If you’re like many business owners and managers, you realize that the manufacturing industry has very unique IT needs, especially in 2015. In addition, many manufacturing companies switch roles temporarily with each new business season, sometimes acting also as distributors, suppliers and customers.
Technology scalability is crucial for the manufacturing businesses. You must have freedom to:
- Compete effectively in the global marketplace,
- Expand in your region,
- Participate in regular mergers and acquisitions, (perhaps even more so than many other industries),
- Now integrate social media into your customer service and lead development platforms, and
- Now incorporate staff mobile device use safely into your daily business operations
Though a Google search might yield 20 IT solutions companies, manufacturers need an IT support team with manufacturing industry focus, experience and insight. This is why, just choosing any IT company isn’t a good idea. In addition, even without a deep understanding of technology, your extensive industry knowledge can help you easily spot the right IT team.
What to Look For:
- Your IT team should help you manage and analyze data so that you can make better business decisions. Throughout the years, companies have learned that understanding the customer, leads to increased sales. However, traditional market research was typically the only way to learn about end users. However, the internet now provides businesses with an ongoing stream of information via social media, email, browser searching, online shopping and other vehicles. Pundits refer to this resource as, “Big Data.” This data is especially helpful to the manufacturing industry, and your IT team should guide you towards the data management and analysis programs that can help you expand your business quickly and serve your current customers best.
- Efficient supplier management is important because these business relationships can last for many years. In addition, you might have hundreds of suppliers, depending on the complexity of the product you manufacture. Efficiency is crucial, as is the prompt and accurate delivery of information when you need it.
- Enterprise resource management is important because most manufacturers have complex budgets and simple calculation mistakes could mean hundreds of wasted man hours and wasted supply. You must understand what your company has to work with at all times.
- Your IT solutions provider should also give you peace of mind. A good IT team’s risk mitigation plan should include a clearly defined protocol for:
- Local and remote device control,
- Backup and restore,
- Network monitoring, and
- Disaster recovery
In essence, the right IT team for a manufacturer is a business partner that guides you toward improvements in business productivity, customer service, profitability and growth, while giving you the flexibility to expand with changing markets. Contact us today. We understand manufacturing and can’t wait to help you manage your technology!