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Flexible Automation and Integrated Manufacturing 1999

ISBN Print: 978-1-56700-133-4

# THE COMBINATION OF CUSTOMER'S NEEDS AND PROCESS OPTIMISATION BY THE USE OF A VARIANT CONFIGURATOR FOR DYNAMIC PRODUCT DEFINITION AND CALCULATION

### Abstract

(dynamic calculation) Today, many manufacturers have the problem of being forced to produce their goods very customer - oriented. This means that a basic product is adapted to the needs of the customer in some details, but not as a whole. This would cause a lot of additional work. To solve these problems some production planning systems offer the functionality of a variant configurator.

For this reason all possible components of the product have to be collected in a bill of materials (BOM). In the same way a list of all applicable work processes must be gathered. The final product itself is not defined in the system before an order is placed. A set of parameters is defined according to the customer needs. This is called the configuration process. This set of parameters define the final product and are customer specific. Now, after some calculation and logical comparison with the parameters, the correct amounts of correct materials are chosen from the bill of materials. Also, the needed work processes are set up and the values for the process time are calculated and written in the right fields. One result is the definition of the actual bill of materials and the schedule of job operations for the production of the customer specified product by the system.

Now the system finds out the stored costs of the processes and calculates the total cost of all operations at all work centres. Also the cost of the materials are calculated by their amount and their cost per unit. This way of calculating new products has two main advantages: first of all, new products can be calculated immediately by the system itself and, second, all changes in the costs of operations and materials are taken into account. An enlargement of this functionality would be to calculate a totally new product.

In addition, also the market price could be calculated on the basis of this product price by using the same parameters and an additional logic.