MRP Automation

Consulting and Analyst organizations are constantly pushing the next big thing. The reality is that the majority of companies don’t utilize the system infrastructure that is already installed and spend little time automating basic functions. At WCS, we focus on filling the grey space that exists between MRP and Planning systems, linking planning to execution through a series of custom applets that reduce manual activities, help to identify and manage key planning parameters and drive approved plans through the MRP system with the minimum amount of manual activity.

Below are some of the areas in which we have applets available to streamline basic processes to increase accuracy and efficiency as well as tie planning to execution.

Inventory Planning – Network Balancing Application

This solution was originally developed for one of the largest Wholesale Distribution companies in the world. They have a network of over 30 distribution centers running a hub and spoke structure. Product is received into a distribution center and then shipped to smaller forward distribution centers to service regional customers. Traditional MRP and/or planning systems will create stock transfer orders or purchase orders based upon when a facility is below inventory levels. However, what they don’t do is first check to see if material could be used from another DC within the network, therefore, utilizing inventory they already have in the network.

Provides a network diagram that highlights where inventory may be in an overstock situation

Based upon user defined rules it looks to balance the network and create a series of stock transfer recommendations to the user

The user can review the recommendations and approve them directly within Fiori based screens

Once approved, they automatically book the Stock Transfer Order into SAP ECC without the user having to touch the approved order again.

This process can be executed at any time and data is refreshed in the application multiple times per day.

Inventory Replenishment + Allocation Planning Solution

For pharmaceutical active ingredients or fillers often demand outpaces global supply. When supply is less than demand for an extended period then an allocation process is required. Allocation divides up available supply by region or region-customer depending on the level of detail that is required. Allocation rules are established to determine the proportion of supply for each region. Once these bulk materials have been allocated, additional guidance is provided for regions to determine how to convert and package into specific end products in their markets. The following process is supported:

  • Run bulk material allocation algorithm to divide up supply based upon a series of rules
  • Review the forecast explosion from end item to bulk and the recommended bulk allocation
  • Adjust the allocation quantities without exceeding total available supply and update final allocations
  • Understand a unified and visible allocation plan by region to see what portion of forecast in supported
  • Update allocations in finite production scheduling
  • Run finished goods allocation algorithm to suggest on how to use the allocated bulk across multiple finished goods and package types
  • Prioritize replenishment orders and commitments

Net Requirements Planning Custom Algorithm

Custom net requirements planning was originally developed to support a global pharmaceutical manufacturer to enhance planning in conjunction with a finite scheduling package. This combination provides greater capability to understand the true constraints in a plant, get a long term constrained response and implement a much faster weekly/daily replenishment process. The network solver nets in-market finished goods inventory from the sales forecast and inventory targets to create a net regional demand by product which is sourced to the appropriate plant based upon the latest available forecast. A master production schedule is created and imported into the finite scheduling system for constrained planning. This solution significantly reduces MRP exception messaging and creates a more productive planning process.