Rocket Software recently assisted SMC transform its business with the help of the Rocket MultiValue Integration Server (MVIS).
SMC is a global leader in pneumatic technology, with subsidiaries in 53 countries providing industrial environments with technology and products to support automation.
Focused on the mission of advancing automation for its clients, SMC also needed to automate transactions and provide real-time access to its ERP system to improve employee productivity and customer experiences.
The Australian subsidiary of SMC relies on a highly customized ERP solution called Masterpack. Based on Rocket UniVerse and Rocket System Builder, it has seen decades of development, but lacked the user interfaces and cross-platform integrations that are the hallmark of today’s modern systems.
As a result, productivity, accuracy, and user satisfaction suffered. Rather than having information available in real time, employees had to wait for the overnight process to run before being able to access it.
These delays and bottlenecks slowed operations, and had the potential to create downstream issues for customers since information like inventory counts were unavailable to sales teams.
Other challenges included the incompatibility of Masterpack with contemporary mobile devices, forcing warehouse staff to rely upon outdated and unreliable hand-held scanners. Maintenance and repair costs for the scanners were skyrocketing, and IT staff spent too much time on the warehouse floor resolving issues.
Overall, SMC needed to improve user experiences by adding new tools and functionalities without undertaking a long, risky, and expensive replatforming project.
Further complicating this challenge was a problem familiar to many organizations that have invested in MultiValue (MV): their experienced administrators were retiring, and skilled developers were difficult to find.
Once the experienced MV developers collaborated with the teams familiar with web-based tools and scripting languages, SMC developed their vision for automation.
In 2021, it implemented the Rocket MultiValue Integration Server (MVIS) to enable future API projects and add Python scripting capability to its modernization toolset. With this upgrade SMC was ready to scale its efforts and take on additional operational challenges.
Modernizing its ERP application with MVIS provided significant savings as compared to re-platforming.
“Replacing an ERP is very difficult,” said Amarendra Rakesh, business systems manager at SMC. “Now, our ERP can continue to facilitate data storage and handling, saving us that time and money so we can still fulfill our vision for the future of the business with modern capabilities.”
With MVIS, SMC has given new life to Masterpack by web enabling it with APIs. Masterpack continues to serve as the backbone of the IT infrastructure, while SMC’s users have the modern experiences that enable them to be more productive and efficient in their work.
As an example, automating sales order entry has reduced process time by 95%, from 20 minutes to less than one minute.
With MVIS, it is possible to build a highly secure environment with similar opportunities for automation across the entire business.
SMC’s Australian subsidiary is setting global standards for innovation and optimization as other SMC offices learn from its advancements.
The company can now deliver the best possible user experiences and maintain competitiveness, all while maximizing their return-on-investment in their existing ERP.