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Five Steps to Fall in Love with Your ERP System

Topics: ERP

Posted on Feb 10, 2016 9:30:00 AM by Julie Mathis

fall in love with ERP softwareAmid the hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s easy to lose touch with the people you love. It’s just as easy to forget all the great features and functionality that caused you to select your ERP system. According to research published by the University of Waterloo in Ontario, unless people use information consistently after learning it, they forget between fifty and eighty percent of what is learned after a single day. Thirty days later, that retention rate drops down to a meager two to three percent. If you've lost sight of all the features included in your ERP system, here are a few ways to rekindle the relationship.

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Six Low-Cost Marketing Initiatives to Grow Your Manufacturing Business

Topics: ERP, SMBs, Strategy, Marketing

Posted on Feb 3, 2016 8:30:00 AM by Julie Mathis

money.pngYou have a great product. You've painstakingly gone through every material and design detail, and are certain of the value you deliver to your customers.  But, what good are your efforts if orders aren't coming in?

Few businesses have unlimited resources. Within industries, individual players demonste priorities based on the allocation of limited resources. For example in a manufacturing environment, the payoff from streamlining operations is incredibly clear cut; keeping the shop floor running as effectively as possible is probably a high priority. I'm coming to you from the MAX Marketing team with the understanding that in a manufacturing environment, marketing initiatives may not be as high of a priority as, say, streamlining the design change process or effectively tracking parts - and rightly so! But, that doesn't mean your marketing efforts have to suffer overall. Here are six low cost ways to increase your marketing effectiveness without breaking the bank.

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How To Turn Weaknesses Into Strengths

Topics: ERP Reporting

Posted on Jan 25, 2016 10:00:00 AM by Gary Needles

superman, ERP systems, super softwareAny comic book fans?

I, for one, am a huge fan of comic books and the seemingly never ending stream of comic spin-off moves that have been coming out the past few years.  Recently, I've had my non-comic book friends ask me about the upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice movie.  How can a regular human being (Batman) with no extraordinary powers possibly compete with an all-powerful alien from another planet who can catch bullets with his bare hands (Superman)?

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Five Ways to Keep Your New Year's Resolution

Posted on Jan 18, 2016 10:00:00 AM by Steve Budnik

Why do we make New Year’s Resolutions? Every New Year I wonder some of the same things. 

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What’s so special about the beginning of a new year; is the 24 hour block of time on January 1st all that different from any other 24 hour block of time?

Yes; but perhaps the 1st is ideally positioned to make it an ideal time to initiate change.

Many stats show that most of us fail to keep our resolutions, many before the end of January.

Yes; but a challenge is fun!

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5 Hobbies That Can Make You Smarter in the New Year [Infographic]

Topics: Infographic

Posted on Jan 5, 2016 10:00:00 AM by Julie Mathis


getty-medium-getty-2956-499200358.jpgHappy New Year! Have you decided on a new year's resolution yet? Or are you boycotting resolutions all together this year? Either way, we challenge you to get smart this year.

Many studies show that exercising our mind poses a number of health benefits as we age. Add physical exercise on top of that and you've now reduced your odds of developing heart disease, stroke and diabetes. As published in the British Journal of Science and Medicine, researchers found that regular aerobic exercise appears to boost the size of the hippocampus, which is the area of your brain that's involved in verbal memory and learning. If you exercise you're body, you're also exercising your mind. It's a win-win.

Last year, a number of us Exact MAXers participated in a walking challenge. We all geared up with our pedometers, Fitbits, and exercise apps and challenged each other for a month to see who could take the most steps. I unfortunately managed to break my foot prior to the start of the challenge, but I powered through and participated as much as I could as I nursed my fractured foot back to health.

The results? We all had a new sense of motivation to be more active throughout the workday—whether it meant taking some time away from our desks at lunch time to walk with a colleague or going for a quick run to boost our energy. I truly believe we each benefited individually from the extra physical activity, as did our company as a whole. Taking some time away from your desk to go for a walk or run does wonders for your mind...and it can also be a good time to think. Try it and maybe you'll return to your workplace with a new idea or strategy for how to help your company succeed in the new year.

If exercise or physical activity aren't an option, there are plenty of other hobbies and activities to exercise that brain of yours. Check out the infographic below and pick one the hobbies to see how having fun CAN make you smarter.

Then get running, walking, gaming, reading, or whatever you choose. Most importantly, have fun and don't just look at it as a New Years Resolution, but a new way of life.

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The Top 7 Benefits of Working with an ERP Consultant

Topics: Implementation, ERP

Posted on Dec 3, 2015 11:00:00 AM by Exact MAX

 

Working with ERP ConsultantCompanies sometimes think that they're saving money by not hiring an ERP consultant, but in reality, the lack of an experienced consultant can lead to costly and time consuming mistakes that may prevent you from achieving the full value of your new ERP system. Here are 7 ways an ERP consultant will make the entire implementation go more smoothly.

1. Bring Experience to the Table

It’s rare that members of your company's ERP implementation team have real ERP implementation experience, since it’s an event that most people see only once or twice in a career. Consultants do ERP implementations every day, and they know best practices for ensuring that a project meets the company’s objectives and comes in on time and on budget.

2. Change Management

To achieve the most benefit from your new ERP system you should use the opportunity to make your business processes more efficient. There will no doubt be a lot of change to absorb in a short amount of time, and a consultant has techniques to perform gap analysis on existing processes and to map the old ways to the “To Be” process. In addition, the consultant can act as a neutral mediator to resolve the inevitable differences of opinions.

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Taking a Smart Look at Data - October 2015 Manufacturing Outlook

Topics: Manufacturing, Trends, Data Analysis

Posted on Nov 24, 2015 12:00:00 PM by Steve Budnik

manufacturing, data, ERPThis month, Bloomberg Business released two articles* on the state of manufacturing in the U.S. based on October reports. 

The headlines read:

“Manufacturing in U.S. Stagnated in October on Weak Exports”

“Manufacturing in U.S. Climbs for First Time in Three Months”

Looking at these headlines, it’s hard to draw a conclusion.  And therein lies a uniquely modern challenge: How do we use data to draw meaningful insights?

Let’s go through steps to get the most out of your data.

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5 Simple Steps To Improve the Quality of your ERP Data

Topics: ERP Reporting

Posted on Oct 28, 2015 1:07:39 PM by Exact MAX

We're guessing that one of your top goals as a manufacturer is to make sure your company's operations run smoothly. Right? The good news is that an effective ERP system can help you do just that.

An ERP system provides consistent information and data that can be used for analysis and reporting, which in turn supports better, faster decision-making Picture1and ensures the most reliable cost and profit breakdowns. Here are a few tips to help you both improve the quality of your ERP data and get the most out of it.

1. Simplify input

Whenever possible, simplify input into the system by using automated data collection or turning off unneeded prompts and fields. Ensure that your process requires transactions to be entered as close as possible to the location and time where the actual activity occurred to minimize the likelihood of forgotten or incorrect entries.

2. Keep your system secure

This might seem like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised how many companies forget this step. Enforce strong passwords and periodic password changes to help keep your system secure.  This precaution helps ensure that only authorized people process transactions and can help reduce input errors.

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Building Your Workforce: How to Connect with Millennials

Posted on Oct 20, 2015 10:00:00 AM by Exact MAX

getty-full-getty-2956-494234223Not long ago, manufacturing was a hot career path. Salaries were reasonably high and there was plenty of work to be had. Then came the digital revolution and waves of outsourcing. Manufacturing jobs grew scarcer, and salaries were no longer as generous. Many people left manufacturing for greener pastures, and manufacturing became a less hailed profession.

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3 Steps to Take When Your ERP System Reaches Its End of Life

Posted on Oct 12, 2015 10:00:00 AM by Exact MAX

When your ERP vendor announces your software has reached its end of life (EOL), you may feel a momentary sense of panic. Your ERP system is such an essential part of your business that it may be hard to imagine what you would do without it.  Not to worry!  It's possible to make ERP EOL a non-event, with little or no negative impact on your day-to-day operations. Handled strategically, ERP EOL could be a golden opportunity to make changes that result in improved efficiency and reduced costs overall.  Take a deep breath, sit back and read on to discover our step by step guide for deciding how to manage software EOL. 

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About This Blog

Insights, opinions and news relating to the world of manufacturing and ERP software. Read the full introduction here.

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