Epicor Software Corporation, a global leader in business software solutions for manufacturing, distribution, retail and services organisations, today announced that IO Electronics Ltd, a UK sub-contract electronics manufacturing solutions company, has selected the Epicor next-generation enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution for the electronics and high tech industries.
The new Epicor ERP solution will support the company’s aggressive rate of growth, as well as future expansion plans.
IO Electronics specialises in PCB and cable assembly production. The company also offers prototyping, testing and finished product assembly. IO is already acquiring customers faster than at any other time in its ten-year history, has recently taken on additional premises and is planning a new production line later in 2012.
“We have seen fantastic growth in recent years and now have 35-40 regular customers coming to us for our expertise and quality of service,” said Andrew Cridland, managing director at IO Electronics. “We have aggressive growth plans to double annual turnover in the next four years, and that is why we are investing now in Epicor ERP.”
IO Electronics’ existing ERP solution has been used for 10 years. Many of the company’s core processes are managed in this system, but it is not flexible, meaning that key information such as project costing, quotations and the tracking of orders takes place in other application such as Microsoft Excel. This creates islands of information that are quickly out of date.
“Taking on a new site and expanding our business means the sharing of information and communication across the company risks becoming fragmented and affecting our efficiency,” added Cridland. “With Epicor we will have all information available to the departments that need it in real-time. As our operatives finish a task they will update Epicor ERP, meaning we can track the progress and location of any production run across any of our four facilities.”
Another key challenge facing IO Electronics is that it sometimes holds excessive stock, something it is confident Epicor ERP will resolve. The existing solution is unable to maintain a list of parts that links multiple suppliers and customer production run projects through a single component code. This means that high levels of stock exist for certain parts that are shared across products, because they use separate unlinked codes. If these codes were linked it would be possible to aggregate stock figures. Epicor ERP will help address this problem through single part codes, which in turn improves the management of production planning and allows the provision of substitute components.
The IO Electronics team reviewed six different ERP solutions before selecting Epicor. Many of the companies met the core requirements of the project, but where Epicor excelled was the level of additional features available out of the box. IO Electronics could see uses for many of these both now, and as it strives to reach its future growth objectives. The team also liked the way that Epicor could be tailored to the needs of each user, and had tight integration with Microsoft Outlook.
“Achieving growth targets requires a lot of components to come together and move in unison,” said Malcolm Fox, director, product marketing at Epicor. “For many companies this is about people, processes and strategy, but technology plays a key role too. You have to review your production technology platform and software to be sure it is not going to hold you back as you embark on a growth strategy. Any weak link can bring the best laid plans to a halt -- once that momentum is lost it is hard to get it back.”