How Mobile ERP Is Changing the Way Manufacturers Do Business

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  • Published: August 22 2013
Mobile is changing the way companies do business—and manufacturers are no exception. They’re asking ERP vendors for apps that help control core manufacturing operations. But are they seeing the ROI they’re looking for? In this Sage-sponsored interview, TEC senior business intelligence and data management analyst, Jorge García, talks about the opportunities, benefits, and challenges of mobile ERP for manufacturing.

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Mobile isn’t just for consumers anymore. Workers are using smart phones and tablets for tasks that used to require a laptop or desktop computer. They can access the information they need any time, and from anywhere. And that’s changing the way companies do business.

Manufacturers are no exception. They’re asking vendors of enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions to come up with mobile applications that help them control core manufacturing operations. But are they seeing the return on investment (ROI) they’re looking for?

In this Sage-sponsored interview, Jorge García, senior business intelligence and data management analyst at Technology Evaluation Centers, talks about the opportunities, benefits, and challenges of mobile ERP for manufacturing.

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Jorge García is a senior business intelligence (BI) and data management analyst for TEC. He has more than 20 years of experience in all phases of application development, database and data warehouse (DWH) design, as well as 9 years in project management, covering best practices and new technologies in the BI/DWH space.

Prior to joining TEC, García was a senior project manager and senior analyst developing BI, DWH, and data integration applications with Oracle, SAP Business Objects, and data integration. He has also worked on projects related to the implementation of BI solutions for the private sector, including the banking and services sectors. He has had the opportunity to work with some of the most important BI and DWH tools on the market.

García is a member of the Boulder BI Brain Trust.

How are mobile devices changing ERP?

Nowadays, mobile devices can stay connected to your ERP system at all times. Since your ERP system is really the system of record for your business, that connection brings some pretty big benefits.

First off, there’s the simple fact of making workers mobile. So they can work from anywhere at any time. They can communicate, they can capture data. They can access critical information like order details and stock inventories. And they can do it using nothing but a smart phone or tablet.

That increases so-called visibility. It’s not just that workers have remote access to company data. More workers have that access. And customers and partners can, too.

Better still, the information is real-time, so workers always have the information they need when they need it.

This all translates to improved productivity and better, more accurate decision making.

It’s important to understand that new mobile technologies are much more than just data visualization tools. They really are becoming virtual front-ends for your ERP system, so you can directly interact with the system in real time.

For example, field and office workers can process work orders and check the status of deliveries. Executives can examine financial results in real or near real time. Authorizations happen faster. Getting in touch with the right resources is easier.

So what mobility really does is make businesses more agile. They can do a lot of work virtually, which is less expensive. In short, they can do more for less.

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