Classical ERP materials planning (MRP) and scheduling algorithms plan to purchase and make inventory for stock, based on several months of sales forecasts. KnarrTek' software, in contrast, dynamically plans and schedules the purchasing, making, and shipping of products in response to a continual ongoing flow of customer orders.
This makes the KnarrTek software especially suitable for quick-turnaround make-to-order manufacturers and industrial distributors that do secondary operations, such as assembly, kitting, repackaging, and relabeling.
In this process, KnarrTek's MilramX software integrates and aggregates customer orders from a variety of sources. Intelligent agents can then automatically generate purchase, work, and shipment orders from these, typically on a nightly basis. Alternately operations managers can interact with the AI algorithms used for planning, through a web portal, to integrate their own specialized knowledge into the planning process.
MilramX can then automatically interact with supplier systems to order the needed raw materials or can submit purchase requisitions to purchasing managers through their ERP system, along with possibly alert messages that materials need ordering.
The purchase orders are also used to generate receiving orders in a BellHawk tracking system, to facilitate the receiving and put-away of raw materials. The receipts are then used to update accounts payable in the accounting/ERP system as well as the database of predicted materials availability maintained by MilramX for materials planning purposes.
Work orders the make products are also generated by MilramX and sent to BellHawk, where they are used to control manufacturing work flow for both intermediate and final products for each customer. Here scheduling is controlled dynamically by BellHawk in response to incoming order flow, availability of materials, and customer delivery dates.
Materials consumed and produced are tracked in real-time in BellHawk and used to update the materials planning information in MilramX. They are also used to capture materials traceability history in both systems, which is typically sent to customer systems after shipment of products.
BellHawk also tracks job cost and inventory data, as well as shipment data, which is used to automatically update the ERP system.
The result is a Lean, Just-in-Time process for making customer orders on a rapid-turnaround basis, which requires far fewer people doing overhead tasks, such as managing materials, planning and scheduling production, expediting customer orders, and generally manually keeping track of the whole process.
This process can be extended to include the engineering department, with products drawings and BOMs, as well as shipment releases designed in a CAD system and then exported through MilramX to BellHawk.
The MilramX' planning algorithms can also be extended to cover operations at multiple manufacturing and distributions sites, with optimum use of materials and production resources at multiple sites, as well as making products as close as possible to their customers, for rapid response and minimization of shipping costs.
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