Joinery optimizes production planning and delivery periods with Siemens PLM Software

Elmwood Reclaimed Timer Inc. (Elmwood) based in Missouri produces customized products such as stair treads, floor coverings and shelving out of reclaimed wood. To simplify the entire manufacturing process and improve transparency, Elmwood introduced Simatic IT Preactor AS from Siemens PLM Software.

Peculiar/Missouri, USA. Elmwood Reclaimed Timber Inc. (Elmwood) based in Missouri produces items such as stair treads, floor coverings and shelving individually to customer order from reclaimed timber. Among the greatest challenges faced by the environmentally conscious company is juggling the strict scheduling required for timber procurement, the design phase and the delivery of ordered products to customers. By introducing software from the Siemens PLM Software Simcenter portfolio, Elmwood was able not only to simplify and improve the transparency of its entire manufacturing process planning: the software has also enabled the company to increase its top line revenues by ten percent and reduce its delivery periods.

The Siemens solution Simatic IT Preactor Advanced Scheduling (AS) is part of the Simatic IT Preactor Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) product family, and has been integrated into the existing ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system. This solution provides Elmwood with a real-time overview of work-in-progress, as well as machine and operations loading plans for all areas of manufacturing. It also allows the identification of operational bottlenecks and monitors the capacity utilization of both manpower and machines.

– The ability to constrain materials to production in Simatic IT Preactor AS enabled us to know in advance what materials from our warehouses have to be planned for production, says Mark Callison, president of Elmwood Reclaimed Timber.

– But more importantly, we are able to replan our material in case of any dynamic changes.” Connor Birn, Vice President of Production at Elmwood, adds: Simatic IT Preactor AS moves the manufacturing shop floor.

 Revenue up ten percent

The manufacturing process depends on the allocation of green lumber with large variations in size and the requirements of customers. Elmwood uses the pegging features of Simatic IT Preactor AS to link the green lumber output with additional cutting operations, laying the foundation for a sound planning and scheduling process. Implementing Simatic IT Preactor AS entails integration of the entire manufacturing process and two-way communication with the ERP system.

– In 2016, we saw the impact of Simatic IT Preactor AS on our systems leading to an increase in sales of 10 percent and improvement in profitability through accurate visibility and effective resource utilization, says Callison.

Proactive not reactive

Simatic IT Preactor AS allows Elmwood to now balance key performance indicators for sales and production using “what if” scenarios.The company is now also able to proactively coordinate its sales and production more efficiently to predict changes instead of reacting to them. Quite apart from these benefits, the use of Simatic IT Preactor AS has also played a role in improving the company’s overall business management, for instance with better visibility of customer deliveries, more transparent material planning and a reduced work-in-progress inventory. The Siemens Solutions Partner Snic Solutions was responsible for implementing the software solution.