Epicor has won a contract to replace the ERP solution at Chin Fong Machine Industrial Co Ltd in Taiwan. Chin Fong is the largest manufacturer of mechanical power presses in Taiwan. Founded in 1948 it has revenues of $7.4 billion NTD.
The company is aiming to become the largest manufacturer in the world. It has manufacturing plants in both Taiwan and China. It has also expanded further overseas. Chin Fong acquired Stamtec Inc in 1990 and also has sales offices in China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, the USA, and Thailand. It also has a global distribution network. In 2001 it extended its capability to automobile presses and can name Toyota and Ford amongst its customers.
Chin Fong first implemented an ERP solution in 2002. Seventeen years on the business has grown significantly and become more complex. The original ERP could only support standardized products. This increased the burden on staff from workarounds and it decided to replace the legacy solution
Mr. Yuta Tu, IT manager at Chin Fong, said: “Our old ERP system could not cope with the type of orders we were receiving. With customer demands becoming increasingly diversified, whenever we processed orders or managed production, our workforce had to spend lots of extra hours to solve problems caused by the system.”
“Furthermore, since our various subsidiaries used different ERP systems, a lot of additional time was spent compiling data for use in our financial statements. All of this had a negative impact on decision-making within the company.”
A long evaluation process
Chin Fong took its time evaluating the different solutions available. In total it looked at seventeen suppliers. That it took so long is unusual, one might argue that ERP solutions can change considerably over those two years.
However, the answer may lie in another comment by Yuta: “During the testing stage, we found that the combination of Epicor ERP and Microsoft technology complemented each other well. This was especially evident when having to process unexpected financial statements—the system’s ability to quickly input data helped reduce the amount of work for the IT department, thereby greatly increasing efficiency. As a result, we decided to completely switch all of our operations to the new ERP system by the end of this year.”
With such an important decision to make, after all its previous solution had lasted more than 15 years the duration starts to make some sense. Running a pilot to understand the integrations between its different solutions clearly helped. It will also have seen the improvements that Epicor has made to its core ERP solution. Epicor updates its core ERP solution, version 10, every six months. The latest release was in October this year.
Cash flow and mobile ERP key objectives
Chin Fong also had clear objectives for its new solution:
- Cash flow traceability: required for the core organization and its subsidiaries. By tracking orders and transfers between business units it wanted to manage resources in real-time. This allows it to provide customers with accurate quotations using accurate costs.
- Mobile-enabled ERP: International growth means it is important that managers can see up to date information on their mobile devices. They can both view information and take action decisions through the mobile application.
Epicor was finally selected based on its integration with Microsoft, the total cost of ownership and positive reference customers.
Implementation begins in China
Chin Fong will first implement the solution at its factory in Jiangsu, China in December. The implementation at Jiangsu will deliver order processing, logistics, purchasing, and finance. Staff from the head office in Taiwan will assist with the implementation.
This will help them gain a deeper knowledge of the solution. It will also be useful when they deploy Epicor in Taiwan in Spring 2020. With a unified solution across its operations, Chin Fong will obtain visibility it has struggled to achieve previously. It should also make further expansion easier.
Vincent Tang, regional vice president, Asia, for Epicor noted: “Epicor has a wealth of expertise in developing ERP software for machinery manufacturers. Our solutions are specifically designed to provide the greatest level of flexibility and promote business growth. We are proud that Chin Fong has selected Epicor ERP to help meet its business goals, and we look forward to supporting the company in its future growth ambitions.”
Enterprise Times: What does this mean
With the Taiwanese manufacturing production index falling in 2019 companies need to ensure that they increase efficiency. Chin Fong will do so over the next few months. This should cut both direct and indirect costs as it rolls out the application. Importantly it will have a better picture of its costs and will be able to transfer production between its plants as required. This should enable it to maximize profits and revenues in the coming years.
The advantage of adopting the Epicor solution is that it will also be able to take advantage of the upgrades every few months without a significant cost burden. It is unlikely that it did so with its historic solution.