In the heart of the West Midlands another company has selected Infor as their replacement ERP solution. PAL Group has two sites in Wednesbury from which it operates its two divisions, plastic extrusions and adhesives. After an extensive search they selected Infor CloudSuite Industrial (Syteline) to replace their aging legacy systems. Ross Herbert, business systems manager, PAL Group explained why: “Our legacy system faced numerous issues. Extracting information was time-intensive and we faced decreasing options for support. Infor CloudSuite Industrial will firstly help improve productivity by enabling staff to personalize their work screens, whilst still keeping reporting consistent.”
Surprisingly they chose to deploy the solution on-premises. Despite its name Infor CloudSuite is deployable both on-premises and in the Cloud. Infor also offers multi-tenant or single tenant solutions using AWS. The advantage is that the software has the same functionality for both. This allows PAL Group to decide at a later date to move to the cloud with relative ease. Infor uses to Life and Shift program to do just that for existing customers.
Making the decision to us CloudSuite
PAL group felt restricted by the lack of analytics and reporting they could obtain from their existing solution. Nick Walton, financial director, PAL Group commented: “We required a platform to support our growth trends and forecasts, upon which we have set no limits. Infor CloudSuite, through their partner Inforlogic, provides this and will also enable us to respond more efficiently to our customers’ demands. This leads to more growth.”
Inforlogic specialises in working with both Infor Syteline and Infor LN products. They implemented a solution at Toye, Kenning & Spencer, another West Midlands manufacturer. They adopted a similar sales process and worked with the manufacturer’s team to show them how the solution would work. As Paula Yarwood, Business Development at Inforlogic explained: “It was clear from our initial meeting with the PAL Group that we not only needed to demonstrate the capability of Infor CloudSuite Industrial but also the credentials of ourselves as a long term trusted delivery partner. We did this through a series of structured workshops, where we took the PAL Group team through the system and how it would work for them. Aside from showcasing the capabilities of the product, the process also demonstrated the experience and product knowledge of our consultants.”
In the end it appears as though PAL Group made their decision based on three things. These were the flexibility, functionality and actionable intelligence that the solution makes available from the manufacturing process. What will be interesting is what difference the solution will make to the business. Also what integrations the software has with other applications in use within the firm.
Over fifty staff at PAL will use the software once implemented. It will be interesting to see how the deployment and subsequent benefits are realised.
Are PAL Group taking full advantage of the capabilities that Infor offer? Geoff Hurst at Triumph Motorcycles recently explained why they decided to go on-premises. This is lacking at PAL Group. Hurst also had a goal to eventually move to the cloud.
There is no doubt that manufacturers need to modernise their software. The question that many need to ask themselves is whether this should just be a software upgrade. Additionally should they transform the business to be ready for the digital economy? PAL Group do not sell their products direct from their website at present. One reason may be that the risk of changing out their existing ERP solution is too great. It may be that they will look to implement Infor Rhythm at a later date to achieve this.
Phil Lewis, vice-president, solution consulting, EMEA, Infor seems to agree. He commented: “Manufacturers such as PAL Group face tough competition and as such must continually innovate.” For Infor the ability of channel to help such iterative transformation with its customers is critical. Inforlogic will offer this partnership with PAL Group. Lewis continued: “Whilst standardized processes are the backbone of that innovation, technology such as Infor CloudSuite Industrial and the expertise of partners such as Inforlogic helps manufacturers remain flexible and keep competitive in order to grow.”