Anchor Fabrication’s rapid delivery of manufacturing orders is due in part to its ability to perform dynamic nesting, made possible by Epicor ERP, which allows the metal-shop team to take work orders and perform them concurrently through integration with Service Connect—an integration platform for secure workflow tasks within Epicor service-software applications and between Epicor and non-Epicor applications. The ERP system examines all orders assigned to a certain machine and notifies the Anchor Fabrication team if any orders are a fit for simultaneous execution.
Flexibility for Customized Orders
“The feature I appreciate most about the ERP solution is that you can make it into whatever you want. It actually accommodates the way you do business whereas other ERP packages make you adapt to their features. This is especially important for us since we have five separate sister companies, which all do things a little bit differently.”- Tom Delicati, Anchor Fabrication director of information technology
“Many metal fabricators only perform a single service—welding, cutting, coating—but Anchor Fabrication saw an opportunity to differentiate themselves from the competition,” says Terri Hiskey, vice president of global product marketing at Epicor. “It has strategically positioned itself as an all-in-one metal fabrication service provider, and as a provider that can complete customer orders faster than single-service competitors.”
The ERP system provides a big assist in that positioning. Anchor Fabrication began using Epicor ERP solutions in 2007 after determining that a previous software product could not provide the required flexibility in scheduling orders and making needed changes to orders in process.
“The feature I appreciate most about the ERP solution is that you can make it into whatever you want,” says Tom Delicati, Anchor Fabrication director of information technology. “It actually accommodates the way you do business whereas other ERP packages make you adapt to their features. This is especially important for us since we have five separate sister companies, which all do things a little bit differently.”
Stretches Across Multiple Locations
The ERP system in place at Anchor Fabrication operates as the backbone of the organization in providing everyone with access to needed and desired information, according to Delicati. This includes the flexibility offered by an onsite SQL server that instantaneously merges data augmented from the company’s own sources with the information generated by the ERP system.
With company-wide manufacturing and financial transactions rising from 180,000 in 2014 to more than 300,000 in 2016 due to expansions, the company can “seamlessly handle the extra work without the need to hire extra staff,” Delicati says.
For instance, one employee is still more than enough to process all accounts receivable invoices and the associated paperwork in about 4 to 5 hr./day despite the ever-increasing volume and demand, he offers.
Another ERP benefit noted by Delicati: Development of a customized intranet that leverages the ERP database and allows employees at all five companies to see complete customer histories and order details on “one concise set of tools that loads incredibly fast and is accessible anywhere,” he says.
On the production floor, employees now can view the priority order of jobs and their specifications onscreen instead of checking with supervisors, saving time and increasing daily job output. MF
Information for this article provided by Epicor Software Corp., Austin, TX; 800/999-1809, www.epicor.com.
See also: Epicor Software Corp.