Case Study: Rayloc

The Autumn 2017 issue of The Record features a case study on Rayloc. The full-length article is as follows:

Making data available to everyone

By implementing technology from Bluestar PLM, engineering company Rayloc has made sure that the right data is now available to everyone in the company at the right time. This has led to fewer errors, improved efficiency and a faster time to market
Established in a small engineering workshop in Atlanta in the 1930s, Rayloc has grown to become one of the most widely known engineering, cataloguing, sourcing and distribution companies in the world.

Today it provides high quality, application-specific products such as brake pads, brake drums and bearings to the National Automotive Parts Association (NAPA) and its customers, using its wealth of expertise in global sourcing, engineering and distribution. This is supported by over 500 employees operating across Rayloc’s four distribution centres, multiple cross dock locations and its 750-piece private trucking fleet.

“Our remanufacturing roots created a technical core competency that enables us to engineer and source high-quality parts and programmes,” explains the company’s supply chain director Joe Stich.

“With an ISO-certified quality system and a culture for continuous improvement, we deliver real competitive advantage to NAPA in each of our product lines.”

But until recently, this competitive advantage was being marred by Rayloc’s disparate technology systems which were preventing it from meeting new expectations in terms of efficiency and visibility of data.
“Most of the challenges we faced as a company boiled down to us having multiple systems to manage different parts of the business,” Stich says. “Product design, engineering, quality documentation, procurement, production and finance were all separate and it was proving difficult to keep them in sync.”

With this in mind, the company turned to Bluestar PLM for help. “Bluestar PLM stood out with its seamless integration as an embedded module into Microsoft Dynamics AX,” Stich says. “Additionally, the integration into our 3D modelling software (Solidworks) and other Microsoft products such as the Office suite combined to make a very versatile tool.”

Following the implementation of the Bluestar PLM solution, Rayloc is benefiting from a raft of business benefits. “We have better data integrity, new visual aids for our production and quality departments, improved document retention which will help Rayloc through its ISO re-certification in 2017, improved revision history and future revision announcements that assist in product running changes,” Stich explains.

In fact, companywide data accessibility has improved significantly. “In the past, product data was shared manually using multiple different solutions,” Stich says. “Rayloc employees have quickly favoured Bluestar PLM because it acts as a one stop shop. All data – from development through to sales and marketing, customer service and quality assurance – can be found quickly and easily.”

And this is just the start. “Errors resulting from our bill of materials have reduced from 60% to below 10%,” Stich says. “The gap is closing every audit.”

“Errors resulting from our bill of materials have reduced from 60% to below 10%,” Stich says. “The gap is closing every audit.”

What’s more, production line efficiency has increased by 15%. “This is because equipment setup and other product attributes were not readily available before. Now it is easier to create different products.”
As a result, the company expects to shave months off its time to market. “Although we are still in the process of measuring the entire time to market, through the first 75% of our process we are seeing tasks completed 20% sooner, while also having the accountability of who is working on each task and gathering key information from other departments all within a single Bluestar workflow,” Stich says.

Rayloc also expects to experience cost savings by the end of the year when it is able to shut down two separate servers that will greatly reduce its IT maintenance. The company’s plans for the future don’t end here. “We want to get the quality management system module up and running and to allow our global team access to our information,” Stich says.

We couldn’t have done any of this without Bluestar PLM.”

“Additionally, we would like to get our laboratory testing data into Bluestar PLM in such a way that we can ensure all test protocols have been completed and then to report on the best in class designs. Similarly for laboratory testing data, we are currently inputting our Production Part Approval Process (PPAP) documentation to make sure we have all the necessary info before placing orders.”

“Overall, now that we have access to great detailed information, we have identified many opportunities for improvement. This is guiding some of our key initiatives for the year ahead. We couldn’t have done any of this without Bluestar PLM.

 

About Rayloc:
For more information please visit :
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Source:
The record, Issue : Autumn 2017, page 100-101.
(http://digital.tudor-rose.co.uk/therecord/issue06/#100)

 

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Single product: CAD/ERP LINK for SOLIDWORKS

TODAY’S CHALLENGE

When CAD and ERP users work independently in detached systems, they are forced to perform the time-consuming task of manually re-keying product data, ultimately resulting in costly errors and redundant product data. As a result, inaccurate data is likely to be used within the system, leading to costly errors and collaboration complications. Even if data inconsistencies between CAD and ERP are discovered in time, users will still need to allocate some of their valuable time to double-checking data and fixing such errors.

PDM technology is excited to introduce our latest product development: CAD/ERP LINK – a distinct product that enables CAD and ERP users to join forces by working together in a unified solution.

The functionalities of CAD/ERP LINK have been an important part of the core product, BLUESTAR PLM, for over a decade. We saw the need for a light-weight solution which is easy to implement and that eases the implementation and installation of BLUESTAR PLM later on, in line with company growth. CAD/ERP LINK is ready-to-go after a quick and easy installation, and features short and to-the point training sessions.

SOLIDWORKS CAD/ERP LINK is an easy-to-use data integration system available for Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations & Dynamics AX (ERP) and the SOLIDWORKS CAD system.

SOLIDWORKS is a leading 3D CAD system with more than two million engineers and designers.

MICROSOFT DYNAMICS 365 FOR FINANCE AND OPERATIONS is a Microsoft enterprise resource planning (ERP) system for medium to large organisations. The software, part of the Dynamics 365 product line. (D365fO)

By providing a real-time link between users’ SOLIDWORKS and Microsoft Dynamics systems, CAD/ERP LINK virtually eliminates manual data entry. This mitigates errors and discrepancies in your data, thereby saving you time, reducing costs, and increasing productivity.

CAD/ERP LINK enables SOLIDWORKS users to seamlessly share their design documents and data with downstream ERP users who need it for purchasing, manufacturing, and other related activities. In return, SOLIDWORKS users are granted access to valuable transaction data from ERP, such as prices, on-hand quantities, and lead times. Through this access, logistical considerations, such as price, quality and operational experience, are easily incorporated into product designs.

This bi-directional exchange of information rids the organization of redundant data entry and fragmented data, while simultaneously strengthening data integrity. Integrating the design department with the rest of the organization improves collaboration, increases productivity, and accelerates the design to manufacturing process.

What makes CAD/ERP LINK Unique?

  • One solution for the everyone (D365fO) Engineering & Operations
  • Easy access to data for Engineering & Operations
  • Developed for Dynamics 365 for Operations & AX based platform
  • Embedded in SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD native interface
  • Seamless and bidirectional transfer of CAD & ERP data

Take a look at the Product sheet here.

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Innovative Thinking – Breaking Boundaries

The Summer 2017 issue of The Record features an article that highlights several important viewpoints from different representatives in the manufacturing business about Innovative Thinking. In this piece, Bluestar PLM’s Dan Fite contributes to this discussion.

VIEWPOINT

Breaking Boundaries

Bluestar PLM’s Dan Fite explains why becoming an innovative company is vital in the modern market

Today, fast innovation is essential to all companies in the global economy. But the speed of innovation is dependent on having easy access to data and information. Companies must break down the boundaries between independent and disparate departmental systems. To have an efficient innovation process, it is essential to have easy access to reliable data and information across the organisation. Data is typically widespread across a company and located in many different systems, and comprises information about markets, engineering, manufacturing, quality and maintenance. Having a single solution which can deliver the required information on time is becoming a top priority. The Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform is proving to be a strong, reliable platform for this. Bluestar PLM on the Microsoft Dynamics 365 technology stack brings engineering into Dynamics 365. All the required data around 3D models, computer aided design integrations, virtual reality, product change management and engineering quality management is now easily accessible on the product lifecycle management (PLM) system and can be harnessed accordingly. Bluestar takes engineering data and allows it to be used across all departments within an organisation. From design to the retirement of a product, this offers a complete PLM system in a single solution.

Dan Fite is director of business development at Bluestar PLM by PDM technology.

Source: The Record, Issue 5: Summer 2017, page 76-80. (http://digital.tudor-rose.co.uk/therecord/issue05/#80)

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Bluestar PLM – The Engineering Solution for Dynamics 365

Bluestar PLM inside Dynamics 365

The Evolution of Microsoft Dynamics

The new Microsoft Dynamics is here, and so is the new and improved Bluestar PLM solution. Microsoft Dynamics 365 combines ERP and CRM solutions (AX, GP, and CRM) into a single, cloud-based solution. The previous version, Dynamics AX, is now a part of Dynamics 365 Enterprise Edition, which consists of 6 integrated modules. The Bluestar PLM application now exists as a part of the Dynamics 365 for Operations module. The Bluestar team is thrilled that Microsoft has shifted focus to a cloud-based solution suite that is readily available to all.

Bluestar PLM in the Cloud

Bluestar PLM has evolved right alongside Microsoft since the very beginning. As one of the first movers, Bluestar PLM for AX7 has been on the market since Dynamics AX7 was first released. Since AX7 was already a cloud-based solution, equipped for the next AX transformation, Bluestar PLM is already optimized for the Dynamics 365 release. As a fully functional Dynamics 365-embedded solution, Bluestar PLM is the Engineering Solution for Dynamics 365. Our solution is the missing link between engineering and operations, and as a part of Dynamics 365 for Operations users can now work smarter with connected operations in the cloud.

Bluestar PLM is also available as a stand-alone license, which means that users can now get the solution unattached to ERP systems for use as an independent PLM solution.

For more information, be sure to check out Bluestar PLM on AppSource

Register for a Live Demo!

Sign up for a webinar here and we will show you all the features of Bluestar PLM in Dynamics 365.

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