Aptean Made2Manage ERP is designed for manufacturers in job shops and dynamic “to-order” and mixed-mode environments. It's suitable for SMB manufacturers in industries like industrial equipment, electronics and fabricated metal, and Made2Manage can support a mix of make-to-order, assemble-to-order, make-to-stock and engineer-to-order manufacturing methods.
Core areas of functionality include quoting, planning and scheduling, procurement, engineering management, manufacturing, inventory management and finance. Made2Manage is intended to coordinate all business processes within the organization.
Features include real-time planning and scheduling, actual job costing, shop floor execution features and lot and serial number traceability. It can deliver full business intelligence reports with the option to drill down to specific data. Integration with CAD engineering tools helps manage BOM data, and a built-in customer relationship management (CRM) component with Microsoft Outlook integration helps manage account information and interactions with customers and prospects.
Made2Manage offers a range of configuration options, allowing businesses to customize forms and menus, control user access rights and modify workflows to support operations across different locations or subsidiaries.
White's Electronics, Inc. manufactures metal detectors for the sport and hobby market, however, we are looking at new markets for diversification. We are a make to stock company. When we purchased M2M in 2007, we were looking for a product where we wouldn't have to modify every screen and report to get the information the way we needed. We didn't want to have to buy a lot of add on products to get the information. M2M seemed to meet our requirements. We have modified some reports and screens and M2M provides tools to do this. Our users like the fact that they can export almost any report to excel and use it they way they want.
The online courses are very helpful and the users refer to them often. They users were able to adapt to the features and use of M2M fairly quickly. We have 20 licenses, however, we have 40 users. We use the time out feature to keep logins available.
We use Advanced Scheduling to keep our inventory to a minimum.
We are currently working on a test machine to upgrade to 7.01. Our live company is using 6.02 SP5 HP4.
Norscan Instruments Ltd. is an Electronics Engineering and Manufacturing company with about 30 employees. We have a relatively large number of products, most of which are small volume. We had to support our existing products for at least 10 years (or more), and many of the products were customized for each customer. Most of our products have circuit boards, which can have hundreds to thousands of individual components, along with multiple sub-assemblies - which make Bills Of Materials (BOMs) very complex.
Back in 1997, we were looking for an ERP system that could tie our accounting, purchasing, product bills of materials, and labor reporting all together. At the time, all of these existed in their own software, or databases and spreadsheets. It was imperative that the system be able to handle multiple levels of BOMs and Routings.
After looking at a few systems, it became apparent that there was a significant effort required just to evaluate these systems to measure performance against a set of requirements. At the time, we did not have any resources available to do this, and there was a local VAR that sold, integrated, and supported Made2Manage (M2M) locally (which was M2M's model then). The pricing fit our budget and we went ahead and purchased the system in 1997 with a target of going live in the start of 1998. The version at that time was based of Visual Foxpro.
The implementation was a bit bumpy at first. Our system was the first for the VAR, and actually we were one of the first companies in Canada to use M2M, and there were a number of things that were not Canadian-ized. M2M was very quick to make these changes in the software. Our VAR designed many custom reports for us (wrote full code) that we later found out wasn't really necessary, as the "canned" reports in M2M can be easily tweaked to suit most companies needs. This is an important factor for future upgrades as custom reports may not function if there are database changes with the upgrades.
The entire staff was trained, and like any new system, there was some hesitation, duplication of work, and many errors. This is why we ran M2M parallel with our existing systems for a few months before going live. Something that I don't think would be acceptable in a larger organization. We persisted, and were completely ready when it was time to go live.
In general, M2M is fairly easy to use. The GUI is straight forward, and has had major improvements over the 15+ years we have been using it. The majority (if not all) improvements have come straight from the users themselves, and as more and more customers purchased M2M, the feedback just became better. When there are issues, M2M support team is there to help. Unfortunately, the help usually takes longer than the user wants, as usually something will go wrong and you need it fixed immediately. Most problems usually are resolved within 24 hours. As a user since 1998, we have build up a lot of in-house expertise, so to be fair to M2M, when we call for support, it's usually due to a very complex issue - usually requiring a second level or higher support person.
We have purchased additional add-on modules (advanced reporter, production scheduler & shop floor manager). For accounting/finance, I don't think you can do without the Advanced Reporter. It makes writing custom financial reports a breeze. Our MFG personnel really like the addition of the Shop Floor Manager. It allows for each individual or work center know what they need to work on that day, what the status of materials are for the job, and an easy way to enter in their labor.
Over the years, we have continually changed processes in order to obtain better quality and margins, and M2M has been an important tool in order to gain the type of visibility needed for both Quality and continuous improvement. Today, we still don't use all the features in M2M, but we are always looking at those features each year to determine whether it makes sense to implement into our business or not.
Over the years, there have been quite a number of people who have gained expert knowledge about M2M (outside of the M2M staff), and as such there is usually a pretty good knowledge base in the forums.
I would certainly recommend M2M to anyone in our line of business.
Lynn L. Branche: Maschinerie Mitarbeiteranzahl: 51-200 Mitarbeiter
This software at its conception was created to help the small manufacturer utilize an ERP System that could grow with the company. M2M has achieved that mission. The customer support is wonderful. The system while have some missteps over the years due to mergers and acquisitions is now on a productive trajectory. They are customer focused, they spend a lot of time listening to their customers and implementing recommendations when able. They are a true business partner.
The cost is on the high side, licenses and maintenance agreements along with customizations. Reporting has been weak in the past, however, we are starting to see real effort in making the outputs for the data more user friendly.
Since we went live July 1, we are still getting acquainted with the software. Overall, we are satisfied with the functionality and believe that it is a good fit for our type of business. We manufacture large positioning systems used for welding and other applications. Some of our products are of a catalogue variety and others are engineered to order. M2M's use of job orders that tie everything together for tracking and cost analysis is going to be a big help to us.
We are using the ERP system and Advanced Scheduling at the present time. We have created a few Advanced Reporting reports using preexisting sphere,s and one sphere that we created. Except for some training our implementation consultant provided for financial reports, we have to learn how use Advanced Reporting on our own because the trainer has not been available. We decided before our conference room pilots to delay implementation of the configuration and CAD link software.
The implementation process was handicapped by version 7 software bugs. It was awful! We had to surrender hours of consulting time that we paid for because of the issues we encountered while doing our conference room pilots, and had to delay portions of the work while hot patches were installed. We required more consulting days because of this.
Our consultant was not up-to-speed on the version 7, and needed to go back and forth between Classic and the net versions. Our users trained using the version 7 training videos. However, they would need to use version 6 videos because ones for version 7 were not available. We had decided to write procedures converting version 5 Word documents to have version 7 screens shots. There were so many problems with version 7; it seems crazy that it was released in that condition! We were told that the software had been beta tested and had been used for a year by some number of users. That doesn't seem possible.
It was not possible for our field sales group to go live with the rest of the company because response time for a remote user was extremely slow - 15 minutes or more to get a report to display. It was a big surprise. We had implemented a dedicated server for M2M in accordance with Aptean specifications. It turned out that we needed to invest in a dedicated server for our field sales group.
We have not completed our month-end close for July. There were numerous problems with data that slowed the process. We experienced some issues with the transfer of work orders and sales orders. In some cases, the wrong selection was made in the setup.
From our training, we seem to taken away how to process basic transactions, but we didn't take away a good understanding of the transactions. We knew the steps but without understanding what was happening when made them. This created some problems for job orders and purchase orders carried forward from the old system to M2M.
Our closing was hampered because we didn't have certain reports needed to tie out transactions to support GL values. Not having been trained in the use of Advanced Reporting meant that we had to stop what we were doing, and figure out how to create them ourselves. Vanessa was able to help with the financial reports, but was not so helpful for ones requiring the use of spheres.
The old quote, "Other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how did you like the play." comes to mind. Any benefits that we may eventually see from using the software has been overshadowed by the difficulty with version 7 and training issues.
As a job shop providing - primarily - custom products to customer design specifications, we have small production runs and little finished inventory. But we have lots of costs! Our previous software was great for accounting but did little to address collection, assimilation or analysis of production data. We examined ERP software and decided M2M would answer those questions and, as a result, we'd be better able to move our business forward.
We recently (Feb/Mar 2013) upgraded to M2M 7.01 (from version 5.6). Thankfully there are two versions - classic, which looks and acts like our older version; and .NET, with a sleeker appearance and more direct functionality. Most of our employees are very comfortable with the Classic version. The more adventurous of the staff use the .NET as often as possible, reverting to the Classic only when we get "lost" - or, on rare occasion, when there's a hole in .NET (and, yes, there are still a few).
Management is enduring extensive training on 7.0 modules. Our philosophy is that now is the time to make corrections and adjustments to the way we do things. This version is quite powerful and more user-friendly, but it takes some getting used to. And we want to do it "right", or as "right" as possible. The online recorded courses have been instrumental in launching discussion and decisions. As a result, we are comfortable moving our employees into the more modern system presented by this version and out of their comfort zone(s).
M2M personnel have been helpful, for the most part. We did not use a reseller (our first - and last - experience with a M2M reseller was less than pleasant or productive) but used M2M staff for the upgrade and install. Getting to the upgrade/install point was often challenging (like pulling teeth to get anyone to return calls) but it's been good ever since. We still have additional training that needs to be done, but before we'll bring that in, we want to be fully - as much as possible - conversant with the software so we can ask intelligent and meaningful questions and get the most of those limited training hours.
Some improvements we like in .NET would be ease of changing data/data tables, better windows and customizable screens, having "favorites" very accessible, access to reports for minor customizations, planning and scheduling/CRM modules (although we don't really know how to use them yet), and quick and easy exports to Excel (some of us are spreadsheet geeks). There's undoubtedly some more that escapes me right now.
Would we purchase M2M again? Well, we've invested quite a lot in this software, as we've been using it since 2001. We've learned that no system is perfect and it doesn't hurt that my staff has threatened me with bodily harm if I change at this point! We're excited with the improvements the 7.0 offers. There's more that we'd like to see upgraded but it's getting there, and we've learned (and will continue to learn) how to manipulate M2M to be the best it can be!