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Where Used Capabilities Across BOM and Routing Data

Where Used Search  - Quickly Locate Part and Tool Used in your Plant


Proplanner provides production organizations with the capability to easily search big manufacturing datasets to quickly identify where parts and tools are used. Purpose-built interfaces allow users to directly open the process consuming the part or requiring the tool. Additionally, features like the Consumption Workbench allow Proplanner to help users absorb product design changes into process plans by identifying parts that are not used.


Oftentimes, manufacturing process planning starts with parts. In the examples below, we are going to walk through some of the capabilities within the Assembly Planner application for locating part and tool information.


Item Where Used allows for searching across the product (BOM) and routing (process) data to find the assemblies and tasks referencing the selected part. Configurable views allow users to control which item master and BOM attributes they would like to see, which may vary depending on the question they are trying to answer.


The process search tells you which activities, stations, and lines reference the part. If the selected part is an assembly, you can control if the results should show the processes which are building the assembly versus the processes involved with the installation of the assembly itself. 


Coupled with the effectivity information of the processes, it is possible to see, from the perspective of the part itself, where and when BOM record splits and process rebalances were performed. 


Process Search


Consumption Workbench compares the components in the BOMs against the process plans and then shows the user the parts which do not have a corresponding process plan to complete the install. This is effectively the inverse of the Item Where Used search, as this shows where parts are not being used! From this list, the user can then drag and drop the parts into the process plans. 


The Consumption Workbench is reviewed in detail in this past webinar and blog post.



Resource Where Used shows the processes, BOMs, and stations referencing the resource. From this control, you can quickly see that the resource is located in many stations, even though a single process requires the tool. This is a great chance to remove the unnecessary tool from the stations.


Resource Where Used


Line Balancing Resource Constraints provide a mechanism to compare the tools at a station with the tools needed to perform the work at the station. This is helpful while planning for a line rebalance, as you will certainly want to be aware of the station does not have a tool that you need. You will also want to understand the cost of the tool and if it is worth purchasing a new tool. In a more extreme case, you have ‘monuments’ that are cost or size prohibitive to acquire or relocate. 


Line Balancing Resource Constraints


The Model Library Remove function calls a Where Used search on the selected Models, allowing the user to see a list of the routings, operations, and activities that use a model. This can be used to quickly find all routings using a certain set of selected models in a flexible grid structure that supports grouping and filtering functions. I have seen this ‘off label’ use of the remove function help users clean up their model/routing libraries. We plan to formalize this as a Model Where Used search in the next few months.


Model Library


The Advanced Search framework underpins all of the Where Used search capabilities discussed in this post.  Creating shareable, reusable, and flexible queries is possible in nearly all screens within Assembly Planner. 


In the example below, I have asked for all operations (stations) which have a certain model mapped to a process and have at least one activity using the specified tool. 


Advanced Search


Proplanner was designed from the ground up to link parts, tools, factory layouts, and process plans into a cohesive dataset. Look for more information from us in the future on the PFEP Workbenches, Shop Floor Viewer Where Used capabilities, and updates to the Consumption Workbench with integrated CAD.

As always, let us know at if we can help answer any questions.


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