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What is a Manufacturing Execution System (MES)?

Manufacturing Execution System (MES) refers to a process-oriented level of a multi-layer production management system. The German term Produktionsleitsystem is often used synonymously. MES solutions are available as complete packages and as individual components. Siemens and SAP, for example, are among the better-known providers. Although MES systems have tended to function as stand-alone systems in the past, they are increasingly being integrated into ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) software. The goal of an MES is to increase productivity and reduce lead time, the total time to complete a job. By integrating an MES with ERP software, plant managers can be proactive in ensuring that quality products are delivered in a timely and cost-effective manner and that the production process is efficiently managed at the manufacturing or automation level.