The key to staying in control of your manufacturing processes is expert planning and management. It’s now possible to do this by overseeing the production process at each point, using real-time information to effectively plan your manufacturing processes with precision.
Statii’s production planning software helps with essential aspects of your manufacturing processes, including scheduling, collecting shop floor data and inventory management. Having such production control software at your fingertips allows for greater productivity, reduced waste and ensures a lean manufacturing process runs like clockwork. MES (manufacturing execution software) helps businesses to monitor and control each stage of manufacturing and production.
Efficient production planning ensures the manufacturing process stays on schedule, foreseeing issues before and when they occur, identifying where inefficiencies are and ensuring resources are put to best use. This includes workloads for both plant and machinery as well as actively managing your personnel and allocating your human resources. Steer your operations in the right direction to reach ideal production capacity.
Statii specialises in providing SME-specific systems with made to measure Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP software) which helps to collect, manage and analyse data to help you organise business functions in one central place. This optimises manufacturing operations across the company, streamlining processes and reducing costs.
This production planning and control guide is a comprehensive guide to the importance and benefits of a robust manufacturing planning system. More factors change throughout the many manufacturing sectors, so we've compiled a list of the top 10. They are:
- Fulfilling Customer Expectations
- Reducing Waste
- Managing Growth
- Production Control
- WIP (Work in Progress) Tracking
- Inventory Control & Capacity Management
- Production Tracking
- Time Management
Get in touch with our experts to find out more about our ERP software for production planning.
The Importance of Production Planning & Control Software
Statii’s MES helps companies with manufacturing needs to gain control over their processes and ensure their production planning and control software maximises their advantage in a competitive market. Production control is critical because it removes waste from the process, ensuring lean manufacturing becomes a central part of operations.
Without effective planning, maintaining production at desired levels becomes more challenging with a risk of losing track of each aspect of your workflow which can happen at any stage, from ordering to invoicing. This can happen when there’s over-reliance on specific individuals, a lack of cohesion between departments, duplication of tasks, unclear scheduling and an inability to tie together information relevant to the process such as staff performance and delivery information.
When considering the use of better planning and scheduling systems, it’s important to think about how the manufacturing process and efficiency will be improved.
- Determine requirements of your manufacturing operations so that customer demands can be met, reaching your effective capacity and maximising profits.
- Accurately allocate resources and ensure production capacity is at its most efficient.
- Schedule operations based on current work centre, availability of materials and labour.
- Only allocate the resources required for the job, creating a cost-efficient process.
- Integrate parts of your software so that you can oversee entire manufacturing operations including scheduling modules and generation of job cards.
- Implement effective time management by reducing process change-over.
- Limit user effort for inventory management and scheduling, producing a clear picture of input required for a desired output.
- Increase productivity across the entire process, reducing waste and ensuring lean manufacturing is implemented throughout.
- Accurate planning can only be achieved through having real-time information to keep you updated about the true position of each operation. Production control software can facilitate this.
- Capture data and effectively analyse processes to understand performance levels in every aspect of the production process from machinery to human resources.
The ideal solution will combine a traditional MRP system (material requirements planning) with ERP software. MRP software is your basic control over the materials involved in the manufacturing process. When an order is placed, the system understands what’s required in terms of volumes, stock and machinery availability to create an overall picture of the input needed to produce the goods while accurately scheduling a time for completion. ERP systems have helped MRP to evolve, understanding that human resources, finance and administration play an important part in the success of planning an efficient process. ERP software introduces other functions into the process including shop floor data, customer and supplier information, personnel information, workflow and of course, expert production planning.
The perfect blend creates a sustainable MES which helps gain control over the entire manufacturing process and each function involved from start to finish.
Fulfilling Customer Expectations
In a crowded industry, efficient planning of manufacturing processes is the key to delivering on your promises to customers and staying ahead of competitor brands. This includes developing accurate and realistic timescales to set their expectations accordingly. Quality product delivery, scheduling and resource allocation all contribute to their overall satisfaction with your customer service. Production planning also allows for increased productivity efficiency which in turn can improve the turnaround times you offer to your customers. Securing repeat business and enhancing your reputation for fulfilling promises will be vital to your success as a business.
Identifying where waste is being produced in the production process can be difficult without the use of appropriate planning software. By identifying where inefficiencies lie in the process, businesses can eliminate waste, reduce their costs and improve turnaround times. This allows businesses to become more cost-efficient by ensuring that only the resources required for completion of the job are allocated and used to create a lean manufacturing process.
By centralising data and automating your processes, it’s important to take on business growth with ease, making fast and accurate decisions where necessary to prevent delays and meet demands. Having a clear overview of the manufacturing process and analysing performance is key to this, identifying issues, trends in demand and ensuring your processes are efficient as possible.
How Software Enhances the Production Planning Process
Statii’s production planning software allows companies to arrange, control and optimise their operations and workloads for the manufacturing process. This ensures the production process is scheduled appropriately to meet customer demands while producing quality output and high levels of customer service.
Our production planning and control software is present throughout our ERP systems, providing users with the key information they need to oversee operations and tie together all aspects of a job in one place. This allows those using the software to gain control over the entire manufacturing process. It’s flexible, unique and easy to use while designed to make the planning process as simple as possible. Unlike many ERP software packages, ours has been designed by manufacturers for manufacturers, making the challenges you face easier and meeting your specific needs.
Statii’s SME-specific software includes the following features.
- The Dashboard – Get an overview of the whole business process including outstanding items in each section and the exact position of your company.
- Customers & Suppliers – Share data about your customers and suppliers throughout the organisation from contact information to the value of each customer spend in a selected period.
- Enquiry/Quotation – Accurately produce quotations with a breakdown of expected costs while analysing your conversion rates.
- Sales Order – Manage and measure delivery commitments while bringing together all documents associated with each job. Live Work in Progress (WIP) can be accessed here.
- Works Orders – As the ultimate production planning support function, this feature brings together sales order, anticipated operation dates, scheduling, SFDC and scheduling, generating detailed job cards for the shop floor.
- Purchase Orders – Manage goods coming into your business by generating purchase orders while analysing other data such as delivery performance of suppliers and spend.
- Route Cards – This is the operational level of instructions issued to the shop floor including inventory items required and specific manufacturing instructions.
- Shop Floor Data Collection (SFDC) – The SFDC captures the labour element of each job and can be accessed via PC, tablet or smartphone. It includes information about time and attendance as well as communicating up to the minute information about the status of any job.
- Inventory – This is the feature which enables you to manage stock items, monitor their levels and alerts users when there is insufficient stock to meet works orders.
- Scheduling – Production planning comes together here, comparing workload with capacity, allowing a shop floor manager to make informed decisions.
- Diary – This internal communication tool allows communication between users and documented instructions with both suppliers and customers.
- Personnel – Our personnel feature combines with SFDC to record holidays and absenteeism as well as analysing trends.
- Delivery Notes – Once a works order is complete, a delivery note is produced here as well as creating Certificates of Conformity.
- Invoicing – Managing the issuing of invoices and credit limits, this feature can import summary information from your third-party accounting software including Sage, Xero and Quickbooks.
How do these features help with production planning?
Having such a powerful tool at your fingertips allows companies to reach their full potential and maximise profits. But how is planning improved with our software?
Tying all the ERP software features together in one package enables users to maintain an effective level of control over manufacturing operations and the production process. Full potential can only be achieved by tracking and controlling efficiency at every stage of the production process from receiving an order and scheduling the work to delivering the finished product to the customer. It’s a method of controlling the entire production line, planning workloads appropriately and producing information to help you make the right decisions for maximising productivity. It also reduces the amount of waste produced in the process while enhancing the ability to successfully meet customer needs as effectively as possible.
Expert production planning relies on having the tools to effectively organise the overall operation of the manufacturing process. One of the primary functions of our ERP system is to help you organise the production process by managing key information. This includes collecting, recording, managing and interpreting data from various integrated applications to make the right decisions in the planning process. The software enables you to fully understand each component of manufacturing and their relation to one another, bring them together to work in conjunction with one another. Analysis is also an important benefit of the software, identifying trends, problematic patterns and the long-term progress of your business.
WIP (Work in Progress) Tracking
Statii’s software features allow users to track WIP in real time, with up to date Shop Floor Data Collection (SFDC) allowing you the accurately track the production process for any project. Reliable data is essential for being able to assess planning capacity and accurately schedule manufacturing output. Maximum efficiency can be achieved by anticipating production problems such as low stock levels, maintenance issues or labour shortages and proactively managing them to prevent significant losses. SFDC not only keeps those managing the production process informed but everyone involved in the operation too, allowing your team to respond quickly to problems and implement changes which need to take place. Such real-time planning helps to maximise capacity and boost profit.
One of the most important parts of production planning is the accurate scheduling of each aspect required to complete the job. This includes machinery, materials, tools and labour needed for the project. Without considering each variable, it would be impossible to accurately plan and organise the scheduling process. Our software helps users to keep track of the different facets required (input) to produce each product and ensure that every stage of manufacturing is carried out at optimum efficiency.
Inventory Control & Capacity Management
When planning your manufacturing processes, understanding the demand for your products and the capacity required to meet ever-changing needs is essential. Production and demand must tie together to both reduce waste and meet expectations. Therefore, poor planning may result in over-producing where there’s little need or under-producing and struggling to meet demand. Either outcome can lead to financial losses and affect the overall success of your business. Our MES (manufacturing execution software) will help you to improve overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) so that you can optimise your existing capacity (without jeopardising production), ensuring that your current machinery and resources are being used efficiently to meet demand. Inventory control is an important aspect of expert capacity planning, maximising its use while cutting down on waste and only investing in necessary inventory items.
In the manufacturing process, unforeseen events and circumstances may arise which require flexibility when planning the success of your production lines. Closely monitoring real-time production will help with this, ensuring that each part of the manufacturing process is running smoothly and according to schedule. Production monitoring software allows for fast identification of issues which are slowing down manufacturing. It also tracks the progress so that processes can be easily adjusted to ensure operations are being carried out at maximum capacity. The ability to monitor processes so easily will also reduce time spent trying to manually collect such information, ensuring the user has everything they need to resolve issues or receive updates about the status of a job.
Tracking how long the production process takes will help you to control this aspect of manufacturing better. Our job card and route card features enable you to measure how long production of specific outputs take as well as the sequence required to produce these. Examine where your time and resources are being invested with route cards used to deepen understanding of this process, including information about what materials must undergo to become the finished item. This is particularly useful if producing custom products. Our software gives users the flexibility to establish their own production methods, streamline processes and produce time-saving resources for future use.
Statii’s production planning software and control software allows for superior data handling capabilities. Our ERP software gives you the tools you need to gain control of your manufacturing processes, saving both time and money while ensuring plant runs at maximum efficiency.
To speak to one of our team about your requirements, call us on 01623 749 739.