The Difference Between Finite Capacity Scheduling and Infinite Capacity Loading

7/12/19 10:30 AM

Many people may associate capacity planning with a manufacturing process, when in reality capacity planning may be a viable option and tool for planning and scheduling various departments that involve utilization of limited resources.

The Difference Between Finite Capacity Scheduling and Infinite Capacity Loading

Finite and infinite capacity planning each has its own strengths and weakness, and locating the best method that is the most effective for any particular method or situation depends on the availability of resources and the extent of the planning horizon. Before implementing either finite capacity scheduling and infinite capacity loading, it is essential to understand the differences between these two methods to production. Therefore, here is the difference between finite capacity scheduling and infinite capacity loading. 

The Difference Between Finite Capacity Scheduling and Infinite Capacity Loading 

The difference between finite capacity scheduling and infinite capacity loading pertains to the following: 

  • Finite Capacity Planning and Scheduling - Finite capacity planning recognized that every production facility and business has a fixed amount of resources that are available that can produce its product or services. This is why careful planning is extremely important when it comes to producing a product or service, simply because of the various constraints within production. This approach to planning is referred to as finite planning and scheduling, based on the finite amount of resource capacity to apply to the production of products or services. 
  • Infinite Capacity Planning - Infinite capacity planning ignores the resource constraints and plans production activities backward from a customer due date or another fixed end date. Infinite capacity planning and scheduling uses the lead times or work times of the production to back-schedule work to each resource, whether a work center or one or more individuals. Infinite capacity loading disregards any existing work or commitments of the resources. 
  • Infinite Capacity Planning Versus Finite Capacity Planning - An infinite capacity loading approach to planning and scheduling assumes that the due date of every order is absolute. This means that through scheduling backward from the order due date and loading work tasks to each of the work centers, those that require additional resource capacity stand out. If the resources are not available, the time requirements - on station, between stations, or perhaps even the customer due date will need adjustment. Now, this differs from the finite approach to planning and scheduling through allowing a manager to view the overall impact of new orders on the production capacity. This is conducted without reprioritizing the existing work and any due dates that require adjustments. Finite capacity planning creates a more realistic schedule for the production processes than the infinite loading approach, especially in the short run. 

Effective capacity planning has become essential for manufacturing operations around the globe that are seeking to enhance their operation through waste reduction, proper inventory management, cost reduction, and profit increase. Without proper capacity planning for your manufacturing operation, your efficiency may fall short. A software that can easily aid with finite capacity scheduling or infinite capacity loading is PlanetTogether’s Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) Software. PlanetTogether’s Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) Software can offer thorough insight into your production facility and improve your operation with ease. APS software generates production schedules that allow you to manipulate areas where efficiency is lacking and therefore improve your overall operation as a whole. APS software is being implemented into operations around the globe and have allowed for continuous improvement among production. 

Advanced Planning and Scheduling Software 

Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) software has become a must for modern-day manufacturing operations due to customer demand for increased product mix and fast delivery combined with downward cost pressures. APS can be quickly integrated with a ERP/MRP software to fill gaps where these system lack planning and scheduling flexibility and accuracy. Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) helps planners save time while providing greater agility in updating ever-changing priorities, production schedules, and inventory plans.

  • Create optimized schedules balancing production efficiency and delivery performance
  • Maximize output on bottleneck resources to increase revenue
  • Synchronize supply with demand to reduce inventories
  • Provide company-wide visibility to capacity
  • Enable scenario data-driven decision making

Implementation of Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) software will take your manufacturing operations to the next level of production efficiency, taking advantage of the operational data you already have in your ERP.

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