Opcenter (Preactor) Advanced Planning & Scheduling

Siemens Opcenter Advanced Planning & Scheduling (formerly Preactor) has the largest installed base of any independent production planning and scheduling software in the world. With over 10,000 licenses shipped, more than 6,500 companies use Opcenter (Preactor) Advanced Planning & Scheduling worldwide.  LSI has implemented the Opcenter APS solution since 2001.

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Nearly 350 companies in North America, covering almost every manufacturing sector and ERP system, use Preactor. Lean Scheduling International has been implementing Siemens Opcenter (formerly Preactor) Advanced Planning & Scheduling since 2001 and has the largest installed base of any Preactor partner in North America. Over 80% of all Preactor installs are within the LSI client base. 

Although Siemens Opcenter Advanced Planning & Scheduling provides great functionality out of the box, its real power is that it is a complete tool set for building production scheduling solutions. Like a Lego set, it can be used to build your own unique manufacturing production scheduling solution which is what sets it apart from other APS solutions.

If you are satisfied with a mediocre manufacturing production scheduling solution, then there is no need to choose Opcenter APS, but if your intent is to create a scheduling solution that delivers immediate results while laying the groundwork for unlimited future improvements and innovation, then you need Siemens Opcenter Advanced Planning & Scheduling.

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It is not always easy for others to understand what makes Siemens Opcenter Advanced Planning & Scheduling work when other systems don’t, but its approach is fundamentally different. Most of the systems being offered today are based on algorithmic sequencing (optimization) techniques. Although Siemens Opcenter Advanced Planning & Scheduling can use algorithmic sequencing, it is primarily based on heuristics (rules) and it does not claim to “optimize” your master production schedule. Optimizing sounds wonderful, but in most cases, it is totally unrealistic and leads to disaster. The difference may sound insignificant, but having the ability to build your tribal knowledge into your manufacturing production scheduling solution is what allows you to take what has worked for you and just automate it. In a nutshell, this is what makes it work in the real world.

Another dose of reality is that in our 20+ years of experience we have seen that it is almost impossible to identify all your scheduling requirements before you start your APS project. APS solutions built on algorithmic sequencing can be severely limiting and may not be able to replicate your needs. This means that even if your changes are possible (and they often aren’t), the developer is the only one who can make them. You are then at the mercy of the developer. Since Siemens Opcenter Advanced Planning & Scheduling is built with heuristics (rules), there is no need to involve the developer as you have complete control of the way the system behaves.

About Opcenter APS...

Fully interactive

Products in the Opcenter APS range provide the interactivity that modern businesses need in order to react efficiently to unexpected changes in demand and capacity and thereby maximize on-time deliveries.

Key Benefits

• Better forward visibility of production • Improved utilization and efficiency •Reduction of inventory and (WIP) •Easier impact & what-if analysis •Better customer service

A Strategic Investment

Manufacturers must react quickly and intelligently to unexpected changes, while being able to respond to shorter lead times and satisfy customer demands. Opcenter APS products have been specifically developed to meet this need, using advanced algorithms that balance demand and capacity to generate achievable production schedules.

Complete customization

Opcenter APS can be installed straight out of the box for immediate benefits, but can also be customized and configured to meet a company’s planning and scheduling needs no matter what they are.

Who uses Opcenter APS?

Many companies, ranging from small and medium-sized businesses to large corporations, employ Opcenter APS as part of their global supply chain solution. These companies are located around the world. The software’s flexibility means that it is used by companies in almost every sector of manufacturing, services and logistics. •Automotive and aerospace • Chemicals and pharmaceuticals • Electronics and electrical equipment • Food and beverage • Furniture and wood products • Glass and ceramics • Machinery and precision engineering • Metals and metal fabricated products • Oil and gas • Packaging, printing and publishing • Rubber and plastics • Textiles and apparel • Transport and logistics

A complete family of products

Opcenter APS is not a single point solution. It is a family of products that have different levels of functionality and pricing so you can select the system that satisfies both your needs and budget. Upgrading to another product as your needs change is simple and easy. Products from the Opcenter APS range can be used for long-term strategic planning covering months and years ahead, medium-term tactical planning with a few weeks planning horizon and for detailed sequencing and scheduling.

What about my existing software?

Opcenter APS products are designed to work alongside and facilitate, rather than replace, existing systems. They can be tightly integrated with enterprise resource planning (ERP), manufacturing execution system (MES), accounting and forecasting software, shop floor data collection and spreadsheets.

Planning vs. Scheduling

Easily Integrated

No matter your ERP, Opcenter APS easily integrates with its built-in API...
Opcenter Planning
• What to make • When to make it • How much to make • Where to make it • Required materials & resources
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Opcenter Scheduling
• How best to make it • Sequencing • Synchronization • Priorities, constraints, & conflicts • Monitor execution & change
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