The Apparel sector faces unique demands that make planning and scheduling particularly challenging

Some of Unique Challenges
  • Mixture of orders for quick response, new season lines and stock replenishment –
    • The demand profile of goods to be manufactured is varied, fluctuating between items requiring rapid response and those that have more flexible delivery dates.
  • Dynamic demand –
    • The demand profile of goods to be manufactured is dynamic with the mix of orders changing frequently and requiring frequent replanning.
  • Mixture of equipment and skills required –
    • Different styles may require the use of different operator skill sets and machines to complete an order.
  • Outsourcing Control –
    • A number of process may need to be complete by external manufacturers and these tasks need to be scheduled and controlled so as not to impact internal production flows.
  • Fabric and trim varieties –
    • Each garment will have its own fabric and trim requirements which need to be available prior to start of production.
  • Complexity of production process –
    • Different garments have different levels of manufacturing complexity which need to be taken into account when scheduling.
  • Differing task demands
    • Production orders need not go through all processes e.g. some may stop after sample production, some may be repeats of already designed products.

Scheduling Solutions can help you address these challenges

Utilizing the Siemens Opcenter APS (Advanced Production Scheduling solution) together with a production tracking solution, we will work with you to design and implement a solution that addresses the business needs while taking all the unique challenges into account.

Key capabilities

The key capabilities of this solution will be

  • To reschedule as often as necessary e.g. daily, to cater for quick response demand.
  • To schedule orders by category type e.g. quick response orders before stock replenishment orders.
  • The ability to consider the availability of materials and projected due date of purchase orders, when loading jobs into the schedule to supply expected due dates.
  • To consider the availability of different resources (lines) and run times when building a schedule
  • Allow what-ifs to explore alternate schedules to understand the consequences of changes to the schedule e.g. what is the impact of inserting a quick response order into production on existing orders and promises.
  • Consider the progress of jobs in production when developing new schedules.
  • Supply work schedules by resource area, or for subcontractor, to ensure all departments are coordinated.

Reported Benefits

Benefits reported by Clothing sector providers are amongst others

  • The ability to be more agile in the face of dynamic demand.
  • Reductions in WIP because of
    • Starting work when both materials and resources are available.
    • Improved co-ordination of Outwork (subcontract) services to prevent production delays.
  • Major increases in productivity because of
    • Avoiding downtimes caused by invalid scheduling
    • Ensuring all staff are aware of work to be completed
    • Activity tracking
    • Reductions in unnecessary overtime.
  • Significant reductions in scheduling effort
  • Improved response to actual demand.
  • ROI measured in months

Discover more about the Siemens Opcenter APS

Case studies

Machinery & Equipment – Lean Scheduling