Higher Data Availability Despite A Diversified Production Structure

Feature Article | September 17, 2003 by admin

Metallica GmbH manufactures metal and plastic components at two sites in Hungary and more intricate plastic components at its headquarter in Spaichingen. The head office oversees projects from the development phase to tool production and the finished product. One of the company’s key areas of expertise is the manufacture of plastic components with subsequent surface finishing. The company, which has a total workforce of 50, has an impressive customer base, including system suppliers to the large automobile manufacturers and customers involved in plant, machine and vehicle production. Cooperation partners in Germany, the rest of Europe and outside Europe augment the range of products and services offered by metallica. As a result, the company can supply products extending from prototypes to entire systems.

New and convincing software concept

It is essential for metallica to retain an overview of its ongoing job status. “We have to meet exact deadlines so that the system supplier receives the goods on time”, explains Manfred Tonhäuser, Managing Director of metallica GmbH, when describing the demands made on his company. This is because meeting deadlines is essential for winning and keeping cooperation partners in the automotive industry.
The company was therefore keen to optimize its information management to ensure higher data availability. Fulfilling these demands requires software which provides fast access not only to current job status, but also to up-to-the-minute information on all aspects of the business such as sales, costs and delivery deadlines.
The process of selecting a suitable solution lasted three months. A decision on a solution had almost been finalized when teufel software GmbH, a Sales and Service Partner of SAP, suggested SAP Business One, the new software for small and midsize businesses. The key aspects which convinced the decision-makers at metallica were the system’s scalability and the fact that it is future-proof: “We wanted to be sure that the system manufacturer would still be around in a few years time”, explains Manfred Tonhäuser.

Intensive cooperation with SAP partners

Following the decision in favor of SAP Business One, the project team made up of staff from teufel software, metallica and SAP worked intensively on its introduction to ensure implementation of the pilot project within the desired timeframe. The project manager at metallica was then given training and went on to familiarize all of the other users with the solution. Further knowledge was acquired though daily practice. “Even after going live in September 2002, the SAP and teufel software GmbH consultants were available twenty-four hours a day with advice and help”, says Manfred Tonhäuser. Everyone at metallica is very satisfied with the introduction of the software. SAP and teufel software implemented the individual steps of the project immediately. If there were any problems, one of the two was always able to provide rapid assistance.

Fast access to sales data

“The new solution means that we at last have a system that renders processes more transparent”, states Manfred Tonhäuser. This also increases the transparency of information. Business data such as sales, deliveries and quotations can be accessed more rapidly. The possibility of sending data directly by fax or e-mail without having to save it or print it out especially represents a significant saving in terms of workload.
The intuitive structure of the visually attractive masks makes the software user-friendly. “At the start, I had reservations because I always thought that SAP was big and complicated. However, SAP Business One has shown me that this is not always the case”, states Dieter Wolter, project manager at metallica responsible for the introduction of SAP Business One. The new server and the Dell implementation computers have also proved a success, with the result that metallica is changing all its clients over to Dell equipment. “It is just as important in the IT sector as in operational activities that we work with reliable partners who will continue to support us in the future”, emphasizes Manfred Tonhäuser.

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