ERP Selection for an Engineer to Order manufacturer

In early January of 2013, we were contracted to assist an engineer to order firm that has grown to 250 million in turnover by acquiring two of their former competitors. They had been 125 million before the acquisitions. The company engineers and manufactures custom equipment for the oil and gas exploration industry.

They were operating on three different ERP systems and needed to select an integrated ERP solution for all three divisions.

We began with a list of twelve solutions and within a four week period had narrowed the list to three short listed suppliers and selected a new ERP within six weeks. The implementation is in currently in progress.


In 2009 we worked with a consulting partner to assist a major packaging company with a full ERP selection. The client selected DynamicsAX as their new ERP solution.

In early 2013, we were asked to assist with a specialty Transportation Management System to integrate with the DynamicsAX 2012 installation.

Our capabilities in the TMS area had been updated based upon some work delivered for a similar company in the UK. The problem is that they are spending in excess of 40 Million USD on shipping charges. They were looking for a solution to help minimize the costs by allowing for spot buys for the best rates, allow shippers access to their own portal to maintain their own current rates and offer the ability to auction certain delivery contracts that are forty percent domestic and the remainder are international shipments.

They are looking to control the costs and have the actual rates integrate to the Dynamics Financials for invoicing and the proper payment.

We started with a list of fifteen suppliers and within three weeks had narrowed the list to a short list of three solutions. They have selected an integrated TMS solution in a total of six weeks from the beginning of the project. Implementation is in progress and expected to be complete by mid June of 2013.

Mining ERP Solution

Working closely with one of the major consultancies we are currently using the SpecIT™IVSM solution to develop detailed specifications and processes for a new mine in North America.

The project is looking at traditional ERP solutions as well as additional modules to help manage, administer and control processes such as Enterprise Asset Management and Fuel Management etc. Furthermore, the project is looking at the communication requirements of the IT solutions because of the remote aspect of the mine.

The specification element of this project is looking at the traditional ERP solution providers but is also taking into account the wider requirements of the operation and how they may be integrated into an overall IT strategy. The strategic aspect of the project is vital to the future of the mine which is expected to be working for at least 50 years.


Mining - Canada

SpecIT was engaged to assist a global mining concern through our consulting partner, select key best of breed solutions in very specialized areas of Enterprise Asset Management. Many of these were emerging technologies to provide capabilities outside of their global implementation of SAP as their ERP system. We were engaged to specify and select solutions for the following areas. Each was a separate project with completely different sets for potential solution providers.

  1. Tool Tracking – Highly specialized and very expensive tools are tracked and located using RFID and those can be tracked outside of the physical location. The tools can also be located offsite through the use of special cellular technologies.
  2. Fuel and Lubrication Management – As you may imagine to the tracking of the consumption and what asset consumed fuel or maintenance lubrication is accomplished through the use of RFID tags on moving equipment. Monitoring trends of consumption enables the possible use of longer range planning and the use of spot buying versus longer term contacts to tightly manage the spend.
  3. Reliability Centered Maintenance – The use of intelligent systems to predict and avoid failures in key equipment. Minimizing downtime due to failure is essential in a 24/7 mining environment. All scheduled maintenance from the manufacturer is recorded and additionally actual efforts are recorded. Failures are tracked and the intelligence provided by the system will recommend alternative maintenance schedules to avoid failure.
  4. Mobile Video Collaboration – Through the use of specialized very high definition cameras as well as common items like an iPad or cell phone, allows for a virtual intranet to be created on the fly. This allows a technician to use live video and voice communication to review particular issues with a manufacturer or support expert to see the problem without being on-site to do so. Handheld devices as well as stationary cameras are integrated into a network allowing this kind of collaboration when and where as necessary. Guidance can be provided to direct the repair or the information can be used to decide what resources are necessary to resolve the issue quickly.
  5. Warranty Tracking and Repair History – This solution will record the Warranty and Repair issues in such a way that ensures that the organization can fully gain advantage of the manufacturer’s warranty, the warranty of a particular repair and assist in the claims process where necessary. The history data may be used to determine in future replacement which assets of similar use was most reliable and costs the least to maintain and had the least downtime.

Each of these projects was run in very short timeframes. Options for a supplier were narrowed from a wide field of candidates to a short list of providers within five weeks from the commencement of the projects.

ERP Solution for a Multi-country Manufacturer

SpecIT™IVSM is being used to develop a specification and shortlist for this client who has operations in the UK, Hungary and China. The project is for the replacement of an old, highly customised ERP system with a solution that must deliver as much functionality out of the box as possible.

The client has many processes and methodologies that are market specific and require a lot of input from the potential shortlisted candidates. The use of SpecIT™IVSM has reduced the overall timescales to get to a shortlist from nine months to three allowing the client to concentrate on other aspects of the business that require more in-depth analysis and process re-engineering.

The implementation of the system will not start until 2014 however, the SpecIT™IVSM methodology has already highlighted areas of the business that could be re-engineered to improve processes, administration and efficiency and, using SpecIT™ROI tool and liaising with the shortlisted suppliers, we are about to start analysing these areas in more detail to understand the return on capital.

More Articles...

  1. HRM Replacement Project