Production Lead Time Reduction

Calculating your production schedule at high precision considering resource capacity is enough to start shortening production lead times. By synchronizing multiple processes in the schedule, Asprova eliminates unnecessary wait time between processes. If you need to shorten lead times more, you can split manufacturing orders or individual operations and assign them to multiple machines in parallel. To shorten lead times even further, you can overlap subsequent processes or reduce transfer batch sizes.

1. Synchronized Finite Capacity Scheduling

If the time each process takes is expressed as a fixed lead time (as in the case of MRP), production lead times are simply the sum of the fixed lead times of the individual processes, and thus cannot be shortened. On the other hand, since Asprova’s finite capacity scheduling calculates the net processing time of each process while synchronizing the schedules of subsequent processes, Asprova can calculate the shortest production lead time realistically allowed by the available capacity of the resources. For at least one user, simply switching to using finite capacity scheduling shortened production lead times by 75%.

2. Operation Splitting

If you would like to shorten production lead times even further, you can split lengthy operations and assign the split operations in parallel on multiple resources. There are many ways of expressing the way to split an operation, including the number of split operations, the number of parallel operations, split ratio, minimum lot size, maximum lot size, and lot size unit. Using these features, you can greatly shorten production lead times. Also, by splitting some of the processes of a manufacturing order that the schedule says will run late, you can shorten the production lead time of a specific manufacturing order so as to complete it before its due date.

3. Time Constraint Method (Transfer Batch Size)

The time constraint method refers to the method of controlling the time relationship between subsequent processes. ES (End-Start) pegs the end of the previous process to the start of the next process. SS (Start-Start) pegs the start of the previous process to the start of the next process. SSEE (Start-Start-End-End) pegs the start of the previous to the start of the next, and the end of the previous to the end of the next process. These are the time constraint methods that have been available up till now. Asprova adds two new time constraint methods to further support production lead time shortening. EES (End Each-Start) pegs a previous process consisting of a single operation to a following process consisting of multiple split operations so as to supply items just-in-time. ESE (End-Start Each) pegs a previous process consisting of multiple split operations to a following process consisting of a single operation so as to supply items just-in-time. This makes it possible to take advantage of operation splitting to the fullest in reducing lead times.

4. Time Constraint MAX (Optional)

The time constraint MAX controls the maximum wait time between processes. This feature is used for cases where the quality of the product will deteriorate if the subsequent processes are separated by more than a certain amount of time.

5. Resource Lock (Optional)

Resource lock prevents other operations from being assigned to the resource used in the previous process until the next process is complete. This feature is used for cases such as where the previous process is carried out by a tank resource.

6. Bottleneck-Oriented Scheduling

In Asprova, you can perform scheduling while keeping fixed all operations assigned to bottleneck resources. Asprova will perform backward assignment on processes previous to the fixed operations and forward assignment on following processes, optimizing start times while shortening production lead times.

7. External Setup

By converting internal setups into external setups, you can shorten your production lead times while increasing the throughput on bottleneck resources and thence the productivity of your factory as a whole, as explained in TOC (Theory of Constraints). In particular, changing setups for an expensive machine from internal setups to external setups will increase the productivity, which leads to profit increase.

Register as a member to download a free trial version of Asprova.


Lead Time Reduction