Plex Systems today announced its manufacturing operations capabilities are now available as a best-of-breed shop floor-specific offering called the Plex Manufacturing Execution Suite (Plex MES). This cloud-based suite is comprised of packages that satisfy the spectrum of smart manufacturing needs from MES to manufacturing operations management (MOM).
“Plex allowed us to quickly standardize our systems and processes across eight facilities globally, helping the company record production and quality checks in real-time,” said Jennifer McIntosh, ERP Manager of Gill Industries, a world-class supplier of advanced mechanisms and welded assemblies. “With the entire company now working from a single system of record, we are able to leverage MES capabilities to continuously improve our quality standards and optimize processes while reallocating our staff to focus on value-added business activities instead of system and server maintenance.”
Plex MES: A Best-of-Breed Shop Floor Solution
Plex MES draws on the company’s expertise as a unified cloud ERP and MES solutions provider and offers a right-sized solution ideal for companies committed to an enterprise business system while looking to optimize their manufacturing operations. Plex MES is designed to seamlessly connect insights from the shop floor up to the top floor, enabling production to deliver relevant real-time, operational information to key roles throughout the organization and empowering everyone to make better business decisions.
“As traditional manufacturing execution systems (MES) are maturing, it is great to see Plex launching a fully cloud-based solution that makes a multi-site rollout a practical proposition in industrial transformation programs,” said Andrew Hughes, principal analyst with LNS Research. “With edge connectivity in the plants and native cloud integration, scalability—long an Achilles heel of MES deployment—will be achievable with lower risk and cost.”
Plex MES gives manufacturers access to key capabilities required for smart manufacturing, including:
- Error-proofed control: Choreographed production processes are driven directly from the quality control plan to shorten cycle times and improve efficiency. A unique operator control panel is paperless and easy-to-use, allowing for increased productivity and fewer manual input errors. In-line quality control governs quality activities to ensure check sheet compliance, and real-time production reporting allows for real-time decisions.
- High-resolution visibility: The full production lifecycle—from raw materials through finished goods—is accessible from anywhere on any connected device. Operations are monitored in real-time, delivering manufacturing intelligence for more accurate decision-making. Compliance risk is mitigated through database-driven traceability information, while increased visibility to asset performance creates more opportunities for continuous improvement.
- Seamless connectivity: Flexible, configurable cloud MES is connected by design. It is easy to deploy and standardize enterprise-wide while connecting to enterprise systems like a corporate ERP. Edge connectivity to industrial automation ensures at-rate production recording to Plex MES in the cloud. The Plex MES solution is fully unified, reducing the risk of disruptions common with an MES comprised of multiple point-solutions.
“There is an underserved need among large organizations to tap into the invaluable data generated in plants around the world,” said Bill Berutti, CEO of Plex Systems. “Plex MES answers that need by consolidating our 20 years of manufacturing expertise into a highly targeted smart manufacturing solution that enables operational visibility, transparency, and accuracy, helping manufacturers standardize operations across multiple plants.”
According to the 2019 Magic Quadrant for Manufacturing Execution Systems report,1 “By 2024, 50% of MES solutions will include industrial IoT (IIoT) platforms synchronized with microservices-based manufacturing operations management (MOM) apps, providing near-real-time transaction management, control, data collection and analytics.”
Plex Industrial IoT, released in May 2019, enables manufacturers to connect down to the shop floor, simplifying the ability to collect, contextualize, and respond in real-time to operational data to improve efficiencies, effectiveness, and ensure uptime. Industrial IoT is designed to complement Plex ERP and MES solutions by adding another layer of capabilities and insights.
Plex Systems was recently recognized by Gartner as a Challenger in the 2019 Magic Quadrant for Manufacturing Execution Systems.1 For this report, Gartner evaluates vendors on their Completeness of Vision and Ability to Execute. Plex is positioned furthest for Completeness of Vision in the Challengers quadrant and has improved its position on Ability to Execute compared to the previous year.