Mines are stepping up spending on technology

Five areas to invest for the best returns

Call out:

“Gone are the days when miners could simply explore for minerals. Looking ahead, successful miners will be those that also mine for innovation.”

2023: The Near Future of Mining, BDO

There’s a technology shift afoot in the mining industry. Once considered behind the technology eight ball compared to other industries, today’s mining operations are embracing technology in new and expanded ways in what’s been called a quiet revolution in the industry. More mining companies are now using technology to integrate their operations, lower operating costs, and boost productivity. Which technology investments generate the best results for mining companies? Here are our top-five winners.

  1. Integrated Technology Platform

Mining industry leaders are also leading in digital transformation, focusing on increasing efficiency, enhancing safety and mitigating cybersecurity risks. Deloitte calls this activity “modernizing their digital core” and it’s a practice that will benefit mining companies of all sizes.

An integrated technology platform plays a central role in helping mining companies capitalize on new digital capabilities—connectivity, advanced analytics, and automation, for instance. For example, integrating vital business functions including finance, reporting and analytics, maintenance, investor relations, and human resources can help miners build deeper relationships with customers and stakeholders, launch new global initiatives, make processes more efficient, and make better decisions.

Call out:

“Businesses aren’t expected to be able to realize the full potential of the intelligent mine without modernizing their digital core.”

Paul Klein, Partner, Consulting, Deloitte Australia

  1. Cloud ERP

Cloud ERP offers enormous benefits to growing mining companies, including real-time data access, support for global expansion, enhanced security, cost savings, and a minimized IT resource burden. BDO predicts that by 2023 75% of miners will choose software as a service (SaaS) options versus on-site financial, maintenance, health and safety, and reporting platforms.

There is a real danger to mining companies who continue to rely on legacy ERP applications — they risk being left behind in a competitive landscape that rewards efficiency and productivity. Cloud ERP, specially Cloud Mining ERP, is a key strategic investment for mining companies in every phase of operation.

  1. Investor Relations

Investors are a critical operational component of most mining companies, and investor relations is another area where technology investments pay dividends. As valuable as these relationships are, mining companies cannot afford not to nourish and grow them. The most common tool for the job is Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software.

CRM solutions capture data from multiple systems to help mining companies get a full 360-degree view of each and every business partner. The best CRM platforms leverage the cloud, allowing multiple users, teams, departments, and locations to easily collaborate across any channel or device. Information is collected, analyzed, and stored automatically, and can be accessed and updated in real time across all authorized users.

  1. Mine Maintenance

Mine maintenance and asset management software allows mining companies to streamline and automate many of the tasks surrounding mine maintenance and asset tracking. And while these technologies are in use by a vast majority of the major mining companies in the world, they are not out of reach for smaller mining operations.

From maintenance planning, including predictive maintenance based on usage patterns, through employee/equipment resource management, and equipment lifecycle costing, mine maintenance applications help miners make the best use of their assets, lowering maintenance costs and improving mine productivity levels.

  1. Human Resource/Human Capital Management

Mining organizations named the future of their workforce as the second biggest risk facing them in 2020—and multi-site, multinational expansion further complicates workforce management for mining companies. With both local and global personnel, companies must ensure their compliance with a myriad of rules and regulations relating to talent acquisition, talent management, and payroll. Typically, global mining organizations will rely on multiple human resource software applications to support the different compliance mandates and workflows. This type of separation doesn’t lend itself to the integrated technology platform we’re trying to build.

A Human Capital Management (HCM) solution designed for multinational organizations can centralize people data into a single solution that is accessible from anywhere. A true multi-site, multinational HCM solution supports and promotes both your local and global recruiting, management, and retention efforts and delivers the visibility needed to attract, retain, and engage a qualified mining workforce.

In a welcome and encouraging trend, mining companies are stepping up their spending on technology. As your organization maps its own technology path, it only makes sense to invest in the areas and the tools that generate the best returns. 

Caron Mining Solutions is a comprehensive, powerful, and easy-to-use mining industry ERP solution, built on Sage ERP software, that addresses the challenges modern mining operations face. Learn more about Caron Mining Solutions here, or by contacting us here.

 

 

Paul has been involved with Sage 300 software for almost 30 years. He brings a well-rounded perspective to business management software implementation projects. His depth of knowledge and expertise in business process analysis has benefited several clients.