Siderise, established in Surrey in 1972, comprises two quite separate businesses: Siderise Insulation, based in South Wales, which designs and manufactures insulation products for the construction industry; and Siderise Special Products, based in Suffolk, which manufactures acoustic insulation products for a wide range of industries – automotive, marine, rail and general industrial applications.
In early 2016, the company had begun implementing a new ERP system, comprising a CRM system and a combined manufacturing and finance system, linked by a ‘connector’ tasked with keeping data common between the two systems.
At least, that was the idea, says Siderise’s Group Head of IT, John McLoughlin: in practice, the reality was often rather different.
“You couldn’t really look at an enquiry in the CRM system, and then click through to the manufacturing and finance system to view the resulting order,” he explains. “So we didn’t have the end-to-end visibility that we wanted. And, although the manufacturing and finance system was supposed to be one single system, it was really two separate systems.”