to succeed in the manufacturing industry, I suggest you consider increasing your manufacturing productivity with MRP. MRP (Manufacturing Resource Planning) is a way to organize all aspects of the manufacturing process, including production schedules, costs, billing, and inventory into an complete system that will help you optimise the process of manufacturing your products. Many manufacturers today make use of some type of MRP program, and if you don’t, you may find the efficiency and productivity of your business falling behind that of better equipped competitors.
The first MRP programs became widely used by manufacturers in the 70s and 80s. Largely based on Toyota’s highly effective manufacturing program, it consisted of a series of information inputs and outputs that would help manufacturers create an effective manufacturing plan that would ensure that products were ready to be shipped on time. Designed to take a lot of the guess work out of the manufacturing process, it took into account factors such as the demand for certain products, the materials required to manufacture them, when the products were wanted, how long it takes to manufacture these products, and much more. Since the 1980s, these systems have been largely computerized.
These days, the majority of MRP systems are run using computer technology. It’s a rare company indeed that doesn’t use a computer system to plan their ordering, shipping and manufacturing processes. Today’s MRP systems are extremely customizable, so that manufacturers can build a system that will address the specific needs of their organization.
Virtually all basic MRP systems include functions that will simplify or produce master production schedules, bills of materials, purchase management systems, material requirement planning, shop floor control, cost control, and capacity planning. Today’s systems will also handle a lot of the planning process for both small and large manufacturing firms, being able to handle material needs and inventory of numerous sites at the same time. These features are typically available with stock MRP programs, which are widely available.
You might want to have custom MRP systems put in place to increase the manufacturing productivity of your organization. Some of the most used custom features included in many MRP applications are: an accounting system or general ledger, distribution requirement planning, technical records, project management, estimation aids, CAD/CAM and CAPP programs, and sales order management. Depending on the type of operation you run, you might want your MRP program to use several of these functions. Modern MRP software packages are extremely modular, allowing you to only add the programs that will be helpful in optimizing your ordering, production, and delivery.
The most useful attribute of today’s MRP programs is that they help with increasing manufacturing productivity by helping the manufacturer optimize his timetable, order only the materials needed, when they are needed (avoiding overstocking of products and materials), and manage the entire manufacturing process from the purchase of raw materials to shipping the finished product. Today’s MRP programs are designed with flexibility in mind, allowing them to adapt to the changing requirements of your company.
Marc Anderes is the Vice President of Operations of Maloya Laser that is dedicated to Laser Cutting and Metal Manufacturing with advanced laser systems, servicing medical, aerospace, scientific and transportation requirements.