Dow-Key Microwave saves $1 million with Aptean Made2Manage ERP

Dow-Key Microwave Corporation (Dow-Key) is the world’s largest manufacturer of electromechanical switches for radio frequency (RF) and microwave applications. Dow-Key implemented Made2Manage ERP in 1996 but failed to take advantage of the full functionality within the system. Subsequently, employees had conflicting data spreadsheets and no way to determine the real, reliable information. In 2010, the company considered replacing the existing ERP system but decided that Made2Manage was better than the alternatives—they just needed to start using it more effectively. Rather than spending $1million or more on a new system, they invested in working with users to improve input and build trust in the resulting information. As a result, they’ve saved labor hours, created consistency, and cultivated confidence in the system. Made2Manage has improved efficiencies, processes, and control over Dow-Key’s business.


Electrical Equipment


Ventura, CA


Electromechanical switches for radio frequency (RF) and microwave applications

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The Challenge

Dow-Key failed to utilize the full functionality of the existing ERP system, resulting in challenges:  

  • A proliferation of conflicting spreadsheets, databases and sticky notes
  • Lack of confidence in the ERP system
  • Reporting requirements and audits by government customers and the
  • imperatives of Sarbanes-Oxley Act compliance placed additional burdens on a company

The Solution

A new General Manager evaluated a project to replace Made2Manage, but ultimately decided that using the ERP properly was still the best solution for their business. It would:

  • Save them $1 million or more in costs associated with changing to a new system
  • Improve efficiencies and reduce labor hours
  • Serve as one source of reporting information and insights

The Result

After working with Made2Manage users to ensure it was fully utilized, Dow-Key has experienced compelling results:

  • Improved control and quality throughout the company, saving
    approximately 50 hours per month in labor
  • More efficient and error-free labor collection system saved 160 hours per month
  • Use of Made2Manage Shop Floor Manager contributes to corporate
    “green” goals by eliminating excess paperwork
  • Improved quality led to zero violations in most recent audit

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