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The MAKING CHIPS Podcast for Manufacturing Leaders with Jason Zenger & Jim Carr

Welcome to MakingChips - We believe that manufacturing is challenging, but if you are connected to a community of leaders, you can elevate your skills, solve your problems and grow your business. Making Chips is a weekly podcast that will EQUIP and INSPIRE MANUFACTURING LEADERS to succeed in the challenging world of manufacturing. Our mission is for the METALWORKING NATION to Think Differently About Manufacturing In Order to Elevate their Game. Your hosts, Jason Zenger & Jim Carr, own manufacturing businesses and interview other leaders in the metalworking, machining, fabrication, tooling and machine tool industries. We have interviewed successful manufacturing CEOs you may have not heard of and also the biggest names in manufacturing like Titan Gilroy from Titans of CNC, John Saunders from NYC CNC, Mark Terryberry from Haas Automation and others from MakerCast, Sandvik Coromant, Autocrib and more. Think of us as your virtual community of manufacturing peers to help solve your toughest problems and grow your business. "Making Chips has provided a transparent approach to sharing within the manufacturing community and a modern platform to do so. Thank you both for taking the lead on moving our industry segment forward!" Patricia Miller - CEO & Visionary (Matrix IV) I really think what you guys are doing is a great, great thing for manufacturing. I have learned so much already from many of your episodes, and am so thrilled to have met people that get as revved up about manufacturing as I do! Cassandra Haupers – Vice President of Operations (Swiss Precision Machining) I love being able to experience what manufacturers are doing to promote culture and engage their team members and community. All of us are smarter than one of us. That is why I am part of the Making Chips tribe. Barry E. Walter, Jr. – Chief Operating Officer (Barry E. Walter, Sr. Co.) Finally, relevant manufacturing media that is actually entertaining! Dietmar Goellner – Chief Executive Officer (Advanced Machine & Engineering / Hennig) The more manufacturing companies we can get to think this way, the stronger our industry will be. Thank you for sharing! Jess Giudici – Manager, Talent and Culture I’m thankful to you for creating MakingChips for the Metalworking Nation so that Owners / Employees can strengthen their companies. Phil Sponsler – President (ORBITFORM) I love the podcast! It really serves to fill a void in the manufacturing world. I will admit I always feel a little more inspired. Jason Falk – Senior Application Engineer, CMTSE (HURCO) Thanks to all the great info on your podcasts and the website. Dave Lechleitner – Director of Solutions and Product Marketing (KEYEDIN) I really love what you guys are doing to advance the mfg industry in a way that really reaches the right audiences. Jeff Rizzie – Senior Manager-Business Development (Sandvik Coromant)
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Jul 9, 2019

Business automation can seem like an intimidating change, but the benefits are massive. Guest speaker, Paul Van Metre - president of Pro Shop ERP, shares how letting go of control can help grow your company and make it vastly more efficient. Automating your systems can help clear up communication, save you and your team energy and time, and help boost your profitability. Change can be daunting, but an automated system is definitely worth the cost. 

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Embracing the big changes that come with business automation 

Some may think that there are too many barriers to push through to make business automation worth it. Paul explains that people fear what they don’t understand and what they don’t know. While such fear is normal, it shouldn’t keep manufacturing leaders from making the switch. The initial expense and time invested in uploading your company’s data may seem like a shock at first, but the efficiency that comes with automation is incredible. Letting go of control could be the best decision you’ve ever made. 

The tools you use to automate your business are crucial to your success. Paul gives some examples of automation, including robots for the machine shop floor, apps, and entire manufacturing eco-systems - such as Pro Shop ERP. Paul shares that his company grew out of the need to solve the problems they faced as a start-up. No one offered the software they needed to automate their systems so that they could stay on top of their game and grow with their clients. Pro Shop ERP is the result of Paul’s team’s hard work and innovation. They wanted a way to tie all the details of their business together into one, centralized system. Paul encourages listeners to not be overwhelmed by the nuances of launching an automated system but to rather focus on the big picture: making chips so that you can make more money. 

Why Excel simply doesn’t cut it anymore 

In every small business, there are going to be people who wear too many hats. Inefficiency isn’t something that growing manufacturing businesses can tolerate for long. Miscommunication, confusion, and extended lead time can all be results of outdated processes and the struggle of having to do everything manually - from customer onboarding to running machinery. It’s easy to get caught up in the everyday chaos and not realize what could be easily solved through automation. Excel isn’t always going to cut it for logging your processes and keeping track of customer information and accounting. Before Pro Shop ERP, there was automating software to help with the accounting side of business, but there wasn’t anything that was built from the shop floor perspective. Pro Shop ERP offers that perspective in an automated format so that you can focus on what’s important to the growth of your business. 

Streamline everything from redundancy to your vendor supply scores

There are so many details to consider when running a manufacturing business, and tools like Pro Shop ERP help take the busywork out of the picture. Jim shares the improvements made to his company through the implementation of automation. 

  • Redundancy: Jim explains that with an automated, centralized system, everyone knows where to find the native processes for different operations. Pro Shop is the one-stop shop to everything everyone in his team needs to know about any job within the company and any order a customer has placed. Jim can go find exactly what order was placed, who took it, what tools were used to make it, when it was delivered, how much it cost his company, and what types of inspections were required by the customer. Before, it took him hundreds of manual steps to fulfill an order. Now, everything is automated. 
  • Vendor Supply Scores: Trying to log and remember which customer was excellent to work with and which ones weren’t can be time-consuming. Jim share that Pro Shop has enabled his company to automatically keep track of everything involving a specific vendor - from packaging to delivery and quality. Paul reminds listeners that while the system is automated, you CAN adjust all the settings and data manually. You define the details of all your processes. 
  • Customer Information: Customer requirements, credit approval, financial information, preferences, and contact information are all logged by Pro Shop. Jim shares that this automation has saved him and his team incredible amounts of time. The automated system processes the details of how each customer wants each order completed - all the way down to whether the customer wants the paperwork for an order on the outside of the box or inside of it upon delivery. 

Create greater impact by applying Pro Shop ERP to your sales processes 

You can automate your sales process as well as your manufacturing processes. Jim shares that he uses Pro Shop even in the initial “interview” with new customers. Since quality communication is one of the pillars of Carr Machine & Tool, Jim likes to show new customers how well Pro Shop allows them to communicate as a team - both internally as a company and externally with their customers. He can also establish trust and openness by showing new customers the automated breakdown of pricing with Pro Shop so that there is no guesswork when it comes to quoting a price. 

While there is a good bit of front-end work with uploading and customizing all of the data for an automated system, the end-product is invaluable to the efficiency of your manufacturing business. 

Here’s The Good Stuff!

  • The importance of a consistent routine to help you decompress for the night. 
  • Automating your manufacturing business through a robust ERP system. 
  • Manufacturing News: Don’t fear the recession. 
  • Pro Shop ERP was born out of solving its own problems. 
  • The fears surrounding beginning the business automation process. 
  • Clearing up communication and creating a centralized system. 
  • Jim shares improvements made to his company through Pro Shop ERP. 
  • Implementing Pro Shop into your sales process.
  • Putting in the initial work with automation is well worth it. 

Tools & Takeaways

This Week’s Superstar Guest: Paul Van Metre

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