The decision to choose one ERP system over another is a difficult one for manufacturers to make. The evaluation process is extensive and requires juggling a business’ unique requirements, a product’s specialized offerings, the partner relationship, and so much more. Here’s how one of our customers weighed the pros and cons of Epicor versus IQMS to make their final selection in favor of the former.

Epicor Versus IQMS

We asked Metaphase Technologies’ President Kevin High three questions regarding how Metaphase reached their ultimate decision to implement Epicor ERP with Encompass Solutions as their manufacturing technology partner. Three questions of Epicor versus IQMS made it clear which of the two was a better fit for their organization.

an image of epicor versus IQMS as chosen by metaphase technologies

What were the perceived shortcomings of IQMS?

IQMS is great for manufacturers who are in the business of running high volume products. It is not flexible for companies who, like ourselves, have a high number of skews and produce low volume. Because of the nature of IQMS, we were not able to fully implement and utilize it for the reasons we liked it. Our employees also did not find it so user-friendly. It was rather ugly out-of-the-box and required a lot of customization that was beyond our scope. We simply did not have the funds at the time to throw into customizing it.

What criteria informed your decision to select Epicor as a replacement?

We were attracted to Epicor because of the simplicity of it for our users. There are a lot of drop-down options for our users to select from when they’re on a screen which simplifies a lot of the job on the floor. Things flow nicely from sales order to shipping. A couple of our top reasons for choosing Epicor was the integrated shipping module (Manifest – which integrates UPS, FEDEX, and DHL into Epicor) and also the integration to our Engineering programs (CadLink).

Are you satisfied with the implementation and functionality of Epicor?

Implementation is a long process. We used a third party (Encompass) to help us integrate which definitely helped me, as PM of the implementation. Epicor is so simple for the users since the data is selectable but that also means A LOT of data needs to be loaded and it requires quite a bit of set up before users can use it smoothly. Once that data is in there, the functionality of Epicor is great when everything in the process is perfect for that order.

Depending on the business, Epicor requires a lot of custom reporting.  If you have an internal resource who is able to do report writing for you then that would be helpful.

Lastly, I have no IT background but I have been able to learn how to customize screens and create queries in Epicor to pull specific data our company is looking for. Which means almost anybody else should be able to learn too. This is a huge plus!

Overall, I’m happy we went with Epicor but we just need to finish getting all of our ducks in a row before we get the rest of operations fully integrated into the software. I’m happy with the functionality of it since it is extremely customizable.

The One downfall: they don’t have a robust CRM for Sales.

About Metaphase Technologies

For more than two decades, Metaphase Technologies has been developing products that advance “The Quality of Light” through the engineering and manufacture of uniform diffuse high brightness and ultra brightness LED illuminators. Metaphase’s illuminators are specially designed for applications in machine vision, military, and specialty lighting. Metaphase boasts expertise in engineering flexible lighting solutions for ease of integration into vision systems design. The company’s LED illuminators are currently utilized in thousands of applications throughout the world, including vision-guided robotics, automation systems, line scan inspection units, and many others across the machine vision industry.

Metaphase Technologies Selects Encompass Solutions For Epicor ERP Implementation

As the first to standardize built-in constant current drivers, Metaphase continues to synergize cutting-edge machine vision LED lighting & control technologies in an effort to simplify innovation and increase customer return on investment.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions, Inc. is an ERP consulting firm, NetSuite Solution Provider, Suite Success Partner, and Epicor Gold Partner that offers professional services in business consulting, project management, and software implementation. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems or addressing the emerging challenges in corporate and operational growth, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. As experts in identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.

 


In an effort to scale operations alongside the company’s recently enjoyed growth, Metaphase has contracted the services of Encompass Solutions to implement Epicor ERP, train staff, and support operations through Go-Live and beyond. With the project plan finalized, implementation, testing, and user training are projected to be completed by the end of this year. Find out why Metaphase chose Encompass Solutions to implement their ERP solution in our interview with Metaphase President Kevin High, here.

The Project

Metaphase Technologies Inc. is a leading manufacturer of machine vision and specialty LED lighting.  They develop products that advance “The Quality of Light” through engineering and manufacturing of LED illuminators for machine vision, military, and specialty lighting applications.  Because Metaphase is projecting another year of 20% growth, they require a system that supports their growth without the necessity of increasing their labor force.

The Challenge

Currently, Metaphase Technologies operates on IQMS ERP and are looking to replace the system due to its labor-intensive nature.  Most of Metaphase Technologies’ production is manual, but it is necessary to scan in and out of those processes on the shop floor.  Quality is critical to their business; and therefore, quality checks are performed when materials are received, during the manufacturing process, and prior to shipping. Because Metaphase Technologies ships their products globally, multi-language support is essential. Additionally, the ability to price for shipping companies, integrate UPS and FedEx into the system for customer information, and maintain the applicable rates in real-time is essential to the project’s success.

The Goals

Metaphase Technologies will be implementing their Epicor ERP solution with the following goals in mind:

  • Efficiently managing global business operations
  • Providing better information to make more informed decisions
  • Supporting Engineer-to-Order Manufacturing (ETO)
  • Providing visibility to manage and track costs to measure and improve profitability
  • Supporting traceability requirements for warranties and material tracking
  • Growing revenue and profitability

The Metaphase Technologies’ team will be taking advantage of this project to review and update business processes, while leveraging standard software capabilities whenever possible. Additionally, there is a desire to streamline ETO processes through the use of technology.

About Metaphase Technologies

For more than two decades, Metaphase Technologies has been developing products that advance “The Quality of Light” through the engineering and manufacture of uniform diffuse high brightness and ultra brightness LED illuminators. Metaphase’s illuminators are specially designed for applications in machine vision, military, and specialty lighting. Metaphase boasts expertise in engineering flexible lighting solutions for ease of integration into vision systems design. The company’s LED illuminators are currently utilized in thousands of applications throughout the world, including vision-guided robotics, automation systems, line scan inspection units, and many others across the machine vision industry.

Metaphase Technologies Selects Encompass Solutions For Epicor ERP Implementation

As the first to standardize built-in constant current drivers, Metaphase continues to synergize cutting-edge machine vision LED lighting & control technologies in an effort to simplify innovation and increase customer return on investment.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers and Distributors. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.