What the Production Management Processes Do
The manufacturing processes in opentaps address the needs of discrete manufacturing operations.
Discrete manufacturing produces individual or separate product items which are easily identifiable and can be counted unit by unit. Such products include consumer goods of many kinds, electronics and computers, appliances, clothing and personal items, endless commercial products, and goods like parts for cars and airplanes. In discrete manufacturing, the manufacturing floor works off orders to build a specific number of some product, and may process several different product types within a short period of time.
This contrasts with continuous flow manufacturing of products like chemicals, oil, water purification and the like which involves continuous flows and instrumentation that are not supported by the discrete processing steps found in opentaps.
In opentaps the processes can produce a wide range of product types from high complexity/low volume products like scientific instruments, to low complexity/high volume types like paper clips.
In any case the use of the manufacturing processes will seek to provide improved planning and inventory control, to reduce lead times, to optimize costs, to improve processing consistency and to improve accuracy in product fulfillment of orders. The Figure 6 displays the types of functions used in opentaps to accomplish these objectives.
The major functions include:
- Defining the product to be produced in terms of materials to use (the Bill of Material), and how to execute the step by step production in terms of the Tasks and the order of the steps (the Routings). These functions are in the category of Planning.
- Defining the production event in terms of the schedule, what to build, how many to produce, and many related details (the Production Runs). These functions are in the category of production shop orders.
- Executing the production runs step by step and accounting for the results of every step. This is the actual production processing.
- Managing related items like outsourcing some of the steps, moving inventory in sync with the production events, and accounting for all the costs going into the production and the finished goods and waste coming out of the processes.
In the following sections of this chapter we will cover each of these topics in detail.