Whatis production scheduling

Production planning is a process, the purpose of which is to organize the production activity so that it is consistent with the business plans that define the economic-financial objectives of the entire company. Production planning, in manufacturing companies, is therefore concerned with defining production plans or programmes and therefore establishing what, how much and when to produce with different levels of detail, different time horizons and possibilities for simulation.


Whatis production scheduling

Production planning is a complex process that is carried out by manufacturing companies to organize their production department and to plan the production of the near future. This process involves different business functions, numerous resources and tools to reason about forecasts that vary from short to long term and is also known as production planning.

The production scheduling process can be divided into two parts, production planning and scheduling. Planning in turn can be divided into one tactic and the other operational, as evidenced by the Hierarchical Production Planning or HPP model of Hax and Meal of 1975. Production scheduling deals with executive-level scheduling instead.

The elements that make up a production plan can be divided into two parts: the Master Planning (which includes the aggregate production plan, also called Sales & Operations Planning, and the Master Production Plan or Master Production Schedule with the related feasibility checks) and the Detailed Planning (consisting of the MRP, or Material Requirements Planning, and the production schedule).

A characteristic of the production planning process is its cyclicality, whereby the same period is the subject of several successive plans with increasing degrees of definition.


Who is involved in production scheduling

The roles involved in the production planning process are different, and each with its own tasks and responsibilities:

  • Production Manager – the person who schedules and coordinates the production activity of an organization with the aim of increasing productivity levels.
    The production manager has the most complete view of the production department and is the link between the various departments. Usually its tasks are to plan and ensure the realization of the production phases based on the needs of the commercial functions (deciding the times and methods), coordinate warehouses and logistics (monitoring stock levels), check the status of machinery and instrumentation, organize and manage human resources in the production department (in relation to the production plan),
    define the operational calendar (according to which all sectors organise the time and resources to be used).
  • Responsible for production scheduling – is the one who schedules production activities, from Demand Planning to detailed scheduling, ensuring the achievement of objectives. The main tasks of the production planning manager are to maintain and improve the performance of the production process. It mainly deals with defining productivity, quality and work organisation requirements, ensuring validation and monitoring plans for tools, machines, plants and processes, planning production, managing the supply of raw and semi-finished materials and finished products, perhaps through the use of a DDMRP solution.
  • Planners – those who are concretely involved in creating production plans and who in turn can be divided, depending on the area of competence, into: Material Planner, Work Planner, Production Scheduler, Work Account Scheduler and so on.


Why is production scheduling useful?

Production planning is an indispensable process for companies of a certain size and for those that want to take a significant step towards greater and better organisation.

In fact, a correct production planning allows to obtain numerous advantages, including:

  • Check the status of production resources and implement them in time if necessary
  • Launch material procurement orders at the right time
  • Keep raw material stocks and finished product stocks to a minimum
  • Establish reliable delivery dates well in advance
  • Manage plants by producing what you need when you need it with maximum efficiency
  • Avoid bottlenecks and queues of waiting materials within the production flow
  • Respect the delivery dates communicated to customers and reschedule them if necessary
  • Placing new unplanned urgent orders


The risks of production scheduling

The main risk that can be incurred in the planning of production is that of using inadequate tools and in particular Excel spreadsheets, which give the illusion of being able to plan without expenses, but present hidden costs and risks, due to technical constraints of the product that cannot be overcome. We explain these dangers in the article the 5 risks of planning production with Excel. Other risks can be those of not having up-to-date data, not having visibility into what is happening in the various departments or having software that is not able to take into account the constraints. The most advanced tools able to overcome these problems are APS, or software for Advanced Planning and Scheduling.


CyberPlan and Production Scheduling

CyberPlan, Cybertec’s APS, is the best of these tools, thanks to the most modern technologies used and over 25 years of experience serving Italian and foreign Supply Chains. Companies that replace the numerous Excels with CyberPlan, have found numerous advantages in a short time:

  • Increase in service level up to 33%;
  • Reduction of warehouses by up to 50%;
  • Increased productivity by up to 10%;
  • ROI within the year.

These benefits are possible thanks to Cybertec’s strong investments in R&D and innovation, and above all thanks to the close collaboration with hundreds of Italian and foreign companies, from small businesses to large multinationals. This commitment has made it possible to create complete, powerful and simple solutions used effectively all over the world.


How to improve production scheduling and increase factory efficiency?

Contact our experts who will be happy to answer your questions and advise you on how to improve the way you plan and schedule production today with a production scheduling software solution. Request a CyberPlan demo, one of our professionals will answer your questions and support you in understanding how powerful tools like CyberPlan can support you and your company.


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