This blog marks the beginning of a joint thought leadership series in collaboration with Supply Chain Matters.
- Supply chain management teams must focus on Adaptation, Realignment, and Response due to ongoing economic uncertainty, geopolitical factors, and supply chain disruptions.
- Anticipated periods of constrained product demand and economic recession in some regions underscore the need for cash preservation, increased productivity, and efficiency across businesses.
- Maintaining customer and brand loyalty, preserving cash, and enhancing efficiencies take center stage.
- The movement towards more direct control of supply and production networks, including domestic sourcing and nearshoring.
- Senior executives are keen on instilling greater agility in supply chain processes to respond to unanticipated delays, changes in customer needs, or disruptive events.
- Targeting managed-scope transformations of supply chain tactical and operational planning for quicker time-to-value and increased productivity.
Changing Dimensions of Production Capacity Planning and Scheduling
Companies are presented with a clear opportunity to shift from the traditional focus on just-in-time efficiency to a more outside-in approach. This new approach involves scenario-based, forward-looking decision-making and supports increased resiliency and agility in production and supply networks.
Production capacity planning, whether for discrete or continuous processes, has traditionally focused on efficiency but is now being challenged to also consider decision-making capabilities that balance productivity, labor costs, and control. To achieve Industry 4.0 efficiencies, companies must improve their capacity planning. For batch companies, changeovers between products can be a significant source of capacity loss.
To enable these efficiencies, companies need to integrate constrained-based tactical planning with optimised production planning and scheduling. Cloud-based technology can automate and optimise midterm/tactical plans, removing manual efforts and enhancing decision-making. This increases supply chain agility and resilience at the production level, enabling rapid responses to changing conditions.
Added Opportunities for Digital Transformation
Companies that control their production or provide contract manufacturing services can leverage the integration of tactical planning and production scheduling to kickstart broader supply chain digital transformation efforts. This involves improving synchronisation and the feedback loop between planning, scheduling, and execution processes at the production level.
Cloud-based technology can replace manual data assimilation, providing more timely and enhanced decision-making capabilities. The goal is to automate and optimise midterm/tactical plans, enabling better, faster planning and more agile responses to changes.
Summary and Reader Takeaways
Senior executives are focusing on instilling agility in production and supply chain processes to respond to delays, changes, and disruptions. The challenge often lies in integrating timely customer product information with tactical planning at the facility level. Removing manual efforts at this level enhances supply chain agility and resilience at the production level.
The opportunity lies in augmenting planning and scheduling at the production level to improve synchronisation and reduce the feedback loop between planning, scheduling, and execution processes.
In future instalments of this series, we will explore operational excellence and efficiencies in continuous and batch production processes.
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