World Class Master Scheduling: Best Practices and Lean Six Sigma Continuous Improvement

Chapter 16: Integrating the Master Production Schedule with Lean and Six Sigma


Both lean and Six Sigma are topics that get a lot of press these days, and for good reason. These two topics, along with a third, enterprise resource planning (ERP), where the master production schedule (MPS) is prominent, make up a logical progression toward world class performance. Each has a specific approach and focus, and each of these process methodologies, done correctly, increases the success of manufacturing organizations. The master schedule plays an important role in businesses using any or all of these methodologies. While there is no conflict whatsoever, there is still a lot of confusion in the marketplace about how ERP, lean, and Six Sigma fit together. One of the best ways to think of these process focus areas and the sequencing is to picture them in a step chart (see Figure 16.1).

The first focus high-performance companies normally achieve is ERP process capability. ERP process capability is the predictability of process when a company says it is going to do something, it is done. This would include master schedules, detailed plans, and customer service, but would also include internal practices like data accuracy. Class A ERP performance is a specific level of proficiency in areas that include top management planning, operations planning, data accuracy, and execution of plans. The MPS is an integral part of the ERP business system one of the most important, and therefore many of the basic MPS process requirements are a first-level priority even before flexibility and speed become the...