Production Dispatch Lists that Boost Efficiency

From the desk of Tim Dimsdale

Using the production dispatch list as a primary means of clocking onto production orders or viewing outstanding work means that we make the list of production orders as relevant to the Shop Floor user as possible.

An effective dispatch means:

  • Scannability:
    • Ideally the dispatch list should never be showing hundreds of records.
    • A small list focused on the actual work being done in the shop.
  • Focused on the task at hand:
    • Restrict the work centers filtered to those within the physical proximity of the scanning station.
  • Process focused with global filters:
    • Ideally only production orders ready to be released are released, and when finished they are finished. This isn’t always feasible so global filters help match the shop floor process.

Let’s work through an example. We’re going to start with a dispatch list showing too many records (636). With a few hundred (or more) a Shop Floor user isn’t going to have a workable list.

Dispatch List

Ensure there is a “Shop Floor Client Configuration” for each:

  • Physical Scanning Station (with a fixed IP Address).
  • One for each ‘roving’ user, such as roving quality inspections, or perhaps a supervisor.
  • A global default / fail-safe.

On each scanning station config set:

In this example we’re assigning configuration CFG000002 to the scanning station

Shop Floor Client Configuration Card

With the work centers filtered to only those that are realistically close to that physical scanning station we’ve already reduced the list down to about 160 records.

Dispatch List

Now let’s add some process filtering with the global filters.

In our fictitious shop we don’t want to show routings where the routing status is ‘Finished’. We also know that our released production orders aren’t always finished in a timely manner. We do know that the start date is never more than two weeks old, and our shop never works on orders that are more than one week ahead of schedule.

To do this we set at the global level in the Shop Floor Setup:

  • “Filter Start Date” to “Filter”
  • “Dispatch Starting Date Filter” to “-2W” ( a standard date formula)
  • “Filter End Date” to “Filter”
  • “Dispatch Ending Date Filter” to “+1W”
  • “Prod. Routing Custom Filter” to “WHERE( Routing Status=FILTER(<>Finished))”

When the dispatch list is applied multiple filters will now be added:

  • The per-scanning-station / client configuration work center will be applied.
  • The global starting date filter will be added.
  • The global ending date filter will be added.
  • An additional custom filtering for routing status to not be finished will also be added.

Our production dispatch list has now been effectively configured to a fast and effective list that’s applicable to both the immediate scanning station as well as applying some real world filters.

Shop Floor Setup

We have now filtered the dispatch list down to three relevant records.

Dispatch List

If that’s still not enough, and your install location also pre-assigns work then you can further filter by those pre-assignments with the “Dispatch Employee Filtering” to either “Current User”, or “Unassigned or Current User”.

Dispatch Employee Filtering
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Shop Floor Data Collection for Business Central

Shop Floor Insight integrates directly with NAV to capture work progress and material usage in real-time, dramatically reducing the effort to manage production and job data.

  • Shop Floor InsightEliminate manual time entry with barcode scanning for Production Orders, Jobs, Service Orders, and Maintenance
  • Capture operational data on the shop floor or in the field, including consumption, output, scrap, and quality
  • Record non-productive and rework time for advanced reporting
  • Record time and attendance based on employee shifts with exception reporting
  • Multi-level timecard approval from shop floor or NAV
  • Automatically calculate overtime, shift differentials, etc for direct export to payroll systems
  • Access via web browser to enable data entry from mobile devices in the field or shop floor
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