VISUAL NEWSLETTER – JUNE 2004           

 


LIBRA AND MANUFACTURING

 

Libra Signature Accounting products were originally designed for the Basic Accounting,  Distribution, Construction and Property Management Industries. There are a number of features available however, that make them a good fit as well in the Light Manufacturing arena. When you compare the costs of many Manufacturing systems, Libra is often a bargain and is usually far easier to operate than many of its Manufacturing competitors.

 

The Bill of Materials feature is one that is often used in Manufacturing. This program allows you to set up a list of parts that go into the manufacture of a finished good. When orders are entered the various component parts can be allocated to determine whether there is sufficient stock to build the number of finished goods that the customer has ordered.

 

File inquiry screens display the number of items that are already assembled, the number that can be assembled and the component parts that are in short supply if you need to assemble a large number of a certain product.

 

There are two principle modes that the Bill of Materials operates in. In one case customer orders create the demand for production. The items are produced and shipped from a work order and when they are invoiced the component parts are removed from inventory. Reports highlight demand for component parts related to customer orders so that effective scheduling can fill this demand.

 

In the other mode, customer orders plus expected demand generates the production of the finished good. This production is entered via the Bill of Materials module and it increases the quantity of finished goods that are on hand, while it decreases the component parts consumed at the same time. When the product is shipped, the invoicing reduces the quantities of the finished goods.

 

In this case, the presence of a finished good with a negative quantity on hand would indicate that the production of that product had not been entered otherwise it could not have been shipped. This mode of operation has advantages when the demand for a product can be fairly accurately estimated.

 

Where Used Reporting can be helpful to highlight common components that may be  sourced elsewhere. Production Forecasting can indicate potential material shortages that will occur a month or more down the road based on estimated production of goods.

 

Once a Bill of Material has been created it can be used to roll up material and labour costs to accurately compute the actual cost of a finished product. As individual material costs change, this can be run again as necessary.

Landed costs such as duty and freight can also be tracked and allocated to the inventory materials used in the manufacturing process.

 

Bar Coding is a useful feature to implement in Manufacturing Control and Tracking Systems. Bar Coded Shop Orders can be created and scanned at various stages of the Manufacturing process to track status of a customer order. In processes that take days or weeks to complete this can be helpful in answering common questions regarding order status, delivery dates and such.

 

Bar codes can be scanned into Libra or any application as the scanner just converts the bar code into a corresponding text field such as a part number or order number which could also be keyed in manually.

 

Once products are ready to ship, preparing bar coded tags for products can be an excellent value added service. This can aid your customer’s inventory system and it is becoming a requirement of more and more customers. If this is a requirement that you can meet, so much the better.