All Bill of Materials (BOMs) features across manufacturing ERP systems are the all the same right?
Well, not really.
According to one DELMIAWORKS (formerly IQMS) user:
“If you’re a manufacturer that uses bills of materials (BOMs) or formulas and are looking for a complete a to z manufacturing ERP system, then DELMIAWORKS is your answer”.
But what makes BOMs in DELMIAWORKS so unique amongst other ERP systems?
In the majority of ERP systems, especially software that is geared towards manufacturing, they tend to have quite a flat or a tree-like BOM structure, meaning that you can only have a number of different manufacturing processes.
And of those manufacturing processes, you can have materials associated with them.
Quite often what manufacturers will find is that the processes will be a production routing and then you’ll have a separate bill of materials, which will then reference a process within them.
And, within that bill of materials, you may want to branch off into subcomponents which might then have additional production routines and additional BOM requirements.
With a flat or tree-like BOM structure you’re limiting yourself in the way you can handle manufacturing processes. You would, for instance, struggle with the likes of a family tool scenario where you might have five different components that are manufactured off one production cycle.
In its simplest form, a BOM provides a list of raw materials, sub components, parts and sub assemblies in order to manufacture a finished product.
Sitting here and typing this article on my keyboard, the bill of materials would, for instance, include the parts and components making up the PCB, keys, cabling, wiring, casing and screws to name but a few that are needed to complete the finished keyboard.
No doubt, there’d also be details on the assembly processes to put that keyboard together.
In most manufacturing ERP systems, the BOM wouldn’t give you the plan as to how those things are going to be routed on the shop floor to to put them all together.
That’s the production routing.
And that’s separate.
What really sets DELMIAWORKS apart from other software applications is its ability to consolidate the material requirements against the specific production routing in the same environment.
You can see exactly what materials are required at each stage in the production process. And where you might have multiple processes, such as for injection moulding, say, or blow moulding or thermo moulding, you can actually have those as subcomponents feeding into the assembly product.
In DELMIAWORKS, you can also set up certain parameters around those subcomponents, such as how they’re specifically manufactured.
Once we’re at this granular level, we start looking at the real benefit of DELMIAWORKS: manufacturing types.
27 different manufacturing types built-in
DELMIAWORKS’ in-built manufacturing types determine the nature of the BOM. They determine what information is received throughout the manufacturing process and what information is required.
If we look at an example plastic manufacturing process, you have got the opportunity to factor in things like:
- Runner and sprue weights
- Regrind percentages
- Specific cycle times – and the list goes on.
So, now rather than looking at a cavitation scenario where you can only look at the time it takes to manufacture one item of 20 seconds in assembly process one and 40 seconds in assembly process two, you can actually say for every ten items in that BOM may take 13 seconds.
When you apply that information through the production planning and scheduling process and start to analyse exactly what’s happening on your manufacturing shop floor, you then have the ability to generate far more accurate representation of what’s happened in the past, what’s happening in real-time and what may happen with future production runs.
You’ll know exactly how quickly you can manufacture those products, get them through the assembly line to a finished product – and with the added benefit of everything being in real-time.
You can understand exactly what’s happening on your shop floor, as opposed to having to use workarounds or use defined fields or the likes, as you’ve got native placeholders for all of that information in DELMIAWORKS so you can manage all your costs and all your resources more efficiently and effectively.
If, for example, you’re injection moulding 100 standard items in a three-second cycle. If that cycle time should deviate by a second, over one year that’s going to have a huge impact on your production schedule.
Your customers might be forecasting annual demand for that standard product and they want an accurate idea as to when they’re going to receive the goods, if your time that you’ve specified on your BOM is out by that second, it can make a huge difference to your bottom line.
When you also factor in the gathering and application of real-time shop floor production data into your BOM, you can ensure your original calculations and production schedule are as accurate as possible – and you can report delivery schedules to customers as accurately as possible.
If you’re trying to do any of that using Excel spreadsheets or trying to integrate several systems or data sources together that might actually be a week or two out of sync with what’s happening at that very moment, you’re never going to be able to build an accurate picture of performance across your business.
Because DELMIAWORKS provides a single, unified ‘moment of truth’ across your entire business – and every BOM – your calculations are always accurate.
Need to look back at past performance for a specific production run or BOM?
You can look back at your setup times. You can look at your cycle times. You can look up everything and make sure all times that the BOM is as accurate as it can possibly be.
Learn more about Bill of Materials in DELMIAWORKS
Want to learn more about what makes DELMIAWORKS’ Bill of Materials so unique for manufacturers? Why not get in touch with us and we’ll show you why.
Posted by Paul on 18th January 2021.