of information through data-gathering sensors, machine-to-machine communication, and cloud computing. Such gadgets can be applied in diverse sectors of this industry.


The information they avail promotes better decision making. For instance, if a machine is due for servicing, sensors will convey these details to the relevant department, for prompt action to be taken. As such, downtime is reduced, and cases of breakdowns are minimized.


Small and mid-size establishments will need to consider venturing in the Internet of Things (IoT), manufacturing, as costs maintain a downward trend, and robotic applications increase. Embracing this concept will set them on course to realize increased profitability and establish their position in the market.