Not all manufacturers are created equal. For example, manufacturing widgets of various kinds are not the same as manufacturing food or drugs. And while a defective widget may have serious consequences, the regulatory process is different for widgets than it is for food and drugs.

For one thing, food and drug manufacturers are regulated by the FDA, which is aptly the acronym for the Food and Drug Administration. Widget manufacturers do not need FDA approval but do have to comply with other federal regulations, such as lot and serial number tracing. Of course, it depends on what your widget is being used for.

So while here at the Strategic Systems Group (SSG) we have specialized in Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) for manufacturers over the past nearly 3 decades (!), we have also developed even more specialized areas of expertise. Prime among them is a focus on healthcare manufacturing.

The Healthcare Sector

The healthcare sector is one of the largest and most complex in the U.S. economy. It accounts for nearly 20% of the U.S. GDP (gross domestic product) and consists of businesses that:

  • Manufacture drugs*
  • Manufacture medical equipment*
  • Provide medical services
  • Provide medical insurance
  • Facilitate the provision of healthcare to patients

*These are the two main areas of Strategic Systems Group’s expertise.

 Let’s take a closer look at those two.

Drug Manufacturers

Drug manufacturers can further be broken down into:

  • Biotechnology firms
  • Pharmaceuticals firms
  • Makers of generic drugs

The biotech industry consists of companies that engage in research and development to create new drugs, devices, and treatment methods. Major pharmaceuticals firms also engage in research and development but tend to focus more on manufacturing and marketing an existing drug portfolio. Some pharmaceutical firms specialize in generic drugs, which are identical to name-brand drugs but no longer enjoy patent protection.

Medical Equipment Manufacturers

Medical equipment makers range from firms that manufacture standard, familiar products—such as scalpels, forceps, bandages, and gloves—to those who conduct cutting-edge research and produce expensive, hi-tech equipment, such as MRI machines surgical robots.

The Best ERP Software for Drug and Medical Equipment Manufacturers

How do you know which ERP software solution, among the many that are available, is the best? To begin with, you need to understand that ERP software solutions are not one size fits all. “Best” is a relative term because what is best for a small biotech company may not be a good fit at all for a major pharmaceutical company. Furthermore, it is not just a question of small companies versus large companies. The right fit depends more on a company’s operations and processes.

The “best” way to determine the “best” ERP system for your healthcare manufacturing company is to sit down with a team of ERP specialists. You are experts at what you do, be it manufacturing drugs or manufacturing medical equipment. We at Strategic Systems Group (SSG) are manufacturing ERP experts. We have developed that expertise over the course of nearly three decades, implementing and supporting manufacturing ERP systems for our clients.

Our first step toward determining the “best” solution for your company will be to conduct a needs assessment so we can understand the full scope of your operations and your current processes. A needs assessment will involve questions and discussions of topics such as:

  • What software are your currently running?
  • How deep is your BOM (bill of materials)?
  • How are your currently handling
    • Lot and serial number tracing
    • Shop floor routing
    • Regulatory compliance (FDA, HIPAA, OSHA, etc.)
    • Inventory management
    • Warehouse management
  • What do have in place for
    • Data and network security
    • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
    • Workflows
    • Supply Chain Management (SCM)
    • EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance
    • Compliance with California-specific regulations such as the
      • California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)
  • Can we help you improve your foundational accounting system (GL, AP, AR)?
  • What about approval processes?
  • What about budgeting and forecasting?
  • Do you have the staffing and other HR needs?
  • Are you experiencing any connectivity issues, lag times, and the like?
  • What aspects of your current system are frustrating you?
  • We will also want to know what your plans are for
  • Growth
    • Geographic expansion
    • Product diversification

We will dive deeper and deeper into your requirements until we have a complete picture of who you are, what you do, and how you do it. Only then will we be able to recommend the best ERP software solution for your manufacturing enterprise.

Microsoft Dynamics ERP and Infor ERP

The ERP software landscape has changed dramatically over the past 20 years with a tremendous amount of consolidation. Microsoft gobbled up Axapta, Navision, Solomon, and Great Plains. All of which then became part of the Microsoft Dynamics ERP family, namely Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics SL, and Microsoft Dynamics GP. And these are now being eclipsed by Microsoft’s own cloud ERP solutions, namely Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations as well as Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central.

The same is true for Infor, which now includes formerly independent brands such as Baan, MK, and MANMAN (whose name is a contraction of Manufacturing Management), in addition to Infor’s own solutions, namely Infor ERP LN and Infor Visual.

Of course, there are many other ERP solutions on the market today – Sage, Intacct, SAP, NetSuite, and Oracle, to name a few. But we have, for reasons we can elaborate on, chosen to focus on Microsoft and Infor. Between them, we are confident that we can present you with the very best fit for your healthcare manufacturing requirements.

But don’t just take our word for it. We love a great challenge! So, challenge us to find you a solution that will meet your every need, either straight out of the box or with a few tweaks and integrated third-party apps that will do the trick.

Nuts, Bolts, and Beyond

We will start with the nuts and bolts, a foundation for the perfect solution. Then we will go beyond, as far as it takes to develop a system that works seamlessly, efficiently, and at warp speed!

Take the next step…

You will not find many (if any) partners with the depth, breadth, and longevity of Strategic Systems Group (SSG). Please call us at (310) 539-4645 or reach out via our contact form today!

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