Think You Need to Master Shop Floor Scheduling? Think Again

With the smorgasbord of ERP and APS-based scheduling options available today, why are so many manufacturers still relying on whiteboards and spreadsheets? Because even with all their bells and whistles, these scheduling systems fall far short in their claim to “better shop floor scheduling.” From inherent lag to unreliable estimates, ERP and APS-based scheduling software are… READ MORE

The Only Shop Floor Scheduling Best Practice That Truly Matters

Managing manufacturing production is hard, and it’s just one aspect of managing a shop floor. You have due dates to hit and a million variables to consider, whether it’s resource availability, material management, or expedited customer orders dropping in out of sequence. Whether you thought your traditional ERP scheduling module would optimize your shop floor… READ MORE

Let’s Travel: The Importance of Tracking Progress on the Shop Floor

Tracking progress on the Shop Floor can help to adjust to changing production scheduling conditions as they occur in real-time. In the previous article in this series (part 3 of 5), we talked about the importance of planning. By way of example, we planned an ordinary drive to work. We then discussed the implications of our… READ MORE

6 Common Production Scheduling Mistakes Manufacturers Make

Effective shop floor production planning and execution is a tough gig. While there isn’t a shortage of technology or methods to help shops plan for an ideal production picture — execution is another ballgame entirely. From failing to account for real-time conditions to expecting a scheduling algorithm to magically solve all of your production problems,… READ MORE

The future is happening right now at Graphicast!

EASTECH 2017 — Jaffrey, NH — May 16, 2017 — Graphicast, Inc., innovative casting producer for medical equipment and other industrial users is dealing with a “problem” many companies would love to have – a sudden, unexpected influx of new orders! According to Val Zanchuk, Graphicast President, “We have been a Visual ERP user for shop… READ MORE

The First Programs: Where It All Began

These articles are portions of a lecture presented to APICS by our friend Gene Caiola. How did we get here? Manufacturers have long contended with trying to deliver on-time. Meeting delivery commitments is one of the most primary characteristics of a good supplier. Not meeting these commitments can result in poor supplier ratings that may… READ MORE

The Disconnect between Production Scheduling and Shop Floor Execution

Last week’s blog discussed how there is no such thing as an optimal production schedule; it is in fact, an impossible problem to solve even for today’s most powerful computers. So, today’s production scheduling tools found in ERP or as bolt-on software use ‘heuristics’. Wikipedia’s definition of heuristic or a heuristic technique is especially appropriate: “any approach to problem solving… READ MORE

Protected Flow Manufacturing: The Cure for ERP That Improves Health

Extend the lives of your sales and operations management team. If you’re involved in business you probably know that scheduling meetings go something like this:– Coffee and donuts in the conference room These meetings can take up a lot of time. How often does a scheduling meeting happen? Twice weekly? Daily? How long does it take? An hour?… READ MORE

Stop Trying to DIY Your Shop Floor Production Schedule in Excel

When you’re trying to juggle dozens of work orders, it’s tempting to cut to the chase and go straight to the whiteboard or Excel spreadsheet to draft your shop’s production schedule. While the DIY approach may be easier to get up and running than your existing ERP’s scheduling functionality, it often results in decreased visibility,… READ MORE

The Cloud never delivered a customer order on time…

The ERP industry has two new words in its vocabulary – “Cloud ERP”. According to some of the advertising coming from vendors, if you put “Cloud” in front of “ERP” you somehow get a better ERP system. Sounds like magic to me. There are certainly benefits to hosting ERP, or any application for that matter,… READ MORE