It’s not often that you find a manufacturing company that has its own software development staff. Most companies regard their I.T. department as a cost center. That’s not the case at Precision Strip – our I.T. department is recognized as a value-add! Our department is instrumental in responding to our customer’s requests quickly and effectively. We are quite proud of the innovative and creative solutions that have been designed, engineered, and implemented at Precision Strip.
Our core ERP was custom built at Precision Strip which provides us with the unique opportunity to be able to quickly adapt to our customers business needs. Our I.T. staff is often included early on to help develop solutions to issues that our customers cannot resolve on their own.
We tailor our software to collect and report on information that our customers are interested in knowing about their inventory. For instance if a customer wants their tag or cert to report in metric or show a certain order number or metal type that they need for their next process, our CSR can use our software to configure their account to create the tag or report exactly how they want it. We can capture how much oil is being applied to our customer’s coil and show them a chart of the distribution of that oil or share with them the tensile, yield, elongation or clad values that we have taken. If our customer wants their invoice broken by shipment and order number and sent on a Tuesday – just ask! We can do that!
Who likes to perform data entry into their system? We don’t and we know that our customers don’t either. Our extensive electronic data interchange (EDI) offering allows us to provide our customers files of data that can be uploaded into their system at various points of our process. With this information our customers can maintain a side by side inventory of what is happening at Precision Strip with their coils. Within five minutes of applying a hold for instance, a transaction file is created for our customer’s system. When they upload it they will not only know of the hold, they will know reason the material was held.
If we receive advanced shipping notices, our system will automatically receive coils into our system as soon as the material handler on the dock scans the coil. This can then alert a customer that their material has physically arrived within minutes of it being onsite. We can send and receive many transactions that trigger or report activity from receipt to production and all the way through shipment.
Many customers have partnered with us when they are developing new transactions or are new to EDI to leverage our 35+ years of experience. We process approximately 3.3 million EDI transactions a year or 450 transactions an hour. We offer a hosted FTP environment for exchanging transactions, or we can drop off and pick up EDI on a customer hosted FTP site within 5-10 minutes of when the activity (receipt, processing, hold, shipment, etc.) occurred. This is what real-time looks like!
For our customers that do not have EDI systems in place, we offer the ability to log into our ERP from anywhere there is an internet connection. From there, they can check on the status of their inventory, run reports, confirm what has processed, shipped or will ship soon.
If they prefer, our software also has the ability to trigger emailed event notifications or reports when based on these and other activities. We have over 600 reports that can be scheduled to send on the date and at the time our customer prefers to receive them or when the event occurs.
Technology is used to monitor and track our fleet of Precision Strip trucks. Each truck has a tracking device installed in it that enables our dispatchers to be able to tell exactly where our truck is and when it will arrive at the customer site for delivery. This helps us to ensure that the material will arrive at the customer site on time. The tracking device will also let us know when the truck will arrive back at our site so that the material for our next shipment is processed and we are prepared to load it on our truck for the next delivery just as soon as the truck arrives back at the Precision Strip plant.
Many of our lines have machine level interface to our custom built ERP. What does that mean? Since we design our own processing lines, we can compare our customer’s specifications, stored in our system, against the state of the machine to ensure that we are processing to their specifications.
At each step of the process we require a Precision Strip associate to scan the coil identification to ensure that the correct coil is brought to the line, processed and shipped.
Whenever you visit Precision Strip you will notice that technology is at the center of everything we do. We are relentlessly investigating and deploying new technology at Precision Strip. We have touch screen inspection kiosks, Preventative Maintenance tablet apps and mobile apps for line operators and supervisors. Drivers delivering material to our locations will schedule appointments through our extranet and check-in via a touch screen kiosk upon arriving at Precision Strip. Our smart warehouse app determines the best location for the coil being delivered and automatically directs the driver to the best door for the delivery. We have developed a system to track safety and quality alerts and audits, and from there, identify training opportunities. We constantly strive to use technology to advance our productivity, quality and service.
Whether you are our customer or future associate, Precision Strip has a lot to be excited about regarding Information Technology!
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