ProgressPlus is vital component in growth for Burcas

Precision engineering manufacturer Burcas claims that adopting ProgressPlus production control software has enabled it to increase its turnover and improve its operational efficiency.

The Birmingham-based business has traditionally supplied high-quality precision tooling, cutting tools and paper cutting knives to a cross section of industries including automotive, paper, printing and converting and precision engineering. However since 2001 the company has also focussed on the aerospace and defence markets, specialising in the manufacture and subcontract machining of highly complex critical components and precision tooling.

As the company expanded, its MRP system for production and accounts required upgrading in order to support the growing demands of the business. After a lengthy evaluation and tender process, the company chose to implement the ProgressPlus software across all of its key business operations.

Developed by Glasgow-based IT specialist Berkeley Myles in 2001, ProgressPlus provides a innovative solution which helps manufacturing organisations streamline, automate and integrate the management and control of shop-floor production and administrative processes. It now has more than 1200 concurrent users throughout the UK and Ireland.

Burcas quality manager Martyn Fearn said the investment was crucial in order for the business to stay ahead of its competitors.  As the company expanded into new markets we became acutely aware that we had to invest in production control software that would allow us to continue to grow and remain competitive in the long-term, he said.  We looked at several systems but ProgressPlus was the obvious choice due to its flexibility, robustness and ease of use.

The system has been deployed throughout various divisions of the company, covering all aspects of process control including sales, manufacturing, stock control, despatch, and invoicing.  Martyn believes ProgressPlus has enabled the business to maintain the highest standards of service and increase its competitiveness in an increasingly tough marketplace. 

He also insists that the system has been crucial in helping the business comply with the aerospace AS/EN 9100 quality standard.  ProgressPlus has directly helped us improve as a business by giving us full traceability throughout the life-cycle of the production process, he said.  The system has increased our operational efficiency and has allowed us to grow our turnover by making us more streamlined, efficient and fully-compliant with the AS/EN 9100 standard.  The quality of our processes has improved dramatically. ProgressPluss ability to link up with SAGE 200 financial software allows us to easily see customer credit status on order entry and instantly view the overall company profitability. With the system handling administrative processing for sales and purchasing orders as well as invoicing, this ensures a consistent level of efficiency, saving the company time and money.

ProgressPlus has also allowed Burcas to focus on sustained customer satisfaction.  Martyn said: Our quality systems have been enhanced using the reporting functions in ProgressPlus and delivery performance can be accessed quickly enabling us to ensure we always deliver outstanding levels of customer service.

Another part of the business which has benefited from ProgressPlus is Inventory Management, based on the principle of KANBAN.  ProgressPlus has enabled the company to deliver exceptional levels of service to their Inventory Management customers and exploit new business opportunities. The next development stage for the business will involve applying discussed KANBAN principles to the defence sector.

Berkeley Myles managing director Tony MacBride said: We have developed a long-standing partnership with Burcas and have supported the business throughout its development programme by helping it drive efficiency and meet compliance with industry quality standards.  At a time when warnings are being sounded that the manufacturing industry is on the verge of a downturn, businesses are recognising that it is the most efficient and lean companies who will survive the current economic conditions. More and more companies throughout the manufacturing industry are now adopting our ProgressPlus software and recognising that it can play a significant part in helping them to achieve the necessary efficiency gains and pass stringent quality audits by prospective clients. We have experienced significant growth in the past year as a result of this demand and our teams will continue to be across the country showing why ProgressPlus is the only true option for companies serious about improving their production control."

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