Genius covers every aspect of a manufacturing plant — from engineering to cash — and helps manufacturers be more efficient and improve their throughput. In addition to their software system, the company also provides implementation services, professional services, and field expertise. Interview with Jean Magny, President at Genius Solutions. Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company? Jean Magny: We specialize in working with small- to mid-sized custom manufacturers that create unique and complex products. We developed our software tool to meet the distinct needs of make-to-order, configure-to-order, assemble-to-order, engineer-to-order and contract manufacturers. Our ERP system — that we completely built in-house — has industry-leading features that help manufacturers automate their processes and reduce their costs. Our entire team is made up of manufacturing experts and we work very closely with our manufacturers to ensure that they have everything they need to improve their operations. E.E: What’s the news about new products? J.M: Though we are new to the European market, we have been around for over 30 years and are strongly established in North America. We are now on version 14 of our ERP system and we are excited about the new features we have added. We now have more mobile features, that allow manufacturers to track jobs on phones and tablets. We have also recently introduced a full field services package making it easy to manage off-site projects and jobs. We also recently developed an industry-leading online training system that allows manufacturers to implement our system more efficiently and improve skills and processes. This has made our system more remote wrok-friendly which has been really helpful over the past couple of years. E.E: What are the ranges of products? J.M: We are a complete ERP system and have features and modules that cover everything a custom manufacture needs. Our product includes accounting, product engineering, inventory management, project management, production planning, quality control, business analytics, a complete CRM system — and much more. If you can name it, we probably have a module, tool, or feature for it! Many of the manufacturers we work with are in the equipment and machinery industry, transportation industry, or the tanks and pressure vessel industry, so we have aligned our system to work closely with manufacturers in those industries. With Genius ERP, manufacturers can automate time-consuming steps, quote for more jobs, estimate with greater accuracy, reduce bottlenecks on the shop floor and connect historical data to upcoming runs to optimize production. E.E: What can you tell us about market trends? J.M: The past two years have been challenging, but we really have seen a lot of growth and strong returns in the manufacturing industry at this time. While supply chains have been stretched — and will continue to be problematic in 2022 — I think the manufacturing sector will continue to have a strong outlook. Automation has been key in helping manufacturers face challenges and improve their operations, and I think this trend will only continue to be more important over the next few years. ERP software plays a vital role in manufacturing automation, so I see the investment in ERP and other software solutions to continue to be strong. For example, by helping to streamline purchasing processes and improving communication with outsourcing partners and suppliers, ERPs have helped manufacturers manage strained supply chains over the past year. ERPs provide manufacturers with a holistic, consolidated view of their entire operation (including supply chains) and give manufacturers a solid foundation on which to build a ‘smarter’ plant for the future. E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed? J.M: One of our most innovative features is our CAD2BOM system which allows manufacturers to turn Solidworks or Inventor models into a fully itemized, complex BOM — with a single click. The engineering department, especially within ETO manufacturing environments, is one of the most critical departments in a manufacturing shop. Highly customized work means a lot of engineering time is needed on every order that passes through these types of shops. But often, even manufacturing-specific ERPs fail to meet their specialized needs. In a typical shop, transferring BOMs out of a CAD system and into an ERP may take up to 20% of total engineering time. But Genius ERP’s CAD2BOM system can automate this. Our CAD2BOM feature can directly transfer a BOM from a CAD program into Genius ERP. Plus Genius makes it easy to manage complex BOMs, letting you edit and manage an imported BOM with ease, plus you can add the required layers of detail that you need. Jean Magny Our Smart Scheduling system is also the only DBR (Drum-Buffer-Rope) scheduling system included in an ERP system. The complex nature of custom manufacturing — never building the same thing twice — creates many scheduling problems. Our scheduling system is based on Eli Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints. It allows manufacturers to identify the most limited resource in their shop, and then automatically generates a schedule around this resource. What this means is that custom manufacturers can actually have an accurate, reliable, prioritized, and easy-to-follow schedule. We have really seen an improvement in shops that have started to use this system. E.E: What estimations do you have for 2022? J.M: While 2022 will probably be a more challenging year than any of us hoped for, we do believe that manufacturers will continue to see growth. Custom manufacturers especially have seen demand for their products increase. Consumers want customized products which means manufacturers need sophisticated software systems that help them meet these needs. I think manufacturers will continue to invest in software to optimize production and meet consumer demand.