There are few professionals who could say that missing a deadline in a strictly controlled work schedule would end in disaster – the kind of disaster that could result with the end customer in hospital.
But as a food and beverage specialist this is your day-to-day reality.
And it is just one tough reality out of the myriad of food and beverage challenges that SYSPRO uncovered in an industry survey conducted alongside Demographica.
There is No Off Button
The findings paint a picture of individuals who operate in a high-speed environment where there is no off button. Because there are constantly orders coming in and out, there always needs to be someone available to process these requests.
Adding to the pace of this environment is the constant race against time. Because food and beverage professionals work with perishables, products can easily expire, become damaged or contaminated. The importance of timing cannot be emphasized enough.
Customer Demands are Relentless
There is simply no room to get comfortable. Customers are demanding, and very often unforgiving, meaning you constantly need to be innovating and bringing new ideas to the table in order to keep consumers excited about your products.
A Case of Constant Crisis Management
In fact, it quickly became clear, based on the findings from our survey, that the demands placed on food and beverage professionals are different to anyone else operating in the manufacturing industry.
Because managing food and drink products adds a much deeper layer of complexity throughout the entire supply chain process. When things happen, they happen in real time.
As one Application Manager pointed out the job might as well be crisis management. And to ensure everything runs smoothly, you likely rely heavily on your technology. Things are chaotic and food and beverage managers simply can’t be at multiple distribution centers all at once, so you use technology to monitor the situation on the ground.
Tech will play an Increasingly Important Part
In fact, increased focus on digitization was identified as a key trend in a recent global survey of 120 food and beverage industry leaders.
The survey which was carried out by IT specialist, CSB-System, indicated that continued pressure on pricing across the globe would likely result in necessary cost reductions. And to reduce costs without compromising the quality of the product, digitization would be looked to as the solution.
Not only did respondents see IT systems as critical to the reduction of costs, but also to the more effective management of complex operations.
Specialized Systems are Key
But, one important point, which became evident through our research into the local food and beverage industry was that it’s important for these systems to consider the differing complexities of each sector and company.
ERP solutions should not be generalized according to the size of a company, but rather according to the complexity of the business in question and the nature of the industry in which it operates.
Because the future success of a food and beverage business is so closely linked to the success of the ERP system it uses, companies need to invest in holistic ERP solutions rather than packaged products.
This is why SYSPRO has always placed such significant emphasis on where the future of ERP technology is headed and on developing its solutions accordingly.
In the midst of the day-to-day chaos you face, you need to know your ERP system is working for you and that you have the ability, not only to play the role of ‘crisis manager’, but also to find new ways of exciting your clients.