E-MAX CASE STUDY

QA Weld Tech

Becoming a leaner, more agile company

Summary

After a strategic business review, QA Weld Tech, a leading provider of integrated welding and engineering services to the oil and gas and petrochemical industries worldwide, were looking to improve their in-house information gathering and storage. Having identified that multiple Excel spreadsheets and Access databases across different departments were no longer sufficient to support the company’s growth, the management team sought a solution to enable them to bring all of QA Weld Tech’s data into one place. In an increasingly challenging economic environment, their objective was to use this information to make process improvements and create a more efficient company.

E-Max Systems were brought on board to provide a solution with their ERP software. Since implementing E-Max in 2012, QA Weld Tech have seen significant improvements in:

  • Decision making
  • Provision of fast and meaningful data
  • Time-savings

all of which have led to numerous process improvements and improved production planning.

About the Client

QA Weld Tech is an award-winning specialist welding and engineering company based in Middlesbrough, UK. With a strong track record in delivering successful projects domestically and around the world, they provide complex fabrications for a variety of different industries, including Oil and Gas, Petrochemical, Nuclear and Power Generation sectors. Their reputation for providing a flexible and responsive service, with emphasis on quality, technical excellence and innovation, has attracted a long list of clients, including household names such as Total, BP and Petrobras.

QA Weld Tech offer a number of services including specialist fabrication, welding engineering and CNC machining. Recently named by the London Stock Exchange Group as one of Britain’s 1000 Companies to Inspire, the QA Weld Tech team continue to take the company forward without losing sight of their core values of quality, safety and partnerships.

The Challenges

As QA Weld Tech continued to grow, it became apparent that relying on Excel spreadsheets and a simplistic Access database for information could not be a long-term solution. Data was being held in multiple different formats in various departments, with no easy way of obtaining meaningful information from that data. At a time when economic conditions meant that companies needed to be as competitive as possible, the lack of usable data was a significant problem.

Other key issues faced by QA Weld Tech at this stage were:

  • No data for measurement of key processes
  • Uncoordinated information across the company
  • The amount of time simple administrative tasks were taking

After a strategic review of the business in 2011, which resulted an expanded management team and new offices, the management team recognised that a centralised data source would also be required to support the company’s continued development.

“The flexibility of E-Max meant it was a perfect fit for our processes. E-Max is also very user-friendly and can be implemented successfully in stages.”

Adam Stockport, Planning & Assurance Manager, QA Weld Tech

The Solution

QA Weld Tech moved quickly to identify a solution to the above issues. The project team understood that implementing a new system would be a significant change so, prior to looking for a supplier, took the time to understand and define their processes. They then explored the market before selecting E-Max as their ERP system provider.

The information challenges faced by QA Weld Tech were resolved by the implementation of E-Max. Adam added “The key to our successful implementation was understanding what we wanted to achieve and how E-Max could accomplish that for us. Now we have data available when needed. Everyone can access information quickly and we can now make process improvements using this data.”

The Benefits

Through the key objective of centralising information, QA Weld Tech saw a number of additional benefits. Process improvements were the most critical aspect of this – by being able to identify and implement these quickly, the company was able to make significant savings in time and resource. In addition, E-Max enabled the production team to capture data to improve their production planning system, meaning less machine downtime.

The reporting and dashboard features provided by E-Max have also been a big hit. Easily customisable, these have made it much easier for employees to focus on specific information at particular times. In general, the information made available through E-Max software has made it possible for every member of staff to do their job effectively. This has been increasingly important over the last few years as QA Weld Tech has had to cope with a very challenging economic environment, not least the oil price correction in late 2014, meaning the focus on efficiency and process improvement has never been greater.

The Results

Since implementing E-Max in 2012, QA Weld Tech have seen significant improvements in:

  • Decision making
  • Provision of fast and meaningful data
  • Time-savings

Adam explained QA Weld Tech’s satisfaction with E-Max Systems as being down to a few key reasons:

“Because the software is so flexible, it is easily customizable and has given us the ability to capture information in a way that suits our specific processes. Plus, E-Max Systems has a good support system so we can confidently call on them whenever we want to make further changes for a specific project, knowing they will quickly provide a solution.”

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