Scheduling systems can be developed to model all significant processes in a business and desk top computers have the power to generate integrated schedules using powerful mathematical techniques to realise optimised throughput. This paper describes the background to the recognition of the need for a planning and scheduling system, the system requirements, the search of the software markets and finally, the benefits achieved. A supplier was found who could generate high‐level plans and detailed schedules from MPS forecasts, thus ensuring a balance between stock holding costs and customer service. Such a system necessitated the ability to interface easily with both future and current systems.
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