If you’re a small manufacturing company, you may be using spreadsheets to manage your business. While this is certainly better than nothing, it’s not the most efficient or effective way to manage your operations. Spreadsheets are prone to data entry errors, and they can be difficult to update and track changes in. A more robust software solution can help you manage your business more effectively and efficiently. In this blog post, we will discuss five reasons why it is time for small Manufacturers to move beyond spreadsheets and get more robust software.
The Problems With Spreadsheets
The problems with spreadsheets are extensive. In addition to being prone to data entry errors, they can also be difficult to update and track changes in. If you’re using spreadsheets to manage your business, you’re likely wasting a lot of time and energy.
One of the biggest problems with using spreadsheets to manage a business is the risk of human error. In fact, based on a few different studies, 88% of all spreadsheets contain “significant” errors. Most are caused by human error.
Because spreadsheets are often used to track important data, a mistake can be very costly. For example, if you accidentally enter the wrong part number into a spreadsheet, it could result in an incorrect financial statement. Or, if you forget to update a spreadsheet with new information, you may end up making decisions based on inaccurate data.
Human error is always a risk when using any type of software, but it’s particularly risky when using spreadsheets. This is because spreadsheets are often used to track critical data, and one wrong move can have serious consequences.
Manufacturing companies often face a unique challenge when it comes to tracking and managing changes. With so many different parts and components involved in the manufacturing process, it can be difficult to keep track of every change. This is especially true when using spreadsheets, which are not particularly well-suited for tracking changes.
One of the biggest problems with using spreadsheets to manage a manufacturing process is the risk of inconsistency. If different people are updating the spreadsheet with different information, it can be difficult to ensure that all the data is accurate. This can lead to mistakes and inconsistencies in the manufacturing process.
Another issue with using spreadsheets for manufacturing is version control. It can be difficult to keep track of which version of the spreadsheet is the most up-to-date, and it can be hard to merge changes from different versions. This can lead to confusion and errors in the manufacturing process.
A more robust software solution can help you manage your manufacturing process more effectively and efficiently. In particular, a software solution that includes change management features can help you track and manage changes effectively. This will help ensure that your manufacturing process is as consistent and accurate as possible… no copying or emailing of files required.
Time to Find Data
One of the downsides of using spreadsheets to manage a business is the amount of time it takes to find data. Because spreadsheets are not particularly well-organized, it can take a lot of time to find the information you need. This can be frustrating and time-consuming, and it can slow down your business operations.
In addition to the search for data, “the lack of scalability, the manual operations, the limitations in the amount of data make the whole process around an Excel spreadsheet quite time consuming.“
A software solution that includes broader search options, automated operations, and scalability can all help you save time and frustration, as well as help you operate more efficiently.
While using spreadsheets can have many benefits, there are also some security concerns to consider. A big security concern with spreadsheets is that they can be easily corrupted. If a virus or malware gets into your spreadsheet, it could damage your data or even crash your computer. If you’re using a cloud based provider, you’re better off, but if you’re using local spreadsheet files, ransomware and malware can be a huge issue.
One of the biggest issues with using spreadsheets is that it can make the re-use of data difficult. If you want to use data from a previous spreadsheet in a new spreadsheet, you may have to copy and paste it manually. Or if you build external references and links, when you move sheets, or change its name, the link is gone. This can all be time-consuming and error-prone with multiple different versions that can be confusing.
Another issue with using spreadsheets for data management is that they can be difficult to merge. If you have two different spreadsheets with different versions of the same data, it can be difficult to merge them into a single spreadsheet. This can lead to inconsistency and errors in your data.
Software that includes a data warehouse can help you store and access your data more easily. It also means you have a single source of truth that everyone can access as opposed to numerous versions of the same thing. This will save you time and frustration, and it will help you operate more efficiently.
Maintain Simplicity while Moving Beyond Spreadsheets
While it is important to move to more robust manufacturing software, it is also important to keep the process simple. Manufacturing companies need robust software solutions that are easy to use and simple to manage. In particular, manufacturing companies need software that is easy to learn and easy to use. They need software that is straightforward and easy to navigate.
A software solution that is too complex or difficult to use can slow down your business operations and interfere with your ability to effectively manage your manufacturing process. In order to be successful, you need software that is both powerful and user-friendly. You need software that is reliable and efficient.
When looking for a software solution for your manufacturing business, it is also important to find one that also has a clean workflow. Software with a clean design is less likely to contain errors or glitches. This will help ensure the accuracy of your data. Choose a software solution that has a clean, user-friendly flow to it with a simplistic feature set so you don’t get bogged down with too many options.
Shift Away From Spreadsheets and Gain More Business Insights
Manufacturing companies that are still using spreadsheets to manage their business operations are doing themselves a disservice. Another benefit of using more robust software is that it can provide you with deeper insights into your data. They can help you uncover trends and patterns in your data without extensive data manipulation in spreadsheets. This can help you make better business decisions and optimize your manufacturing process.
Deeper Data Insights
One of the biggest benefits of using more robust software is that it can provide you with deeper insights into your data. This means that you can get real-time insights into your business operations. You can see how your business is performing at any given moment and make changes as needed as well as track your progress over time. In addition, you can see how your business is evolving and identify trends and patterns in your data in real time without any manual entry. As per a study by LinkedIn, businesses are 137% more likely to differentiate with data and analytics driving insights.
Manufacturing job costing with software can be a very beneficial process for businesses. When it comes to job costing, it is important to have accurate and up-to-date information in order to make sound business decisions. Software can help you manage your job costing process more effectively and efficiently.
Job Costing Insights
When it comes to job costing, there are a few key factors to consider. One of the most important factors is material cost. It is important to track material cost in order to stay within budget and make sure that you are making a profit on each product.
Software can help you track material cost more accurately. In particular, software can help you keep track of how much material is used in each product and how much it costs. This will help you make better decisions about what products to produce and how much profit you can expect to make on them.
Another key factor when it comes to job costing is labor cost. Labor cost is the amount of money spent on employee wages and benefits. It is important to track labor cost in order to stay within budget and make sure that you are making a profit on each product.
No matter the functionality of how it’s done, the right solution can help you keep track of how many hours employees are working on each product and how much it costs. This will help you make better decisions about what products to produce and how much profit you can expect to make on them.
Another key factor when it comes to job costing is overhead cost. It is important to track overhead costs like rent, electricity, and water bills in order to stay within budget and make sure that you are making a profit on each product.
Inventory Management Insights
Inventory management is an important part of any manufacturing business. The right software can help you keep track of how much inventory you have on hand and how much it costs. This will help you make better decisions about what products to produce and how much profit you can expect to make on them.
The stats tell a clear picture:
- Reducing stock-outs and overstocks can lower inventory costs by 10%
- 74% of businesses have experienced a shortage of critical parts and materials across all industries
- The cost of inventory distortion in 2020 amounted to US$1.8trn in 2020
If you’re a small or micro-manufacturing business, it’s important to be aware of the importance of inventory management.
An inventory overage occurs when you have more inventory on hand than you need. This can be costly and can lead to lost profits. The right software can help you keep track of your inventory levels and make sure that you are not overstocking any items.
An inventory underage occurs when you have less inventory on hand than you need. This can lead to lost sales and missed opportunities. The right software can make sure that you have enough stock on hand to meet customer demand.
The bottom line is that the right software can help you manage your inventory more effectively and efficiently. This can help you prevent overages and underages, which can lead to lost profits for your business.
If you’re a small or micro-manufacturing business, it’s important to have a dashboard that provides an overview of your business performance. With so much on the line each day, dashboards can help you track your progress over time and identify trends and patterns in your data. Dashboards can also help you make sound business decisions based on accurate and up-to-date information.
Scale from Spreadsheets to Automated Software
When it comes to micro and small manufacturing companies, there are many benefits to moving into more robust software with automation.
The use of software automation can lead to increased efficiencies within a manufacturing company. With the right software in place, businesses can reduce the time it takes to complete tasks, improve accuracy, and obtain real-time data. Additionally, businesses can become more agile and responsive to changes in the market.
As per IBM, “Workflow automation offsets shifts in supply and business structures. It reduces redundancies and improves quality-control errors. Automating workflows specifically cuts down purchase, budget and supply chain approval and cycle times.“
Another key benefit of automation is the ability to support growth. As a company grows, its needs will change and evolve. Using software that is not able to adapt to these changes can lead to inefficiencies and errors. However, by using software that is designed to grow with a company and automate processes, businesses can avoid these issues.
Software with automated workflows can also play an important role in the success of any manufacturing process. By definition, workflows are a series of steps that need to be completed in a specific order in order to achieve a desired outcome. When it comes to manufacturing, having defined workflows can help ensure that tasks are completed accurately, on time, and can be combined into singular, automated events that save effort, confusion, and ensure consistency.
In addition, workflows can help improve communication between departments within a company. When everyone is aware of the steps they need to take in order to complete a task, there is less opportunity for confusion and mistakes.
The bottom line is that automation and workflows are an essential part of any manufacturing process. It can lead to improved productivity and efficiency within your business.
Scale Beyond Spreadsheets While Keeping Costs Down
While a good software solution can help you manage your manufacturing business more effectively, it can also be expensive. In some cases, the cost of the software may be prohibitive for small businesses. However, there are a number of affordable software solutions available that can meet your needs.
If you’re looking for a way to move away from spreadsheets and get more robust software without spending a lot of money, consider using a “robust enough” software solution. That means aligning your true needs with a software solution that also fits your budget. Have in mind your top pain points when reviewing software options, to make sure those needs are met. But don’t overindulge on the feature set when you know you need to stay within a certain monthly budget.
One of the benefits of using robust enough software for managing your manufacturing business is that it can help you scale beyond spreadsheets while keeping costs low. The right software solution will provide you with all the features you need to manage your business effectively, without breaking the bank. In addition, the right software solution should be easily customized to meet your specific manufacturing process, which can help you save time and money.
Not all software solutions are created equal, so it’s important to do your research and find one that is a good fit for your specific needs. Although it may seem like a big change, it is time for small manufacturers to move beyond spreadsheets and make the switch to the right software to alleviate many of the problems you’re facing with your current spreadsheets.
Parts Dashboard was designed with simplicity in mind, in addition to our strategy session to align the software with your specific processes. Plus, our low costs will keep your business expenses down. Finally, enhanced automation and more business insights will help you make better decisions for your company. If you’re ready for a hassle-free transition to better software, sign up for a personalized demo of Parts Dashboard today.