No matter how many things you manufacture, if the quality is poor or things are a little disorganised your business could stagnate. Whether you serve B2B clients or retail sectors, customers are free to choose between suppliers and brands. They won’t stay for long if manufacturers provide sub-standard, low quality products or even poor aftercare.
So how can your manufacturing enterprise improve its quality control procedures and keep standard high? This is a key question, particularly for businesses that are keen to expand their range or penetrate new markets.
Implementing enterprise-wide IT solutions is one way to improve quality over the long-term, and here are some of the reasons.
Easily Carry Out Quality Audits on Any Product
Quality control relies on physical audits to check that batches are being delivered without critical flaws, but many firms carry out these procedures haphazardly, at irregular intervals (if they carry them out at all). By setting up a schedule of audits for every product, manufacturers can ensure that their products are regularly assessed, and any flaws are identified. With the right IT systems in place, these actions can be automated, and the data they produce can be fed into advanced analytical systems to work out areas for improvement.
Seek Out Customer Feedback to Boost Quality
Nobody knows more about the quality of your products than your loyal customers, so obtain feedback from repeat customers and make them feel like valued members of your team at the same time. Clients will often be happy to offer their feedback if they value your products and want to see them improve, and any opinions should always be welcomed. This can also be automated, either fully or partially, via Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software, so take advantage of what is has to offer.
Create a Corporate Culture of Quality
To maintain quality, everyone has to be on board – not just managers. This means that when problems arise or new ideas emerge, they have to be cascaded down (or fed up) the hierarchy, and everyone needs to know where they stand. With Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, every single staff member can work from the same system so, data is always up-to-date, and all departments can work together to raise quality.
Invest in the Right Analytical Tools to Identify Quality Issues
If you have collected thousands of customer audits and tested the tensile strength of thousands of products, it is all useless without the ability to analyse it for insights. With ERP packages in place, managers can take that raw data and track changes, identifying if product sales are improving or decreasing. They can create detailed presentations for in-house and external use, and create tailored plans for every department based on the information.
Quality control is about more than sending regular newsletters to staff and encouraging them to work more effectively. It’s about creating a culture of success and traceability. ERP tools like WinMan are a great way to build the infrastructure that such a culture can be based on. The results will be higher quality products, happier clients and a more efficient firm.