The advantages of an integrated business system for managing the company’s products are great:
- Better calculation and management of material requirements (BOM)
- Traceability and control of all warehouses and warehouses in the same system
- Optimization of how different resources are used
But business systems are often substandard for a particular, specific need in the manufacturing process
- Management of production planning.
Some smaller companies may live with this fact and, for example, plan their entire production in Excel or on a whiteboard. But many companies today have such a complex planning process that it is simply not possible to plan in this way.
Business systems are good at handling ongoing operations and various production activities when they happen. But many business systems lack good support and functionality to quickly and efficiently assist production planners in their decision-making.
This is when production planners start using Excel for their production planning alongside the business system. When these Excel spreadsheets become too large and complicated, it’s time to review the possibilities for more advanced production planning.
What Makes Planning Systems
A planning system supports complex planning processes and integrates the results of planning with your business system. With advanced planning and resource scheduling features, a planning system can consider several different parameters and optimize your production in minutes. For example:
- Find bottlenecks in your production
- Quickly get new delivery dates for new customer orders based on your capacity.
How Can Planning Systems Streamline Your Production
In your production line, a machine suddenly breaks down. This directly affects ongoing work, other orders, promised delivery dates, and last but not least, customer satisfaction in the long run. Or that you get an emergency order from your most important customer, where several thousand units are to be manufactured. How do you place that order in today’s manufacturing planning, with the least possible impact on other manufacturing orders?
The question is difficult because it requires a quick and total overview of:
- Material capacity (items in BOM and article structures in stock) – resource capacity (how much the machines can handle at the moment)
- Available production staff
- Information and status of all existing sales orders, production orders, and purchase orders.
If you can handle this easily through various menus and functions in your business system, you do not need to improve your production planning with a planning system.
But if you need to extract this information from your business system, which will then be entered into several Excel spreadsheets to do a production planning that takes hours to calculate…
Then it would help if you considered whether it is not time to get a planning system.
Integrate Planning Systems With Business Systems
Integrating planning systems with business systems is easier than you first think. The important thing in this context is your company’s data model with information and data about your production, articles, and deliveries.
This data model from your business system contains the information the planning system needs about, for example:
Employees’ qualifications and training to work with specific machines
- shifts, holidays, and vacations
- Warehouses, warehouses, warehouse levels
- Lead times for different jobs
- Time and resources for machine changes
- Alternative resources (switch between several machines that can perform the same task)
If you can retrieve this type of information from your business system, integration is easy.
Summary – When a Production Planning System is Needed
If today you can easily generate production plans in your business system, without advanced calculations in standalone spreadsheets in Excel, you do not need a system for production planning.
But if you:
- Extract information from your business system
- Which is entered and calculated in independent Excel calculations where the production plan is created
- Where the calculated production planning is registered in the business system
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