Production Planning and Scheduling

Respond and adapt to constantly changing conditions on the shop floor.

Your production schedule has a direct impact on on-time delivery, inventories, and profitability.

The master production schedule is a critical element to run a manufacturing business.  Supply planning, inventory forecasting, and resource planning all depend on the accuracy of the master plan.  However, the ERP system isn’t usually equipped to handle events that happen in real time on the shop floor.  Everyday problems can disrupt production, drive up costs, and cause supply chain challenges:

  • New rush orders
  • Raw material shortages
  • Unplanned machine downtime
  • Order cancellations
  • Shop floor workers unexpectedly out or reassigned to other areas

Manufacturers that use production planning and scheduling software to conduct effective scheduling planning, so they maximize throughput with real-time visibility and collaboration.  These efforts enable them to:

  • Achieve on-time delivery with correct quantities
  • Eliminate shipping rush charges
  • Improve customer satisfaction and retention
  • Control operating costs
  • Optimize inventory of raw materials and finished goods
  • Make more product without adding equipment
10 Success Factors for Production Scheduling

Will we succeed with production scheduling software?

Maximize project success.

Help your company set the stage to win with production scheduling software. Avoid common gaps throughout the initiative, and make better decisions about planning and scheduling software.

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Production Planning Software Selection Guide

What's the best production planning software?

Not every option is right for your company.

When it comes to production scheduling, the software choices can be confusing.  Let our production planning software experts help you create a short list of solutions that will work for your company.

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Production Planning Value Assessment

When senior execs ask, "What does it cost?"

A better question is, "What's it worth?"

Many operations leaders and production planners don't have time to build a business case for tech investments.  Let us help with a no-cost, no-obligation value assessment that answers the question: "What is a production planning solution worth to our company?"

Get your free assessment

Turn Production Control into a Strategic Competency and Source of Competitive Advantage

  • Easily generate and optimize production schedules that are realistic and achievable
  • Automate production schedule templates to fit production constraints
  • Quickly respond to real-time production disruptions
  • Standardize and coordinate planning and scheduling globally
  • Improve demand planning with fast, easy-to-create make/buy plans
  • Enhance strategic plans with long-term advance planning
  • Address tactical planning and scheduling concerns within a several-week horizon
  • Apply advanced scheduling algorithms to balance demand and capacity
  • Standalone solutions that also integrate real-time plant scheduling with ERP, OEE/MES, data collection, and supply chain systems

Understanding the Value of Planning and Scheduling Throughout the Enterprise

Even within a single industry sector, all companies have vastly different customer requirements, strategic objectives, and operating environments.  The best approach for every company is to understand the processes already in place, the tools and systems supporting them, and the needs and concerns of the people involved.  That insight, along with consensus on the most immediate improvement priorities means your organization can take a pragmatic approach to build on existing planning and scheduling strengths.

Production Planning and Scheduling Optimization Diagram

Step 1:  Optimize Planning and Scheduling to Achieve Quick Wins

  • Hit on-time delivery and correct quantity targets
  • Improve customer service and retention
  • Eliminate shipping rush charges
  • Improve production capacity
  • Reduce overtime
  • Schedule longer runs and fewer changeovers
  • Create better maintenance schedules
  • Control operating costs
  • Make more product without adding equipment

Step 2:  Balance Raw Material Inventory and Production Capacity

  • Reduce stock-outs
  • Optimize safety stock
  • Optimize raw material inventory (and warehouse costs)

Step 3:  Balance Finished Goods Inventory and Customer Service

  • Reduce safety stock (reduce inventory of finished goods)
  • Reduce shrink (damage, obsolescence, theft)

Production Planning and Scheduling Case Studies

Find out how manufacturing companies get results.

Planning and Scheduling Experts Help You Tackle Your Most Difficult Problems

Production planning and shop floor scheduling are highly complex activities, and the impact of success or failure to optimal results are far-reaching throughout and beyond the manufacturing organization.  Toward Zero production planning and scheduling experts are first and foremost manufacturing enterprise performance professionals.  We apply a proven methodology to assess your specific organization’s strengths, obstacles, and opportunities, to formulate a plan to meet your tactical and long-term strategic objectives.

Most importantly, we help you build on and enhance your company’s existing processes, systems, and expertise.  No one knows the intricacies of the operation better than your production planner.  We work with them to develop the right strategy, put the best solution in place, and make sure it’s getting the results your company expects.


Production Planning Template

How does a production scheduling system work?

Take an instant test drive.

See for yourself how easy it is to use a planning and scheduling system. Use the self-guided cloud demo with drag-and-drop scheduling and modeling for single or multi-plant scenarios.

Try it now for free

How to Pick the Best Scheduling Software

Am I choosing the right production scheduling software?

Make a better software decision.

Learn how to pick the best production scheduling software for your manufacturing company. The best approach to get the right software and avoid conflict.

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3 Steps to Improve Production Scheduling

Can we make production scheduling better?

Effective production scheduling takes more than software.

Cross-functional collaboration is required for effective production scheduling so manufacturers meet customer requirements and reduce supply inventories.

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Let's connect

Toward Zero helps you establish priorities, build consensus, choose and implement solutions, and manage change within manufacturing operations and throughout the industrial enterprise. How can we help you?

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