Some manufacturers are hesitant to adopt new software because of the cost. But these companies fail to recognize how much their existing software is costing.

Outdated legacy SPC systems require ongoing investments in hardware and maintenance. But these inefficient systems also inhibit companies from becoming more cost-efficient. Without real-time digital tools, it’s difficult for manufacturers to optimize processes, reduce costs and risk, and improve compliance.

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Cloud-based SPC solutions reduce overall costs associated with quality management through:

  • Scalable licensing to match your use
  • Eliminating capital investments in hardware
  • Built-in security
  • Automatic updates requiring no IT maintenance

It’s clear that overhauling legacy SPC systems will help manufacturers’ bottom lines—now and in the future.

Pay For What You Need

Companies think of software investments in terms of Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), but with the cloud you don’t own software in the traditional sense. Rather, you pay for what you consume, like utilities.

Because of this, it’s important to take a different approach to comparing and calculating software costs for cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions.

SaaS completely transformed the way technology is delivered and consumed. It shows owning something does not necessarily deliver value. Often, owning something outright only adds cost and complexity.

Software’s value lies in the capabilities it provides. You use software because it has provided a benefit for your team—whether that’s increased efficiency, productivity, output, quality, or agility. The more benefits it provides, the more it’s used.

Under the SaaS model, quality management software becomes an operational expense—tied to operational performance. In other words, its value is tied directly to the benefits it provides to operations.

In contrast, companies still using outdated legacy SPC systems tend to view software costs as capital expenditures. Their legacy SPC system may be negatively impacting performance and, by keeping it, they are unable to see the productivity costs.

SaaS vs. Legacy SPC Systems

When a company makes a traditional software purchase, they make a significant investment upfront.

When legacy software is purchased and installed at a site, the relationship with the software provider typically stops after the sale. Since you already bought the system, the provider has no obligation to continue to innovate the product. Usually only maintenance and security fixes are performed.

Meanwhile, SaaS products are delivered through a subscription-based model, which lowers upfront investment costs. Some solutions, like Enact® by InfinityQS, offer a low cost of entry—you subscribe to just a few licenses to get started—resulting in further savings.

From there, companies can expand or purchase additional licenses as they grow and see the value the software provides. Scaling can happen quickly, and any infrastructure costs are covered by the software provider.

The SaaS model’s flexibility gives companies the ability to pursue a tactical approach to digital transformation.

Instead of planning a large-scale, high-risk, and disruptive enterprise-wide digital transformation, companies can start by digitizing the areas that have the most need. This tactical approach quickly demonstrates tangible results, leading to a widespread expansion.

Cost versus Value: Beyond Software

Cost alone shouldn’t be your only consideration when choosing SPC-based quality management software. Security is also typically a top concern.

Because today’s SPC-based solutions are hosted in the cloud, security is no longer an issue. Leading technology companies offering cloud hosting dedicate the most advanced resources to secure and protect valuable data.

And of course, implementing any new solution—especially one that is mission-critical and sits at the center of a manufacturer’s operations—often comes with the additional need for supporting services. You may want advice and guidance on implementation approaches and best practices, access to integration with automated data sources such as PLCs, OPCs, SCADAs and gauges, or advanced training, for example.

While InfinityQS is a software company, we see ourselves more as a company that is at the heart of manufacturing and quality. The company comprises more than just “software people,” but also mechanical and industrial engineers, qualified quality experts, SPC experts, and even several degree-level industry statisticians and Six Sigma Green and Black Belts.

InfinityQS has an entire Professional Services Group that is dedicated to helping customers achieve higher levels of manufacturing excellence with our solutions. We also have an extensive global network of highly skilled partners who specialize in fields such as manufacturing and quality consultancy, industrial IT services, and automation and control solutions.

Overhauling your SPC solution is about more than buying technology—it is about acquiring a valuable capability. And that goes beyond working with just a “seller” of technology—to working with a technology partner who can support you on the entire journey.

Modern next-generation SPC systems, especially those deployed as a SaaS/cloud-based solution, decouple the technology infrastructure and ownership challenges from the capabilities they provide.

When you digitize SPC with a purpose-built cloud solution, you can focus entirely on extracting significant operational performance advantages from the capabilities your system provides, without having to be concerned with the deployment, delivery, management, and maintenance of the solution.

Thinking about modernizing your SPC system? Read the InfinityQS executive brief and discover why you should overhaul your legacy SPC system.