How to Launch ERP at The Manufacturing Site – Oversimplified

This OVER-SIMPLIFIED view of an ERP System for manufacturing startups shows What it is, Why, and How to do it.

Download a PDF copy here.

  • What is ERP – Simply?
  • Why Should Small Manufacturing Companies use ERP?
  • Deploying ERP at a Startup Site

What is ERP simply? 1

Enterprise Resource Planning, ERP System, is software for the manufacturing company. It helps users stay in sync with the business and with each other.

Manufacturers invest in people, suppliers, facilities, equipment, materials, and piece parts. All these components can function as a whole when using Enterprise Resource Planning software.

Overview from the 10,000-foot level

ERP Overview

Supply Chain Management Overview

SCM Core Functions

Manufacturing- Core Functions: 3

Sales and Marketing

HR Functionality



Why Should Small Manufacturing
Companies use ERP? 4

The world has changed and the demand for closer-to-home manufacturing has increased. Small manufacturing must step up to fill the void in the supply chain.

In the US, there are thousands of Software as a Service offering to choose from. So, it is a matter of selecting the software that fits the business’s needs. The costs are in line with what small businesses can afford. Once everything is working together, the business is cost-effective, efficient, and competitive.

Small manufacturing companies should use ERP software to reduce costs, improve communication across departments, optimize business processes, manage accounting processes, facilitate effective maintenance, and automate manual and repetitive tasks.


(Define Small: 10-100 employees)

Deploying ERP at a Startup Site

Best practices for installing ERP software at small manufacturing sites include:

  • Benchmarking current operations
    • Use benchmarking to measure performance against industry standards and identify areas for improvement
    • This involves setting metric goals, comparing current practices with best practices in the industry, and analyzing what is effective in other businesses
  • understanding and defining the current and future state
    • This involves examining key areas such as situation analysis (pain points), workflow (subpar areas), and metrics (measure performance)
    • and, conducting research to identify business needs.
  • overhauling processes
    • providing employees with new tools
    • reducing utility costs
    • implementing manufacturing operations management strategies
      • creating a culture of safety
      • implementing a risk management strategy
      • providing cross-training for employees
      • utilizing real-time, accurate, and reliable data
      • and, monitoring and improving production processes
    • updating processes and technology
    • and, create new processes or organize and simplify industry standard processes for better efficiencies
  • getting data ducks in a row
  • focusing on critical business requirements
  • and, following an ERP implementation plan.

Some implementation articles:







Activities to consider:

  • Set up your office at the site. Have laptops on the desks and notepads on the shop floor.
  • Visit competing companies that use ERP software.
  • Make a vetting checklist based on what your business needs.
  • Have a technician evaluate solutions against your checklist.
  • Choose a product that can grow with the growth of the company.
  • Get the starter set.
  • Start with the HR module. Let the administrator implement the HR Module after training.
  • Train your users or hire them
    • Procurement, Supply Chain Management, Inventory Control
    • Shop Floor Planners, Manufacturing
    • Accounting and Finance
    • eCommerce, Sales, and Marketing
  • Work with your ERP vendor or hire a consultant

The best selections for small manufacturers, depending on situation, are:

  • NetSuite
  • Cetec
  • Prodsmart
  • Striven
  • ProShop
  • Katana Manufacturing ERP
  • shopVOX
  • MRPeasy
  • Acumatica Cloud ERP
  • Plex Systems
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365
  • Deacom
  • Infor Cloudsuite

ERP Selection Articles:







February 2023

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