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A Guide to Business Intelligence For Manufacturing

What do you know about business intelligence for manufacturing? And how is your company manufacturing business intelligence (BI), and using it to shape improved outcomes?

Business intelligence for manufacturing coincides with the rise of data-driven decision-making to optimize operations, improve product quality and reduce costs. It has become increasingly important in the industry.

In this article, we will explore tips for business intelligence for manufacturing, and how it can help yours thrive and succeed.

Business Intelligence for Manufacturing: Collect, Analyze, Optimize

By collecting data from multiple sources, manufacturers can gain a comprehensive view of their operations and make data-backed decisions to optimize efficiency and improve product quality. These sources include production lines, quality control systems, supply chain networks and customer feedback.

Leverage predictive analytics

Predictive analytics allows manufacturers to analyze data and identify patterns and trends that can be used to predict future outcomes. Its use encourages proactive decision-making that reduces costs and improves efficiency. For example, predictive analytics can be used to forecast demand and adjust production schedules accordingly.

Use data visualization tools

Data visualization tools are essential for making sense of large amounts of data. They can be displayed in an eyecatching format that is easy to digest and understand. Common tools include charts, graphs and dashboards that allow manufacturers to more readily identify trends and patterns prior to taking business actions.

Optimize Supply Chain

Supply chain optimization is a critical aspect of BI. By analyzing data from suppliers, logistics providers, and inventory management systems, supply chain operations can be optimized for improved delivery times, cost reductions and better efficiency.

Improve Product Quality

BI can help manufacturers improve product quality, as well as customer service. By collecting data from quality control systems and using predictive analytics, manufacturers can make decisions that reduce defects, amp up product quality and uncover potential issues. All before they reach the customer. Increased customer satisfaction and loyalty can in turn improve overall business performance!

Precision manufacturing at work

Precision manufacturing and advanced processes are other areas where BI can make a significant impact. Precision manufacturing involves producing products with high accuracy and consistency, while advanced processes involve using technologies such as robotics and automation to improve efficiency.
Business intelligence for manufacturing can importantly help achieve such processes by monitoring and analyzing the right data, as well as identifying opportunities to improve accuracy, efficiency and overall consistency, too.

BI: Integration, Scalability

BI can help manufacturers monitor quality metrics, identify inefficiencies and other areas of improvement, optimize supply chain operations and production schedules, reduce waste, analyze customer feedback, and much more. It is used across a range of industries in manufacturing from the food and beverage, automotive and pharmaceutical sectors to electronics, aerospace and many others.

When manufacturing business intelligence via the implementation of business intelligence software for manufacturing, there are key factors to consider, including:

Integration with existing systems: Business intelligence software should be able to integrate with existing systems, such as ERP and MES, to provide a comprehensive view of operations.

Ease of use: The software should be easy to use and intuitive, with a user-friendly interface that allows manufacturers to quickly analyze and visualize data.

Scalability: The software should be scalable to meet the needs of growing manufacturing businesses, with the ability to handle large amounts of data and provide real-time insights.

Security: The software should be secure and comply with industry standards for data protection and privacy.


In summary, manufacturing business intelligence is worth looking into for those seeking more efficiency, lower costs and improvements to product quality. When implementing BI software, manufacturers should consider factors such as integration, ease of use, scalability and security to ensure a successful implementation.

At the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association (IMA), we hope to be a resource and provide even more dynamic information on the subject of BI for manufacturing, alongside other areas of manufacturing business operations, growth and development. With the right tools and strategies in place, manufacturers can leverage solutions to achieve their goals and drive growth. Contact us to learn more.