Thinking topics

Some thematic information that will help you better understand Manufacturing Execution System (MES) and its implementation.

Le Takt Time est un terme d'origine allemande que l'on associe généralement au Lean Management et qui est employé dans le secteur de la production industrielle. Il désigne la durée idéale de production d'un bien, définie pour répondre exactement à la demande du client. Elle peut être expripmée en secondes, en minutes, en heures...tout dépend du besoin client.

With the avalanche of technologies that is now invading the industry in what is commonly called the Factory of the Future - 3D Printing, Cloud, Big data, AI, IoT, Virtual Reality, Digital Twin, etc. - there is no doubt that the industry is expected to experience many changes in the years to come.

The debate on the dividing line between ERP and MES, which indeed is variable depending on the processes and even the industrial’s choices, scarcely go beyond arbitrage duties on the management of units’ stocks and the products manufacturing recipes.

Lean Manufacturing has become very popular in recent years, as a result of the initial success of its methods in the Japanese automotive industry and a climate of fiscal restraint, where the idea of “lean” was obviously widely accepted. With the goal of making things easier and more efficient, Lean Manufacturing was first seen as the natural enemy of heavy and expensive IT systems, a category in which the systems of the Manufacturing Execution System could be wrongly classified. But are Lean and MES really enemies?

Starting with only a dozen or so in the early 1980s, programming languages have multiplied since then, now easily exceeding 100. There is abundant literature on the subject, which has earned its spot in large bookstores, alongside math, physics, economics, history, philosophy and the humanities.

Most integrators in our industry believe that integrating a batch engine results in higher costs in terms of licenses and development. Also, unless the end user requests a "batch engine" or a "ISA-88 standard", they often prefer to carry out additional specific developments, on the basis of a supervisor, in which they only use the recipe mechanism. Is it justified?

Some customers ask themselves if ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and MES (Manufacturing Execution System) are playing the same role. They thus challenge the opportunity to install an MES system after their ERP system has been installed. Actually MES systems have been designed to cooperate with ERP systems.

Born in the 1990s, the MES (manufacturing execution system) has gradually been adopted, somewhat like the ERPs that appeared in the previous decade. Put off by the budgets spent on ERPs, which they had not necessarily anticipated, companies have been more demanding when it comes to MESs, and mid-sized companies have lagged behind in adopting them.
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