12 Jan

Wood industry urged to embrace automation


Vietnamese enterprises, regardless of size, should use enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions to optimise their resources and improve their efficiency, a seminar organised by the Handicraft and Wood Industry Association of HCM City heard yesterday.

Phí Anh Tuấn, deputy chairman of the HCM City Computer Association and CEO of PAT Consulting, said ERP could be used to collect, store, manage and interpret data from many business activities.

The challenge facing wood processing firms is to meet the increasing requirements of buyers in terms of quality, delivery time, and traceability, and cutting costs to improve competitiveness, according to Tuấn.

The more orders a company gets, the busier its managers are and they do not have time for planning strategy, considering measures to improve productivity and optimise production.

With ERP, data is easily available and routinely updated and the management can make the best decisions for the company.

They can also get a better overall picture of how the business is operating, which is vital when it comes to responding to changes and improving overall financial planning of the business.

Lê Đức Nghĩa, general director of An Cường Wood Working JSC, said at a time it had 700-800 workers the company had difficulties in managing things. Then its payroll grew to over 1,000 staff and revenues to VNĐ1 trillion, and the company did not know how to manage, and restructuring became the only option, he said.

But then it adopted SAP’s ERP, and management had become smooth, he said.

Now it had more than 5,000 workers and revenues of over VNĐ3 trillion, but management was no longer difficult, he said.

“Since applying SAP’s ERP in January last year, our revenues went up by 40 per cent, and I just need to work five days a week instead of seven as I used to.”

The solution allows him to manage his company’s resources at any time and from anywhere recognise potential risks, and make decisions at every level quickly and precisely.

The solution is no longer just for large organisations and in fact ERP for small businesses is quickly becoming popular among organisations to look for greater productivity and more streamlined data that is available to all departments at all times.

With proper use, an ERP system can boost productivity, reduce costs, streamline data flow, encourage collaboration, deliver business insights and improve decision-making, according to Tuấn.

If they streamline their management, Vietnamese businesses can save up to 76 per cent of administrative costs.

Hoàng Đình Trọng, chairman of PDCA Training Consultants Limited Company, said automation would help liberate top management from mundane tasks to focus on their key mission of planning.

However, the number of businesses embracing automation remains modest in the wood industry because at most companies the managers used to be skilled workers like carpenters who established a company and so sometimes lack management skills, he said.

But many delegates agreed that businesses should definitely adopt appropriate ERP solutions. — VNS

Read more at HERE