Smart Manufacturing Blog

Welcome to the official Smart Manufacturing Blog. Gain access to the experiences of smart manufacturers that make the world's most awesome products, and insights into cloud-based MES, ERP, Supply Chain Management, Industrial IoT (IIoT), and Analytics solutions.


Exciting Announcement

Rockwell Automation Has Acquired Plex Systems

Modern Manufacturing

Plex Manufacturing Blog

IoT Traceability Software Eliminates Surprises in Manufacturing

Plex Team January 18, 2022

Many people love surprises. On birthdays, anniversaries, or holidays, they can be fun. But in manufacturing environments, not so much. Surprises here can mean missed deliveries, damaged or spoiled materials, compromised brand reputation, and even dangerous recalls. For many years, traceability within manufacturing was plagued by the same problems encountered by any analysis. Siloed data,…

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5 Steps for Improving Your Product Quality

Plex Team January 4, 2022

Everyone knows that poor quality can cause headaches that ripple throughout an organization, but not every manufacturer approaches (or even defines) quality the same way. Quality improvement strategies are as old as manufacturing itself, and yet achieving success in this area continues to be a challenge for many in the industry. Done right, and your quality concerns will be reduced to a minimal…

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Inventory Valuation Methods – Which One Works for You?

Plex Team December 21, 2021

If you don’t know what you’ve got, you don’t know what you can make. While simple, this statement sums up the importance of inventory accounting in any business. But the value of inventory is just as significant. While accurate unit counts mean actual performance will match the production schedule, inventory valuation affects many areas within the company....

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The Last Mile in Your Quality Journey: Building a Quality Culture for Continuous Improvement (Part 3 of 3)

Reid Paquin December 15, 2021

This is the third and final blog in a series focused on quality management. The first two blogs covered the importance of digitized quality processes and extending quality beyond a manufacturer's four walls. The third and final step I want to cover is the natural progression in Quality: the importance of building a quality culture or mindset across the enterprise....

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The Role of Quality Assurance in Manufacturing

Plex Team December 7, 2021

What’s your quality management system like? It’s a simple question, but the answer can be complicated. Most manufacturers say they have a system in place, but what does that really entail? After all, some quality systems are based on manual, rudimentary processes while others leverage automated, cutting-edge innovations. Regardless of the level of sophistication, any quality management system…

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Progressing Down Your Quality Journey: Extending Quality Management into the Supply Chain (Part 2 of 3)

Reid Paquin December 7, 2021

Last week I discussed the importance of starting out your quality journey by eliminating manual processes and embracing digitization. For the second blog in this three-part series, let's look at a natural next step for progression that many manufacturers are taking — extending their quality approach beyond their "four walls" and into the supply chain....

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Starting Down Your Quality Journey: The Importance of Digitized Quality Processes (Part 1 of 3)

Reid Paquin November 30, 2021

Quality management is certainly not a new topic for manufacturers; however, the importance of it has never been stronger. This is the first blog of a three-part series focused on quality management and how manufacturers should approach their quality journey. First, it’s important to understand the current manufacturing environment....

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How the Efficiency of Inventory Management Affects Your Company

Plex Team November 23, 2021

The efficiency of inventory management is crucial to any business. For retailers, accurate inventory means finished goods ready to sell. But for manufacturing companies, warehouse capacity for raw materials and finished goods must be balanced like bookends to ensure that production can take place on time and on schedule....

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The Importance of Quality Control in Manufacturing

Plex Team November 9, 2021

Few things worry manufacturing managers more than quality. When quality control is on track, it improves efficiency and cost, and let’s face it; it means far fewer headaches. But when things go awry, quality issues can drive up material and labor costs, threaten margins, and result in missed orders....

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Periodic vs. Perpetual Inventory: What’s the Difference?

Plex Team October 26, 2021

Get this - U.S. businesses carried $2,069.5 billion of inventory through July of 2021. That’s a 16.3% compared to 2020 when inventories were depleted during the early days of COVID. Further, business-to-sales ratio for inventory is 1.25, the lowest point since 2012 and reflective of the boom caused by pent-up demand....

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