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Mining & Quarrying
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Mining is the extraction from the earth of materials used in different human activities (industry, trade, energy production, etc.). There are four major types of materials: precious metals and minerals (gold, diamonds, silver, etc.); materials used to produce energy (coal, uranium, etc.); base metals (copper, iron, etc.); and building materials (stone, sand, gravel) extracted from quarries, which are open-pit mines. There are two major types of activities specific to the mining industry: exploration, which involves the search for materials; and extraction, which is the activity of getting those materials out of the earth.
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The main challenges of the industry are related to the environment and personnel safety. The use of eco-friendly extraction methods, along with investments in safety equipment, make mining operations a very expensive proposition, which explains why the industry is dominated by large companies with very complex activities. The initial investment is particularly high, as it involves the exploration and set-up of the mine, as well as the acquisition of heavy equipment required for extraction. Furthermore, mines are usually located in difficult-to-access locations, which makes the construction and maintenance of mines an expensive and challenging proposition.

Another challenge for the mining industry is to maintain a level of production that’s commensurate with market demand, which requires flexibility and well-defined business processes. Mining companies should be able to increase or decrease production in line with market fluctuations.

All these challenges can be addressed by an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution designed for the mining industry, including functionality for project and maintenance management, human resources (HR), quality and process manufacturing management, etc.

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