Manufacturing transformed: Microsoft Dynamics 365 – Part 1

The future of manufacturing will be defined by the quality of investments companies are making today

In the not too distant past, efforts in manufacturing to optimise productivity and increase customer satisfaction were viewed as separate endeavours. Today, the convergence of physical and digital trends is disrupting these kinds of assumptions.

Manufacturers today care about integrated digital and physical systems, improved visibility, increased efficiency, additional flexibility, and lower costs. They want to connect equipment and factories, leveraging data from the factory floor to the customer call centre to improve every aspect of their operations.

The Microsoft vision for supporting digital manufacturing embraces the seismic shifts in the industry today. Microsoft has created solutions that provide a unified and flexible approach across front office and production floor processes. Their approach enables transformation in six ways.

Optimise supply chain operations through better visibility and collaboration.

By collecting, integrating, and visualising global supply chain data worldwide, manufacturers gain better visibility into their operations from production to sales. For example, one of the world’s largest industrial automation firms found that by automating the collection and analysis of data from remote installations across the petroleum supply chain, they strengthened their competitive advantage with a faster time to market. Improved access to supply chain data is also the basis for better collaboration across production, supply, service, and sales.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is Microsoft’s new approach to end-to-end intelligent business applications in the cloud. Dynamics 365 unifies ERP and CRM into one cloud service with new purpose-built apps to manage all your core business functions, including Sales, Customer Service, Finance, Field Service, Operations, Marketing and Project Service Automation.

Streamline the management of assets, products, and production.

With a consolidated view that unifies process oversight and provides real-time insight, manufacturers can institutionalise efficiency gains and use connected devices to monitor and resolve issues remotely. One leading manufacturer of industrial robots enabled 24-hour continuous uptime using this approach. The additional insights into production and customer usage also allow manufacturers to provide value-added services like ongoing monitoring and proactive support.

Engage customers in powerful new ways.

To deliver personalised and contextual engagement across any channel, manufacturers must provide customers with more visibility and build trust through fast and convenient responses. This engagement approach is built on a combination of predictive analytics, the ability to deliver value-added services at scale, and guided or self-directed service that’s relevant to customer needs. With the implementation of a connected platform for sales through service, a leading home technology manufacturer not only solved potential problems remotely before customers ever felt the impact, but provided custom differentiated offerings based on unique customer usage and purchasing history.

Look out for part two of this post where we look at three more ways Microsoft’s approach enables transformation in manufacturing.

For manufacturers, Microsoft Dynamics 365 ends the artificial divide between CRM and ERP systems and supplements necessary capabilities with rich analytics, embedded intelligence, and the convenience people expect from consumer apps on their phone or tablet. Dynamics 365 unites the front office and the back office with a single end-to-end system for managing every aspect of your business, at the pace and scale that’s right for you. Digital transformation isn’t accomplished overnight and leveraging current investments is a key component of any successful approach.

Source: Microsoft (Bill Moffett) https://community.dynamics.com/b/msftdynamicsblog/archive/2017/05/30/manufacturing-transformed-microsoft-dynamics-365

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