Managing Resource Utilisation
Production based on customer demand is a complex process. The continuous synchronisation between planning, purchasing, engineering and resources is a major challenge for every business. Because of the 'dynamic' nature of specifications, plans, changeovers and changing orders it is useful to have immediate access to information from a huge amount of data (delivery dates, resource utilisation, bill of materials, etc.). Underpinning this is the requirement to have labour and resources allocated correctly and at the right time.
Typically there is a gap between the scheduling function and the reality of production. This can be summarised by OEE not taking into account Schedule Adherence. This can be illustrated by real world issues such as, how long will the schedule last before a rush order appears, re-work is required, operators call in sick, a machine breaks down or demand does not match the forecast? Each of these will invalidate the production plan and the scheduler will spend time re-assigning work, changing priorities or altering production routes to meet promised delivery dates.
Even today, many industrial businesses work with non-integrated combinations of spread sheets, planning tools, paper etc. The most common tool used by schedulers trying to maintain the balance between demand and capacity is a simple planning board where work is allocated to resources in time periods such as an hour, day or week, this may have been replaced by a spreadsheet but the process is still essentially manual and not integrated.
EmsPT has been able to help streamline businesses giving them the ability to control and plan their workload, optimise productivity and improve efficiency. EmsPT solutions have given our customers the ability to improve profitability through customer service, reduction in inventory, reduced WIP and greater productivity. Our customers have been able to deliver high levels of customer service and satisfaction whilst benefiting from increased productivity and significant reduction in costs. This is basically owing to closer integration between the scheduling and production (operations) functions, ensuring that Labour and Resource are allocated correctly to improve Schedule Adherence and OEE.
When trying to maintain the balance between demand and capacity, would it help if it was possible to ensure that labour and materials are available exactly when needed, reducing inventory levels, waiting time and bottlenecks? Would you benefit from being able to accurately predict lead times and delivery dates to enable management of work at an optimised and constant level? Would a reduction in costs and an increase in customer satisfaction help improve your profitability?