ERP systems at heart of steel firm's expansion

Greater use of enterprise resource planning software is helping Pressed Steel Products in County Durham to extend its product range and double its turnover.

Greater use of enterprise resource planning software is helping Pressed Steel Products in County Durham to extend its product range and double its turnover.

The manufacturer, which has grown from 10 to 30 employees since 1998, announced plans in May to increase its £3m turnover to between £5m and £6m by offering a wider selection of products.

Since Pressed Steel Products went live with an Epicor Vantage ERP system two years ago, the company has cut idle time by 25% and delivers 93% of orders on time.

Now the firm, which makes architectural facades, is making more use of the software’s customer relationship management capabilities to allow it to link with architects and become involved with customers earlier in the design stage of development.

“The system is now linking with the architects from the design stage and throughout the delivery, which will allow us to improve our cost estimations,” said Tamer Qaqish, IT manager at Pressed Steel Products.

The project to bring in ERP systems started in 2002, when the government-funded Knowledge Transfer Partnership scheme enabled Pressed Steel Products to work with Durham University to improve its business processes. Even as a shortlist of ERP suppliers was being drawn up, the company started to move to new business processes.

“The result was that the move to the new software was a really smooth transition,” Qaqish said.

“It is normally quite difficult for a small company with limited resources to manage the implementation of a new ERP system. But the implementation process itself can help all involved get a better understanding of fundamental business processes.”


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