Fastems Manufacturing Management Software new MMS Domain, Work Cell Operations (WCO), makes it possible to include all manual production tasks, work cells, and stand-alone machines in the IT-supported planning, control and monitoring of production.

Planning, Control, Monitoring Software — Standalone or in a Cell

March 12, 2020
WCO software provides all the tools needed to combine automated and non-automated production steps in a uniform production management system.

FASTEMS Manufacturing Management Software (MMS) for planning, forecasting, controlling, visualizing, and monitoring automated manufacturing has expanded to include a new MMS Domain, Work Cell Operations (WCO.) This new function makes it possible for IT-supported planning, control and monitoring of production to include all manual production tasks, work cells, and stand-alone machines.

The solution can be used either separately for machines or manual workstations, or in combination with an automated pallet and/or workpiece handling systems.

“MMS Work Cell Operations, or WCO, brings the unique Fastems features like automatic, predictive scheduling and full transparency of manufacturing operations, for stand-alone machine tools and other manually operated workstations,” according to Tomi Kankainen, CDO and VP of Fastems MOM Software business.

WCO presents a range of advantages for work preparation, shopfloor operations, and controlling, including time-optimized, automated production planning that takes into account the entire process chain managed by WCO, along with automatic detailed planning that allows production with smaller part buffers, among other parameters.

Notably, shopfloor workers will have a clear view of what tools and materials are needed, and which resources may be missing.

Additionally, workers will know at all times which specific tasks are due in a shift, as they are provided with clear, prioritized work lists. Such prompts improve the timeliness of resource ordering and transfer logistics, Fastems explained, so that tools and materials are always delivered on time to the machines, cells, or flexible manufacturing system (FMS.)

If permitted, the employee at a machine or work cell also has access to all important production documents and instructions via the WCO module. Against this background, WCO also offers greater transparency with regard to current information on manufacturing capacities, production output, and order status.

According to the developer, Work Cell Operations domain has a direct positive influence on KPIs for highly efficient overall production, including higher utilization of production capacities, increased production output, shorter lead times, higher delivery reliability (e.g., through automatic planning based on real production orders, due dates and quantities) and less WIP (Work-in-Progress). Detailed planning and seamless transfer of information will contribute to higher production quality.

Fastems emphasized that WCO software provides all the powerful tools needed to combine automated and non-automated production steps in a uniform production management system. Functions like deburring and parts washing can now be incorporated into cells and monitored right along with CNC machine tools and the automation equipment integrated into the cell or FMS.

The solution is therefore a decisive step towards full integrated manufacturing management often referred to as MOM (Manufacturing Operations Management), enabling continuous improvement of all production processes through the digitalization of manufacturing workflows.

WCO and all Fastems products and services are offered at several levels of engagement and application, for the convenience and practicality of a customer’s operations and goals. Fastems automation equipment and software can be installed in phases, each one growing in capability and functionality.

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