4/27/22 12:36 PM


Most people in the manufacturing space think of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) when faced with the daunting task of optimizing their planning and scheduling process. But Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) software is specifically designed to manage this obstacle. It’s easy to think that these two software tools are separate. The reality is that APS and ERP coexist pretty well in any manufacturing company. PlanetTogether APS is just one software that works in conjunction with ERP to maximize your company's potential. The best way to look at the issue is not whether the best system for you is an either/or situation but how to utilize both software's strengths. 

Here is how APS enhances your experience with ERP software.  

Capacity Planning: PlanetTogether APS features the ability to create “what if” scenarios to generate the best possible schedule for shop floor operations. ERP software does not create alternate schedules. Every change made to a schedule in ERP is effectively permanent and can majorly impact company operations if mismanaged. APS technology working in conjunction with ERP data presents the ability to alter the scenario data without affecting any live production schedules. When you’re ready to deploy the new scheduling initiative, the changes you’ve made take place. So you’re free to experiment with what happens when you have different people, machines, or equipment accomplishing various tasks. 

Production Planning: While ERP software features production plans, these have few options. APS software presents greater freedom regarding planning rules and more management over capacity. ERP leaves many features that could be necessary for business operation out. There is no ability to sequence-dependent setup times, manage shelf life constraints, observe machine assignment, monitor labor skill limits, adjust machine preferences and configure optimization goals. APS takes the data from ERP and grants you control over every facet of your scheduling process. 

Production Scheduling: The benefit APS brings to production schedules is immense. Most ERP systems present basic scheduling functionality. APS offers managers and supervisors the following:

  1. Calculate setup times automatically when schedules change
  2. Optimize schedules around KPIs
  3. Visualize your future schedules and see bottlenecks
  4. Know when orders will ship based on all constraints
  5. Create various alternative scenarios
  6. Write custom rules to adapt to special constraints
  7. Quickly recalculate and create new schedules when machines go down, or materials arrive late
  8. Know the impact of expediting orders and which orders will be affected by the change

ERP and APS are best when used together and not pitted against each other. ERP is used for data storage and managing transactions. APS automates scheduling and capacity management and adjusts plans to fit your company.

PlanetTogether APS Software

At PlanetTogether, we provide your company with a workable, customized trial model using your data, production processes, and priorities. After the trial, you will have an accurate picture of how our APS software works within your environment.

The usual drawback of a software trial is the incomplete and theoretical picture you get of how the product will work for you. Most trials involve only a glimpse of what tools are available. Analytics tools are populated with generic data to provide a simulated version of how your dashboard will look, but not necessarily how the reports may apply to your process.

Setting up a free trial with PlanetTogether is a three-step process. Assess. Connect. Transform. This is how it works:

  • Assess -We have discussions with your onboarding staff to understand your needs, requirements, critical success factors, and goals. That information helps us set up your trial in the best way possible for your operation. Unlike many other trials that take months of work to set up, we can have your free trial up and running in less than a week.
  • Connect -We then connect your personalized data with our system and instruct your staff members on how to make the best use of the software. We work with your IT folks to ensure all details are in place and secure. We'll also help you to assess progress.
  • Transform - We then train your staff to use the software for your custom situations. The trial process includes our study on how best to move from the trial to an all-company implementation, so you'll have a clear idea of what is ahead.

Our free trial has two crucial goals. First, we make sure that you get a clear picture of how our planning software will work for you. Second, once you have tested the software's usefulness in your workplace setting, your final implementation process will be 50% complete—all at no charge!

Topics: Factory Scheduling, manufacturing, Implementation, APS, project management, ERP, APS, scheduling, analytics, Automation, what-if scenario, APS benefits, production management, manufacturing process, production planning and control, master production scheduling, production scheduling, operations scheduling, Job Shop Scheduling, planning, Concurrent Planning and Scheduling


Download the APS Shootout Results


PlanetTogether APS: A GPS System for your Supply Chain - See Video

Recent Posts

Posts by Topic

see all
Download Free eBook
Download Free APS Implementation Guide
Download Free ERP Performance Review