3 Essentials to Global Manufacturing Excellence

MES/MOM XDI Excellence

3 MES/MOM Solutions for Manufacturing Excellence

In this article we are exploring three pivotal solutions for achieving manufacturing excellence through MES/MOM systems. At the core lies a robust, adaptable MOM Platform, essential for standardizing processes across various sites, encompassing production, warehouse, quality, maintenance, and labor activities. It delves into the establishment of a World Class Internal Center of Excellence, highlighting the significance of industry knowledge and best practices for successful multi-site deployments. We’ll also outline a Global Deployment Methodology, emphasizing the necessity of meticulous planning and the ability to replicate and deliver manufacturing processes across multiple sites, ensuring a flexible and efficient deployment model.

A firm foundation:

Enable a set of standardized processes that are easily created, updated and distributed across multiple sites you need a strong, yet flexible MOM Platform. The MOM Platform hosts a set of applications for manufacturing operations that manage production, warehouse, quality, maintenance and time & labor activities

A World Class Internal Center of Excellence:

Offering the necessary industry knowledge and best practices, both from a process and technology appreciation, for successful multi-site deployments

A Global Deployment Methodology:

Rolling out a global MOM, nothing happens by accident and meticulous planning and foresight are essential. Supporting multi-site implementations demands manufacturing processes that can be readily replicated and delivered to multiple sites simultaneously. The result is a deployment model with sufficient flexibility to easily update processes as often as needed.

Let’s dive in deeper:

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1. A firm foundation

A great MOM Solution operates like a true enterprise platform for Level 3 – manufacturing operations management.

They comprise the necessary technology foundation that enables manufacturers to easily develop, model, test and deploy standardized business processes to every site. Its flexibility ensures these processes can be easily changed – as often as necessary.

Your MOM needs to cover multiple sets of plant level capabilities, including:

  • production,
  • quality,
  • logistics,
  • maintenance
  • time & labor.

This set of capabilities can be deployed and managed across multiple sites, thereby ensuring the necessary visibility, control and synchronization to effectively manage plant operations on a global scale. Furthermore, systems interoperability enables business processes and workflows to span between other enterprise applications, such as PLM, ERP and SCM.

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2x CSFs: Agility & Standardization

2 Critical Success Factors are needed for a best-in-class MOM solution: global process agility and standardization.

Agility is vital as processes must often be changed to reflect differing plant product lines, new and local market conditions or continuous improvement initiatives. This means global MOM platforms must support both discrete and batch processing, as well as hybrid modes. It also means supporting the spectrum from repetitive manufacturing to Make-To-Order or Engineer-To-Order.

When selecting your platform, please ensure you have sufficient visibility and agility to deliver:

  • Flexibility to configure processes for different manufacturing models
  • Rich Bill of Materials/Process model for multi-level product structure and packaging requirements
  • Substitutions and by-products
  • Divergent and convergent manufacturing
  • Multi-level unit types (batch, serial, lot, bulk, pallet, container, license plates)

Meanwhile, standardization is essential to ensure consistent product quality and service delivery, regardless the geographical location. In order to address this essential capability, global MOM solutions must be capable of operating across sites, including the sharing of processes between locations, while operations data must be readily accessible from any process, function or site. Equally critical, local site time and language requirements must also be supported.

2. A World Class Internal Center of Excellence

When selecting your solution provider to implement any enterprise software solution, it is important to choose an organization that has had extensive experience with global solutions. At the same time, when implementing a MOM Platform, every manufacturer is different and there will be a need to customize the platform to fit your needs. Maintaining this, improving this and expanding with this, means building up your own internal capabilities – your Center of Excellence (COE).

Keeping it real!

Picking your flexible solution provider is an investment in your future. It’s not just delivering for the hear and now, but building for your long-term and helping to build your internal capabilities to take the solution forward. An inexperienced team from your solution provider, to manage such a deployment will undoubtedly result in project delays, underutilization of potential solution benefits as well as unnecessary costs as part of your deployment.

Don’t get starry eyed by the big brand solution provider!

It’s not how they look (their brand) or what they’ve done (case studies), it’s about who’s on your program and what they’ve personally done. Please, please interrogate the team being chosen to deliver your program. Interview them all and dig deep as to their experience.

Don’t accept the “B Team”.

3. A Global Deployment Methodology

Every global implementation of an enterprise IT system must be carefully planned and managed to ensure all objectives are met. Challenges often arise when delays occur while trying to achieve group consensus on final capabilities. Project managers must then balance the need to deploy the best possible solution while meeting stakeholder expectations.

These types of deployments typically include the following steps:

  • Assembling a project team (as I say, I’d want to see the team before awarding the project to a consulting organization)
  • Developing measurable goals, acceptance criteria, and test scenarios
  • Gathering requirements and documenting your business processes
  • Developing a project management plan
  • Creating a quality assurance and change management process
  • Educating your staff on the technology and transferring knowledge to your staff

Any Enterprise Application implementation frequently includes the demand for a “single version of the truth” – process and measurement consistency across operations. This means required changes to existing business processes.

A lack of understanding of needed process changes prior to starting implementation is the most common reason for project failure.

Adding further complexity, these types of installations are considerably more difficult (and politically charged) in decentralized organizations because of the existence of different processes, business rules, data semantics, authorization hierarchies and decision centers. This often requires the migration of some department before others, delaying implementation further to work through the necessary changes for each one, frequently reducing integration or customizing the system to meet specific needs.

These challenges apply when implementing an enterprise manufacturing IT system (to all sites), as these types of deployments are also de-centralized, with sites located all over the world.

Typically with these types of projects, everyone feels great when they begin to work at Plant 1, but issues can arise once work begins on Plant 2. New functionality or processes might be discovered that invalidates the premise that Plant 1’s footprint was the right template for the entire enterprise deployment. As new sites go live, this problem can be exacerbated into such a big issue that the entire deployment could be canceled.

The Global Solution / Template

A reflection on the previously discussed deployment challenge reveals two common issues that must be addressed in order for large organizations to achieve process consistency across their enterprise.

  1. The first is that IT infrastructures must enable agility by easing how processes are changed to eliminate concerns over “getting the first site right.”
  2. The second is ease of process “transportation” to other sites. Once a process improvement has been identified, manufacturing IT systems must then be capable of distributing the update quickly and easily to allow a more fluid set of business processes to be created, modified and continuously improved during and after implementation.

Establishing a “Core footprint” is a well-accepted procedure to install enterprise software, which involves identifying a set of business processes that are deemed “best in class,” and then implementing that set to each location.


Building your COE early on starts with your governance team. This team identifies and controls “best practices” and process standardization. This team considers how processes should be secured, changed and managed as well as when they should be rolled out to each of their manufacturing sites. The group has responsibility to ensure process standardization is important not only from a regulatory and risk management perspective, but also to ensure consistent product quality. The COE team should have representation from many disciplines, including manufacturing, finance, quality, engineering as well as an executive sponsor.


Once the initial starting point for the global template has been designed, accepted and signed-off, it is then time to implement processes within the MOM Solution, using its global platform capabilities. The key stages in moving along the path from an accepted initial model to the first deployment are the following:

  • Prototyping / The MVP
  • Plant sequencing
  • Rollout planning and set-up

Once established, the core deployment methodology allows manufacturers to bring plants online at a much faster pace than would otherwise be possible.

Keep an eye on the ROI

What gets measured, gets done!

By not starting each plant with a “clean sheet of paper” considerable cost savings are possible as more and more sites go live.

As each new site goes live, a new opportunity exists to learn more about what processes can further increase productivity and reduce waste. A good MOM Platform easily transports these learnings to any other plant, effectively expanding the cost benefits of implementing a new MOM solution.

Leveraging your evolving COE

After going through the process of rapid, standardized rollouts, a manufacturer now has in place the organizational framework necessary to support continuous improvement.

Regardless, once the first plant goes live, the importance of your COE becomes evermore apparent. It’s purpose – to oversee continuous deployment of standard processes, discovery and testing of improvements, and deployment of these improvements everywhere. The COE eventually becomes the owner of change, and the master of best practices spanning manufacturing operations world-wide.

Harvesting best practices managed by the COE for continuous improvement becomes a way of life.