Inventory management optimization​

We looked at the current situation together at a sheet metal dealer. After determining the current issues, we developed an automated plate location registration together.

Challenge

A customer working in the production of sheet material had to deal with stock differences and unclear pick times for sheets from the material park. Plates are usually stored in stacks and this has the property that if this is not done in a controlled manner, it is unclear which plate is where.

Solution

By introducing a real-time relocation system that automatically keeps track of the locations of material in the material park, it becomes clear where which sheet is present in the stock. Particularly with records that are supposedly classified as “special”, which therefore have a specific property and must therefore be removed from the stack, this sorting sequence provides the option of determining the exact picking time of a record. After all, a plate in the fourth position takes less time to look up than a plate in the twentieth position. This has been achieved by means of an API connecting the stock to an automated stock system in which the sequence is kept.

Results

This has resulted in adequate pick lists being made, based on the actual moving time and the picking time of plate material. Because the stock is continuously up-to-date, including the processing of residual parts, it has resulted in the external auditor having declared the counts of the plate stock unnecessary and could only do the audit with the overview of the top plate in the plate stock in hand. The audit saves several thousand euros per year and the picking time has been reduced by 15%.