Eliminating Blind Spots 

Mining companies are expanding their operations outside of their home countries at the most rapid rate in history. Today, Canadian mining companies operate in more than 100 countries around the world—with Latin America accounting for 54% of Canadian mining companies overseas investments. While the future looks bright for Canadian mining companies, both here at home and abroad, international expansions bring a new set of operational challenges to overcome.

One of the most fundamental of those challenges is maintaining visibility across locations. Without adequate and timely insight into local and remote operations, managing for success is impossible. What can Canadian mining operations do to secure and maintain visibility throughout their operations, both domestic and abroad? Here are five ways to eliminate blind spots and promote multi-site visibility throughout your global mining operation.

  1. Rely on a Single System of Record

It’s not uncommon for mining organizations to rely on multiple business applications—fragmented and disconnected technologies that do not effectively or efficiently share information. The inefficiencies, redundancies and potential errors of a siloed system are costly enough when you’re dealing with one or two domestic sites, but global expansions with multiple site offices dramatically exacerbate this challenge. The result is data silos scattered throughout the organization, without an ability to bring the data together for meaningful use. Called an integration gap, it can contribute to a 10 to 20% productivity loss for companies in the mining sector.

A global mining ERP application unifies your organization’s data across departments and geographies, providing a single system of record uniting operations. Armed with real-time, comprehensive insight and analytics, the decision makers in your organization can plan optimized workflows and your workforce can deliver on the plans. With industry-specific features and functions, mining ERP applications can be a big contributor to your organization’s digital effectiveness.

  1. Monitor Key Performance Indicators

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are a set of quantifiable measures that companies can use to monitor and compare their performance to their strategic and operational goals. The beauty of KPIs is that they provide a quick visual indication of the health of your operations—available to all who will benefit from the information.

KPIs lend a particular advantage to multi-site mining operations. KPIs provide an ideal way to monitor and compare different locations, allowing you to more easily identify problem areas, anticipate potential setbacks, and respond more quickly to both. We’ve outlined a set of KPIs of value to the mining industry here.

  1. Use Business Activity Monitoring Tools

It’s hard enough to track all that’s going on in one location, but add multiple sites across time zones, borders and continents and staying out in front of the data becomes nearly impossible—without help. Help comes in the form of business activity monitoring tools, like this one

Business activity monitoring tools effectively monitor your ERP database (and other databases, including CRM and HRMS) looking for conditions you’ve identified as important and alerts you to those conditions — by email, text, IM, FTP, fax, or the web. Business activity monitoring tools provide that extra set of eyes, promoting visibility throughout your organization.

  1. Streamline Multi-Site, Multinational Challenges

Operating a global business is challenging. Multiple languages, multiple currencies, multiple business regulations, and multiple payroll regulations are just a few of the myriad of challenges mining operations face when they open additional sites. Above, we identified that a single system of record is one of the main ways mining companies can maintain needed visibility, but that single system must be capable of streamlining the complex and tasks associated with running a successful multinational operation.

A mining ERP solution with multi-currency, multi-language, multi-company and multi-legislation capabilities builds in the visibility and information-sharing tools needed in order to be efficient, productive, accurate and compliant across multiple, multinational sites.

  1. Support for a Global Workforce

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 contributes to the blind spots we’re working to eliminate.

With the right cloud Human Capital Management (HCM) solution designed for multinational organizations, you can centralize people data into a single solution – 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.

Eliminating blind spots and promoting visibility in your mining operation requires efforts by everyone throughout the organization, along with a commitment by management to provide the tools, resources and culture to support the initiative. Efficient, effective information sharing is at the heart of visibility. Caron Mining Solutions is a comprehensive, powerful and easy-to-use mining industry ERP solution, built on Sage ERP, that provides the visibility 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.