Full-Service Manufacturer Drives Quality, Innovation with Single-Source ERP
Innovation Driven Manufacturing
When it comes to thinking “out-of the bo,x” innovation has a home at Wisconsin Plastics, Inc. (WPI). From concept and design to distribution, WPI stands apart from its competition by delivering quality services with reliable precision. With five locations throughout the Green Bay, Wisconsin area, WPI provides prototyping, injection molding, metal stamping, powder-coat painting, assembly, heavy steel fabrication, warehousing and distribution. WPI’s full-service approach has allowed the company to grow to four divisions with more than 200 employees and over $25 million in sales annually.
Managing such a fast-paced, diverse manufacturing environment requires strategic control and visibility across WPI’s entire supply chain. However, in the past, WPI’s enterprise system failed to meet demand of the company’s four divisions: Modern Plastics which handles injection molding and final assembly; Modern Stamping and Painting for thin gauge metal stamping and custom fabrication; Modern Design and Development which brings raw ideas through concept to prototype; and Valley Plating and Fabrication for heavy metal products. All four divisions had similar accounting procedures, but varied in operations, inventory and supply needs.
Slow and cumbersome, WPI’s ERP system lacked the functionality the company required to win certification and grow its business to serve a broader range of customers. WPI sought a comprehensive solution that could manage future growth as well as meet its day-today needs, including single-system tracking to inform all departments of key activities and superior quality control to maintain rigorous standards. The new system also needed to be cost-effective, easy to maintain, accessible, and easy-to-use for everyone—from the shop floor to the board room and every step in between.
Immediate Results from a Single-Source Solution
WPI found IQMS, makers of the EnterpriseIQ system, to be the ideal fit. IQMS offers a comprehensive, single-source ERP software solution that delivers extensive management functionality previously available to WPI only through multiple vendor solutions. EnterpriseIQ
uses a single database solution powered by Oracle® for improved implementation, ease-of-use and efficient administration for manufacturing companies. WPI also liked that EnterpriseIQ is designed for those who use it most—employees. The system’s familiar Windows® environment and intuitive graphical interfaces are so simple to learn that training costs are typically a fraction of those accrued with other systems.
IQMS provided WPI with an integrated ERP package that supported the company’s design and development, production, accounting and customer service needs. After a brief training and hand-in-hand work with an IQMS implementation team, WPI saw immediate results.
“We wanted to move all divisions to one computer system,” said Marty Christensen, Director of Information Services at WPI. "EnterpriseIQ did that with an easy-to-use interface and interdependent activities that make tracking a one-click move. We’ve seen vast improvements in several departments.”
Now, instead of using both the computer and manual files to pay vendors, WPI’s accounts payable department can view purchase orders, track receiving data, check invoices and print checks – all on the same screen. Customer service representatives have access to plant floor operations and can review job status in real-time. Being able to immediately respond across its supply chain saves WPI time and money, enhancing customer and vendor relations.
EnterpriseIQ’s inventory management functionality gives WPI impressive accuracy, and has allowed the company to make substantial inventory management improvements as well as implement corrections before problems occur. To reduce inaccuracies and save valuable time, WPI made use of the EnterpriseIQ system’s cycle counting features, eliminating the company’s previous paper-based tracking system.
Better Management Through Enhanced Communication
EnterpriseIQ has also helped WPI better manage its quality standards. Once the system was implemented, two WPI divisions, Modern Plastics and Modern Stamping and Painting, were able to receive ISO certification. With EnterpriseIQ in place, WPI was able to take a systematic approach to meeting stringent ISO standards. The Quality Management System embedded in EnterpriseIQ increases WPI’s visibility and improves the company’s reaction time by pushing data to those who need it, all while using secure electronic signatures and approvals. EnterpriseIQ also automatically evaluates WPI’s workflow status and sends email notifications to both internal and external team members as needed to maintain the highest quality standards.
“EnterpriseIQ was invaluable in our ISO registration,” said John Senter, Quality Manager at WPI. “The manner in which EnterpriseIQ enabled us to inform each effected area of changes or notices, and document confirmation was integral to the audit. With EnterpriseIQ we were able to showcase all of the tools needed to supplement an excellent quality system such as corrective actions, audit findings, statistical process control, deviation/change control and document control, all in an organized, up-to-date, and easily accessible format. No doubt, IQMS will be key to maintaining our ISO compliance and moving forward through continuous improvement.”
Christensen agreed. “During the past several months, we’ve expanded EnterpriseIQ to manage all design and development projects as well as implement a preventative maintenance program,” he said. "EnterpriseIQ is intelligent innovation that delivers significant results for WPI. We just keep asking ourselves why we didn’t implement this system sooner.”