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Material Management

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What is Material Management?

Material management is a key component of many business operations, especially those in the manufacturing sectors. At its most essential level, materials management involves overseeing and managing everything that is related to the materials used in a business or production process. This could include planning, handling, and coordinating raw or manufactured materials, up to tracking purchasing information, managing inventory, or overseeing production operations. Though it deals with the most basic components of an industrial process – the materials, the material management process can be complex, as it encompasses so many different areas and items within a business.

Effective Material Management

What are the components of effective material management? As those overseeing material management are responsible for planning, acquisition, receiving, and handling and storing materials, it is crucial for the material management team to be extremely organized. Whether an industrial facility is producing one product or hundreds, it is necessary to track, monitor, and report the data surrounding material management so that the correct operations are ensured, and appropriate business decisions can be made. Therefore, most industrial facilities have a material management system in place to track their materials and ensure a smooth production and workflow.

Features of Material Management Systems

Many of the systems in use today deploy advanced technology that can identify and track materials within the physical space of a facility, calculate which raw materials are needed for which processing run (and how much), and ensure effective and optimized use of materials to reduce waste. In advanced facilities, the material management system is connected to the ERP system, to enable comprehensive data tracking and management. Systems should be able to identify and track the material that’s needed at the right time, at the right amount and price, at the correct quality, and from the optimal source. This way, the system directly contributes to an optimized material management workflow.

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Benefits of Material Management

Leading industrial businesses today use material management as a key factor in their overall business management strategy. Many material management systems include the capacity for material requirements planning, which is a real-time material management system used to calculate all materials and components needed to produce goods in a manufacturing facility in the most efficient way possible.

Production material management can help cut costs by optimizing inventory delivery and handling, and can also help increase manufacturing efficiency. Without the ability to track and measure exactly what’s being used, when, and how, a manufacturing facility is not operating at its most efficient capability. A proper material management system in place is key to making sure all materials are handled and tracked in the most optimized manner. 

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