Sequencing Automotive Parts

Sequencing automotive parts consist of real-time communication with the customer and suppliers, building products in a set order, and shipping quality products on time. Because of the nature of JIT manufacturing, it is critical for manufacturers to have real-time reports of their sequencing processes.  

As the need for visibility is so important, we thought wed share some reports our clients are using today. Below are seven reports that our clients use every day to keep the constant flow of real-time information visible and ensure their production goals are met. 

1) Broadcast Stats Report  

The Broadcast Stats Report is important because it shows when the last broadcast time was and ensures plant communications are working properly. Because everything is just-in-time (JIT) it’s important to know that you’re communicating with the OEM, receiving data, and that you’re able to process the incoming data scheduled to the line. 
The second part of this report, the broadcasts per hour chart, shows the broadcast rate from the assembly plant. It’s a metric that lets you know if production is ramping up or if something’s happening at your customer’s facility, so that you can quickly understand what’s going on and make adjustments as fast as possible to help you meet your production goals for the day. 

2) PFCSCommLink Log 

The  PFCSCommLink Log gives a more detailed status of the service that is handling the communication/broadcasts from the assembly plant like we discussed in the first report. It allows you to know whether that communication link is up and running and if you’re processing things properly. 

If you’re looking at the broadcast stats and see that you haven’t received anything for an hour, you could look in this report log and see if there’s a problem.

This report gives insight into your broadcasts to ensure everything is properly communicated. This is important for several reasons, from ensuring you’re on track with production to knowing how many hours of parts are left to run. 

3Hour Count Report  

The Hour Count Report is another important report when sequencing automotive parts because it shows the last sequence that was shipped from your plant, the actual sequence the assembly plant is currently on, and the number of hours left of production before your customer runs out of parts. 

With this report, you can see the estimated number of parts that are in your customer’s assembly plant. Based on your customer’s usage rate, you’ll know how many hours of parts are left to run before your customer runs out of parts. Because it’s a live feed in a JIT manufacturing environment, you’re only building a couple of hours ahead of the assembly plant. 

With such a small window from product to assembly, the hour count report allows you to react to the information and make decisions based on what broadcasts are coming in. For example, a low hour count indicates that the customer is in danger of running out of parts to use in their assembly process.  

4Line Status & Production Report  

 The Line Status & Production Report monitors production on the line, making sure your targets are being met. This report includes the hourly production counts versus target production counts and the overall status of the line 
The bar at the top indicates the line’s statusThe color lets everyone know whether the line is running or notIn this example it’s green and running, but if the line stops it’ll turn red and show the reason it stopped running, such as a machine faulted, or the conveyor stoppedThen it posts the amount of time that it’s been stopped or running with a time stamp.  
Below that is the production count per hourThere’s a target amount of parts you want to produce per hour, and you can adjust each one of those manually based on breaks or lunchesThe color (green = target met, Yellow = within 10% of target, red = target not met) is based on the actual versus target number of parts produced 
It’s important to know exactly where you are on your production schedule. If the line built more ahead of schedule the previous day or hour, then it doesn’t matter as much if they’re off by a few parts. The insight this report gives allows assembly plants to ensure production stays on schedule.  

5Container Status Report  

The Container Status Report shows what parts are loaded into containers in particular order. Visibility of what is going into the containers and the container status is very important. Since automobiles are built in sequence you must know what is going into the containers to ensure everything is in order—every part number must be in a certain spot within each container. 

 The above image is an example of a door line with six different container types. The right and left sequence numbers must match up because doors are shipped in pairs. 

The report shows you where the parts are in the container and what part number and what sequence number goes into the containerSuppliers must guarantee that those are in the correct order when they get to the assembly line because the containers—and the parts inside them—must come out in the correct order to avoid slowing down or stalling assembly productions  

6Container Shipping Report  

As the previous container report lets you know that the parts are in the right sequence inside the containers, our 6th report, the Container Shipping Report,  lets you know that the shipping containers are in the right order as they are loaded onto the truck.  

You can tell what’s in the container based on the maximum and minimum sequence numbers. The numbers correlate to parts that go onto the assembly line, so they have to be in a specific order. 

The important information to look for in this report is the rack number so that you can sequence your 

containers and know what order they’re supposed to go in. For example, this supplier is supplying doors, so there are four doors for this car, and all four of those lines have to be in the correct order when they come into the plant because they enter at different points 

The assembly line tells suppliers the exact order of the parts they want. Suppliers have to make sure the parts are in the right order in the containers and that the containers are shipped in the right order when they come off the truck—again to avoid slowing or stalling production.  

 7Jobs Report  

The Jobs Report shows the jobs that are created/scheduled to a line. If something in this report is red, it means a job was not created and needs to be investigatedThis report is important because if the process has an error or a failure it allows you to investigate why that failure might have occurred 

This image is the broadcast shipping exceptions status. If the broadcast shipping exceptions status is received but the load number doesn’t increase that means the jobs didn’t get processed and scheduled onto the line because of a problem, such as the part wasn’t configured. This report allows you to determine the issue, figure out what went wrong, and resolve it.  

Succeed in Sequencing Automotive Parts  

When you’re talking about sequencing there’s not a large margin of failure points between shipping a part and having it on the assembly line. Since everything is built JIT, every part and container must be in the correct sequence.  

Assembly plants who have implemented JIS manufacturing don’t keep storage and inventory of parts, so it’s critical that everything is correct when it arrives at the assembly plant from the supplier. The seven reports we discussed ensure manufacturers continue to run on schedule with enough parts coming in to keep the lines moving.  

The information in these reports gives decision-makers the visibility to see how the plant is running in real-time and adjust as neededThey can plan for back-ups in the supply line or assembly line, see where they are in production compared to targets, and drill down to see why a problem has come up and how to resolve it.  

So, to help optimize your automotive sequencing process, make sure you keep in mind these seven reports:  

  1. Broadcast Stats  
  2. PFCSCommLink Log (Communication Report) 
  3. Hour Count  
  4. Line Status & Production   
  5. Container Status  
  6. Container Shipping  
  7. Jobs  

Do you want to save time and cut costs by implementing a manufacturing sequencing system? If you’re ready to improve your manufacturing plant’s operations,  download our case study to learn how a tier 1 automotive supplier implemented a sequencing system and successfully reduced production costs, freed up floor space, and increased production volumes.