Article | April 21, 2022
Manufacturing ERP (enterprise resource planning) benefits organizations in multiple ways, as it simplifies decision-making for top management by utilizing data from smart dashboards and consolidated data. The requirements of manufacturing companies are extremely precise. These include elements like planning and management. Manufacturing ERP systems are designed to meet these requirements.
In other words, manufacturing ERP is a specialized form of an ERP system designed to streamline and automate all manufacturing processes. It applies the same ERP principles to manufacturing organizations to increase efficiency.
Numerous businesses have implemented or are planning to implement ERP systems in their manufacturing organizations. They are, however, constantly on the lookout for the best return on investment when it comes to manufacturing ERP software. In this article, we'll look at how to calculate the return on investment for manufacturing ERP solutions to help you get a better grasp of the investment viewpoint for manufacturing ERP.
How to Determine Manufacturing ERP ROI?
Organize Data for ROI
ERP evaluation, selection, and implementation require collecting a large amount of business data. Putting all of this information together can be a daunting task. Therefore, individuals from each department should provide objective feedback to help mitigate bias and ensure consistency.
Focus on People and Processes Rather than Technology
You can increase your ROI by mitigating the technical aspects of an ERP system. Get an understanding of how it will improve your processes and how much money you will save over time due to those improvements. Your return on investment will depend on how well you effectively manage business process reengineering and organizational change.
Invest Time and Effort in Your ERP Deployment
It is critical to set realistic expectations and forecast the ROI benefits. Estimate the project's time, cost, and effort by consulting an expert, preferably not the ERP vendor, as their estimates may not be entirely accurate for their benefit.
Predicting ERP Cost
Costs associated with ERP, such as licenses and hardware, are easily quantifiable. Apart from these fees, additional expenses must be addressed and evaluated. They include subscription fees for SaaS, consulting, maintenance, and user fees.
Consider the following questions:
How you will implement your solution: Cloud or On-Premise?
How many users are required?
What equipment do you require to operate your business?
What implementation and training requirements do you have?
Calculating these expenditures may take considerable time. Mentioned below is the list of costs that can be estimated prior to investing:
Out-of-the-box System Price
Many business owners believe that this ERP cost is straightforward to determine because it is based on the vendor's quote. That, however, depends upon the modules and deployment options required in your business.
License Fees – on Premise Vs. SAAS
On-premise ERP software runs on your company's servers. This incurs a one-time license charge. On-premise deployments need organizations to maintain their servers to assure software functionality both in the present and future. It is therefore important to factor in these costs. Licenses are “repurchased” every five years, which is another cost to consider.
Cloud ERP SaaS is hosted remotely on a third-party server and is accessible online. You must pay a monthly subscription fee until you stop using the system. Updates to the ERP system are free.
Consultancy Costs and Vendor Implementation Fees
A consultant's price must be considered if you hire one. To minimize future troubles and costs, it is vital to identify the actions and timeframes they will accomplish.
ERP consultants provide implementation services such as data migration, project management, and system customization. Some consultants charge extra for these services, so be careful to ask how their pricing operates.
Your servers and machines should meet the vendor's minimal requirements. You may need to update your equipment to support the ERP deployment, which will affect your ROI calculations.
Maintenance expenses should include IT labor, extra server expenditures, and other departmental charges. Also, the ERP vendor may charge an annual maintenance fee to upgrade to new technology.
Training your employees on the new ERP system is critical to its efficiency. Training takes time and money. It will depend on how many employees need to be trained, how difficult the processes are to learn, and whether you need to engage extra trainers or managers to help speed up new production processes.
The budget should never be exceeded; otherwise, the ROI will suffer.
A manufacturing ERP system is an integral part of any modern manufacturing organization. It helps your business in multiple ways to accelerate operations and business processes. Always conduct a thorough analysis of why you are looking out for ERP solutions and how they will help your businesses in becoming more productive than it is now.
The ROI for manufacturing ERP is calculated by comparing the anticipated cost of ERP to the expected benefits (direct and indirect cost savings) of installing the ERP system. ROI is computed by adding the predicted ERP returns and dividing by the ERP TCO (Total Cost of Ownership); the resulting quotient is the ERP ROI.
What is ERP used for in production?
Manufacturing ERP is a centralized approach to managing production and payroll activities. ERP improves operational efficiency by providing unprecedented visibility, coordination, and management across a company's many activities.
What are the types of ERP?
There are three main types of ERP systems, each with varying deployment models. ERP systems can be cloud-based, on-premises, or hybrid.
How long does it take for an ERP investment to pay off?
A typical project can take between 12 and 24 months to complete, depending on the scope and complexity of the work.
Article | January 4, 2022
Content marketing for manufacturers has become an essential component of every organization, and the manufacturing industry is no exception. Manufacturers are concentrating more on increasing their presence in both the digital and physical markets. As a result, the content market is seeing a boom as novel techniques are aimed at reaching the end objective of the manufacturing company.
According to PRNewswire, the worldwide content marketing industry is expected to increase by USD 417.85 billion between 2021 and 2025, at a CAGR of over 16%.
“Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell.”
– Seth Godin
Why Is Content Marketing Critical to Your Business's Success?
Helps in the formation of your brand's identity
Enables you to take advantage of organic search results
Performance is easy to assess
Produces leads and attracts ideal buyers
It balances the playing field, resulting in a higher ROI
It enables you to benefit from social shares
It entices visitors to return to your website on a regular basis
Manufacturing Content Marketing Strategies That Work
Recognize the Buyer's Pain Points
Writing amazing content requires knowing your target audience. Knowing your ideal customers helps you generate content that is relevant to them. When your potential buyer visits your website and finds content that answers his or her inquiries, you've already removed one hurdle for your sales staff.
How does your sales team define a good prospect?
Who are they?
What do they do?
Why are they visiting your business?
What is their industry knowledge?
The answers to all such questions influence what and how you write. Once you start recognizing your buyers, you can get the prospect and confidence in your organization to address your buyer’s difficulties.
Do Research on Keywords
Everyone appears to believe that skipping keyword research is acceptable. However, this is not the case. If you want to focus on marketing activities that yield big returns, you need a best manufacturer content marketing strategy backed by solid SEO.
Keyword research is the first step. Use one of the numerous internet keyword research tools to find terms with high search traffic, low competition, and relevance to your manufacturing company's activity. The better your keyword research, the better your content approach.
Create and Schedule Consistently Excellent Content
Writing outstanding content is by far the greatest strategy to increase your manufacturing company's SERP rank.
Hire a good content writer or content strategist who can combine your technical expertise, keywords, and purpose into a meaningful blog, case study, or content offer that gets results. Your material must be good to rank well.
Irregular content, like scattered production, always spells disaster. Having a defined timetable that your audience understands is essential to successful content marketing. Whether you produce material weekly, monthly, or quarterly, a timetable ensures that content is consistently released and updated.
Make Your Content More Visible
Once your content is ready, make your content visible to your target audience. Get your content marketing for manufacturing plan going to promote it in every way.
You're in a tough spot when it comes to content marketing for manufacturers. To stay ahead of the competition, you must constantly monitor the performance of your materials.
Keep an eye on everything you create and promote. Analyze which content form is performing well. Is it a blog? A time-lapse video? Or infographics? Identify your best-performing content so you can develop more of it.
Also focus on the content that doesn't perform well. Consider why that content didn't work for your audience. Is it too hard to rank that post? Is there a better platform or medium for the content? All of these queries must be answered to establish a strong content strategy for your company.
Optimize Your Content Marketing
The lack of industry-specific content marketing tactics is a major challenge for manufacturers. Many businesses use a generic strategy that ignores their particular customer connections, making different types of content marketing for manufacturers ineffective.
As the manufacturing business is a specialized business in any particular area, they also need specific content marketing strategies. Hence, focus on building a unique content marketing strategy that would help you optimize your business reach to your target audience.
General Electric Is Taking the Lead on Social Media
GE has come a long way from its 1892 beginnings. While it has retained basic product streams such as lighting, transportation, and power transmission, the goods themselves have developed dramatically. Social media marketing has become increasingly important as new technology transforms the corporate scene.
GE's Instagram Presence
GE's Instagram feed is an excellent illustration of widespread appeal. GE always shares attractive photographs with full explanations. It recognizes the power of pictures and captures common scenes in fascinating ways.
Utilizing cutting-edge content marketing methods for manufacturing businesses is critical for increasing your business's visibility and reach with your target audience. Ascertain that you select the appropriate techniques to advance your digital and physical presence in the industry. Discover the most effective plan for manufacturing content marketing and change your present marketing methods into more refined and up-to-date ones.
What are the best ways to market a manufacturing company?
The best approaches to advertising any manufacturing business are to concentrate on improving content, email marketing, SEO, press releases, and event sponsorship.
Is marketing vital for manufacturers?
Yes, since marketing opens up a whole new world for manufacturers, and a strong brand helps any business stand out from the competition.
Article | November 12, 2021
Robotics industry growth has accelerated rapidly across several industries. It has aided manufacturers in overcoming numerous barriers related to real-time communication, workplace safety, and overall manufacturing cost and timeliness. However, if we trace its history back to 1961 when George Charles Devol introduced the first robot, dubbed 'UNIMATE,' it has exponentially grown and utilized across sectors to make operations more effortless, precise, and faster.
“As technology takes over and enhances many of the processes we used to handle with manual labor, we are freed up to use our minds creatively, which leads to bigger and better leaps in innovation and productivity.”
– Matt Mong, VP Market Innovation and Project Business Evangelist at Adeaca.
However, the industry has seen snags or difficult times due to market fluctuations, unfavorable situations, and the need to remain competitive in the drive for expansion. To thoroughly understand the robotics industry, let us examine each component that surrounds it.
Industrial Robotics Global Market Size
According to recent Allied Market Research studies, the global industrial robotics market was worth $37,875 million in 2016 and is expected to reach $70,715 million by 2023, rising at a 9.4% compound annual growth from 2017 to 2023.
Industrial Robotics Market Analysis
The global industrial robotics market is primarily driven by a global increase in labor costs, which has compelled firms to replace human labor with robots. As a result, Asia and Europe are the world's fastest-growing areas, with top companies such as ABB, Fanuc, KUKA, Kawasaki, and Yaskawa Electric Corporation headquartered in the region.
The global market of robotics has been segmented by its type, industry, and function.
Soldering and Welding
Electrical & Electronics
Healthcare & Medicine
Assembling & Disassembling
Rubber & Plastics
Painting and Dispensing
Others if any
Machinery & Metals
Cutting and Processing
Food & Beverages
Precision & Optics
Others if any
Others if any
Industries That Are Pioneering the Use of Robotics
As we have observed, the global robotic market will continue to rise in the future years. Therefore, let us examine which industries will extend their use of robotics in their operations.
Healthcare & Medicine
Medical robots help surgeons optimize hospital logistics and free up the working staff to focus on patients. In the healthcare field, robots are revolutionizing surgery by speeding supply delivery and disinfection and freeing up time for doctors to interact with their patients.
da Vinci System – A General Surgical Robot
The da Vinci System is a surgical robot that focuses on a wide range of urological, bariatric, and gynecological surgical treatments. In addition, Stryker's MAKO System also specializes in orthopedic surgery, specifically partial and total knee replacements.
The da Vinci SP system is cleared for use in the United States exclusively for single-port urological procedures, lateral oropharyngectomy (often referred to as radical tonsillectomy), and tongue base excision.
Police robots are meant to gain access to areas inaccessible or dangerous to first responders, and they are capable of manipulating items and gathering data using several technologies. It encompasses robots capable of operating in various conditions and displaying a range of data and communication capabilities.
Agriculture & Food Industry
Farm equipment is now routinely equipped with sensors that utilize machine learning and robotics to identify weeds, compute the appropriate quantity of herbicide to spray, or learn to detect and pick strawberries, for instance.
Additionally, in the food business, robotics has been used to do repetitive tasks such as picking and placing food items and cutting and slicing food items during any given food item. For instance, the modern bakery business uses robotics to perform traditional craft skills and produce any product in large quantities while maintaining high quality and hygiene standards.
The transportation sector is highly leveraging robotics. The powerful transport capability, advanced control technology, and sensing precision are some of the benefits that make the transportation robots widely utilized in this sector. These benefits from robotics help the sector convey various commodities in factories, restaurants, and medical institutions, among other locations.
Robots are employed in manufacturing to do repeated jobs and streamline the overall assembly process. Additionally, robots and humans can also collaborate on product making. Robots can replace humans for hazardous tasks or processes that need large quantities of materials, which might be hazardous for a human employee to handle.
Factors Sustaining the Growth of the Robotics Industry
Reduces Manufacturing Costs: Robotics application in all industries reduces the overall manufacturing process running costs.
Improves Product Quality: The precision of robotics throughout the manufacturing process helps produce high-quality items that meet target client needs.
Offers Competitive Market: Increased income due to utilizing the benefits of robotics applications makes any industry more competitive.
Speed-ups Production Time: Robotics speeds up production and helps manufacturers increase output.
Offers Task or Process Flexibility: Robotics can weld, cast, mold, assemble, machine, transfer, inspect, load, and unload items, among other duties. So, it gives the manufacturer process flexibility.
Reduces Excessive Use and Waste of Production Materials: Robotics employs the exact quantity of material required for the manufactured product, reducing waste and overuse of materials.
Offers a Safe Working Place: Robotics improves employee health and safety by performing tasks that humans find risky. For example, in the chemical industry, a human employee may not do a hazardous task. In such instances, robots can replace people.
The rise of the robotics industry has accelerated dramatically, and it is now spreading its wings across industries. Research firm IDC provided a projection for the commercial robot market, forecasting that the market will exceed $53 billion by 2022, with a compound annual growth rate of more than 20%. In addition, several advantages of robotics such as safety, productivity, uniformity, and perfection are pushing its expansion and making it an essential element of industry 4.0.
Why are robots the future of the manufacturing industry?
The use of robots in manufacturing has improved process efficiency and product quality. As a result, robots are gaining favor in production and becoming the future of manufacturing.
Which industries make the most use of robotics?
Healthcare, agriculture, food, and manufacturing are the industries that are embracing robotics to get the most out of it.
How is manufacturing utilizing robotics?
Manufacturing uses robotics for repetitive tasks. This helps in the reduction of errors and human efforts. It also improves production efficiency.
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Article | March 4, 2022
Cyber manufacturing is a term that refers to a modern manufacturing system that allows for asset management, reconfiguration, and productivity maintenance in a way that is easy to see and use.
Industry 4.0 anticipates an era of enormous opportunity for innovation and prosperity. Additionally, it introduces new risks and challenges in today's manufacturing cyber scene.
“Cybersecurity is starting to become more prevalent within organizations, so opportunities to grow in this industry will never end if you have the correct drive and determination.”
– Joe Boyle, SEO of SaltDNA
Numerous manufacturing organizations are experiencing an increase in cyber-attacks on control systems used to oversee industrial processes. Some of these systems may include programmable logic controllers and distributed control systems, as well as embedded systems and industrial Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
To help you develop a strong and secure manufacturing operation, this article will outline the multiple sorts of cyber-attacks in manufacturing and how you may improve manufacturing security. Let's begin with the importance of cybersecurity in the manufacturing industry.
Why is Cybersecurity in Manufacturing Crucial?
From January to March of 2019, the number of ransomware attacks in the manufacturing industry has increased by 156%. This is a big change, so it's important to have strong cyber security in the manufacturing process. Wherever software is in use, there is a high probability of cyber-attacks. The manufacturing industry is digitizing itself with cutting-edge technologies connected via the internet and various software. Therefore, the manufacturing industry is particularly vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
The following are some of the key reasons why manufacturers should prioritize manufacturing cybersecurity:
Increase in the use of IoT devices in the industry
Increase in the cost of data breaches
Increase in the number of cyber-attacks across industries
Increase in the severity of cyber-attacks
Increase in the use of widely accessible hacking tools
Increase in the use of remote workers
Five Major Types of Manufacturing Cyber Attacks
Due to the rising value of ransomware, cybercriminals have switched their attention away from selling personal and financial data. Unfortunately, industrial companies stand to lose a lot. Until the hacker's demands are met, this malware locks files on a network and makes them impossible to use.
If a ransom (typically millions) is not paid, threat actors may sell or leak important data. Until the ransom is paid, ransomware users render the company's network inaccessible. This strategy works well for attackers in the manufacturing industry because downtime is costly, and no manufacturer would like to encounter it for a long time.
Ransomware assaults generally occur on weekends or holidays to maximize damage before the attack is realized. This allows hackers to wait in comfort during a busy manufacturing period. Manufacturing enterprises are a desirable target for numerous reasons. A wide network of OT devices and a long supply chain make many endpoints and security flaws.
Phishing is the most common type of network assault. Phishing emails are frequently used to gain access to a target firm to carry out further detrimental assaults or acts. For instance, in 2016, a CEO sent an email to a global solar panel manufacturer’s employee.
The email claimed that precise information about internal employees was required. The employee transmitted the data without confirming it. The CEO received the information. Unfortunately, the CEO was a cybercriminal, and the employee was phished, disclosing firm secrets. Perhaps the next generation of thieves will commit even more advanced and sophisticated penetrations and attacks.
Phishing attacks are characterized by the following characteristics:
Emails with malicious attachments
Emails with hyperlinks that differ from well-known websites and are misspelt
Emails with an attention-grabbing title or content
Emails from an unusual sender
Urgent orders or to-do items
Supply Chain Attacks
In the manufacturing business, no single firm can complete the entire production cycle. It must rely on several manufacturers' parts and components to complete the manufacturing and assembly of the entire product. As a result, numerous parties should coordinate to ensure an effective production process. This technique introduces the risk of supply chain attacks.
Numerous criminals utilize supply chain hacks to steal critical data and intellectual property rights from manufacturers. If a malicious attacker gets permission from the manufacturer's partner to access their network, they may steal critical information or data, and even essential manufacturing records, wreaking havoc on the business.
Additionally, manufacturers' external software or hardware poses security vulnerabilities, and there is a danger of attack along the equipment and system supply chain. Most products are developed using open-source or closed-source components, yet all these components have some level of security vulnerability.
The following are common indicators that your network has been compromised by a third party:
Incorrect usernames and passwords are used to access software systems
Strange redirects to unknown websites
Software freezes or crashes
As the intelligent transformation of manufacturing continues to progress, the Internet of Things' role in facilitating this process becomes increasingly critical. Manufacturers can optimize production processes more effectively and precisely by utilizing various IoT devices. For instance, businesses track assets, collect data, and perform analysis using IoT sensors embedded in devices. These sensors continuously monitor the various operating parameters of the equipment and critical data to enable automatic recovery and minimize maintenance downtime.
Increased security risks occur because of the proliferation of various IoT devices in manufacturing plants. IoT devices have networking capabilities and can be easily connected to a network. Typically, manufacturers' IoT, industrial control, and office networks are not adequately isolated. They can get into the industrial control network through public flaws or zero-day attacks on IoT devices. They can then launch malicious attacks on critical production equipment, which can stop production and cause processing accidents.
Most manufacturing cyber attacks are carried out by outsiders, but nearly 30% originate from insiders or those with access to the company. As with external hackers, these attacks are frequently motivated by financial gain. However, some employees or former employees attack a business out of rage or dissatisfaction.
Internal threat actors do not require network access. They can access sensitive data by leveraging their existing knowledge or credentials. A threat actor is more likely to carry out an attack invisibly and undetected with pre-existing credentials. Unfortunately, former employees can typically access this information if passwords or entry methods are not changed to prevent such attacks.
Because of the increased use of personal devices and remote work, employees can unintentionally be the cause of an internal breach. Most businesses were unprepared for the regulations that would accompany a global pandemic. As manufacturing companies looked for ways to stay afloat by maintaining employees remotely, few had the necessary technological equipment to keep each employee as safe as the company's employees.
Many home-based employees discovered that working from home was not easy, as the line between personal and work time became increasingly blurred and eventually vanished. For hackers, these home networks and the use of unprotected personal devices have opened a new avenue for obtaining sensitive data from large andsmall businesses.
How to Mitigate Manufacturing Cyber Attack
Make Sure Your Software Is up to Date
Install software patches to prevent attackers from exploiting known issues or vulnerabilities. Numerous operating systems include an automatic update feature. If available, ensure that this option is enabled.
Utilize Current Antivirus Software
Install software patches to prevent attackers from exploiting known issues or vulnerabilities. Numerous operating systems include an automatic update feature. Ensure that this option is enabled if it is available.
Make Use of Strong Passwords
Set up password rules. A stolen or default password is used in 63% of confirmed data breaches. Create strong passwords that are difficult to guess and use unique passwords for each program and device. Experts advise using passphrases or passwords of at least 16 characters.
Make Use of MFA Tool
MFA validates a user's identity using at least two identification components. This stops attackers from taking advantage of weak authentication mechanisms, which lowers the risk of someone getting into your account even if they know the login credentials.
Train Employees on Security Awareness
Security awareness training unites employees, eliminates risks and events, and protects both the company and the employees. Employees should also be taught how to look for and deal with threats like phishing.
Industry 4.0 is all about smart technologies that operate with the help of the internet. It increases the probability of manufacturing equipment and software being hacked. Therefore, while you intend to create a smart environment in your manufacturing facility, you must take the necessary cyber security measures.
The strategies mentioned in this article to mitigate the cyber-attacks will ensure that you take every precaution to keep the working environment safe. There are many ways to protect your manufacturing business from cyberattacks. The techniques and the types of attacks described in this article will help you know what to opt for and which attacks to look for in your manufacturing business.
What are the most common cyber security threats?
Phishing attacks are the most common cyber security threats that employees fall for. With the advancement of phishing attacks, many employees lack the knowledge necessary to spot a phishing email. Additionally, many employees have poor cyber security practices, such as using the same password for work and personal devices, which is also one of the reasons for rising phishing attacks.
What are the cyber security challenges in Industry 4.0?
Smart factories are vulnerable to the same types of attacks as conventional networks, including vulnerability exploitation, malware, denial of service (DoS), device hacking, and other typical attack tactics.
What is CPS in manufacturing?
CPS (Cyber Physical Systems) are defined as designed systems that are comprised of and reliant on the seamless integration of computer algorithms and physical components.