10 Mar What is MES Software? Some Important Benefits and Details

Posted at : March 10,2021 in Blog by in Atachi Systems

What Is MES Software? Some Important Benefits and Details

The Hidden Factory – Not To Be Ignored:

The Hidden Factory refers to parts of a manufacturing process that decrease the quality or efficiency of operation -the mistakes, the rework, the waste – all the things that are kept hidden from the eyes of the customer. It is called the “hidden factory,” and it causes unseen profit leaks to companies every day of every year. 

  • These wasteful processes and work go unreported and undocumented and are dangerous to a company’s bottom line.
  • These factories are fueled by a dangerous attitude that the headaches and heartache caused by this Hidden Factory are surely worth it if the customer remains unaware and is ultimately happy with the product.
  • All too often these daily drains on resources are going unnoticed or are even accepted as part of the process itself.           

Of course, you care about lost time, money, and effort, but how are you supposed to correct something you can’t see?

MES- How It Exposes The Hidden Factory:

A modern Manufacturing Execution System (MES) captures data that can be analyzed to uncover flawed processes, providing insights that expose the hidden factory.


  • A flexible MES documents, tracks, and reports the time it takes to deal with events  When studied with a trained eye, these reports reveal what went right and what went wrong. 
  •  Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) deliver a number of long and short-term manufacturing benefits, as well as strategic benefits such as improved yields, lowering operating costs, and increased compliance.

What is MES?

According to MESA (Manufacturing Execution System Association International),

  • Manufacturing execution systems deliver information that enables the optimization of production activities from order launch to finished goods. 
  • Using current and accurate data, MES guides, initiates, responds to, and reports on plant activities as they occur. 
  • The resulting rapid response to changing conditions, coupled with a focus on reducing non-value-added activities, drives effective plant operations and processes. 
  • MES provides mission-critical information about production activities across the enterprise and supply chain via bidirectional communications.”
  • Manufacturing Execution Systems collect multiple plants’ production information and integrate easily with equipment, controllers, and enterprise business applications
  • Although MES solutions are used to operate as a self-contained system, they are increasingly being integrated with enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. 
  • The result is complete visibility, control, and manufacturing optimization – from the order placing, production inception, and process control to product output.

Why Do Companies Need A Manufacturing Execution System?

  • Many companies still enter data manually or share work instructions on paper. Most of them, however, know there is a better way to organize the mass of activity happening on the plant floor.
  • MES provides visibility to that activity as well as the underlying data, uses that data to improve how that activity is done and makes it repeatable. 
  • It connects multiple sites, integrates with equipment, and raises the effectiveness of business applications all to better optimize operations.
  • MES technology is helping manufacturers to reduce cycle times and achieve cost savings (production does not continue when critical issues are encountered), whereas the opportunity to improve planning activities is also resulting in improved utilization of equipment. 
  • These systems also automate many manual documentation tasks, thereby eliminating related deviations and achieving better compliance. They are also removing calculation and review tasks that ordinarily would require considerable manual effort.

How does the move towards web-based MES solutions making it easier to support production operations and real-time activities: 

  • HTML5 support now enables organizations to access MES across a range of digital devices, including tablets and smartphones, with ease. 
  • This makes it a lot easier to migrate manual processes to the electronic world as the need to deploy expensive infrastructures no longer exists; all is needed is a wireless network, which is often already in place. 
  • The device proliferation also simplifies real-time involvement in the process, making all parties aware of what is happening at any given time. 
  • Although planning needs to remain a cornerstone of GMP, being aware of issues as they occur provides a level of understanding that often cannot be achieved after the fact, thus leading to better decision making.
  • Although some manufacturers are still wary about the associated challenges that go together with implementing a new system, breaking the project down into phases, starting with the functionality that will provide the biggest return, can make the whole process much more approachable. 
  • Indeed, once the organization has created a success story and brought all its stakeholders on board, it’s easier to define the scope of the remaining areas.

The 3 Pillars of an MES:

  • Establishing a plan and staying on schedule

    The system takes your input – production shifts/times, production goals, etc. and calculates your TAKT time. Operators see real-time progress on dashboard graphics, knowing the progress at every moment.

  • Enforcing a repeatable process

    Knowing your process is being followed exactly as defined provides the ultimate peace of mind. Every step, from fastening to product routing, is nailed just as you defined it time after time.

  • Creating a rich data set:

    Capturing data is one thing; being able to act on that data is really the key to driving improvement initiatives. Use your business intelligence platform, explore your data set, and identify and solve your hidden inefficiencies.

All three of these MES pillars are used to help you reach productivity and quality goals by:

  • Solving production scheduling challenges
  • Discovering and sharing your best operators’ insights
  • Uncovering inefficiencies in your process and fixing them
  • Reducing the exhausting task of putting out fires
  • Establishing a continuous improvement philosophy
  • Increasing operator engagement and dedication

MES Is For All Industries:

  • Manufacturing execution systems (MES) are being used across industries, and are seen in a number of the discrete, batch, and continuous process manufacturing industries including semiconductor, aerospace, metals, plastics electronics, medical devices, automotive, pharmaceuticals, glass, and more
  • A Manufacturing Execution System (MES) with a configurable platform adapts to the users’ business without custom code, and has an open SOA architecture designed for ease of integration to enterprise applications and shop floor automation.

But Why Should Pharma And Biotech Companies Use An MES?

What is MES in pharma?

  • Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) enable pharmaceutical manufacturers to improve performance and reduce operational cost, while simultaneously increasing compliance with regulatory requirements.
  • MES digitizes your pharma and biotech production.  In today’s intense economic conditions, spiraling overheads are compelling manufacturers to optimize their production processes, leading to a demand for new approaches that can improve efficiency and better utilize expensive resources.
  • As the industry evolves and the complexity of managing drug manufacturing programs increases, MES technology has also advanced at considerable speed and come a long way in terms of functionality and flexibility.
  • MES solutions enable manufacturers to plan, direct, track and analyze every stage of their operations. 
  • Today, these systems provide real-time management capabilities, full support to replace paper documents with electronic documentation (electronic batch records [EBRs] and electronic logbooks [eLogbooks]), and seamless integration with enterprise resource planning (ERP) and automation systems.
  • They also offer compatibility with multiple plug-in applications, meaning they can accommodate the most complex workflows into their design while contributing new levels of adaptability through modularity and off-the-shelf configuration. 
  • MES technology is equipping manufacturers with comprehensive data to help with proper recipe management and electronic batch processing recording, reducing the risk of production issues and, most importantly, improving product quality. And they are an important prerequisite for digitization and Pharma 4.0.
  • At the highest level, MES needs integration between the ERP and shop floor automation.

What Is The MES System In SAP?

  • SAP maintains the record of materials, BOM, routings, and orders; the MES maintains the records/transactions such as WIP (work in progress). 
  • For implementing the MES, the consultant has to perform a detailed analysis of MES requirements such that they can be mapped with the manufacturing environment. 
  • The consultant has to perform the analysis of the integration with SAP PP since there is an overlap of functionality offered by SAP and MES software

Companies like Atachi Systems have worked with several top global pharma manufacturing companies who have used the other MES platforms and struggled to get the value out of these MES platforms; hence we call them legacy platforms. 

  • Atachi NGIMES platform has eliminated all the pain points that companies are struggling with legacy platforms. 
  • Their platform is the only MES solution entirely built on the SAP HANA platform that leverages Big Data analytics and AI, which need tomorrow’s business. 

Because of these reasons, Atachi systems have been listed as TOP Global MES platforms by several research firms in the last few years, repeatedly.

What are Atachi solutions offerings for Pharma 4.0?

  • They are helping the pharma manufacturers to get them on to the Pharma 4.0 journey and realize complete business agility (quickly and cost-effectively) for their customers with real-time insights. 
  • As part of their platform, they offer EBMR, logbooks, DMS, CAPA, IIOT, TMS, Supplier quality management, Real-time analytics, Mobility, big data, and AI at a single license cost. 
  • Users don’t need to pay separately for each functionality; everything comes as a single package in a USE-AS-NEEDED approach.

MES is a Holistic Solution:

MES isn’t a stop-gap, quick-fix, or miracle solution (although it can seem magical at times). It’s really a system for digitally transforming your entire facility’s manufacturing execution.

You need to explore how an MES implementation will influence your established processes and how those processes may change. That requires upfront thought about change management within your organization. MES software is powerful and dynamic, yet it needs everyone to be on board to make it effective.

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