Headquartered in Atlanta, GA, Aptean provides customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), and supply chain software applications to more than 5,000 customers. The privately held company is owned by Vista Equity Partners and was established in 2012.
Aptean sets out to help businesses profit, innovate, and grow areas such as call centers, factory floors, and at the end of the assembly line.
Connect for Success
At its user forum, Aptean Edge 2014, the company launched its Process Manufacturing solution suite. It is designed to seamlessly connect the company’s Ross ERP Factory Manufacturing Execution System (MES) and Pivotal CRM solutions, enabling all products to share operations data and holistically complement each other when customers execute process manufacturing decisions. Perhaps most noteworthy is the suite’s ability to provide process manufacturers with a single view of operations, inventory, and financial data.
Jennifer Sherman, SVP, product management, Aptean, points to a couple of areas where Aptean differentiates itself from the competition. “First, we have a focused set of capabilities at the core of the solution versus a generic, one-size-fits-all approach,” she explains. “For example, Aptean had decades of dedicated process manufacturing focus with ERP and MES products, and these functions deliver core functionality to our process manufacturing solution. So, when process manufacturers dealing with recipe and formula management are looking for solutions that address their specific needs—lot and batch traceability, overall equipment effectiveness, and enabling multiple units of measure like catch weight and potency—they can rest assured knowing that these factors and knowledge are baked into our solution.”
Second, she says that the company delivers specific process manufacturing capabilities with CRM and business intelligence, rather than forcing customers to accept generic solutions. “We deliver an order to cash integration so that sales automation and production information are linked, and data is shared between them.”
Analytics are powered by QlikTech’s QlikView and provides an out of-the-box set of dashboards specific to process manufacturing needs, while also enabling simple role-specific dashboard tailoring on the fly.
“Any user, from an executive to a sales user to a plant floor user, has the ability to find the data they need easily and quickly, presented in a way that is easy to interpret. This capability enables users to take action as needed to improve their business,” states Sherman.
While Aptean has had its products successfully working together for process manufacturers for a number of years, the latest solution suite leverages its time-tested and robust products and adds new applications focused on process manufacturing. “These additions include recent product developments that add specific process manufacturing dashboards and focused, out-of-the-box capabilities. This ensures that the right data is shared, the corresponding data files are automatically populated within the enterprise, and that the data is presented in a simple and digestible manner using intuitive and flexible analytics,” says Sherman.
These capabilities, coupled with newly enhanced integrations and automations between Aptean products provide process manufacturers with expanded toolsets. These toolsets enable increased efficiency, better visibility, and lower costs by linking CRM, ERP, and MES data sharing within a production environment.
Real-time data sharing between products allows processes, such as generating proposals and executing job production, to become highly automated while reducing errors, ensuring proper costing, and saving time.
Broad User Base
Aptean Process Manufacturing focuses on several key vertical markets, with an install base of customers from The Cheesecake Factory to Citizen’s bank, it targets industries including food and beverage, chemicals, life sciences, natural products, and consumer packaged goods. The company has served these markets for years and has continuously built customer functionally needs into its products to enable alignment between its solutions and industry needs.
“Within any given vertical, a key advantage of the Aptean Process Manufacturing solution is that it provides capabilities for a wide swath of users and roles,” explains Sherman. “At the product level, for example, ERP provides reporting and tools to production mangers, procurement teams, and executives.”
Another example is MES, which Sherman says provides data pertinent to factory managers and workers for measuring improvement and efficiency easily and quickly.
Aptean Analytics further complements the overall solution by providing a series of process manufacturing specific dashboards. “This set of dashboards includes data dashboard views specific to sales and finance for viewing and analyzing overall P&L, finance trends, customer and product sales analysis, and sales pipeline,” says Sherman.
For production workers, specific dashboards exist for product yield OEE, inventory position, and additional product detail. “These BI dashboards combined with the inherent capabilities of each unique Aptean product enable varying levels of users to access the data they need in a manner that fits their requirements,” she adds.
The announcement of Aptean’s Process Manufacturing Solution Suite adds to the company’s capabilities for serving its base of more than 5,000 users. In addition to the latest critical connectivity between products, the launch adds additional analytic capabilities as well as the Aptean Business Platform and sales force automation tools. SW
Jul2014, Software Magazine