New solution redefines power of “Pull” processes for global manufacturers beyond the scope of traditional Lean manufacturing programs
Global manufacturing software solutions provider Apriso has launched an industry solution aimed at helping manufacturers to increase responsiveness and agility by better leveraging “Pull” triggered manufacturing and supply chain processes. This process-based solution incorporates real-time operational intelligence into the design and execution of Pull processes, resulting in “smarter” pull and Kanban signals that can enhance operational performance.
In the world of Lean manufacturing, Kanban systems are widely used to trigger Just-in-Time (JIT) operations. The challenge is that traditional Kanbans typically only rely on simple and basic measures – for example, if a parts bin is empty, place an order. Apriso’s Smart-Pull solution leverages FlexNet’s Manufacturing Process Intelligence (MPI) to add intelligence to Kanban-driven Pull processes by incorporating a broader scope of actual events or historical performance. For example, an electronic Kanban signal can now consider up-to-the-moment seasonal order fluctuations, supplier quality performance or employee knowledge and inputs, which then trigger more accurate replenishment signals.
“Apriso’s new Smart Pull solution really challenges the concept of JIT as defined by Lean methodology,” explained James Mok, director of solution strategy and business development at Apriso. “Recent advances in mobility, social media and sensing technologies have completely changed the scope of what real-time data can be gathered. Combining this intelligence with the capability to quickly extract actionable insights enables highly efficient business processes to be formulated and executed just in time for dramatically improved responsiveness across manufacturing and supply chain operations.”
Manufacturers deploying MPI now have access to greater real-time visibility than ever before. When FlexNet’s enterprise approach to manufacturing operations management is deployed, real-time operations intelligence can be seamlessly included within a Pull process. The new Smart-Pull Manufacturing solution not only has built-in integration capabilities with sensing devices, but also has the capability to store, filter, analyze and contextualize these events in almost real-time – resulting in dynamic triggering and execution of business processes across the product supply network and value chain.
This solution supports and enables each of the following.
- Management of Pull processes such as Production Kanban, Supplier Kanban, Replenishment Kanban, Signal Kanban, Just-In-Sequence (JIS) ship, JIS make, JIS buy, among others
- Execution of advanced Pull scenarios such as CONWIP, generalized Kanban, dynamic Drum-Buffer-Rope and advanced algorithms in Kanban calculations, Pull strategies (ex: Make-to-Order) as well as an optimized “Push” processes (ex: Make-to-Stock) that work in concert on a unified architecture
- Synchronization of not only in-house Pull processes, but also those with customers, suppliers and sub-contractors (ex: multi-vendor containment triggered by Quality alerts or reallocation of manufacturing resources during the event of unplanned downtime or demand changes)
- Eases facilitation of change management, including Pull process design as well as on-going process management support such as formulating measurements (KPIs, Takt time, supermarket readiness)
- Incorporation of real-time manufacturing intelligence to quickly extract actionable insights from manufacturing supply chain events to drive execution of intelligent
- Pull processes with both structured (ex: Kanban loop) and unstructured (ex: collaboration flow through enterprise social media) information to accelerate response times and improve decision-support