Factory Logic Expands Lean Production Management Capabilities

Integrated production leveling, supermarket and supplier Kanban tools part of Factory Logic solution for demand-driven manufacturers

Integrated production leveling, supermarket and supplier Kanban tools part of Factory Logic solution for demand-driven manufacturers

Austin, TX — November 15, 2005 — Factory Logic today announced an upgraded release, 5.4, of its Factory Logic Lean Operations Suite. Factory Logic said its integrated lean software is designed to support demand-driven production scheduling and pull-based supply synchronization.

The provider said the suite uses lean methods originally pioneered in the Toyota Production System (TPS) to encourage just-in-time (JIT) manufacturing, which reduces lead times, improves efficiency and drives down costs throughout the supply chain.

Factory Logic said it has taken the discipline and methodology of TPS and turned it into an enabling technology to standardize and automate processes. The newest release provides capabilities for heijunka scheduling of pacemaker operations, expanded capabilities for supermarket management and upgraded capabilities for supplier kanban.

Increasingly, manufacturers are recognizing the competitive advantage achievable by transforming themselves to a Lean, demand-driven model, said Tim Costello, Factory Logic Board member and a member of the Board of Governors for the Shingo Prize. TPS is a powerful, proven model for lean operations, but it requires a very different approach to production management at the shop floor level. Factory Logic 5.4 provides the tools that factory and supply chain personnel need to address real-world issues they face on a daily basis in a just-in-time environment.

While enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems have been instrumental in helping companies achieve supply chain efficiencies, lean pundits and purists have historically disavowed the use of such systems in lean manufacturing, claiming that ERP solutions have lacked the capability to support the flexible, demand-driven factory scheduling and supplier replenishment capabilities required to support today's complex manufacturing environments.

But the pace of adoption of lean and the pressure for enterprise-scale deployment is shifting the tide toward technology, both ERP and complementary lean solutions. According to an AMR Research report on lean manufacturing: Companies that want a broader adoption of lean will need a combination of ERP systems and lean technology&The tools to support Lean planning and execution are maturing, and the deployment of Lean technology will support a sustainable, scalable model for future adoption. (Judy Sweeney, AMR Research, East Meets West — Lean Manufacturing and ERP Are a Better Fit Than You Think, October 13, 2005.)