Having a process that allows you to meet customer demand more efficiently and to keep meeting that demand when things go awry is an important part of the long-term success of your business. To make sure that you are covered, there is the production preparation schedule.

Overview: What is a production preparation schedule?

A production preparation schedule (PPS) covers every single product that is to be manufactured by an organization as well as all that will be required to successfully manufacture them. This includes everything from raw materials to logistics, along with the processes needed to make all aspects of production run smoothly.

5 benefits of PPS

There are several benefits of a production preparation schedule that are worth noting:

1. Predicting

With proper PPS, predictions can be made regarding available resources and their ability to meet demand.

2. Advance scheduling

Should unexpected delays occur, proper planning allows for the assignment of the right workers in advance to quickly address the issues.

3. Prevention of stockout

You are able to keep consistent output, even if an upswing of orders causes an upswing in demand.

4. Spotting bottlenecks

Creating and implementing a proper schedule can help to spot and prevent bottlenecks.

5. Improved communication

Since there is one master document that details every aspect of production, there is no communication among departments and communication is standardized.

Why is PPS important to understand?

Understanding how to organize and implement this type of schedule is important for the following reasons:


By understanding this concept, you are likely to meet the demands of your customers in a more efficient manner.

Hitting deadlines

By understanding PPS and how to implement it, your business is much more likely to get deliverables into the hands of your customers on time.

Direct line between sales and production teams

By having a firm grasp of PPS, you are able to utilize the production schedule as a link between the sales and production teams. This helps maximize steady workflow between departments.

An industry example of a production preparation schedule

A project manager at a toy company is putting together a production preparation schedule for a new line of action figures. First off, the project manager maps out the entire production process. This includes the number of employees, materials, and amount of time that will be necessary for every single step. Potential roadblocks and bottlenecks are identified along with plans for dealing with them. The available market research is consulted in order to anticipate and estimate demand for the action figures. A system for inventory control is proposed, as well as how staff and equipment will be allocated for this new line. Also in the preparation schedule, it will be determined how many new hires there will need to be.

3 best practices when thinking about production preparation schedules

Here are the best practices to keep in mind in order to ensure the success of your planning:

1. Flexibility

Make sure you create your schedule using software that allows for edits to be made in real-time.

2. Prioritization

Have a dynamic schedule so that you can prioritize tasks accordingly.

3. Use a project management tool

There are plenty of options out there as far as tools for helping to organize your PPS. Just be sure to share it with the appropriate team leaders and make it simple to edit.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about PPS

What are the various components of production scheduling?

They are planning, routing, scheduling, dispatching, and execution.

What are the major types of production schedules?

There is the master schedule, the operations schedule, and the daily operations schedule.

What types of planning are involved in production preparation schedules?

There is static planning, which relies on everything staying the same, as well as dynamic planning. With dynamic planning, it is assumed that everything can change.

Being ready with a production preparation schedule

Embarking on a new venture or product line takes a lot of resources. All of the facets of production need to be well thought out and all the departments involved need to be on the same page. Having a proper PPS will help chances of success.

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