Key facts and essentials for implementing an APS system

By Cassinadri_D

Software companies invested millions developing-high end APS solutions that claimed to “optimize” the way a plant was scheduled. Most of these systems failed miserably in the real world. Why? Because they couldn’t produce accurate schedules that considered the tribal knowledge critical to running most plants. More importantly, there was no mechanism to modify the way schedules were produced that accounted for this tribal knowledge.

The good news is that today, we absolutely, one hundred percent know how to create schedules that use heuristics (rules) to consider both the core data and the tribal knowledge.

According to our estimates, about 10% of medium to large manufacturers in the United States have been able to automate their scheduling processes. These companies are streamlining their operations with the ability to intelligently schedule their plants in a fraction of the time it takes to schedule manually.

Typically, these companies improve their on-time deliveries, increase their productivity and eliminate most of the confusion caused by manual scheduling and manual expediting. They are creating a strategic advantage over their competitors simply because they are able to react faster and smarter to change.

So, how do you ensure payback for your company when you invest in APS? There is a simple formula:

  • You need the right APS software

  • You need the right implementation partner

  • You need the right internal resources

Find out more about the transformational impact of Advanced Planning and Scheduling in our website where you will have also the chance to preview “The Little Blue Book on Scheduling.” This resource helps the reader understand the history of APS offerings, the key requirements for the best APS software selection, and the metrics they should be measuring to show results.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at