Overcoming Challenges in the Manufacturing Industry Through  Technology

New improvements to the  Odoo ERP systems used by the cement manufacturing industry can save manufacturers at least 2-3 million dollars in installation and maintenance throughout a 10-year system lifecycle investment.

In Africa and around the world, more and more businesses in the manufacturing, construction and engineering industry are overcoming business challenges aided by technology.    

The cement manufacturing industry is one such industry. 

ERP for Manufacturing Industry

In the past, cement manufacturers relied on the traditional Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems like SAP, Oracle etc. Not anymore. Smart businesses have discovered that Software as a Service (Saas) system provides more benefits. 

Cement manufacturing, an intricate area (like all assembling businesses), depends on a few pointers. For example, the control of raw materials inventory,  source of inventory items, opportune store network, price changes of produced items and a decent distribution network to get the items to the market.

Typically many complex systems are used to manage the core processes. They include: 

1. Extraction of raw materials  
2. Crushing and grinding of raw material  
3. Mixing and Preheating
4. Heating
Final Grinding  
5. Storage in silos

A typical manufacturing plant has over 200 different types of machinery with a multitude of sensors and electrical systems that need to be at optimal capacity at all times to reduce loss of downtime. In cement manufacturing, the control system is more complex. Despite that, the systems are evolving daily. One of such possible evolutions may be the entry of new digital-driven technology in the form of a system that provides bulk order fulfilment without human intervention. 

A customer arrives at a facility to pick up an order of bulk cement in an articulated truck. By parking the truck under a silo and inserting a key fob that controls the systems, cement is disbursed to the correct quantity ordered without any human contact.

The savings in terms of manpower and being able to run the facility at a lower cost are drivers to adopt such automated systems which lead to an increase in the financial efficiency of a facility.

Odoo ERP enables a new flexible way of modifying the use of the ERP to execute all the back office functions within a platform that is user-friendly and easily scalable.  

By streamlining the processes and optimizing the way each department interacts with the operations in the company, synergies across departments from sales through to finance to manufacturing can be closely monitored and enhanced to ensure the products sold to customers maximize the market conditions and gives the company a nimble execution across all functions. 

Due to the saas nature of the system, the usual costs associated with legacy systems of requiring huge investments in managing physical systems and personnel on-site alongside ensuring 24-7 efficiencies have been negated with the corresponding savings.

Odoo ERP for Manufacturing Industry 

Odoo ERP is at the forefront of embracing new features such as digital signature and an integrated document management system that offers a compelling proposition for manufacturing companies.

Cement manufacturing systems will continue to evolve like all areas as the drive to focus on innovative and cost-reducing systems continues to give real-time analytics and information that can feed into the business decision making.

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