The supply chain is saturated with suppliers of all sizes competing for the same OEM business. They’re faced with the pressures to meet OEM demands under tight deadlines, at the lowest possible cost while maintaining high-quality standards. In the end, supplier contracts are often awarded to larger, well-known suppliers that have established industry credibility with the technology and processes in place to support the business. So how does a start-up capture the attention of the OEMs to win business away from their larger competitors?
According to a recent report published by the U.S. Department of Commerce, “smaller manufacturers are only 60 percent as productive as larger manufacturers in part because of the challenges they face in adopting new technologies and processes.”
But technology is leveling the supplier playing field, making it easier for smaller, start-up manufacturers to win against their larger, more established competitors. And the technology helping suppliers compete? Cloud ERP solutions that are built to grow as business grows without requiring a large investment in IT resources. Here’s a look at how a metal forming start-up leveraged cloud technology to win OEM business and grow in the marketplace.
Minimal Investment = Maximum Functionality
When Michigan-based MFC Netform, a metalformer specializing in flow-forming and cold forming, opened its doors in 2003, it manufactured one part in a facility with 15 employees. The company had plans to grow and aggressively sought business from large automotive and agricultural OEMs.
“We were starting out with just one part number, and our biggest challenge was attracting customers,” says MFC Netform Assistant General Manager Dan Januszek.
But in order to compete and win more business, MFC Netform needed to demonstrate they could manage higher production levels. They needed a sophisticated system to help manage their business operations from the plant floor to the front office without a dramatic investment in infrastructure and staff.
MFC Netform evaluated cloud ERP technology and found what they needed with the Plex Manufacturing Cloud. It provided a single, scalable solution that could grow over time with the business without a large investment in IT infrastructure and resources.
Upon implementation in 2005, MFC employees received consistent, accurate, real-time data focused on receiving, inventory, quality, planning and scheduling, shipping, EDI, engineering change tracking, financials and document control. The sophisticated level of data and process allowed MFC Netform to meet and exceed customer expectations in ways it hadn’t predicted which led to accelerated growth and further adoption of Plex by MFC Netform’s parent company.
In the 10 years since launch, MFC Netform has grown to an organization producing more than 2 million parts each year for more than 24 OEMs. Because Plex’s solution is cloud-based and built for continuous innovation, the software has grown right along with them.
“We are now in a good position for the future,” adds Januszek. “Our revenue continues to grow, our systems are strong and we continue to expand the role of Plex within the company.”
For more information on how MFC Netform has leveraged cloud ERP technology to grow its business and market share, download their full success story here.