Ever come across the term master schedule? Maybe not yet, or probably you have, and it got you curious. In as much as the term seems self-explanatory, there’s so much more to it than a mere schedule. Well, it is inevitable has this is equally as important as the capital you’ve raised for your business.
To coordinate and monitor all of the project’s many components, the management team, and especially the project management team leader, will have to create a series of distinct schedules, each of which will track a single component or aspect of the project on a smaller, more detailed scale.
Keeping track of where things stand in the larger picture of the project as a whole, on the other hand, maybe a difficult task, especially given the many different timetables for the various components. Because of this, compiling a complete master schedule for the project is important, if not necessary, for the project team leader.
Every profitable manufacturing firm relies on a master schedule. This article will teach you all you need to know about master schedules and how to use them in your operations.
What is a master schedule?
A master schedule is a central document that tells you what you have to do, how much you have to produce, and when you have to do it.
After-sales and operations planning, the master schedule is the next phase in the planning process.
Data from a higher-level sales and operations planning exercise flows through master scheduling, which is used for planning at a lower level and for product groups.
The master schedule will tell when certain product types will be manufactured when client orders will be completed, and how much production capacity remains for fresh customer demand.
In a nutshell, it is everything in your firm that has to do with production, including certain time frames, for example, your manufacturing lead time.
Why build a master schedule?
What advantages can you expect if you include a master schedule into your company planning? Find out below.
1. Because you’ll have a better understanding of your production runs, you’ll be able to create, optimize, and monitor your demand planning more effectively.
2. With an understanding of the manufacturing needs, you can figure out what your optimal inventory level is.
3. Prior to production, your HR department may know what the criteria are.
4. You may increase your material capacity and prevent stockouts by doing so.
5. You can calculate the total quantity of labour required for future manufacturing runs.
6. You can execute predictive maintenance throughout your manufacturing lines if you know how much production will be done ahead of time.
7. Your master schedule makes it easier to estimate how much inventory you’ll need in the future, which helps you improve your procurement process.
8. A master schedule may also help your finance department by allowing them to generate a cash flow projection for the organization.
Main Features of a master schedule
Below are some of the main features of a standard master schedule:
1. Master Schedule Record
The master schedule record will differ depending on your company’s planning processes and unique goods, but it will include several essential details.
The predicted demand, amount of booked orders, estimated inventory levels, production quantities, and quantity available for promise should all be included in the record.
The master schedule record is shown across a period known as the planning horizon. This might take anything from a few days to many months, depending on the completed product.
Complex completed items, such as aeroplanes and bespoke conveyor systems, will have months-long lead times, while products that can be created and delivered in a matter of days will have a shorter planning horizon.
2. Available to Promise
The master schedule not only provides information on the time and quantity of needed production quantities, but it also provides information to the marketing department that can be utilized when working with clients on final delivery dates.
Customers may request final delivery dates depending on the number of available-to-promise (ATP) inventory when placing orders with the sales department.
The ATP is determined as the gap between recorded sales orders and the amount allocated for production by the manufacturing department. The available to promise quantity is lowered by the amount on the sales order when the sales team accepts a new order. As a result, depending on the amount available to guarantee, the following purchase may need the client to be offered a different ultimate delivery date.
The ATP amount is not a genuine number, but rather an estimate based on client sales orders and manufacturing estimates. The availability to promise quantity will alter if a client cancels an order or the production department arranges a fresh run, enabling delivery dates to be shortened.
If a consumer calls to adjust a sales order to a higher amount or if the manufacturing department fails to provide the anticipated number of components, the situation is reversed. Because the master scheduling amount sets the time and size of new completed items that may be assigned to satisfy future sales orders, each master scheduling quantity is connected with an available to promise inventory.
3. Time Fences
If the master schedule is modified for whatever reason, it may be costly to the firm since more production might create delays in customer shipments, or lowering the quantity of sales orders can result in raw materials not being utilized, resulting in warehouse storage expenses.
A corporation might freeze a specified time called the Demand Time Fence to control the master schedule. No major changes may be made to the master schedule during this time period, which begins with the current period.
The number of periods may be determined using the cost of making modifications to the master schedule. If making modifications is exceedingly expensive, the demand time barrier maybe weeks, but if the cost of making changes to the master schedule is low, the demand time fence can be a day or two.
Changes done outside of the demand time boundary are consequently less expensive for the firm, although they will still incur some expenditures.
This is known as the Planning Time Fence, and it is during this time that the master scheduler can:
- Make adjustments to the timetable.
- Consider the needs of the consumer.
- Changes in production should be considered.
Other features of a master schedule
1. Discrete and Repetitive
Discrete and repeated tasks might be included in the master schedule. A master schedule entry for a separately made item is defined by precise schedule date and quantity. A master schedule entry for a repetitively produced item is defined by a schedule start date, a rate termination date, and a daily quantity.
The scheduled date for a discrete item in a master demand schedule may or may not be a legitimate workday. Because repeated planning ignores non-workdays, the start and end dates for a repeating item must be valid workdays.
The start and finish dates for repeated items, as well as the scheduled date for discrete items, must be valid workdays for a master production schedule.
4. Configurations for Forecasting and Planning
Configurations may be scheduled on your master schedule. Configurations might be one-of-a-kind, one-time combinations of choices, or they can be common, frequently-ordered groupings of options.
5. Identify Schedule Conflicts
Using rough-cut capacity planning, you can detect conflicts between ideal and achievable schedules. Rough-cut capacity planning transforms the master schedule into an evaluation of available and necessary capacity, as well as the influence on important resources such as bottleneck work centres and items/equipment with long lead times.
It allows you to assess the likelihood of success before execution. Rough-cut capacity may be used to simulate various situations and evaluate numerous master schedules.
6. Demand for Scheduled Spares
Manually establishing spare parts needs as master demand schedule entries are how you add spare parts demand to an MPS plan. You may also predict spares need and include them in the master schedule.
7. Planned Orders from MPS Firm
For MPS plans developed using the Memory-based Planning Engine, an order for an MPS Planned item may be amended or added in the Planner Workbench.
8. Master Scheduling for any Level
Schedule elements that exist at any level of the bill of materials may be mastered. The master production schedule is therefore independent of the material needs plan, albeit it may contain the demand for goods that are also MPS parents. Similarly, both MPS and MRP scheduled items may be included in the MRP plan.
9. Project and Seiban References
You may add project/Seiban and task references in your schedule entries if you operate in a project-based or Seiban environment. The material planning process will be accompanied by and driven by these references.
Functions of a master schedule
In order to grow your manufacturing business, a master production schedule will help you save time by increasing the efficiency of the time you spend regulating your production flow.
Once you know the master schedule’s ultimate aim, you’ll see that all of the other master production schedule goals are geared toward attaining it. The following are the additional functions of a master production schedule:
1. Converting Production Schedules
How will you balance demand, personnel needs, and equipment capabilities in your operations? The master production schedule will help you figure out how many goods you’ll need to make in a given time frame.
2. Alternative Timetables Are Being Considered
A master production schedule should take into consideration numerous manufacturing routes to determine which is the most efficient, as well as any difficulties that may arise along the way.
3. Capacity Requirements for Production
With your master production schedule and rough-cut capacity planning, you can figure out the actual capacity you’ll need to satisfy demand, enhance revenues, and save expenses.
4. Processing Information More Efficiently
The master schedule assists you in determining reorder points for upcoming deliveries. This may be accomplished by synchronizing several management information systems, such as marketing and finance.
5. Capacity Utilization
Finally, a master production schedule can assist you in determining machine and equipment loads and usage needs.
The following are the additional master production schedule objectives:
- Improves the smoothness of your demand flow
- Keeps your lead time to a minimum
- Ensures consistency in your company’s communication.
- It aids in the prioritization of needs.
- Assist in maintaining production stability.
- Produces practical planning for your production orders.
- Assists in the proper execution of the purchase and transfer orders.
What is the difference between a master schedule and a production planning?
Although the methods for developing the two might be similar, there are some misunderstandings between a master schedule and a production planning.
The following is the distinction between a Master Schedule and Production Planning:
Businesses must carry out a continual optimization process to determine the number of completed items they need to create depending on the inputs and parameters of their production.
Production planning, on the other hand, is where you specify the production levels in the early phases of your manufacturing process, with limited or less information. The goal of production planning is to establish how many families or groups of things will be produced.
Management Software for Master Scheduling
Katana Manufacturing ERP Software is a solution for firms that want to centralize everything from production planning to manufacturing to sales.
Katana, on the other hand, is equipped with a master production schedule, which simplifies the whole process by automating the activities related to your master schedule.
Katana’s MPS system is a constant stream of data. It optimizes your calendar so that you can not only see what is most important, but can also view everything else, all at once.
The master schedule is a high-level project plan that identifies all of the project’s primary deliverables as well as all of the specific work breakdown structure components.
However, the Materials Requirement Planning (MRP) system will be used to refine the master schedule by calculating the amount and timing of purchase and production orders required to meet the master schedule.
Now that you know what a master schedule is and how it differs from production planning, you’re now probably aware that putting together this planning is a lot of effort, and it’s definitely worth it.
Fortunately, there is software available that can automate this process for you: Katana Manufacturing ERP Software. This software allows you to quickly create your master production schedule and go back to expanding your company in less than no time.