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Planning and Scheduling
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The first two steps in the above "production meeting process" are generally where individuals with CIRM, CPIM, or CFPIM credentials focus the majority of their attention. It is critical that an APS system be powerful enough to exactly model your manufacturing process, and flexible and fast enough to easily simulate how you can respond to bottlenecks and late deliveries. The key in se­lecting the right software for your use is that it can act as a decision-support tool to help operations improve de­liveries. Finite schedulers should not become tools that identify limited capacities as an excuse for not making the business plan. APS must be a tool to optimize the plan against resources and provide valid dates that can be depended on. I will not focus on the many features and techniques available in various APS software; how­ever, I will say that close is not good enough in modeling your shop to get buy-in on a schedule.

The third step is an exciting "bonus" part of this pro­cess. Reasons companies struggle with implementing ERP systems or comprehensive manufacturing strate­gies are the requirements for high degrees of data accu­racy and process integrity, and cross-functional involvement and process reengineering required to implement "the project." The review necessary to get the buy-in of manufacturing will require a validity check of the APS plan. Managers who are trying to improve duedate performance must challenge data that is too conservative. Operators being held accountable for their attainment of the schedule challenge data that is too aggressive. The data that is influencing the load on a constraint is auditable and APS tools allow correction to be simulated and a valid schedule to be prepared. The efforts of your key operating people are focused at correcting the data relevant to making current requirements happen. The critical data affecting critical bottlenecks is reviewed and fixed during the production meeting with a new re-optimized schedule generated and the detailed impact of those corrections immediately understood. The continuous improvement of the most important data has a cumulative effect on improving enterprise information for work centers or items that present bottlenecks. Unlike other data cleanup projects, the effort is focused on data that matters to the business, data that helps managers alleviate late orders, and data that helps operators fix unreasonable standards.

To Be Continued

For balance of this article, click on the below link:

Lean Manufacturing Articles and click on Series 14

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