ERP Quality Control: 5 Wrenches Thrown in the Works

Just about any of today’s ERP systems will have a quality management component included. Set up properly, they provide a source of data to satisfy the needs of your business and the needs of your customers. But used incorrectly, an ERP quality module can throw a spanner or wrench into the works.

The Useless Wrench

The alligator wrench is mostly a curiosity today – not of any current value. Your ERP quality control module can quickly become useless too and one sure way is to fill it up with data that no one needs or wants. Just because you can easily collect data doesn’t mean you should. What is important to your processes? What does your customer ask and pay for? Be sure you can collect that data and stop there.

The Adjustable Wrench

The adjustable wrench is an important unit in anyone’s toolkit. You turn the little thumb wheel and the jaw opens wider. Be sure your ERP quality control is adjustable. Set things up to meet today’s needs. Be prepared for tomorrow’s needs too. What will your next customer want? What recommendations will come from ISO next year?

The “One Size Fits All” Wrench

Your box wrench fits exactly on a fastener. Whatever the size, 12 mm, ¾ inch, there is a wrench that fits perfectly. But use that ¾ inch tool on an 11/16 bolt and what happens? The corners of the bolt wear down and you are stuck. Something similar happens when you use the same quality measures for every purpose. A highly automated machine-driven process and a one-time developmental, individual process both should have a quality measurement within your ERP, but they won’t be the same. Go back to the store and buy the 11/16 wrench you need.

The Ratchet Wrench

Your business needs to be flexible and scalable. You need to ratchet up and down with speed and agility to meet today’s ERP quality control requirements. Your ratchet wrench will turn that fastener quickly and with a flip of the switch will turn it just as quickly and easily the other way. Your ERP quality control should also be able to cope with changes in throughput.

The Torque Wrench

When your business is humming along and your customers and employees are happy, you hear the machinery clicking into place. Your torque wrench has a similar click when you turned that fastener just right. Set up reporting on ERP quality control to be sure you know when it is working and when it isn’t.

Use the right tool and your ERP and your business works well. Use the wrong tool or use the right tool in the wrong way and you know what will happen – the business works badly or even comes to a stop.

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Tom Miller

About the author…

Tom completed implementations of Epicor, SAP, QAD, and Micro MRP. He works as a logistics and supply chain manager and he always looks for processes to improve. He lives near San Francisco Bay in California and can be found on the water in his kayak or on the road riding his motorcycle. Contact Tom at

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Tom Miller

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