BatchMaster Software’s manufacturing solutions allow companies to leverage inbuilt GMP practices across a variety of plant operations, including formulation, production, quality, inventory, planning, scheduling, and warehousing. The review and refinement of one’s current manufacturing operations is a key focus during the implementation process because it forces companies to focus on any existing bad practices, inefficient operations and workarounds, as well as any underlying cultural issues, such as staff members that may be resistant to change.
The following points are just a sampling of considerations that are addressed by the BatchMaster implementation team during the implementation phase to effectively map out the customer’s current processes to the software’s best practices.
- BatchMaster generates product labels for received and produced products, therefore there will be discussions on the required fields, formats and use of barcodes for these labels.
- BatchMaster automatically generates lot numbers for received goods and product goods, therefore its critical to define the lot masks employed. It’s important to identify the triggers for label generation are triggered and the printer locations of where specific labels are printed.
- Allocated inventory for a batch job can be issued in the exact required quantity or in larger bulk quantity to be staged at a process cell along a production line. Pulling the exact amount may require trips to multiple locations and/or more time to pick that quantity. Pulling a bulk quantity, like a pallet or drum, may be easier but may require the balance returned to inventory at some point. The team needs to consider the effort and speed, plus equipment and space utilization in making these types of decisions.
- In additional to the traditional physical inventory activity performed by companies, BatchMaster allows companies to enact new cycle count strategies against specific products or locations, including frequency and sampling criteria.
Formulation & Packaging Management
- BatchMaster requires the team to separate one’s existing BOMs into formula and packaging specifications. Each specification record contains its own unique parameters, including industry specific fields.
- Identification of intermediate formulas is important because intermediates that can feed multiple top-level formulas can impact batch job planning and scheduling optimization.
- Multi-level approval workflows can be employed against formulas, packaging specifications and other critical records. For example, Finance Management reviews estimated formula costs (valuation, labor, etc), Quality Management reviews QC tests and SOPs, and Product Management checks process cell / production line requirements. The team needs to identify the approvers and the policies to approve or reject these records and configure the application to support the distribution of record notices and responses.
- With visibility to order forecasts, BatchMaster MPS can consolidate various orders to optimize production. The team will need to decide upon the proper scheduling inputs and parameters to kick off the planning intuitive until such time when historical data can be collected and analyzed.
- BatchMaster MRP can consolidate raw material requirements for scheduled batch jobs. The team can look at the planning horizon options and consolidation opportunities to determine the best reorder strategy, with respect to bulk purchase order discounts.
- Loss and gain factors on an item and batch job basis impacts the inventory pulled into the production line. The team should review historical data to determine starting percentages to ensure batch yields are as close to estimates as possible.
- Waste and recycled materials can be accounted for in BatchMaster so these data points and collection methods will need to be identified so that they are financially accounted for.
- 3 levels of signoffs against quality results are available, in addition to electronic signatures (CFR Part 11), so supervisory and management approval levels may need to be defined.
- BatchMaster offers deviation, nonconformance and CAPA transactions to support one’s continuous improvement initiative. The team needs to determine what constitutes a deviation within WIP that would trigger this process.
- BatchMaster offers both paper-based (with embedded barcodes) and mobile driven WMS and MES task execution methods, therefore decisions will be made as the best methods per task and the mandated validation of key field values, specifically item, location, lot, location, and license.
Follow the consultants’ mantra “Don’t automate inefficient processes” and get the most out of your investment by streamlining processes and improving overall user productivity by adapting your processes to the best practices supported by our industry specific, process manufacturing software applications.