• Michael Intravartolo

I’ll get you my pretty…and all of your Manufacturing ERP pain points too!

I’ll get you my pretty…and all of your Manufacturing ERP pain points too!


Halloween is not just a time for ghouls and goblins to come out of the wood-work and reclaim All Hallows Eve as their own, it’s also a time to reevaluate your manufacturing software to reclaim it as your own. If you’re continually dealing with common pain points associated with typical manufacturing software this blog post will not be just a bunch of hocus pocus. Rather, by the end of the post you’ll see how to put those pain points on the back witches’ brooms as they flee toward the moon the day after Halloween. So, stick around my pretty and enjoy the magic in the night as this blog post glows by the moonlight.


“Products make a statement. Manufacturing Software tells the story.” Your finished product is what consumers see but the story behind the creation of the product is what really needs to be seen by you.


Common Manufacturing Pain Points


1. Inventory Control

Inventory control is a vital part of any manufacturing business and lack of inventory insight will cost you more money one way or another, no doubt about it. Whether your organization is prone to having too much inventory on hand in the warehouse or not enough inventory on hand in the warehouse you are losing money. Yet, some ERP software still requires you to keep track of inventory by hand and manually key in numbers, yikes! Inventory control is very information heavy and needs to be uploaded in real-time.


Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central allows you to provide better customer service and optimize your supply chain by organizing your inventory, even at different addresses if needed. You can then buy, store, or sell items at different locations and transfer inventory between them.


According to Microsoft, items that you offer to customers but do not keep in inventory you can register as catalog items, which you can convert to inventory items when necessary. You can increase or decrease the quantity of an item in inventory by posting directly to the item ledger entries, for example, after a physical count or if you do not record purchases.

Inventory increases and decreases are naturally also recorded when you post purchase and sales documents respectively. For more information, see Record Purchases, Sell Products, and Invoice Sales. Transfers between locations changes inventory quantities across your company's warehouses.


To increase your overview of items and to help you find them, you can categorize items and give them attributes to search and sort by.


Another key attribute of having the proper items in inventory is Sales Forecasting. Sales Forecasting is another common pain point among manufacturing companies. However, which Business Central there’s no need to panic as it’s forecasting functionality is far ahead of other ERP software.


Is Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central for manufacturing? Yes, both the on-premise and cloud versions have full manufacturing capabilities that can be tailored to your exact needs.

2. Sales Forecasting and Production Forecasting

That old witch looking into her crystal ball had it right, visibility, visibility, and visibility. With no visibility the chance of having surpluses or shortages due to having out of date raw materials is almost certain! For example, without the raw materials to create a product, production is ceased. That means customer deadlines are missed, which leads to unsatisfied customers. Your ERP software needs to have accurate, real-time information just like what is found in Business Central.


The forecasting functionality in application can be used to create sales or production forecasts, in combination or independently. For example, most make-to-order companies do not carry finished goods inventory, because each item is produced when it is ordered. Anticipating orders (sales forecasting) is critical for a reasonable turnaround time on the finished goods (production forecasting). As an example, component parts with lengthy delivery times, if not on order or on inventory, can delay production.


  • The sales forecast is the sales department's best guess at what will be sold in the future, and is specified by item and by period. However, the sales forecast is not always adequate for production.

  • The production forecast is the production planner's projection of how many end items and derived subassemblies to produce in specific periods to meet the forecasted sales.

In most cases, then, the production planner modifies the sales forecast to fit the conditions of production, yet still satisfies the sales forecast.


According to Microsoft, forecasting functionality is used to create anticipated demand; actual demand is created from sales and production orders. During creation of the Master Production Schedule (MPS), the forecast is netted against the sales and production orders. The Component option on the forecast determines which type of requirements to take into consideration in the netting process. If the forecast is for a sales item, only sales orders net the forecast. If it is for components, only dependent demand from production order components net the forecast.


Forecasting allows your company to create "what if" scenarios and efficiently and cost-effectively plan for and meet demand. Accurate forecasting can make a critical difference in customer satisfaction levels with regard to order promising dates and on-time delivery.


3. Equipment Maintenance and Upkeep

Unexpected machine repairs result in unplanned downtime which can be scarier than watching A Nightmare on Elm Street as a child. This is because one little malfunction can slow down your entire production flow within minutes of the issue. With Business Central and it’s extension capabilities you can be proactive in preventing maintenance instead of reactive.


Solution Systems’ Plant Maintenance extension for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central addresses various requirements of engineering and process industries. It’s a complete solution for the machinery & equipment requirements you might have. It enables organizations to efficiently improve and sustain life of machinery equipment and thereby increasing productivity. The various features include:

  • Machine Master

  • Definable Lookup Data

  • Data Element Definition

o Specification

o Preventive Maintenance

o Spares

  • Mapping Data Elements

  • Complaints and Work Records

  • Internal Messaging – Including SMS (on demand)

  • Analytical reports

  • User-Friendly GUI

  • …and much more!

Our Plant Maintenance extension optimizes production efficiency with reduced efforts in tracking of maintenance requirements in a manufacturing environment. A customized solution for Machinery & Equipment requirements – that enables organizations to improve the life of machinery and equipment, addresses breakdown complaints, and increases productivity. How can you go wrong?!


Want to learn more about Business Central's manufacturing capabilities? Here's how:

Contact Us

Solution Systems, Inc.

3201 Tollview Dr. 

Rolling Meadows, IL 60008

Office: 847-590-3000

Email: info@solsyst.com

Support: 224-345-2020

Support Email: support@solsyst.com

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