CAM as a Progress Lever

In a digital age, couldn't CAM be generalized?

Technology is now capable of integrating the specific requirements of different business lines in order to structure or standardize processes within Information Technology. As a result, Computer-Aided Production Management (CAPM) is becoming a prerequisite for production efficiency.

CAPM very often plays an essential role in supporting production efficiency.

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To be successful, it must be well-suited to users' needs and be sufficiently integrated into the rest of the Information Technology environment (upstream Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES), Supply Chain planning, etc.) Its implementation must also be supported by “intensive” change management to avoid classic pitfalls, such as keeping an unnecessary - or even burdensome - paper trail in parallel, concurrently calculating needs on Excel, or failing to control production management parameters, all of which can bring about significant failures.

There are many advantages:

  • Existence and maintenance of a technical database (ranges, nomenclatures), where possible interfaced with PLM tools, in order to guarantee the reliability of Material Requirements Planning (MRP) process, the time and material consumption tracking, as well as the information supplied to Industrial Management Auditing, Planning and Sequencing
  • Manufacturing Resource Planning (MRP II) process, which involves the production scheduling, the calculation of supply plans, the management of raw material inventory and WIP. This method no longer conflicts with just-in-time management methods, as software packages now allow for the coherent integration of different flow management approaches
  • Production and consumption monitoring, in order to fuel the Sequencing and Industrial Management Auditing functions, in particular
  • Industrial Management Auditing, which manages standard costs and provides all the production management indicators necessary to define action plans for improvement.

Implementing a CAPM creates definite potential for progress on a production site. It can complement a Lean Management approach, provided that the management methods implemented are entirely consistent with the decisions made in the Lean initiative. It can also provide historical data, allowing the levers implemented in that initiative to be quantified. However, companies must be thoroughly prepared when selecting and implementing a solution, to avoid the classic pitfalls of CAPM projects, e.g. project exceeding planned lead times and budget, results not living up to expectations nor reflecting the efforts made, etc.

How can Argon Consulting help you?

  • Analyzing and diagnosing production management practices and existing CAPM (if in use): this diagnostic may be aimed at either assessing requirements for the future CAPM or optimizing the use of the existing CAPM, which is often a significant area for improvement
  • Defining target business line processes and related management rules, so that the target business line vision is as clear as possible and guides decision-making regarding the implementation or adjustment of the CAPM in place (and not vice versa)
  • Developing a business case that sets out the expected benefits of the approach, as well as synergies with ongoing initiatives
  • Drafting functional and technical specifications to guide the pre-selection of solutions, based on the specific needs of the organization (in line with the organization’s Information Technology guidelines). This will probably raise the question of target architecture scenarios:
    • Best-of-breed software packages, which complement the existing Information Technology environment
    • Extension of any existing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) to the domain of production management
    • Implementation of a new ERP, including the CAPM component.
  • Managing the invitation to tender: pre-selection from a shortlist of solutions, defining selection criteria, including the creation of a model with “real” test data
  • Supporting implementation, and specifically:
    • Providing a detailed definition of new business processes
    • Transferring skills and designing training
    • Operational monitoring of the launch, including consulting on flow management methods and management rules
    • Managing the required change (communication, support, training, cultural and behavioral change, skill development, etc.)

Case Studies

Identify the paths of improvement of industrial performance for an automotive equipment supplier