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The future demand for IT in manufacturing

As the manufacturing industry is looking to boom in the near future, businesses within the sector will need to keep up with the expansion and rely on their IT system more than ever before. By having a more stable and robust system, it will allow manufacturers to increase their speed to market, quality and cost-effectiveness of their products as well as achieving greater flexibility and individualism – separating themselves from the competition.

 

‘The big data trend’

As any good marketing or sales guide will tell you – data is key! However, as more and more data is collected by the manufacturing industry, the need for a more reliable IT system is greater. The data will need to be stored on a secure and resilient system where they are able to abide by the new data protection laws (GDPR) as well as hold that amount of information without crashing their systems.

 

System Upgrades

As well as hitting this big data trend, we are also well into the digital revolution. Inevitably, that means there will be more manufacturers looking to upgrade their IT infrastructure for improved speed and productivity.

With an integrated MRP system, firms will be able to manage all aspects of their business in a more unified, constructive manner; from customer relationship management through to stock control and delivery, there are solutions available to provide them with the cost-effectiveness and flexibility they need.

Larger investments into a new IT system may seem daunting or costly but the impact across a manufacturing business could be more than just saving you time and money in the long run, it will increase productivity and efficiency.

The future of manufacturing growth heavily relies on IT and the impacts of technological advances are going to be more obvious to businesses within 2017 than ever before.

 

For further information or assistance, please contact Minster on 01562 68211 or email sales@minstermicro.co.uk

 

 

Made In The Midlands 2017 Exhibition – Will we see you there?

We’re now approaching exhibition season and following on from our success last year, you’ll see Minster exhibiting again this year as a Gold Partner at the Made In the Midlands Exhibition in May at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry.

The exhibition has been branded ‘Bigger, Better and Bolder’ to capture the wide scale growth of the event. This means there will be plenty of ideal networking opportunities with many local companies.  At the exhibition you can expect to see over 2,000 representatives of the Midlands manufacturing sector and a record-breaking 200 exhibition stands.

The Made in the Midlands 8th Exhibition is a full day event which brings together the very best of Midlands manufacturing & engineering services from across a wide variety of sectors, including Aerospace, Automotive, Rail, Marine, Medical and Oil & Gas.

The opportunities that come from the exhibition are ideal for businesses including a series of seminars hosted by our partners, on the day, focusing on a variety of topics which affect Midlands manufacturers.

It’s free to register so if you are interested in attending the Made in the Midlands exhibition in Coventry on the 25th May 2017 then please click here for more information: http://www.madeinthemidlands.com/content/expo

We’re very much looking forward to the event and would love for you to come and say hi to us – we’re on stand D25!

 

MRP Manufacturing – What Can It Do For You?

MRP ManufacturingManufacturing Resource Planning software is used to integrate inventory control and production planning – to manage all aspects of manufacturing efficiently. When managing your business it is important to keep costs low and efficiencies high which is where an MRP system may just become your new saviour!

The three main objectives of MRP Systems are;

To ensure materials are in stock for production and products are available for delivery to customers,

To ensure the lowest possible material and product levels are maintained,

To plan manufacturing activities, delivery schedules and purchasing activities effectively.

How could an MRP System benefit you?

MRP Systems are designed to make business operations smooth and efficient which allows the business an economic advantage. The system does this by planning and scheduling production operations which reduces money spent on waste materials, as this is a struggle for some manufacturers. Planning production also helps to see the number of finished goods for the future to improve planning of sales. The lowest material and product levels need to be maintained for warehouse storage and cash flow implications. Daily schedules and manufacturing activities need to be planned so the manufacturing of a product goes smoothly to ensure there are no complications which could impact on the production of the product and the delivery of the product to the customer.

It is important for a business to control the types and quantities of materials they purchase, products that will be produced and the quantities in which they will be produced. This is to ensure the business continues to meet customer demand at current and in the future, at the lowest possible cost. An MRP system would help to control this and would create reports on financial status and areas in which the business could improve on.

Why would an MRP System benefit your customers?

An MRP system will improve shipping performance to ensure goods are delivered to the customers at the correct time.  It will also reduce the amount of late orders, create higher levels of productivity and helps the company adjust to changes in demand quickly; greatly improving customer service.

Overall, an MRP system is a great way not only to stay organised, but to also save time and money. All aspects of the business will integrate into a successful management solution with many benefits to the business.


If you’d like to find out more information, take a look at the popular SAP Business One or contact us on 01562 68211 or email us at sales@minstermicro.co.uk

Autumn 2015 Newsletter Is Out NOW!

The latest edition (Issue 8) of the Minster Focus newsletter has been released!

Autumn Highlights Include: Meet Minster’s new rising stars – Junior Technician apprentices Rheece, Alex and Esmee as well as our undergraduate Ryan! We’ve also been spotted in the press with our manufacturing lunch and outstanding work with our customer!

Click here to read Minster’s Autumn newsletter

Rheece, Alex & Esmee

Apprentices Rheece, Alex & Esmee

Midlands Manufacturers Still Seeing Growth Despite Loss of PMI Momentum

Despite UK productivity appearing to be lagging behind most of the G7 countries last quarter and capital investment in the manufacturing sector slumping 24% below pre-crisis trends, Midlands manufacturing is still seeing trend bucking growth. 5

The Made in the Midlands industry forum met at Minster Micro in Kidderminster this month to check on the health of the sector in the Midlands with some of its members. “We’re still seeing our customers experiencing almost unprecedented growth as they continue to win orders they can’t turn down” commented Susan Marlow, Financial Director at Minster. “We hosted the forum to gain insight into the story behind the success of the ‘Midlands engine’ to get a steer on how firms in the region are strategising.”

For some, it seems breaking away from short term parts sales into more of a service mindset which seems to have been one such strategy for Intec Laser. Head of Sales & Marketing David Wheatley said; “More and more customers are looking for a complete solution, not just part of a process – our response is to handle the whole network supply chain on behalf of the customer and as a result our group have just had the best three months in our history”. The story is similar for Cannock based Aluminium Ingot Manufacturers Norton Aluminium; “We’re seeing production tonnage up by 30% this year, our USP remains the high quality of material that we’re able to produce, as a smaller proportion of our market requires such high quality material we are looking at a huge diversification strategy to capitalise” commented Norton Aluminium Managing Director Andrew Fogarty.

The past 24 months for one participant has been particularly ground breaking as Rugby based Assembled Electronics Solutions has managed to double its turnover through product innovation culminating in the launch of a new division launched this year. “Electronics go into everything and we feel we could collaborate with most firms in this forum – our company growth is very exciting – a lot of the opportunities lie around ‘the internet of things’ in industry. We realised an electronics company shouldn’t be selling into other electronics companies, but finding problems in other sectors with an electronics based solution – we’re particularly interested in creating mandated technology where customers would simply have to buy AES” said Managing Director Nigel Maris.

Minster’s MD Nick Marlow

Technology has certainly been a game changer for solving customer problems and the power of communication through the internet was echoed by sentiments of Minster’s Managing Director Nick Marlow; “We had an instance last week where we telephoned a customer to inform him his factory computer system was about to fail and we had a team with him on site before anything went wrong. He was really impressed as this meant that he didn’t lose any down-time and therefore there was no financial impact on his business”.

The Made in the Midlands forum rotates around member premises and positions company owners and managers into an environment where they can share market intel and best practice. “Research from Birmingham City University this year showed that manufacturing and engineering is behind half of the region’s economic output, so it is no surprise to see our firms yet again riding above the national trends and softening we’ve seen in 2015 reflected in the latest PMI data” commented Made in the Midlands Chief Operating Officer, Charles Addison.”

Minster Micro Delivers Comms For Leading Midlands Manufacturer Boss Design

The talents of Kidderminster based IT solutions provider, Minster Micro Computers, have been enlisted to support the UK’s seating industry market leader, Boss Design. From Boss Design’s HQ in Dudley, West Midlands, the Group has most recently acquired a US based manufacturer. Enjoying a prestigious client base which includes many high profile and international blue-chip […]

Minster @ Made In The Midlands Expo!

With over 1,200 tickets sold and over 125 exhibitors, it’s safe to say that this years’ Made in the Midlands exhibition was one of the most successful for everyone involved.

Minster had a really great day exhibiting as a Gold member for MIM’s 2015 expo and met some fantastic, local and like-minded companies to discuss business with. We found it an excellent opportunity to network with many different businesses and also catch up on the latest trends and news within the manufacturing industry.

As around 60% of our customers are in the manufacturing sector, it was an excellent platform for us to showcase our products and discuss with other exhibitors the challenges that we have helped our clients in the same sector overcome.

At this exhibition we decided to do something a little different for our competition and decided to give-away a money tree. We felt that a money plant would be more fitting at this exhibition than any other as it’s a symbol of both growth and prosperity – something that the manufacturing industry is enjoying in this climate. The draw was made by one of the Made in the Midlands team, Sophie Whittingham.  The lucky business card that was picked out belonged to one of the lovely ladies from the Paycare stand. She was overjoyed to have won and we are confident it has gone to a really great home.

PaycareTweet&Pics

Apart from the fantastic networking opportunity and competition fun, Minster also managed to catch up with some great companies we have met at previous events as well as some of our own customers. Our director, Susan Marlow, also had chance to have a chat with local UKIP MEP James Carver .

MIM Event

Alongside all this, Minster also took the opportunity to talk with many of the local universities and training consultancies about our current recruitment drive and our concerns over the skills gap facing businesses in the Midlands.

All in all the Made in the Midlands exhibition was a fantastic event that we are proud to say we were a part of. We would like to congratulate the MIM team on their efforts in organising a fantastic day. We hope you all had a really successful exhibition as much as we did. Already looking forward to MIM Expo 2016…!

Made In The Midlands 2015 Exhibition

As you may be aware, exhibition season is well underway and Minster have been taking the opportunity to attend and exhibit at as many as possible in order to meet local, well-established companies.Minster Team At Exhibition

In less than a week (Thursday 14th May 2015) we will be exhibiting at the Made in the Midlands exhibition where we are a Gold Partner. Whilst you have to be a member of Made in the Midlands to exhibit, other companies can register to attend the event.

The 2015 exhibition is set to be MIMs (Made In The Midlands) biggest and best yet with a brand new location hosting over 150 of our members exhibiting and an expected 1,000 visitors.

The Made in the Midlands Exhibition is a full day event which brings together the very best of Midlands manufacturing & engineering services from across a wide variety of sectors, including Aerospace, Automotive, Rail, Marine, Medical and Oil & Gas.

MIMs annual exhibition provides the ideal platform for networking with a view to doing more business and meeting like-minded companies from across the Midlands region.

The day will also include a series of seminars hosted by our partners on a host of topics which affect Midlands manufacturers.

Again, we are very excited to be exhibiting at this event and would love to see you there!

If you are interested in attending the Made in the Midlands exhibition in Wolverhampton next week (Thursday 14th May), then please register for your tickets at: http://www.madeinthemidlands.com/events/15690601010

*Tickets are available at no cost to Manufacturers and members of Made in the Midlands, please see the Made In The Midlands website for further details.

Minster joins Business Secretary at Westminster

On Tuesday 3rd February, Susan Marlow (Director at Minster) joined a Made in the Midlands (MIM) delegation to meet Secretary of State for Business, Vince Cable, at the Houses of Parliament.

Minster & Made In The Midlands with Vince Cable & Lorely Burt

Minster & Made In The Midlands with Vince Cable & Lorely Burt

In all, over thirty Midlands businesses made the trip to Westminster, taking the opportunity to put forward their points of view, and to impress on the Business Secretary how much the UK economy benefits from Midlands businesses. Following a group tour of Westminster, they joined Vince Cable and MP for Solihull, Lorely Burt, for an informal lunch.

 After her experience, Susan went through a Q & A with EvoPr discussing reasons she attended this meeting and how she felt the opportunity has made an impact:

 Q:      Why did you attend the MIM meeting with Business Secretary Vince Cable?

Because it seemed like a fantastic opportunity to meet such an influential MP and to bring to his attention the good work that Midlands businesses are doing for our country.

Q:        What was it like visiting the heart of Government?

It was nothing like I imagined – the inside of Westminster Palace is vast and extremely beautiful. I learned an awful lot about how our government works which is actually really helpful as a business owner; I’d thoroughly recommend everyone to visit and take a tour as it’s open and available to all of us.

Q:        What questions did you ask?

Sadly time ran over so we didn’t get the chance to ask individual questions, but I did meet Vince Cable briefly and he asked about me and my business and what we did. I explained that Minster works with a range of Midlands manufacturers and businesses by providing IT and software support to enable them to enjoy greater business efficiency. He was generous in his comments stating the Government needed to support more women in business and entrepreneurs such as me.

Q:        What did you gain from the trip and were your expectations met?

I went with an open mind as I didn’t quite know what to expect. I came away feeling much more appreciative of the job MPs do and why it’s so important that we all make contact with our local MPs; if businesses don’t engage and express what’s important to industry, then we can’t expect them to know. As a business owner I feel empowered by this experience.

Q:        How important is it that the Business Secretary meets and listens to business owners such as Minster?

Extremely important and this meeting was very useful. Both Vince Cable and Lorely Burt made it clear that the Government needed to continue to aid manufacturers by developing more schemes to fill the skills gap than those already in place. They appreciated the importance of our region and why regeneration of the UK economy is coming from the Midlands – firms like JLR and Aston Martin are really driving and supporting manufacturers within the region, and they recognised that we need to find ways to bring business back to the UK.

Q:        As an organised group, what was your stand out memory?

It was really refreshing to talk with other like-minded people who care passionately about their businesses and the future of our region – the energy was infectious and it felt fantastic to be involved with such a positive organisation as MIM.

Q:        Any surprises?

I didn’t expect to have the opportunity to sit in on a Commons debate which was organised by MIM and allowed me entry in to the Strangers Gallery in the House of Commons for 15 minutes to watch and listen to the MP’s as they debated; such an unexpected surprise!

Q:        Any disappointments?

I would have liked to have had more time with the MPs and to have a more formal Q and A session, but the MP’s presentations were very impressive and informative, although I would have liked it to have been more interactive and inclusive of the delegates.

Q:        Would you do it again and if so, why?

I would definitely do it again. It was extremely useful and having the opportunity to talk with other Midlands business people about their businesses was very refreshing, adding value to my existing knowledge and understanding of Midlands manufacturing.

 

Fantastic Networking At Minster with Made In The Midlands

As part of our membership with Made in the Midlands, we were given the opportunity to host the first breakfast networking event of 2015.

Made In The Midlands Breakfast Event

The event was held at our offices in Kidderminster and 15 manufacturing companies joined us. All were given the chance to do a 60 second pitch, giving them the opportunity to introduce themselves, the company they are representing and what they are hoping to get out of both Made in the Midlands and the meeting itself.

60 Second Pitches

This key networking event was the perfect occasion for both new and old members to come together, discuss the industry as well as give advice and support in regards to any issues that they can relate to.

As it was our first event with Made in the Midlands, we were keen to find out how the attendees found the morning. We found that all of the anonymous responses from our survey were positive, with people commenting on the great location with relaxed atmosphere. One individual response came with an added comment:

‘The Minster team came across as a lovely, warm group of people ‘.

We were very proud to host this successful event and are keen to plan others this year. Watch this space!