A lot of poeple have asked me what can process manfuacturing do in Dynamics AX2012? This post will hopefully serve the purpose.

Process manufacturers deal with resource rich industries on buy side and with aggregators & retailers on sell side, both having larger bargaining power. The constant squeeze between two powerful groups’ reduces already thin margins and this is likely to exacerbate for US & Western European manufacturers in the coming years as manufacturers in the emerging markets stake their claim for even larger share of the pie.

Process manufacturers therefore continuously need to reduce costs, improve quality & maintain security standards to be able to keep their margins in the markets that are important to them.

Process Manufacturing for Microsoft Dynamics® AX 2012 (formerly known as process industries or PI) gives process manufacturers a low cost solution that can model lean, discrete & process manufacturing in one box, is versatile & flexible to model new organizations, products or processes, supports most common multi-X scenarios and can be extended to support specific vertical requirements without the need of additional IT investments.

Process Manufacturing for Microsoft Dynamics® AX 2012 enables manufacturers and distributors of natural, industrial or consumer packaged products to control costs, increase profitability, maintain stringent quality standards and manage compliance using a familiar user interface on an advanced technology platform with cost of ownership that is significantly lower than the competition.

Process manufacturing for Microsoft Dynamics® AX2012 is available in two different SKUs. Process Manufacturing logistics is targeted at customers who would like to automate their distribution processes for products that are usually manufactured in a batch or semi-continuous processing environment. Process Manufacturing production is targeted at customers who would like to automate their batch or semi-continuous manufacturing processes. Process manufacturing logistics SKU is a pre-requisite for process manufacturing production SKU.

Both SKUs contain enough functionality that can also address some needs of customers with discrete manufacturing environment. Key functionalities enabled by process manufacturing are:

  • Maintain complex formulae
  • Manage short life products
  • Manage commodity pricing
  • Manage product compliance
  • Setup & apply complex rebates
  • Advanced lot tracking & control
  • Enhance cost management of multiple outputs
  • Procure, store & sell products in dual units of measure
  • Manage production for assembly or disassembly for single or dual units of measure

SKU 1- Process manufacturing production

Process manufacturing production for Microsoft Dynamics® AX 2012 enables manufacturers of processed goods to quickly define complex formulae, to accurately control production costs, to easily model discrete & process production scenarios and to switch between make or buy decisions with agility.

FORMULA MANAGEMENT

  • Easily model disassembly sequences or products with multiple outputs in different batch sizes or multiples
  • Effectively model batch processed products that are consumed into a discrete or lean assembly or model discrete or lean sub-assemblies consumed into multiple output products
  • Flexibly consume or produce products in dual units of measure with constant or varying consumption
  • Dynamically calculate ingredient consumption even for items consumed non-linearly in single or dual units of measure
  • Maintain with ease many formulae for producing same product by using different material combinations or for producing different products using same combinations
  • Setup, measure & improve production yields by having the flexibility to define yield for several different combinations and comparing it to the production results
  • Quickly scale some or all ingredients in the formulae based on available inputs to estimate outputs
  • Reduce inventory & purchasing costs by defining several alternate ingredients and consumption priority for each on the formula
  • Easily toggle security restrictions on formulae access by activating any of the four built-in security levels
  • Control packaging material costs by setting up configurable products as different packaged products and linking them to processed products

PRODUCTION MANAGEMENT

  • Reduce waste by using production policies to ensure right formula for production is automatically selected based on a given tank size and other factors
  • Link multiple packed productions to multiple bulk productions. Consolidate them to improve operational efficiency, minimize bulk storage and optimize packed product production
  • Quickly add, remove or alter number, type or amount of multiple outputs
  • Improve profitability for each of the multiple outputs in a production by accurate allocation of costs over them before, during or after production & revalue goods by comparing actual with estimated costs
  • Always produce to customer specifications by ensuring discretionary picking of ingredients based on certain attributes
  • Rapidly react to a change in production conditions based on results of automatically created quality orders
  • Consume ingredients and produce multiple outputs in dual units of measure and record nominal or actual values in such units all through the process
  • Achieve real time visibility on plant floor and at higher levels by re-sequencing jobs based on actual capacity on the floor and by recording production output on such jobs in dual units of measure and for multiple outputs

SKU2 - Process manufacturing logistics

Process manufacturing logistics for Microsoft Dynamics® AX 2012 enables distributors of processed goods to forecast and plan supply & demand and to manage procurement & sales in dual units of measure natural or consumer packaged products with short or long shelf life while meeting strict quality standards, complying with regulatory requirements & providing visibility into profitability for the distributor.

DUAL UNITS OF MEASURE MANAGEMENT (CATCH WEIGHT)

  • Easily create & release products with dual units of measure to multiple legal entities
  • Seamlessly manage products with dual units of measure through forecasting, planning and production and be able to define & view such products on forecasts, planned orders, demand & supply views, and on production and consolidated orders
  • Manage flexibly single and dual unit of measure products on purchase requisitions, purchase agreements and release order lines together with stocked and non-stocked products
  • Manage flexibly single and dual unit of measure products on sales quotations, sales agreements, release order lines and delivery schedules together with stocked and non-stocked products
  • Improve product yield and operational efficiency by recording actual values in both units of measure at every stage of the process

LOT MANAGEMENT

  • Enhance backward traceability and reduce time required for recall by integrating information about vendor batches for purchased lots into manufactured lots of semi-finished or finished products
  • Improve profitability by differentiating product based on specific product characteristics per lot & only shipping lots that meet certain company or customer criteria
  • Reduce costs of rework by arresting the progress at any stage for any process, of a poor quality lot through various supply chain processes
  • Enhance lot control with the ability to record and recall as needed, characteristics of an inventory lot as procured, produced or as sold
  • Measure quality of each lot with or without dual units of measure for single or multiple production outputs at any stage of processing and attach such results to the inventory lot
  • Increase customer satisfaction and reduce cost of rework by meeting all demand of a particular customer from the same lot if so desired
  • Enhance operational efficiency and order promising by having the ability to instantly search all inventory and find lots with specific characteristics
  • Improve inventory visibility by having access to all the inventory lots and associated functions in one unified view

SHELF LIFE MANAGEMENT

  • Manage plan, procure and sales processes for fresh, frozen or long shelf life products based on expiry period or best before period
  • Improve warehousing efficiency by earmarking locations based on product shelf life and issuing goods only as per process or customer requirements
  • Reduce waste by using the ability to retest shelf life products reaching the end of their shelf life
  • Improve order promising & reduce stockouts by incorporating shelf life information into planning processes and planning views
  • Differentiate service and increase profitability by incorporating residual shelf life demanded by customer at ship-to location

WAREHOUSE MANAGEMENT

  • Manage full or partial visibility dual units of measure based products through all inbound and outbound warehouse processes
  • Increase warehouse efficiency by using the ability to mix products in same shipment that are constrained by varying levels of additional requirements like ship from single lot, based on specific characteristics, shelf life and dual units of measure

REGULATORY COMPLIANCE MANAGEMENT

  • Receive, store and send product safety data sheets for hazardous products as needed
  • Keep product safety data sheets current with the company and customers
  • Comply with local regulatory agencies by restricting or regulating the sale of certain products in certain regions
  • Record necessary compliance related product data for various regulatory agencies
  • Record usage data for all products and use available third party integrated service to calculate usage of regulated substances for yearly reporting
  • Manage quality and compliance by ensuring that certain products can only be supplied by approved vendors

REBATES MANAGEMENT

  • Improve profitability by managing different rebate & trade merchandising programs for different customer segments
  • Monitor and manage rebates processed either at invoicing or accumulated by user defined periods. Rebates can be setup by different currencies, units of measure or by differing qualifying levels and can be paid to customers by several different methods

COMMODITY PRICING MANAGEMENT

  • Effectively react to changing commodity costs so the prices of sellable goods always stay current with the market
  • Manage sellable product prices such that trade agreements are always up to date and new contracts reflect the price change

You can find more detail about how to use process manufacturing capabilities in the product on technet