Manufacturing processes are becoming more intricate, from inbound materials to tracking details. This necessitates informed decision-making based on accurate information by using business intelligence solutions. Leading companies have been utilizing meaningful insights from data to create data-driven stories, and this allows end users to consume data easily and make informed decisions.
The manufacturing sector generates a large amount of data, so BI software (such as Microsoft Power BI) is an ideal fit. BI software can assess and identify inefficiencies in your operations while streamlining workflows by processing large amounts of digital information and creating easy-to-read reports.
Analytics is becoming more widely adopted among process manufacturing companies, with the market projected to grow from $8.6 billion in 2021 to $27.6 billion by 2027 at an annual compound growth rate of 21.4%. Furthermore, 76% of manufacturing businesses have already adopted artificial intelligence-driven robust solutions such as manufacturing analytics since 2021 - up from just the previous quarter.

Distinguish between ERP systems and business intelligence software

Before we continue, let's not forget that business intelligence software is distinct from an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system you may already possess.
ERP platforms provide a solution to break away from data silos. They create one centralized data architecture to store, manage, and collect digital information. You can integrate data from accounting software, CRM platforms, and supply chain monitoring solutions into this comprehensive strategy for improved data quality and insight.
Business intelligence platforms, however, analyze all data, anticipate future patterns, and create dashboards for easy interpretation of manufacturing insights.
ERP tools collect enterprise data, while business intelligence software analyzes it and can make predictions about future business performance. ERP systems integrate information from various departments, while BI tools present this combined digital information so company leaders can quickly make informed decisions.

Real-world use cases of business intelligence in manufacturing

Enhancing facility efficiency

Analytics tools are an indispensable resource for judging and enhancing efficiency. Managers should utilize BI first to establish a baseline performance level, identify problems, then assess how changes over time affect employee outputs individually and collectively. It provides invaluable insight into employee productivity levels.
Manufacturers use business intelligence to enhance their quality control efforts. BI can analyze metrics like yield percentage, process uptime, and capacity utilization to predict assembly line failures due to ineffective quality control by analyzing the line's end results and returns. This predictive analytics component of BI enables corrections before costly recalls or discards occur - helping protect a company's reputation in the process.
There are many BI-related metrics that can be used to detect inefficiencies within a manufacturing environment. BI can even help businesses determine optimal warehouse configurations, helping them save money and ensure efficient operations. A manufacturer might track how far workers must travel within the warehouse to retrieve materials; using analytic solutions, managers could decide if the material should be moved closer to workers to reduce transit times and delays or if another aspect of their process should change. Manufacturing teams will gain deeper insight into different actions and uncover new strategies based on this interconnectedness.

Predictive maintenance and fault prediction

Manufacturing has relied on preventive maintenance for decades. Manufacturing BI can be utilized to avoid unplanned breakdowns, with prescriptive analytical dashboards offering even greater insight. With predictive maintenance, technicians can anticipate when a breakdown will happen and how likely it is. By making repairs when convenient, technicians also save time ordering spare parts ahead of time which reduces downtime and boosts productivity.

Robotization – AI-powered tools

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is powered by data from manufacturing analytics. This information is then converted into instructions using AI algorithms and used to identify potential opportunities for automating or robotically altering a factory, helping executives decide where best to begin and ensuring the most valuable business processes are automated first.
The 'Food & Beverage' and 'Oil & Gas industries often have many intricate processes that could potentially be automated. Utilizing analytics for an informed decision-making process will enable leaders to implement RPA successfully.

Revenue growth and cost reductions

Managers of manufacturing rings should assess whether they possess the data necessary to accurately gauge the financial consequences of their decisions. Business intelligence (BI) provides valuable business insights that demonstrate how changes in inventory, processes, and financial outcomes are connected.
Business intelligence is perfect for illustrating profitability and risk profiles, such as the potential rewards or risks of introducing an intricate (but profitable) product range. By easily calculating overhead costs like inventory turns and dollars-per-unit before expanding operations, manufacturers can achieve economies of scale. Managers are able to keep an eye on competition using BI data like retention penetration rates, customer acquisition metrics, and market share.
Manufacturing is no different; profit margins are the foundation of every successful business. Business intelligence tools enable you to delineate the profit contributions from each manufacturing segment and customer. Furthermore, data about the overall margin spread provides a comprehensive picture of profitability.

The supply chain refinement

Factories still struggle with broken supply chains, which can cause delays or damage to shipments and raw materials. With advanced analytics, factories gain visibility into their entire supply chain so they can better assess risks due to adverse weather or traffic issues, measure supplier reliability cost-effectively, negotiate more advantageous contracts, and track shipments from suppliers through the customer to identify any problems in the chain. This provides them with valuable insights for making informed business decisions and optimizing processes.
Food and beverage factories must take special care with their supply chains, which are often long with components that must be kept at specific temperatures or environments. Delays in shipment or prolonged exposure to sunshine, dampness, or cold can cause damage and/or pose a health hazard. Factory owners are kept informed via manufacturing analytical tools when raw materials arrive late so they can find alternative suppliers or switch up their current provider.

Enhancing internal and external communications

Advanced business intelligence software tools like Power BI that integrate multiple data sources are able to anticipate problems before they happen, so manufacturers can adjust as necessary. Monitoring the entire supply chain is possible with BI tools; this information can be instantly relayed to partners or suppliers so they can adjust their processes or expectations. This results in a more efficient and intelligent business, offering greater transparency that's essential for healthy working relationships.
Manufacturing managers who want to take a customer-centric approach must identify the appropriate business metrics related to client satisfaction. Business intelligence (BI) is essential for measuring both internal and external processes; it can tell them if a client is contented with delivery quality, speed of service, or any issues encountered.

Achieving operational efficiency

Finally, manufacturing business intelligence dashboard tools can significantly boost overall equipment efficiency (OEE) in a process manufacturing factory. Factory managers can easily assess the effects of minor issues or inefficiencies across their entire operation and take swift action to correct them.
OEE is achieved by optimizing maintenance schedules and reducing downtime, which in turn improves product quality. Cement companies can benefit from manufacturing analytics to reduce their costs through more energy-efficient systems that use less waste and have longer machine lifecycles - ultimately leading to improved product quality and greater customer satisfaction.

Manufacturing business intelligence (BI) can assist you in building a more profitable factory.

The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and Industry 4.0 are driving digital transformation within manufacturing. Visual analytics generated from real-time production data is being utilized by manufacturing organizations to propel this transformation within the entire company.
Machines and industrial equipment connected to sensors and edge devices generate vast amounts of data, which is sent off-site for cloud-based analytics platforms. These cloud solutions can offer actionable insights, facilitate effective decision-making, and result in significant process enhancements.
Factory owners would be wise to embrace manufacturing business intelligence. There are numerous applications where it can be beneficial.
Reach out to a member to discover how Advaiya can implement modern business applications to enhance your manufacturing business operations.

Vikram Jain

Vikram is a technology enthusiast and he believes a good cup of coffee makes everything better. He has got extensive experience in designing and developing information systems and managing business processes and projects in hyper growth companies. He has worked with organizations in consulting, and manufacturing sectors where he has held responsibilities in security, assurance and quality management systems.

Vikram joined Advaiya in 2007 as a Senior Principal bringing in world-class strategies and practical experience in establishing successful business. His chase for excellence, passion for technology and commitment towards customer satisfaction are the driving forces behind his career in Advaiya.

Trained and Certified Six Sigma black-belt, Certified Amazon Associate Architect and Microsoft Certified Professional, Vikram is currently pursuing his interests in nexus of forces including Cloud, Mobile, Social, Enterprise Architecture and emerging technologies. He attended Maharshi Dayanand Sarswati University, where he received his MBA in Marketing and Finance.

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