Regardless of what area a manufacturing company operates in – almost all seem to face similar challenges. Whether it’s the food industry, heavy machinery manufacturing or perhaps a pharmaceutical company – evolving systems, computerisation and process automation affect the way a business operates. To keep up with the technologically developing world, you might need to hire a professional and constantly learning, and preferably a large team of IT specialists. Manufacturing companies rarely have a vast pool of such specialists, they are usually individuals. Fortunately, today’s low-code solutions offer assistance that proves almost invaluable given the high demand for IT workers and relatively low supply of them.

What is low-code? 

Using a low-code development platform (LCDP) consists in replacing traditional programming by a manually typed code with the possibility of applying tools that are mostly (but not entirely!) available in a graphical form and allow for software development by the drag&drop method. With the help of such a platform, it is possible to create complete and functioning software.

You can read more about what exactly low-code is in this article

Manufacturing companies in the face of commercially available management systems

The Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, which is sometimes equated with a “financial management system”, can be considered the command centre of a significant number of manufacturing companies. In fact, managing finances in ERP is only one of the modules, and the capabilities of modern ERP systems apply to most departments and processes of a company. In addition to ERP, there are various supporting programmes – for instance CRM (Customer Relationship Management), MES (Manufacturing Execution System) or WMS (Warehouse Management software). Although the systems available on the market offer a vast array of possibilities, their functions have been compiled by “averaging” the needs of manufacturing companies for given modules. This means that despite the fact that they offer the possibility of free configuration, allowing the system to adapt to the specificity of a given company, this configuration always entails certain limitations. At the same time, it should be noted that enterprises have a variety of needs resulting directly from their business model, which is particularly evident in the case of plants engaged in low-volume, custom-made production or using less common technologies. In such cases, the management supporting programmes available on the market, despite their broad capabilities, are very often unable to meet the expectations of users. Therefore, it is necessary to customise or build new “turnkey” solutions. Such solutions, however, prove to be not only time-consuming and often problematic, but also expensive. This is where low-code platforms come to the rescue.

How can low-code help a manufacturing company? 

Low-code platforms allow to automate management processes much faster and cheaper than in the case of traditional software developed by IT specialists. With their help, it is possible to create personalised, efficiently operating software, and testing it can begin at the prototype stage, honed already at the usage stage. 

Thanks to the flexibility of low-code, business applications can be kept up-to-date and therefore catch up with changing business realities. Ultimately, one can even say that IT systems reflect the company’s processes, not the other way around, which has a positive impact on the quality of their operation.

Another – and highly relevant! – advantage of LCDP (Low Code Development Platform) programmes is that no specialist IT knowledge or skills are required to operate them. Almost anybody who has ever dealt with data management systems is able to make an application with the help of low-code. A company can choose to build applications in-house, without external developers, even if it does not have a skilled team of programmers. This makes them more likely to use low-code, which can significantly simplify the management of a production company. 

What can a manufacturing company use low-code for?

Low-code platforms can be useful for a great number of issues. They can easily automate routine operations in a production hall or the flow of orders and demands within the warehouse.They also offer the possibility to create check-lists of maintenance activities, to monitor working time or to support the budgeting process. The aggregation of data from forms and automatic sources (e.g. machines) can also be simplified by using low-code, as well as the aggregation and processing of data for reporting purposes. Moreover, with the help of the LCDP software, you can more easily and quickly manage employee attendance, overtime, holidays and have control over HR processes.

Why is archITekt worth considering?

Why is it worth considering archITekt out of the numerous applications available on the market? First of all, due to its versatility. It can handle simple applications, document management, workflow between employees as well as complex systems requiring data processing and calculation algorithms. It is equally capable of dealing with large amounts of data – and an exorbitant amount of information to be stored is undoubtedly bread and butter in some production companies. Additionally, thanks to the on-premises model, it can run entirely on the company’s internal servers. Furthermore, it may be used completely free of charge – the customer gets the possibility of testing and building the application in the archITekt system, and the fees will be charged only once the production use of the built application has begun.

Slawomir Gierek
Head of Business Development for VSoft archITekt
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