When it comes to calculating profit margins in manufacturing sales, sales teams can only project a limited amount, especially with the time they are provided to create a quote. Yet, quoting has to be quick and accurate. This leads to a conundrum that can plague many manufacturers: how can you price your products or manufacturing services and take into consideration all the different factors, requirements, and profit margins that the business needs, while being fast and accurate?
Within the framework of manufacturing sales is a wide variety of sales processes, needs, and challenges. A contract manufacturer will have unique requirements when trying to close a sale that would differ greatly from a precision engineering company. Sales cycles can be long and drawn-out, or they can be a straightforward upsell opportunity which requires significantly less resources to craft.
There are many benefits to having multiple sites and sales regions: for enterprise manufacturing businesses, local sales offices and production sites make for lower costs and quicker time-to-quote.
However, the process of setting up sales offices and production sites in different countries and regions tends to create silo-ed factories and offices: most of them don’t find a need to be connected to other sites on a day to day basis, so they aren’t. Even when sites are in the same region, they may not be aware of each site’s activities, from productivity levels to sales activities.
Life-Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA), or Life-Cycle Costing (LCC), is a common concept in the world of procurement and manufacturing: It refers to the need to analyse all ‘costs of production, installation, usage and disposal, aiming at the minimum of the total cost’, as per a 1998 research paper, ‘Product Life Cycle Costing Applied to Manufacturing Systems’.
Instead of focusing on the cheapest cost price, LCC looks at a material’s entire life cycle (hence the term), and the need to include installation, operational, maintenance, and end-of-life costs to the overall buying cost of a material.
First things first, we are big fans of the Novus CPQ Podcast. Frank Sohn, CEO of Novus CPQ established this format to bring valuable knowledge and industry insights about all things Configure-Price-Quote related to his audience.
As Industry 4.0 solutions have taken over the market, employees of manufacturing companies have started getting anxious about job security. The number of articles that proclaim ‘Robots/Automation will destroy our jobs!’, boosted by publishers such as The Guardian, BBC, and Wired, number in the millions (2 million results on Google and counting!).
While it is true that innovation will bring many changes to the work landscape and many roles will need to be up-skilled to stay relevant, it is also important to keep in mind that Industry 4.0 solutions will affect every role differently.
Engineer-to-order (ETO) businesses have a unique challenge in the manufacturing space: When your business model depends on mass customisation, sales is never routine. Each project requires precise complex calculations as well as engineering resources and input due to the singularity of the final product or project.
Contract Manufacturers are vital in the supply chain of manufacturing. While many in the manufacturing industry treat it as just an outsourcing entity, churning out goods for others, contract manufacturers have been busy adapting to the rapidly-changing landscape that Industry 4.0 has brought on.