Using Send-Ahead Quantity in Microsoft Dynamics NAV Routings
From a production scheduling point of view, it may be advantageous to ‘overlap’ production steps to reduce the elapsed time to produce a lot of goods.
From the APICS Dictionary
Send-Ahead is the movement of a portion of a lot of material to a subsequent operation before completion of the current operation for all units of the lot. The purpose of sending material ahead is to reduce the manufacturing lead time.
Other names for ‘Send-Ahead’ are Split Lot or Overlapped Production.
Figure 1 – Figure showing ‘Send-Ahead Quantity’ in Dyamics NAV
To illustrate this, we created a Dynamics NAV production order for 10 bicycles using the routing from above. The due date of the production order is 9/14/2014 and the starting date that was calculated by the system is 9/10/2014, 11:39 AM.
Figure 2 – Figure showing production order showing starting and ending dates
Now, when we have changed the Send-Ahead quantity on the first three routing steps and refreshed the production order, we get a starting date of 9/13/2014, 10:49 AM, which will result in a 3-day reduction of elapsed time.
Figure 3 – Changing the Send-Ahead Quantity of the first three routing steps…
Figure 4 - …results in a reduction of three days
Keep in mind that the total ‘effort hours’ remain the same, but the elapsed time is reduced. The advantage is that there are more operations being performed at the same time, as opposed to doing each operation when the entire lot is completed at each operation.
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