ERP SOFTWARE

For The Agricultural Equipment Industry

ERP Software for Agricultural Equipment Manufacturers

Agricultural equipment manufacturers face some unusual challenges compared to other types of equipment manufacturers. Sure, they face similar issues of complexity, continuous change, price pressures, and innovation demands. Likewise, their customers also demand equipment lifecycle management, whereby all the activities involving the product must be managed from cradle to grave.

However, there are a few twists that make the agricultural equipment market a unique environment.

What Makes the Agricultural Equipment Market Unique?

Export Demand & Support

Demand for agricultural food products is steadily rising around the globe, particularly in the remote undeveloped regions of the world. The major driver for this demand lies in population growth. Within time, this demand for food imports becomes replaced with a need to produce food products locally. This local need creates new demands for agricultural equipment, and subsequently mandates that sales, service and support networks be created to nurture those markets. Call centers, spare parts, effective warranties and support documentation must all be available to support equipment sold into the new markets. Additionally, strong CRM software systems are required to build the fledgling dealers into long-term growing partners.

Cyclical Demand

The agricultural equipment industry is a highly capital intensive endeavor. From sophisticated machinery on the shop floor, to expansive buildings, to expensive inventories of finished goods; the AG equipment business requires large reservoirs of capital. The AG equipment market is also subject to rapidly changing peaks and valleys of demand, caused by changes in farm income, commodity prices, the strength of the dollar, changing interest rates and the strength of the farming balance sheet. In combination, these factors can cause wide swings in profitability.

To combat these challenges, an AG equipment manufacturer needs to be as agile as possible. They need to produce more with less, and to switch operations on a dime. More capacity can be gained from higher uptimes, better quality, less queue time and precisely scheduled work. Switching operations on a dime can be done with effective systems that re-plan in minutes, and give managers immediate insights into the details.

For some, configuring the product to hold the variety (options, features, colors, etc.) until the end of the production process, can significantly improve deliverability. Variety is expensive when stored in finished goods, (and subject to write-offs and discounting), rather than in stocking the less expensive lower level components.

Manufacturing Efficiencies

For some AG equipment manufacturers, the product unit sales do not support full time assembly lines for each product. To maximize utilization of operations and capacity, changeovers are required for the various different products. It therefore becomes imperative to use shop floor systems to minimize the impact of these changes, and to maximize the efficiencies on the plant floor. ERP software ools such as MES, visual scheduling, mobile data collection, and real time dispatching are essential.

Manufacturers operations also must control costs by maximizing uptime, quality, and throughput with use of such tools as CMMS, TQM, and MES.

High Dollar Inventories

Products of AG equipment manufacturers tend to have high dollar price tags, with an additional requirement for stocking of finished goods at both the manufacturers and in the dealer network. Forecasting of customer needs can be difficult, with many variants. Poor forecasting can result in expensive discounting or significant write-offs of obsolete finished goods. The answer to this problem lies in designing flexibility into both the product and the production process, along with refining the forecast within a sophisticated ERP tool.

Supply Chain: Cost Control & Timely Deliveries

Purchasing can be a key value driver for AG equipment manufacturers. Material costs remain a large factor of product cost for AG equipment manufacturers. Added to this, late deliveries or poor quality can stop a production line for days, causing high costs, and even higher inventories. Managing supplier performance can have a big impact on all three factors – price, quality and timely delivery.

Because of the huge impact, there is a constant pressure to build dependable relationships with suppliers. These relationships can provide reliable delivery of expensive components, and warn of shortages and price variations. Supply chain collaboration can make the difference between profitable or non-profitable product lines, and high or low levels of inventory.

WorkWise ERP Software for Agricultural Equipment Manufacturers

CHALLENGES FACED BY AGRICULTURAL EQUIPMENT MANUFACTURERS
Export Demand and Competition
  • Need for comprehensive low cost aftermarket service and support
  • Requirement for readily available aftermarket parts
  • Mandated full warranty coverage and extended time frames
  • Better customer service
Cyclical Demand
  • Economic
  • Seasonal
  • Weather
  • Shifting world-wide markets
  • Capital intensive business
Manufacturing Efficiencies
  • Equipment downtime
  • Changeovers
  • Limited equipment and capacity
  • Poor scheduling
  • Quality and rework
High Dollar Inventories
  • High priced supply chain components
  • Expensive finished goods
  • Coordination of inbound supply
  • Rising material costs
Supply Chain Weaknesses
  • Fluctuating raw material prices
  • Unreliable suppliers
  • Poor delivery performance
  • Need to outsource
  • Need greater insights into supplier activities
Total Solutions/ Life Cycle Performance
  • Customer mandated solutions- birth to death
  • Mandated full warranty coverage and extended time frames
  • Better customer service
Innovation/ Change
  • Incorporating changes to remain compatible with large manufacturers
  • Different farm conditions (rain, soil, etc.) around the world
  • Staying ahead of the competition
  • Meeting customer expectations
  • Controlling product design changes
Margins
  • Rising material costs
  • Product line profitability
  • Pressures to reduce cost
  • Push for lower total cost of ownership for the product
  • Inefficient operations
  • Customer demand for lower prices
  • Customer demands for more features, functions and solutions
Competition
  • Low cost foreign competition
  • Supply exceeds demand
  • Large manufacturers consolidations
Quality
  • Lifecycle quality-birth to death
  • CAPA, APQP, ISO 9001
Tailored Products
  • Capturing the customer feedback
  • Coordinated design efforts
  • Handling variety throughout the organization
  • Expanding special features, options, colors, etc.
  • Ability to match the customer needs with the optimal mode, ETO, CTO, MTO, ATO
Safety and ergonomics
  • Large costs of recalls
  • Product liability costs
WORKWISE ERP KEY FEATURES FOR AGRICULTURAL EQUIPMENT MANUFACTURERS
Mixed Modes
  • Make to stock
  • Assemble to order
  • Build to order
  • Configure to order
  • Repeat and tweak
  • Engineer to order
Mixed Methods
  • Lean Manufacturing
  • Kanban
  • MRP & MPS
  • JIT
  • 5s
  • MES
  • Role based manufacturing
  • TQM, Six Sigma, Kaizen
Manufacturing Execution
  • Product configuration
  • Visual scheduling
  • Shop Floor Control
  • Work in process manager
  • Asset utilization manager, CMMS/EAM
  • Mobile data collection
  • Kanban
  • Kaizen
  • 5s
  • Performance management
  • Human resource management
Supply Chain
  • Inventory management
  • Purchasing
  • Supplier portal/ Supplier score carding
  • Bill of material
  • Engineering change orders
  • JIT
  • Warehouse management
Purchasing
  • Purchase Order and Change Printing
  • Go Paperless with Integrated fax/email capability
  • Blankets and Releases
  • Vendor Quotations with Quantity Breaks
  • Purchase for Stock, Jobs (WIP) and MRO
  • Outside Process Services
  • Optional Inspection Processing
  • Complete Purchasing History
  • Vendor On Time and Quality Tracking
Production Planning
  • Material requirements planning
  • Master scheduling
  • Product configuration
  • Available to promise
  • Lot traceability
  • Capacity planning
Aftermarket Sales and Support
  • CRM sales
  • CRM-Call center
  • eCommerce
  • Warranty
  • Customer portal
  • Spare parts
  • Document management
Cost Management
  • Job cost
  • Standard cost
  • Multi-layered cost application
  • Product line profitability
Dealer Service
  • Quoting and estimating
  • Complex orders
  • Product configuration
  • Copy and tweak order creation
  • Direct Fulfillment
  • Dealer portal
  • Dealer relationship manager
Product Life Cycle Management
  • Dealer portal
  • CRM-Dealer
  • Product configuration
  • Document and file management
  • Engineering change orders
  • Supplier traceability
  • As built BOM and routing
  • Build histories
  • Quality archives
  • CRM-Support
  • Warranty
Cost Management
  • Job cost
  • Standard cost
  • Multi-layered cost application
  • Product line profitability
Quality
  • Engineering change orders
  • Quality control
  • Regulation compliance
  • Tools supporting ISO 9001 and TS16949 standards
  • SPC, APQP, CAPA
  • Supplier score carding
WORKWISE ERP SOFTWARE ADDITIONAL KEY FEATURES & FUNCTIONS
  • Multidimensional sales forecasting and planning
  • Preventative/predictive maintenance tracking
  • Features and options
  • Multi-level pricing
  • Rules based quotations and configurations
  • Blanket purchase orders
  • Role based screens and applications
  • Document archiving
  • Rules based configurations
  • What-if quotes and costing
  • Available to promise
  • Shop order explosion
  • Modular design capability
  • Asset purchased and tracking system
  • Cost application of design, research and other special costs
  • Matrix bills
  • Family forecasting
  • Serialized label generation
  • Complete audit trails
  • Multi-currency, international shipping
  • Forward and backward lot traceability
  • Kitting
  • Cumulative lead time
  • Smooth forecast error
  • Substitutes and alternatives
  • Serialized inventory
  • Attribute management
WORKWISE ERP SOLUTION BENEFITS
  • Global reach along with cost and capacity advantage
  • Complete engineering change control, product lifecycle, and lot tracking, across all internal and external operations
  • Improved collaboration and relationship with the customer, engineers, and suppliers
  • Rules-based, multi-level sales configurator – Configure and price
  • Quick bidding with bids, quotations and estimates
  • Improved supply chain management and cost control
  • Lower operational costs
  • Speed time-to-delivery
  • Maximize aftermarket opportunities, and lowering aftermarket costs
  • Supports aftermarket parts sales
  • Extend value add programs (solutions)
  • Support production of complex products
  • Improved equipment lifecycle management
  • Maintain plant and equipment with CMMS activities factored into production schedules
  • Full lot, serial, and revision control
  • Ability to handle multiple mixed mode planning models
  • Lower costs and waste thru lean practices
  • Better visibility into all aspects of your operations
  • Precise execution throughout the business
  • Real time feedback to stay on top of all activities and performance
  • Enhanced productivity for the shop floor
  • Low cost efficient operations
  • Better customer fill-rates and delivery promises
  • Improved quality with Kaizen, TQM
  • Extend value add programs (solutions)
  • Optimized production capacity
  • Insights into accurate product costs with full view and alternative application methods
  • Tight control on serial numbers and lots
  • Manage high level receivables
  • Project and manage cash flow

Ready to Learn More?

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