Job shop scheduling is the process of detailing resources that are allocated for particular jobs, and the most efficient way to do all the jobs simultaneously. With companies taking up hundreds of orders from multiple clients daily, job scheduling can be arduous, given the limitation of resources and time. Job scheduling can be effectively and simply managed by using the right software.
Job scheduling generally requires the creation of complex algorithms and mathematical charts. However, with scheduling software, this can be eradicated as the software tools effectively maintain all the information on a centralized server, for real-time processing. This enables the operator to track each and every job, machine, department and employees by each hour, day, week or month. Each machine can be scheduled individually, or the entire shop can be scheduled at a time. These tools are also smart enough to prioritize the tasks, determine the capacity requirements and schedule them accordingly. They can build schedules based on the real-time capabilities of the resources, people and the machines as well as the current used capacity of the job shop. They can identify WIP, ERDs (estimated release dates), throughputs, backlogs, JIP scheduling, ASAP scheduling, priority scheduling, tandem scheduling, parallel scheduling, fragment scheduling, ship date scheduling, station-specific scheduling, station sequencing and many more.
An ideal job scheduling software is flexible enough to accommodate additional jobs and rush orders. It effectively identifies bottlenecks in the process and seeks to remove them. It keeps you in control by measuring performance on the basis of planned against actual, capacity-driven critical paths, net change effects, pulse rates and others.
Job shop scheduling software should be easy to use, cost effective, and easily coordinate with the existing systems. Simple and easy to use interface, multi-user interface, easy configuration, finite capacity planning, forward scheduling, and direct file linking with other systems are other desirable features. Many also have advanced features like integrated MRP/ERP system, drag and drop scheduling, manufacturing capacity planning tools, integrated job quote modules, multi-cell and multi-plant manufacturing support, lean manufacturing value streams support and others.
There is hundreds of job shop scheduling software tools available. Many suppliers offer additional services such as analysis, modeling, integration, training, data cleanup, customization, implementation, and measurement of benefits as well.