Human Performance in Planning and Scheduling

By Bart MacCarthy; John Wilson | Go to book overview

CHAPTER FOURTEEN

Designing and Using an Interactive MRP-CRP System Based on Human Responsibility

Nobuto Nakamura


14.1

INTRODUCTION

Generally, a production plan will be divided into long-range, medium-range, and short-range (Hax and Candea, 1984). The long-range (years) plan is necessary to develop facilities and equipment, suppliers, and production processes and becomes, in turn, the constraints on the medium- and short-range plans. The longrange capacity planning problem is not handled in this chapter.

Aggregate planning develops medium-range (6-18 months) production plans concerning employment, inventories, utilities, facility modifications, and materialsupply contracts. A master production schedule, which is made from data determined by the aggregate plan, is a short-range (several weeks to a few months) production plan for producing finished goods or end-items. This plan develops production schedules of parts and assemblies to be manufactured, schedules of purchased materials, shop floor schedules, and work force schedules (Gaither, 1996).

On the other hand, the capacity planning which plans the balance of demand and supply for manufacturing capacity is divided into resource planning, rough-cut capacity planning, and capacity requirements planning corresponding to each level of the production planning mentioned above. Of course, these levels are mutually linked, although the content of the capacity planning at each level is different, making it possible to say that human judgement is necessary for final decisionmaking.

In a short-range production plan, one of most important developments has been that of material requirements planning (MRP). MRP is a computer-based information system for planning production and purchases of dependent demand items. It uses information about end product demands, product structure and component requirements, production and purchase lead-times, and current inventory level to develop cost-effective production and purchasing schedules.

Why have so many production companies today adopted MRP systems? The reasons result mainly from the philosophy of MRP systems, that is, 'each raw material, part, subassembly and assembly needed in production should arrive simultaneously at the right time to produce the end items in the master production schedule (MPS)' (Gaither, 1996).

However, since it has become evident that MRP alone is not sufficient to cope adequately with balancing capacity with workload, further development has

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