Just in Time Supply Chain Pinch Point & Risk Analysis
01 | Challenge
Significant expansion to two towel and tissue facilities in the Southeast.
Objective was to analyze new expansion project to optimize inventory levels, minimize truck fleet, optimize truck flow patterns and mitigate risks across the network. Vision was to have a Just in Time System.
Identify potential disruptions to flow including truck supplier issues, impact of accidents, impact of production outages, loading issues, weather related delays, distribution centers, key customers, suppliers.
Determine appropriate inventory levels of key products, number of truck trailers to maintain in the yard for surge, best flow pattern, loading dock requirements, etc.
Evaluate both plant in-flow feed materials and outflow – objective was to use the same trucks to minimize empty loads and partial loads
02 | Solution
- A simulation of both plants and the corresponding supply chain networks was built to understand potential issues
- Each plant had a different configuration
- Network Model included two manufacturing nodes along with key destinations such as key customers and distribution centers
- Failures in both plant systems and network were assigned probabilities with regards to downtime and repair times based on historical data as well as estimated from mitigating strategies from the respective plants.
- Various locations within the network had different assumptions based on weather, seasonality, accident history, loading constraints, etc.
- Model included loading of wide variety of products and feedstocks assuming same truck trailers, interactions between the two sites.
Results of analysis:
- Simulation identified ideal truck flow and inventory levels for both plants considering potential delays including secondary routes
- Plant in Arkansas would experience major disruptions to flow under certain production scheduling scenarios – Ex: “short packing cubed” trucks – products that did not consume the entire trailer space in even stacking.
03 | Result
- Arkansas plant expansion project required a loading bay redesign to accommodate problematic production schedules – additional loading bays were needed to synchronize truck flow and loading and inventory levels.
REDESIGN TO OPTIMIZE FLOW – INVENTORY LEVELS WERE KEPT LOW AND TRUCK / TRAILER FLEET WAS MINIMIZED SAVING MILLIONS