Tracking Manufacturing Cycles to Improve Operations and Profitability

Modern, just-in-time and ďleanĒ manufacturing principles place great stress on manufacturing managers. Previously, those managers were able to maintain large quantities of raw materials that they could use in manufacturing processes to create equally large inventories from regular production runs. These practices allowed businesses to fill product orders as they came in, but they also tied up significant amounts of cash and assets and reduced manufacturing company profitability.

Rather than creating large inventories of finished products that then sit in warehouses until orders come in, new manufacturing principles call for managers to create a regular trickle of finished products that go immediately to customers with little or no intermediate warehouse time. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) for manufacturing gives manufacturing managers the tools and information they need to track, measure, and monitor every step of a manufacturing cycle, from raw material order and delivery to shipment of a final product. In addition, managers can use ERP for manufacturing to:

  • approve purchase orders electronically
  • match supplier invoices with accepted purchase order receipts
  • connect and coordinate the efforts of multiple manufacturing facilities
  • forecast demand, and match production to anticipated demand from those forecasts
  • track order status and fulfillment at all stages of a manufacturing cycle

Gamma Vacuum, a small Minnesota-based manufacturer of ion pumps, realized all of these benefits and more through the adoption of its own manufacturing ERP software. Gamma is a small business, yet it has captured more than one-third of the marketplace for its products through intelligent management of its manufacturing processes. Gamma specifically uses ERP for manufacturing to manage supply and distribution channels and to feed information back into its manufacturing facilities to allow the company to quickly respond to customer orders and changes in those orders.

Likewise, H&R Manufacturing, a Texas tool producer, uses ERP for manufacturing to stay competitive with international tool manufacturers. H&R collects data from its manufacturing floor in real-time to measure production time, and it then uses that data to set costs and pricing for its products. Its ERP manufacturing system gives managers a clear picture of order processing time and identifies manufacturing processes where time is used inefficiently or ineffectively.

Depending on its needs and the specifics of its manufacturing operations, a manufacturing company can adopt and install a number of different modules, all of which address different aspects of ERP for manufacturing, including:

  • sales and distribution management
  • purchasing management
  • manufacturing planning and control
  • quality assurance
  • supply and inventory control
  • machine and equipment maintenance
  • human resources and manufacturing operator management

Effective use of any of these modules is a function of managementís ability to harness the information that a manufacturing ERP system will collect and generate. The auto parts supplier, Tribar Manufacturing, discovered this after the initial installation and implementation of an ERP system generated so much data both within and outside of the system that its personnel were unable to fully grasp and use all of the data that had been generated. Tribar rebooted its ERP installation and within a short time, realized cost savings of more than $350,000 from better control over its inventory.

Regardless of size, a manufacturing company can squeeze substantial profits out of its operations through better use and understanding of all of the data and information that manufacturing cycles routinely generate. ERP for manufacturing company can improve the operations of a manufacturing company by providing the tools and pathway that the company needs to gain that understanding.

 

 

 

Office space for start ups

Nobody has any doubt that London is arguably one of the best places in the UK to run a small business. With so many people living in the capital city it is only a matter of time before a business fully takes off and spreads its wings.

Having your business located in London has many benefits, not only when it comes to the number of people living there but also due to many other factors such as being able to access various facilities that are usually connected to bigger businesses. Having a good location in proximity to a well-known business can mean the world of opportunities for you as well such as getting to know the people behind those businesses and making valuable connections with them that might turn into something more valuable in the future.

If you are a start up you will be certainly looking for office space for start ups. You are definitely in luck here because London is full of such places and offers a very wide range of co-working spaces, served offices, hot desks, etc, the list here goes on and on. In other words, there is always something to choose from depending on what your business needs are.

When it comes to the location you choose it all boils down close to what sort of amenities and landmarks you will want to be. Usually, the more reputable office spaces are located closer to the city centre while more affordable options are located further away. Ad a start up you might want to start slowly and the gradually build up to bigger and netter offices while moving closer and closer to the city centre. You might want to start straight away in a good location if you are absolutely sure that your business is guaranteed to succeed. If this is not the case, being somewhere on the outskirts, at least for now, might be a good idea for you you will want to implement.

Ultimately, the choice where to have your office is yours. There are many attractive locations in London and I strongly recommend that you visit them before making up your mind what you really want. Very often, visiting a few locations should give you an idea what your real needs are and how to accommodate them.

5 Ways to Make Your New House Feel Like Home

Moving into a new house can bring a wave of mixed feelings. Maybe youíre leaving behind your beloved apartment or condo in the city. Or perhaps a job brought you across the country and youíre now focused on crafting a new life for yourself and your family. Owning a home is a huge accomplishment, and you should be proud to enjoy the fruits of your labors. After the initial rush of signing the papers, closing on a home, and making moving arrangements, youíll cross the threshold and start to create new memories that center around your new space.

You may go through a period where youíre excited and grateful to work with a blank canvas that is your new dwelling, but also have the nagging feeling that itís not quite homeóyet. Here are five ways to make your new house feel like a proper home right off the bat:

Keep the Old, but Freshen Up

Some people fiercely hold onto old furnishings, appliances, and traditions like old friends. Others are overly eager to distinguish their new life from their old life and update everything at once. The Guardian suggests the healthiest way to make your home feel familiar yet novel is to mix old possessions with new ones. If possible, keep your investment sofa that has that perfect groove for napping. Bring along art, knickknacks, and furniture from your old home instead of rushing to the nearest home dťcor store and adopting a totally new look. The act of mixing will keep you grounded while still allowing you room to experiment and grow into your new digs.

Change Locks and Codes

In both a symbolic act of ownership and a savvy measure of safety, you should change locks and codes that allow entrance to your house. Itís practical, as realtors, previous owners, and others might still hold keys to your place. But it also puts you in charge. Whether you call a locksmith straight away or decide to handle the installation yourself, it will provide a positive sense of control. If the garage has a keypad, donít forget to reprogram it to a code thatís unique to your family.

Take Full Ownership

Part of achieving a sense of possession is taking care of the legal and financial details to a T. Moving from one place to another is a highly transitional time, and itís the best opportunity to check homeowners insurance rates and the level of coverage you actually need in your new area. Finding the right policy and speaking candidly with your carrier helps you rest assured that if something unexpected occurs, youíre covered. It will also help you get into a groove with paying bills on your new residence.

Stock Up on the Essentials

Nothing screams ďI just moved inĒ like an empty refrigerator, bare-bones cabinets, and vacant closets. One Buzzfeed contributor reminds everyone to pick up the staples that you need to establish your routine, like milk, peanut butter, condiments, and more. The same goes for basic toiletries, cleaning supplies, and tools. If you brought them along from your previous place, make sure to unpack them as soon as possible to restore some normalcy and give you easy access. If you are starting fresh, then a trip to your favorite store with a checklist in hand might be in order.

Give It a Deep Clean

This one is self-explanatory. You canít be sure how in-depth the previous residents went in cleaning, and itís doubtful that your space will feel comforting until youíre confident itís neat and orderly. Be prepared to conduct a deep clean before unpacking all your belongings. You can hire a cleaning service for a professional-grade scrub down, or round up your trusty supplies and spend a few hours going over surfaces, paying special attention to the kitchen and bathrooms.

You look forward to the day when your new house becomes your true home. Taking these five measures before, during, and right after your move can help expedite that process.

Getting Started with Mobile Payments

If your online business isnít accepting credit cards and mobile payments just yet, you are missing out on thousands of potential transactions and customers already. Credit card payments are the most frequently used method of payment online. There was over $800 billion of revolving credit from the use of credit cards in 2015. That is a big market share to tap into, especially with studies by the Business Administration degree program of Rutgers Online revealing that customers are spending an average of $5,000 on their credit cards every month.

Accepting credit card and mobile payments is not as difficult as you think, even when you are running a relatively small business. PayPal, for example, now allows merchants to accept on-site mobile payments using a smartphone as a payment terminal. Other services are just as easy to integrate.

To find out more on how to get started with mobile payments, Credit Cards and Mobile Payments: What Your Business Needs to Know for Now and the Near Future, the infographic by http://online.rutgers.edu/ is the page to read.

How Businesses are Adapting to the Independent Contractor Economy

Rutgers Online

Ecommerce Customer Service Dos and Don’ts

Ecommerce plays by a different set of rules compared to brick-and-mortar businesses. While customer service is not new or in any way unique to ecommerce businesses, doing business online does call for updated rules and practices.

Many ecommerce businesses skimp on customer service or try to automate it away using software or bots. Other online ecommerce stores are making customer service an integral part of their brand and user experience. Great customer service can actually create more fans and buyers of your products online.

The best website builders for ecommerce such as Shopify have a lot of customer service elements built in or at least available to integrate. How you choose to use these tools to interact with your customers can either help your business or hurt it.

Here are some doís and donítís to keep in mind when providing customer service for your ecommerce business:

Donít: Have an invasive, annoying, pop-up chat box

Do: Make yourself available to help your customers

One of the latest trends in online customer service is to include a pop-up live chat box on your website. Itís popular because it provides a way for customers to contact you easily and resolve issues quickly over live chat.

However, as theyíve grown in popularity across the internet, many users have grown to find these chat boxes annoying and invasive. They often make noise and require a click to disable. For these reasons, chat boxes can often have the opposite intended effect.

If you are considering adding this feature to your website, please be considerate to your visitors and make it as discrete as possible. It should be there when your customers need it, but silent and out of the way when they donít.

Donít: Automate your customer service with bots

Do: Systematize your customer service to create efficiency

There are customer service tools and software on the market that essentially automate the entire process. While this may save you time and possibly staffing costs, itís probably not the best way to serve your customers.

Have you ever experienced the frustration of trying to get a human on the phone when calling a customer service helpline? Using an automated service bot is the modern day online equivalent. While some questions or issues come up again and again, others are more unique and complex and require human attention.

Your customers deserve the best service you can provide. Always have real people respond to customer service inquiries. Use tools like Help Scout or other management systems for efficiency, but always have real people behind the wheel.

Donít: Sound like a customer service robot

Do: Be human and have a voice

Since youíre not leaving your customer service to an actual robot, you shouldnít sound like a robot when interacting with customers either. Many companies use pre-written responses and rigid, boring language when interacting with customers online. Itís not the worst business practice, but it certainly doesnít lead to memorable experiences.

The best companies online have a unique voice and memorable brand. Not only is this great for customer service, but itís also great for marketing. Customers will talk about brands theyíve had a good experience with. Itís OK to follow a template for customer service emails, but just make sure you fill it with content that shows some personality and caters the interaction to the individual.

The most important things to keep in mind for providing customer service online is to be timely and friendly. Customers expect quick responses to their questions. If you donít get back to them, they will find a business that will. Make sure you are responding quickly to your customer inquiries and treating them like a friend. If you do, theyíll recommend you to their friends too.

 

What People Like About Blogging

Blogging has become an integral part of our culture, as there are millions of people who enjoy sharing their thoughts with others by blogging. There are many things which bloggers like about blogging, and here are some of them that I would like to list:

-Desire to have contact with others and being part of the blogging community. Everybody needs to identify himself somehow, and most people like being actively involved in a community.
-Desire to do something creative, something that will stay for a long time. People are generally creative beings. Being passive does not bring many people satisfaction. They have an irresistible desire to create something that they will be able to show and share with others.
-Desire to have a popular blog with a lot of traffic and high number of comments. Desire for popularity and fame are other characteristics of humans. What people want to achieve is to be known in the blogosphere as an experienced bloggers who publish quality content.
-Possibility of setting very specific goals and aiming at them. Do you want to have higher Alexa score? Set your realistic goals and try to achieve them. What is nice about blogging is that the more work you put in it, the better results you will obtain.

What is it that motivates you to blog?

Things to Consider When Using Industrial Cranes

Cranes and hoists can be critical pieces of material handling equipment in industries where the nature of the operation requires heavy items to be moved from one surface to another. Sometimes, the area into which the material must be moved is not accessible by forklifts. In other cases, the use of cranes simply makes for more efficient operations. At any rate, cranes are necessary pieces of equipment.

Using a crane is not as simple as installing it and forgetting about it. There are several things that must be done to ensure the safety of those working with or around them. There are also regulatory requirements that must be met.

Places like McDal Corporation can conduct crane installation nj in such a way that meets the initial requirements. They can also help with the periodic activities that must take place to remain compliant.

Cranes must be labeled with the lifting capacity. These labels must be clearly visible to all who will be using the crane. In addition, the crane must periodically load tested by a qualified person to ensure that it can safely handle the weight for which it is rated. After the crane passes the load test, it is labeled with the date on which the test was conducted. This makes it easier to tell when the next test is due. Typically, load tests are conducted annually.

There are also periodic inspections that must take place in order for the crane to be legally used. There must be a weekly check to ensure the controls are all working correctly and that there are no obvious operational issues. These checks should be documented on a checklist that is posted at the site of the crane.

Chains, slings and hooks are to be examined with each use. If there are signs of deterioration, the item must be taken out of service. Ideally, it should be destroyed to prevent an inadvertent use in the future. Likewise, hooks that are bent beyond their original shape are not to be used.

Operators who use cranes as part of their jobs must be properly trained. Many companies have certified trainers on their payroll. Others outsource the training to other companies. Which method is best depends on what works best for the company. If you have responsibility for operations in which cranes are used, you might want to have an audit conducted to make sure your cranes are in compliance.

Businesses and Internet

Since the Internet was invented, businesses were trying to do everything they can to take advantage out of it. After all, a business has to be focused on making money, and should be able to take advantage out of any tools that could help achieve success. There are probably at least a few things that every business can do to have advantage over their competitors:

  • One of the most basic things is to have a website. It is a great way to advertise a company to Internet surfers, and since the number of Internet users is growing every year, a business does not have to worry whether a website is a good idea in the long term.
  • While having a website is a good idea, it may also be beneficial to have email support or live support on your website. This way a business will be able to be contacted by email, and not only by phone. These days most businesses have email, as it is a convenient way to communicate with customers.
  • Online Pay Per Click campaigns and banner advertisements may be a good way to attract new customers. Advertising online is especially good idea if a particular business has something to do with technology. That is because anyone who uses Internet has some interest in technology, so ads for that business have a potential to reach a lot of new customers.

A Black Woman Who Means Business


Monica Y. Dee is an award winning African film producer. She is also a business woman and under the guise of rKive Productions which she set up, she is also the founder of the first touring web series film festival ‘UK Web Fest’ in the UK, a popular film club ‘Six Sixty’ and is also the creator and producer of the highly anticipated LGBT/BAME drama web series ‘Spectrum London.’ Her work encompasses smaller narrative projects as well as bigger ones producing film for corporate companies.

A former lawyer who was also a partner in the firm she set up, Monica is a true entrepreneur in every sense of the word. She has advised company heads, global business figures as well as the every day person in Immigration and property matters.

Monica has recently been invited to a well known film festival in America to screen her latest project, Spectrum London. A festival that does not normally screen web series works but who asked specifically to do so of Monica’s project which she sees as an honor.

Monica is the founder of another start up in online digital content streaming, when it is launched in 2017 she promises to come to back to us and tell us all about it.

Monica holds three degrees, an LLB (hons) and Pg Dip Law from the University of West London and an MA in Film from Staffordshire University.

http://www.rkiveproductions.co.uk

How Working From Home Helps Businesses and Individuals

Despite the surge of technology that allows people to work from home and the numerous health and personal benefits it offers, many companies havenít yet embraced it as much as they could. There are some downsides, but having business video conferencing for IT like BlueJeans software is an affordable and easy way to conduct regular business operations remotely, part time or even full time. Many sectors, particularly healthcare, have already used it to transform their work practices and make things much easier and quicker for themselves and their customers. Here are just a few of the benefits for both individuals and corporations as a whole:

  1. Open Hiring

Itís obvious that every company needs to hire the best people they can find in order to stay ahead of their competitors. But this does reduce your hiring pool to the people in your immediate area. It also makes things more difficult for job seekers who can only find work in their own area. This makes it harder for them to find work in certain industries which are only located in urban centres. Hiring and working remotely allows for open hiring and more options for both recruiters and job seekers. If there is somebody you want to work with who isnít willing to relocate, you can still add them to your staff thanks to remote working. Job seekers can also tap into their dream industries without always needing to move to an expensive city centre, which also improves workplace equality. It is also much easier to train multiple new hires remotely thanks to screen sharing software and uploading training videos to cloud storage.

  1. Time Saving

Tightened budgets and increased competition means that companies need to pay closer attention to their productivity and time management. But as Video Conferencing Guide points out, travelling two hours to make an appointment and then two hours back again takes four whole hours of productivity out of a day that could be better spent on more important tasks. Making the appointment remotely would only take a short time out of your schedule. This is why the software has become so popular in the medical industry, as it allows doctors to make an instant diagnosis and provide test results much quicker than they used to. Hiring and training, which take up a large amount of time in any company, are also streamlined and simplified when done with online tools. Online conferencing really does give businesses the gift of time by allowing people to achieve more in a shorter space of time. Not only does it cut out the need for long and expensive travel, it allows colleagues to contact each other easily, access and distribute files and information, and provide training to multiple people at once.

  1. Cost Saving

Post credit crunch, businesses need to find as many ways to save money as possible. Individuals also need to make the most out of their pay cheque and make it stretch as far as possible. The single cost of a conferencing software subscription can potentially save a company thousands each year in travel expenses, renting office space, setting up conferences and other large events, and thousands of other smaller expenses. Individuals too can save money on travel, eating out, coffee runs, formal clothes, and multiple other things. Even just working from home for one or two days a week can save substantial amounts of money.

  1. Access to Information

A surprising amount of hold ups are caused by people not gaining access to the information or files they need because it is sitting in somebody elseís computer or on their desk. It wasnít that long ago when sharing information meant physically bringing them over to other peopleís desks, or even mailing them back and forth. Today, technology has evolved so much that even exchanging information through e-mail seems somewhat archaic. Cloud storage makes information accessible for all who need to see it, including video files and online meetings. Livestreaming big conferences or events means they are accessible to everyone, not only those who can afford to fly out to the conference and book a hotel room. If somebody canít make an online meeting, training session, or conference, you can instead record the livestream, save it to the cloud storage, and allow others to access it whenever they need to. This also prevents the need to make the same lecture or share the same piece of information multiple times to different people. Buzzle says that it is even possible to share and update information in real time, meaning nobody is ever left behind our outdated.

While companies will always need some opportunities for colleagues to meet in person, there are multiple benefits to allowing staff to work from home even if it is only for a few days each month. Take advantage of your conferencing software and encourage more home working and remote hiring and you will see the advantages it has to you, your colleagues, and your entire company.