A University in Vietnam Focusing on SCM Cooperated with Asprova

Working with VIetnam Supply Chain

Eastern International University (EIU) is a newly created university located in Binh Duong New City,Binh Duong Province, Vietnam, built by the State-owned Becamex IDC Corporation – the country’s largest infrastructure, industrial park developer and operator and a large conglomerate with over 30 related subsidiaries, has the mission of producing high-quality human resources to meet the country’s pressing needs.

EIU is the first University in Vietnam which offers Supply Chain Management Program for undergraduate level. We identify the problems Vietnam is facing with quality of workforce and provide the best solutions.

Our major supply chain management challenge in Vietnam is logistics cost. The logistics cost in Vietnam is around 25% of GDP. This creates an undue burden on businesses in Vietnam as we compete globally for FDI resources. In China and India, the logistics cost is around 15% and 13% respectively. In the USA, it is only 7.7% of GDP. This large gap is because of waste in the Vietnamese logistics processes and procedures. Another major issue is our supply base limitation. This limitation acts as a roadblock for companies in their efforts to meet the growing demand. The lack of skilled employees is a hindrance for business because it prevents companies from being established, or growing to meet marketplace demand. Information technology application is also a critical issue but there’s lack of Vietnamese businesses using IT to create competitive advantages and improve productivity. Vietnam must address these roadblocks to meet their long-term growth strategy. How can our community get to where we need to be to reach our strategic goals?

Creating a different way of educating our students is required if we will meet the challenge. We must have students who know the academic material, but are flexible in their thinking so they can meet as yet unknown problems. Collaboration between the business communities, governmental organizations, professional associations and institutions of higher learning ensure strategic challenges are completed on time, within budget and at the standards that delight the customers.

Eastern International University (EIU) is at the forefront of addressing our skill gap in employees that can meet the current and future challenges of business. EIU is addressing this skill gap by teaming with Portland State University, the Vietnam Supply Chain Association and ASPROVA Corporation. Through this collaboration we ensure we have the best understanding of what the business and governmental organizations must have for success.

We hope this cooperation will create a community and let’s be the community that creates the movement leading to success – success for our future generations.

Classifications in Manufacturing Industries Part I

Silk factory

BY PRODUCTION PROCESS

Assembly type

This is one of the most commonly used classifications. It pertains to factories where parts are assembled to make a product. This is also known as “discrete type”.

Process type

This is also one of the most commonly used classifications. It is where the product is produced from the material through a chemical change. Process type is also known as “non-discrete type”.

BY PRODUCT TYPE AND PRODUCTION VOLUME

Mass production of scant kind of products

From a factory’s point of view, this classification is efficient. This is mainly because it is easier to mass produce than to create different products.

Small volume production of diversified products

Recent trends show that mass production of scant products is slowly dropping away. This is why small volume production of varied products came to be. This is developed to meet the different needs of consumers.

BY STOCK POINT

Make-To-Order (MTO)

As discussed in the previous paragraph, consumer needs vary. So, in order to satisfy the growing needs of the populace, MTO was conceived. MTO is generally a business production strategy that allows customers to buy products that are customized to meet their specifications.

Make-To-Stock (MTS)

This is the traditional production strategy. It relies on demand forecasts that determine how much stock should be produced.

 

What is the Importance of Scheduling in MTO Manufacturing?

MTO Manufacturing

GammaIn the case of a Mexico-based Make-to-Order (MTO) company, production only starts when the order is received. Each customer order is unique, requiring the really intense coordination of every single activity, from paper purchase to artwork and plate preparation to machine make-readies. There are many restrictions and variants in MTO. Also, there’s the problem of how to deal with shortening lead time.

Without a very flexible and capable tool for scheduling, the operators, in this MTO Company, will only be processing orders chaotically, especially on times when there are tons of orders. Sometimes, the operators might be forced to refuse some orders and would be unsure of the delivery time. This will also prove to be a hassle if the customer cancels the order. This company experienced these ordeals before they met Asprova.

After implementing Asprova, positive changes become apparent. According to case study 12 of Asprova, overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) in the company increased by 80% after using the scheduling tool for a while.

There were other benefits like the late delivery which was reduced by 50% and WIP (work-in-progress) which was cut by 66%, but more importantly, the company was able to utilize their assets better, all thanks to Asprova.

 

Production Scheduling Software: In-house VS Standard Packaged

Quick Response

Consumers look for certain traits in their service and/or product providers. Two of the many things that customers assess in manufacturers are these: a swift product delivery and a fast response to their orders or order changes. These have been continuing to stand as a firm production standard and have also taught as a management concept known to many as Quick Response (QR).

QR is a management concept created to increase consumer satisfaction and survive increasing competition from new competitors. It intends to shorten the lead time from receiving an order to delivery of the products and increase the cash flow.

Asprova, the product that aims to apply the QR concept on its clients has certainly proven itself to a well known international company that produces heavy electric machinery systems, industrial mecha-tronics, information and telecommunications systems, electronic devices, manufacturing and sales of home electric appliances, and more.

Production Scheduling

According to the company, even though they have developed their own in-house scheduler, it required a great deal of troublesome work in establishing a system. Scheduling took a long time when it is applied to actual use. In order to solve such problems, they considered the introduction of the packaged solution—Asprova.

The previous in-house made scheduling software is very simple but it was also very slow. When the company switched to Asprova, they experienced a shift from the 5-10 minutes scheduling to a 2 second scheduling. The scheduling implementation was reduced by 80% and drastically shortened the implementation overhead.

Also, one of the most notable improvements, the company said, is the fact that it enabled them to respond quickly and accurately to customer orders.

Why is Planning Efficiency so Important?

Flawless Production Planning

“A goal without a plan is just a wish” says Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, a renowned French author of Philosophy books. The same can be said in modern manufacturing.

Planning is one of the most crucial stages in the processes of production. Without a detailed plan, goals cannot be met with ease. Even so, no matter how important planning is, it must be—like most things in life—fast and, as much as possible, flawless. No company who’s in their right minds would wish to unnecessarily lengthen this phase of production. Rather, we daresay that all manufacturers wish that the planning stages in their production processes would, as much as possible,  be shortened without the risk of errors, apparently.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Efficiency in planning is without a doubt, an attainable goal. This has been the fervent desire of one of the leading international camera film producers at some point. As we have discussed in previous studies, deficiencies in planning results in too many unwanted miscalculations and slip-ups in production.

Low cost, High-Speed Production Scheduler

This company has experienced these, and decided to switch to Asprova as well, and the reason was “In order to cope with rapidly changing business environments around that time, the manufacturing process for camera films required an improvement in efficiency in preparing plans. Given these circumstances, we considered utilizing Asprova as it was not only already in place for our other products but also didn’t require a high introduction cost” says a Logistic System Department Officer of the company. It did not only help with planning itself, but also gave the company a very cost-efficient deal.

According to the data found in Case Study 10 of Asprova, this company cited the following as highly rated effects after using Asprova:

  • Promotion of visualization
  • Keeping delivery dates
  • Reducing inventory
  • Improving operational ratio
  • Reducing lead-time
  • Improving throughput
  • Reducing planning cycle
  • Handling frequent planning changes
  • And, consolidation of  valuable human know-how into system resources.

But out of all this goodness, their most notable experience would be that the planning period was shortened by more than 20%, and saved a lot of money by reducing the planning staff by 50%.

Shortening Lead Time with Speed and Accuracy

Electronics Manufacturers’ Dilemma

Speed and Accuracy do not always go together. It is for a fact that, these two things would try to get in each other’s way, especially in manufacturing of electronic products. The reason for this is the detail-oriented specifications that are needed to be considered in most devices. Sometimes, by striving to go too fast in production might result in wastes if some important details were overlooked.

Let’s look at the case of a world renowned Japanese manufacturing company which have been producing wide variety of electronic products since 1987. The company was trying their best to meet customer demands. They simply wanted to upgrade their systems to achieve both scheduling speed and accuracy and possibly, they wanted to improve on the following areas: shortening of lead time,  improving productivity of their every employee, and shortening the operational time in preparing planning.

To accomplish this task, they searched for a scheduling package that can do all this and more. After a while, they found the scheduling software, Asprova, that offers a solution on all these areas and gives them a lot more than just that. Asprova has been known as having the uncanny ability of resolving companies’ scheduling nightmares and if its potentials will be utilized a hundred percent, then you will be able to improve upon not only in the areas mentioned above, but also on other important matters in scheduling – and most importantly, increase your company’s bottom line.

Improvements

In conclusion, the aforementioned company who was searching for a decent upgrade in their processes achieved what they were searching for after implementing the use of Asprova. According to Case study 9 of Asprova, lead time was shortened by 20%, the unevenness of lead time was reduced by 30%, production productivity per person was enhanced by 43%, and operational time in preparing planning was chopped by 16.7%. These are definite results highly improving in terms of speed and accuracy. And lastly, these are not the only things that their company improved upon.

The installation and implementation of Asprova has been seen by this company as the harbinger of productive and profitable times ahead of them. We urge you to experience high-speed and accurate scheduling with the help of Asprova.

Two Factories, One Production Engineer – Made Possible by High-Speed Production Scheduler

Custom Made Production Schedule

To keep up with the fast-paced manufacturing industry, one must learn to innovate. You will hear these words constantly if you would venture into production businesses. Time is one of the most essential factors in producing and meeting the ever-increasing and changing demands of the masses and the orders of other companies as well. Nevertheless, producers have to keep in mind that upgrading more often leads to positive results. Let’s look at the case of a synthetic resin manufacturer that had several problems that is concerned with time.

Using their own custom made scheduler, which had AI capabilities, the company was doing well—or so they thought. Their scheduling was based on order prospect and inventory information calculation. However, their custom made scheduler had tons of restrictions – one of which was the lengthy process of coming up with a schedule. It took them too long to process orders and other necessary things for production. In addition to that, their old hardware caused them machine failures that led to heavy burden on scheduling managers and unavoidable overtime work twice a month just for the routine scheduling job. This is quite miserable for the laborers. Relying on machines that don’t give good results is absurd.

Switching to Asprova

After realizing that they would need to upgrade their system, the company thought of numerous ways to improve. Fast enough, they discovered Asprova. They chose Asprova as their replacement scheduler because they were impressed with the scheduling speed, the ease that they’ve seen in its modification features and rescheduling features, and lastly, in issues operationally. Asprova allowed the users to easily modify schedules on its Gantt chart visually and effectively.

The most important factor here, once again, is undeniably time. Speeding up the processes of their factories is their first priority. When they incorporated Asprova into their scheduling routines, they amassed great developments. Visualization of production schedules provided by the Gantt chart transformed rescheduling time to 5 seconds from the past where it took 4 to 5 days.

Do you feel that your factories’ processes could be improved? Are you still grappling with unnecessary long hours (and additional costs from overtime work) just to make production schedules? Do you put heavy burdens on your schedulers by giving too much workloads – and deprive them of much needed rest just to meet customer demands? Don’t fret.

Visualization of Production Schedule Gets the Job Done more Efficiently

Visualization of Production Schedule

Visualization has been one of the most important part of production as this will allow you to take quick action should there be any unexpected  problems. For example, a sudden huge, rush order. It is apparent  that visualization leads to the maximization of the potentials of the production processes. Let’s try to crack the nutshell in the next paragraphs using a clear and concise example.

A well-known dye manufacturing company lacked visualization in the scheduling data of their factory, and this resulted to heavy dependence on human schedulers for order processing. As we have discussed in previous case studies, depending solely on schedule managers and/or human schedulers gives you headaches of all sorts. In this company’s case, it lead to work overload for their schedule managers because attending to changes and inquiries during daytime, and drafting the appropriate schedule at night became their routine. Because of this, they were unable to comply with the required efficiency to meet customer satisfaction. It was quite obvious that they needed a better scheduling scheme that would lessen the pressure on their laborers.

Getting tired of this long, inadequate routine, the company looked for solutions. At first, they tried to collaborate with a software company to produce their own production scheduling system. However, it didn’t work because of many setbacks. After that event, Asprova was recommended to them by an authorized distributor. The company agreed to try the product through the demonstration, and was impressed because of the following: Asprova’s scheduling speed, the Graphical User Interface (visualization), and the cost-effectiveness in terms of its version upgrades. The company, later on, decided to apply the Asprova scheduling software and just from one of its many features, the company was freed from their paralyzed state that lack of visualization held them in.

Trimming down the Plan-Do-Check-Adjust (PDCA) Cycle

Lengthy Production Schedule Drafting

Metal manufacturing, like other kinds of production, is not as easy as it seems. Like other manufacturers, companies that produce metals inevitably face the common difficulties (heavy workload, scheduling flaws, etc.) in production that comes along with it; this often takes place in the planning, doing, checking, and adjusting (PDCA) cycle.

Such is the story of a metal manufacturing company, who was aided by a mainframe computer in a monthly scheduling routine. In the initial stage of this company’s scheduling, the people in-charge often switched on the main computer at night. This was because it would take five to six hours of machine calculation needed in drafting a scheduling job. On the following morning, schedule managers would spend a whole day of work in correcting and editing the results in order to synchronize delivery times, setups, and machine operations.

Time is an essential variable in production. And, as you may have noticed, this company’s scheduling process took them quite  longer to finish than necessary. How right you are! In fact, it gets a lot worse, this manufacturing business needed at least three to four days to finish just drafting the schedules. And, it took them a month to finish scheduling. This is, most certainly, a result of relying on their mainframe computer that required long processing time, is inflexible—couldn’t adapt to sudden order changes, leading to dreadful manual calculation and on-site adjustment, and could not satisfactorily meet customer needs—now that’s a BIG problem.

High-Speed Production Scheduling

No matter how strong and capable a company is, it has limitations. However, these limits are not impossible to break with a little help. In order to find a solution to this issue, this metal manufacturing company looked for a scheduler that could give them better results. After a while, found out about Asprova and was surprised on how promising it is. It offered fast scheduling speed, a user-friendly Graphical User Interface (GUI), and diverse master settings. The people in charge of the search immediately recommended Asprova to their company after assessing the trial package.

They were able to resolve their situation and harnessed impressive results with the help of Asprova. The company was able to reduce the drafting time four days, to a three-hour minimum! Also, they lessened the completion of scheduling from a month to a week. This not only simplified the scheduling process, but also took off some of the heavy workload on the scheduling managers and the workers themselves.

If you need a little help on scheduling, Asprova might be your best friend, if you would give it a chance.

Standardization: The Secret to Massive Data Handling

Manual Production Scheduling’s Flaws

Scheduling is a key factor in any kind of production. It affects the entirety of processes and can either make or break the company’s daily production routines. As the company expands, demands change. Orders transform from a sizable few to a frantic many, which undoubtedly affect the daily production process and require upgrades in the system’s mainframe. A Japanese Auto Parts Company experienced this kind of ordeal.

It is of utmost importance to cite the several problems that gave the company quite a dilemma. First, there was inadequacy in the data processing capability of their current scheduler. This led to a point where they had to limit the number of products being produced. Second, the existing scheduler was unable to restrict colors in each facility. This problem led to manual schedule modification with the help of an experienced schedule manager. Third, and lastly, when they resorted to manual scheduling, it incurred a number of errors.

If we would analyze these critically, we could deduce a conclusion that their main problem lies in their custom-made production scheduler. Anybody would notice, and suggest, that the most plausible solution would be to upgrade their scheduling system. They did this. In fact, they thought of ways to improve the existing custom-made scheduler. However, their own managers agreed that it was better to search for a scheduling package than to upgrade the existing one.

Introduction of Asprova

They initiated efforts on finding a package that would be enough to satisfy their needs. It seemed hopeless at first, but then, persistence prevailed and they discovered Asprova. A demonstration was immediately requested. After learning more about Asprova’s functions through the use of a trial version of the software and attending a training seminar, they decided to switch to Asprova.

Asprova offers standardization. According to Wikipedia, Standardization means “the process of developing and implementing technical standards with the goals that can help with the independence of single suppliers (commoditization), compatibility, interoperability, safety, repeatability, and/or quality”. Standardized scheduling work by codifying their human scheduler’s know-how into Asprova made it easier for the company to make production schedules of bigger data and in a very short time.

After incorporating Asprova in their production scheduling, there were noticeable improvements: it enabled all products to be scheduled simultaneously, scheduling of data larger than their previous data size in the same amount of time needed, reduced schedule adjustment work due Asprova’s ability to restrict colors in each facility, and achieved standardization in most of the scheduling work by transferring the scheduling data into Asprova.

To read the full report, please click here.

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