The Essential Role of Asset Tracking for JIT Manufacturers
In the fast-paced world of manufacturing, effective supply chain management is paramount to enabling "just-in-time" (JIT) manufacturing. To maximize manufacturing throughput, asset tracking is a key component of the process. Each part is as important to track as the next because they all contribute to the final product. To help mitigate risks in their supply chains, manufacturers often turn to asset tracking.
The JIT approach is commonplace in the car manufacturing industry but is applied in countless manufacturing settings. It involves aligning the arrival of parts like doors with their moment of need in the assembly process. This end-to-end visibility of the supply chain allows for better control of labor and inventory costs while increasing a manufacturer’s ability to produce more, more effectively. JIT is a highly efficient approach, but it inherently involves risk if a part does not arrive when it’s needed. In order to avoid supply chain disruptions, it is critical to have a comprehensive understanding of all parts and their respective timelines through asset tracking data.
At Skylytics, we partner with manufacturers to help them harness the power of data coupled with the JIT manufacturing model to make better business decisions. Read on to learn more about how IoT technology and asset tracking can reduce the risks associated with supply chain disruptions.
Mitigate Manufacturing Supply Chain Disruptions
Tracking parts through a supply chain helps fuel a company's JIT approach. It can help optimize flexibility by allowing manufacturers to adapt quickly to changes in demand and enhance resilience in the face of potential supply chain disruptions. Supply chain issues are not always avoidable, but negative impacts can be mitigated using asset tracking technologies. Asset tracking provides both immediate and long-term benefits:
- Efficient inventory management: Allows manufacturers to track and manage their inventory in real time. This reduces the need to hold excessive inventory and saves on associated costs.
- Risk mitigation: By providing insight into where parts come from and how they interact with each other, asset tracking plays a crucial role in identifying and mitigating supply chain risks.
- Enhanced throughput: Asset tracking systems support maximized throughput by enabling manufacturers to predict and adjust for potential delays. This significantly reduces costs associated with slow production.
- Reduced inventory cost: Save money by managing less inventory in-house and reducing the space needed to do so.
- Improved Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE): Ensure a smooth flow of products to the line with asset tracking software. Prevent disruptions that could negatively impact machine efficiency and OEE as a result.
- Reduced labor costs: Labor can be managed more efficiently, minimizing idle time, unnecessary downtime and expenses.
- Greater supply chain transparency: Gain a comprehensive view of the supply chain to quickly identify and proactively address issues before they impact production.
- Better decision-making: Insight gained from asset tracking can inform strategic decisions, help manufacturing companies optimize their processes, and improve long-term profitability.
In an industry where supply chain disruptions can create significant setbacks, asset tracking plays a crucial role in enhancing throughput and avoiding downtime. This is particularly important for JIT manufacturers as the data gained from asset tracking helps inform any needed inventory management processes.
IoT Devices for Asset Tracking and OEE
Integrating IoT devices in a JIT manufacturing environment can also lead to a more resilient and agile supply chain. The IoT devices used for asset tracking cater to a wide range of customer needs. Despite the sophistication of these technologies, integrating asset tracking software can be a straightforward process with a trusted partner like Skylytics.
IoT brings visibility and automation to asset tracking processes, saving countless hours of manual work and reducing the risk of human error. Typical IoT devices used to enhance asset tracking technologies include:
- Sensors can measure temperature, humidity, or vibration to track the condition of sensitive products
- GPS trackers identify the precise location of assets, which is particularly helpful for items in transit
- Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacons offer indoor tracking capabilities
- Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags provide real-time information about the location and condition of assets
- Near Field Communication (NFC) tags for short-range tracking
- Smart labels combine QR codes with IoT technology, making it easy and cost-effective to track essential data
These IoT devices offer critical insights about throughput patterns and trends, which can be leveraged to make strategic business decisions that further enhance JIT operations.
Asset Tracking Tools are Essential for Manufacturers
Asset tracking is an indispensable tool for manufacturers as it offers invaluable insights and control over the complex dynamics of supply chains. It helps businesses mitigate risks, optimize efficiency, and ensure maximum throughput. As a result, they can significantly reduce costs.
As technologies continue to evolve, the adoption of IoT asset tracking solutions will undoubtedly become more widespread. Contact Skylytics today to integrate these technologies with a trusted partner.