MES system – what is it?
The MES system, or Manufacturing Execution System – is a response to the needs related to the daily functioning of production companies that have always required a huge commitment to efficient company management. It is also the easiest way to effectively use the company’s resources and effectively increase profits.
Manufacturing Execution System – systemy mes
In practice, MES systems are nothing but IT systems that use information technology, software, applications, electronic devices and automation elements to obtain information about the production process and translate them into the business plan. All this in order to receive real-time information about production in real time and to be able to react efficiently to existing situations or modify production to be as effective as possible.
In order to properly situate the concept of MES systems in the company hierarchy, it is worth mentioning the most important levels of the production company’s operation. Literature is distinguished by four most important levels, where the highest concerns business issues, including primarily logistics and planning. ERP systems, or enterprise resource planning, operate on this level. Lower levels are associated with the production layer, which is responsible for controlling and supervising processes. In this layer we deal with all drivers, software, machines and computers. SCADA systems that collect the main information about the processes occurring during production. Simplifying the relationship between individual layers of the company’s operation, it can be concluded that the MES system is the intermediary between the production and business layers, because it processes the information collected by the SCADA system and forwards it to the ERP system.
MES system – a milestone in the direction of competitive advantage
It is impossible to talk about MES systems, apart from the issue of the Manufacturing Enterprise Solutions Association (MESA) International, which created the official definition of this issue. The very organization of MESA International, which is a global community of manufacturing enterprises, software and consulting services providers, as well as analysts and academics, focuses on the main goal of improving production and business effects by implementing best management practices and optimizing information technology.
The definition created by MESA International states that MES systems are designed to provide data that will optimize the production process – starting from the order itself by the customer and ending with the delivery of finished products to him.
MESA International has identified the main areas – the functions in which MES systems apply are:
Production management management – is one of the basic functions, extremely important, because it involves constant monitoring of the production process and appropriate reactions to the changes occurring in it. In practice, this translates into faster decision making and the elimination of problems resulting from errors of employees, this module of the MES system more often manages to avoid mistakes.
Performance management – consists in collecting analyzes of the efficiency of positions, machines and production lines, information about the course of order fulfillment or downtime. What does this give you in practice? Facilitates the reaction to the external environment and its requirements, it enables, for example, a change in the production profile or adaptation to top-down (eg international) requirements.
Tracking production and its genealogy is nothing other than monitoring and saving information in the database, eg about the amount of raw materials used, suppliers, and the implementation of tasks entrusted to specific employees. All these data allow to trace the genealogy of production of a given batch, which is increasingly often required by the relevant regulations
Quality management – is aimed at catching deviations of product parameters from the assumed values, in order to determine the reasons for the quality discrepancy of products and eliminate them.
Collection and data acquisition – the success of this module works, among others mentioned SCADA systems, PLC controllers and any databases which during production collect and record data on its course – it is, for example, about product parameters, order statuses, general condition of machines. As a result of these activities, production employees and managers have the opportunity to obtain detailed reports that allow to draw conclusions and take actions aimed at optimizing production.
Document flow management – allows you to supervise the flow of information (ie, instructions, diagrams, assembly or transport guidelines, order execution schedules) between individual departments and employees of the company.
Resource allocation management – is used to obtain data on the status of materials, machines and documents needed to carry out specific production activities. Thanks to it, checking, for example, the availability of raw material in the warehouse is quick and easy.
Human resources management – is responsible for employee data – specifically about their presence, authorizations, currently performed task. These data illustrate aspects of work such as productivity and labor costs of individual employees.
Traffic management is nothing else but information about the equipment of the production hall, the course of previous repairs and the results of the inspection. All these data are to provide direct support during planning and activities in the field of modernization, service and maintenance.
Scheduling production – it’s help in planning production, which should be adapted to the priorities of orders or specific production requirements.
Distribution of production tasks – it is used to plan the division of labor, which should be distributed among different production departments of the company.
All indicated functionalities of the MES system could be described in more detail or precisely refer to specific structures and problems of a given business. It is worth getting to know them so that before selecting a suitable MES system for your company, select modules that actually require support and enable efficient achievement of the set goals.
MES software – construction and practical use
It may seem that the MES system must be something very complicated. In practice, to collect data and process information flowing directly from machines or production lines, and later to generate a report useful for employees and the board, a few basic elements are needed. specifically:
- Server with a database so that information can be collected and processed in one secure location.
- Automation components (including drivers) that will allow you to obtain data.
- Computers or other terminal equipment that will allow the exchange of messages with machines and the server, and in addition allow reading and presentation of the data obtained.
- Software that allows employees to enter, read or process data. It is usually a specialized program or application with a dedicated interface.
Only and enough is enough to collect and process information efficiently. However, to be sure that everything will work as it should and meet expectations in 100%, it is worth using the support of professional consultants and implementation companies specialized in MES systems for enterprises with a similar business profile.
How do you choose MES System? The key to success: matching the company’s needs
MES program – is it worth it? On the example of OptiMES from Syneo.pl
In the era of huge competition in virtually all areas of the economy, any way to achieve an advantage over business rivals is on the price of gold. Properly selected and professionally implemented MES system allows you to work out the intended business effect – no matter whether it is about increasing production efficiency, increasing product quality, reducing production costs, adapting production to regulatory requirements or the possibility of introducing changes to manufactured products. All this and many more can be achieved with minimum commitment and favorable financial conditions. An example of such an economical and effective solution is the OptiMES system created by Syneo.pl team:
a system dedicated to production companies, specialized in solving the most common problems, but at the same time adapted to respond to individual problems of specific production,
– effective not only in crisis situations, but also when we strive to strengthen and make better use of what works well in production,
– adapted to the needs of various entrepreneurs – both companies from the SME sector and international corporations, because each implementation is different and requires an individual approach,
– providing specific solutions, such as creating reports, sending alerts or reminders, eg about the upcoming service line of the production line,
– available remotely, wherever the Internet is available, you can check the status of the warehouse or any stage of production in real time,
– simple to use and simply practical, because it has a real support for the company’s functioning.
You can do more with the MES system!
The value of the MES market has been increasing for years, and it is the most readable signal and proof that the investment in the production system is a necessity for manufacturing companies. Especially for those who want to gain an advantage over the competition or even stay on the market.
This is a subject worth attention, the more that MES systems carry the same opportunities and benefits as: reducing production costs, increasing productivity and increasing OEE, increasing production quality, reducing downtime and production cycle time. In the case of this type of aspirations, it is not worth postponing the implementation of the MES system – the earlier it starts to work, the faster it will translate into the company’s growth and profits.