Ed Deaton

Ed Deaton

CIMx Software Marketing Director

Recent Posts

June 11, 2019 at 10:00 AM

Why Manufacturing Will Never Live in the Cloud

You wouldn’t allow your competitors to walk your floor and rifle through your files, so why allow strangers to access your data by placing it in the cloud?

Last week SalesForce, one of the most widely-used CRMs on the planet, inadvertently opened access to its Pardot repository leading to a full shutdown. This locked out thousands of users, for more than 15 hours. Not only did this failure result in private data being made available to the rest of the user base, it meant sales teams around the world were hamstrung from doing their job for multiple days.

The amount of potential revenue that was lost is incalculable, but many businesses feel so locked into their contracts and sales processes that they wouldn’t dream of moving onto a new platform. Mistakes happen and Salesforce will learn from this glitch making it even stronger moving forward… right?

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April 16, 2019 at 4:00 PM

Assembling Your Production System Project Team - The Calibrator

Part 6  |  The Calibrator 

Now that you’ve found your Visionary, Connector, Implementer and Definer you’re nearly ready to start your project. What your team still lacks is the person responsible for external research and communication. They know where to go, which questions to ask and have the resources and diligence to get the job done.

This week we discuss the Calibrator.

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April 9, 2019 at 11:00 AM

Assembling Your Production System Project Team - The Definer

Part 5  |  The Definer 

The surest way to take the wind out of the sails of a project is to realize a requirement has been misinterpreted by your key decision makers. If the confusion relates to a key piece of the project, it can set work back months, hold up go-live and create rifts between departments. The only way to avoid this devastating scenario is to assign ownership over the recording and defining of those critical points to a single member of your team.

This week we discuss the Definer.

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April 2, 2019 at 10:54 AM

Assembling Your Production System Project Team - The Implementer

Part 4  |  The Implementer 

To follow through on a successful selection and implementation of your next production control system, you need to assemble the right team with the right skill set. Some roles require social or political acumen, others require an understanding of process or corporate structure. You may even find multiple qualified candidates on your staff to fill those roles well. In the case of this absolutely critical team member however, our mantra of “talent over title” is more relevant than ever. 

This week we discuss the Implementer.

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March 26, 2019 at 11:00 AM

Assembling Your Production System Project Team - The Connector

Part 3  |  The Connector 

In addition to the steadfast guidance of your Visionary, your team needs a lead to be the hub through which information flows. They will be responsible for understanding the mission laid out by the Visionary and communicating the independent requirements of the various departments involved in the project. Without a dedicated team member receiving and translating those requirements, your project runs the risk of late additions that create conflicts with established functionality.

This week we discuss the Connector.

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March 19, 2019 at 1:30 PM

Assembling Your Production System Project Team - The Visionary

Part 2  |  The Visionary 

The first step in any successful manufacturing system project is to assemble the right people around the table. As we discussed in “Assembling Your Production System Project Team”, it’s more important that you focus on talents than titles. Throughout March we will be focusing on the specific roles that will make up your team and ultimately propel your project to success.

This week we discuss the Visionary.

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February 26, 2019 at 11:00 AM

Why Other People Quitting Their Jobs Matters to You

The Workforce is Changing. Are You Ready?

The latest jobs reports have come in and the findings have an impact on how you hire, how you invest in your current team and how you plan for your future.

Wage growth has increased over the past 12 months, the average earnings increasing to $27.48 and, even though manufacturing jobs grew by 32,000 in January, the ISM (Institute for Supply Management) index dropped by 5% in December. This shift illustrates a lack of confidence in the coming months for manufacturers across industries [Schneider NPR, 2019].

Today's blog focuses on what the changes in the economy mean for your business and how production systems like Quantum help you keep your most valuable Operators engaged in the face of difficult trends.

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February 19, 2019 at 9:00 AM

The 5 Critical Requirements When Researching Production Control Systems

Which ERPs Can Manage Production? | Part 2 of 2

In part 2 of our ERP for production series, we cover the critical factors to understand when researching production systems. To learn more about requirements based on your size revisit Part 1 where we discuss the difference between “Growing” and “Influencer” sized manufacturing needs.

Regardless of size, every manufacturer needs to keep these 5 factors in mind when selecting their next production control system:

  • Demand clear upfront pricing (including implementation and customization)
  • Request a live demo
  • Never fall in love with gimmicks
  • Know your shop’s needs
  • There is no such thing as simple production 
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February 12, 2019 at 4:17 PM

What the Size of Your Shop Says about Your Production Needs

Which ERPs Can Manage Production? | Part 1 of 2

I’m going to save you some time and get straight to the point; there are really only 4 ERPs that are designed to manage any element of live production.

If you’re a smaller shop (5-15 Operators) then Shoptech or JobBoss are potential fits. They’re inexpensive (comparatively) but offer limited functionality without expensive customization and are restrictive to growth.

If you’re a larger manufacturer (300+ Operators) then reaching out to systems like INFOR or IQMS are a good place to start, but expect a long install and high cost of entry.

*Note: For shops between 75-300 Operators, there are answers. Just not in the form of an ERP.

Here’s the catch.

Unless you already have these ERPs implemented you’re looking at 3 years (minimum) to rip out your existing system and replace it with the new ERP just to get to the functionality that these systems consider secondary to their front-office tools.

ERPs were designed for the financial, HR and ordering segments of your business, so the production functionality has likely only been bolted on to their product in the past 5-10 years.

So let’s refine the question. It isn’t, “which ERPs can manage production?” but rather, “which system is the right fit for my shop?”. 

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February 2, 2019 at 3:00 PM

How am I going to pay for shop floor improvements?

Federal Award Programs Designed for U.S. Manufacturers

You are too busy to surf through the internet hunting down government grants. Production is backing up, you had another experienced Operator retire that needs replaced and your calendar is booked with meetings of people trying to convince you to drive your prices down even lower just to compete with overseas competition. 

The stress of just keeping a small manufacturing business afloat is overwhelming.

If these are your reasons for not seeking federal funding, then you’re exactly the kind of plant the government’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) was created to support.

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December 18, 2018 at 8:51 AM

Where Can I Find Qualified Operators?

Increasing Production Without Increasing Hiring

In 1987, manufacturing jobs made up 33% of all employment in the United States. Today, those numbers have plummeted to 8% (Pew Research Labs, July 2017).

Our Experts speak with manufacturers all around the country and we've heard the same thing from every state. The common refrain is an inability to find enough people qualified to do the work. This leads to skyrocketing salaries, overtime bloat, and the ultimate frustration of being forced to turn away work due to a lack of resources or an inability to meet the customer’s tight deadline.

So where do you find the right people to increase productivity? On your own shop floor.

You don't need to lower your standards just to bring on under-qualified Operators, you need to give your existing team everything they need to succeed with your current workforce.

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September 26, 2018 at 9:00 AM

The Truth about Production Scheduling Software – 2018 Edition

The majority of manufacturers schedule their daily work one of two ways: color-coded spreadsheets or magnets on dry erase boards. It isn’t ideal, but it’s cheap and, more often than not, it gets the job done.

However, as shops grow and Orders become more numerous and complex, manual scheduling becomes more of a guessing game than a science. Our team of manufacturing system experts has examined the functionality you need to know about, and the marketing-speak to avoid, when researching the right Scheduler for your shop.

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August 28, 2018 at 3:32 PM

Manufacturing Has Changed - Why Haven't you?

Walk onto any shop floor in America and ask an Operator to tell you about all of the ways their job has changed since their first day in manufacturing.

Whether they’ve spent their entire life on a shop floor or it’s their first week on the job, a common theme will emerge: manufacturing is all about change. 

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August 17, 2018 at 9:50 AM

The Margin Wars

How to Succeed in Global Manufacturing

Let’s be frank, most of your customers can’t tell the difference between your plant and the next job shop on their vendor list. You may have the best machinery, the most skilled operators and a spotless reputation, but all they really care about are the big three: quality, turnaround-time and price.

It’s frustrating, illogical and unfair; but it’s the world we sell in.

To stay competitive in manufacturing your shop needs to become the go-to supplier for every run. This means guaranteeing delivery dates, eliminating turnbacks and producing the same work with fewer resources than your competitors.

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August 9, 2018 at 2:30 PM

Turning Manufacturing Audits into Profit

 Audits can either cost you money or make you money. The choice is yours.

In the manufacturing industry, audits are the key factor in determining a company’s continued growth or imminent decline. Audits quantify the success of your team’s efforts by ensuring your shop is up to snuff in every stage of production.

However, the stress and time invested into filing frequent audits can weigh on your team, slowing down production and negatively impacting your bottom line.

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