In mid-2011, Corporacion POK S.A. de C.V., Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, an engineering firm offering metalcasting and machining solutions, transitioned from lot (or heat) traceability to individual serial number traceability to comply with the needs of some of its customers. Instead of migrating only some of the products to serial number traceability, the company opted to convert all part numbers to this type of tracking. Management saw it as the best way of tracing parts and trusted it would standardize criteria and deliver more precise information for quality and problem solving.
By early 2012, POK had an urgent need for a system capable of tracking the serial numbers throughout the entire manufacturing process and rendering automatic material certificates. Doing it through spreadsheets was consuming too much time and vulnerable to human mistakes.
While in the process of creating a tailor-made traceability system, POK discovered an already established system for the metalcasting industry that could execute the needed tracking and purchased the software in mid-2012.
The Implementation Plan
Implementing an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is a huge task for any size company, and mistakes in implementation can have costly consequences.
The main component of an accurate implementation plan is time; however, history has shown time frames in ERP implementation are likely to be broken. Understanding this before starting is important for the project leader (and whomever that person is reporting to) to avoid feeling frustrated and instead continue working toward the set goals.
POK designed an implementation plan after a week-long initial visit from the software provider. The objective of that visit was to get to know the company and understand the full capabilities of the software.