Navigating the Unpredictable: How Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management Helps Manufacturers React to Last-Minute Production Order Changes

January 19, 2024 Dmitri Perepelov

In the fast-paced world of manufacturing, adaptability is a cornerstone of success. Manufacturers face the constant challenge of responding to last-minute adjustments in production schedules, whether they’re due to unforeseen issues on the shop floor, changes in customer demands, or supply chain disruptions.  

Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management (SCM) addresses these challenges head-on—with a revolutionary feature that allows for last-minute changes to production orders. This new function in the ERP platform empowers manufacturers to react swiftly and intelligently, ensuring seamless and agile production processes. 

Planned Production order screenshot

Managing the Dynamic Nature of Manufacturing 

Manufacturers operate in an environment where change is the only constant. A sudden machine breakdown, a rush order from a key customer, or unexpected material shortages can throw a carefully planned production schedule into disarray. Traditional production management systems often struggle to keep up with these dynamic challenges. This can lead to inefficiencies, missed deadlines, and increased costs. 

For manufacturers seeking to enhance their agility in responding to unforeseen events, Dynamics 365 SCM offers three functions that are game-changing in enabling manufacturers to effectively react to last-minute production changes: 

  1. Intelligent Decision Support: Armed with real-time data, Dynamics 365 leverages intelligent algorithms to provide decision support. The system evaluates various production scenarios based on the current situation and recommends the most optimal course of action to minimize disruptions and maintain production efficiency.
  2. Resource Optimization: To help respond to last-minute changes, Dynamics 365 also optimizes the allocation of resources—including machinery, labor, and materials. This ensures production continues without unnecessary delays or the over-utilization of specific resources. 
  3. Dynamic Rescheduling: When faced with changes, the system dynamically reschedules production orders, adjusting timelines and priorities accordingly. This proactive rescheduling minimizes the impact of disruptions and ensures that customer commitments are met. 

Dynamics 365 SCM also offers several other key capabilities to help manufacturers handle last-minute production changes: 

  • Add margins to manual scheduling – Insert buffer time between production orders by adding an issue margin, receipt margin, or reorder margin when rescheduling production orders. This is especially useful for orders with deep bills of material or when you have several related production orders, where having a buffer between orders can help ensure on-time delivery.

margins for scheduling orderse screengrab

Master plans screengrab

  • Use on-hand inventory and planned receipts – Increase your order fulfillment rate by using on-hand inventory and planned receipts for last-minute orders. Master planning suggests creating a new planned order when an item is needed outside of its lead time while also using the existing supply if it's needed within the lead time. You can control this using the new Dynamic positive days parameter. 

master planning line screengrab

Setup Master Planning Screengrab

  • Avoid releasing orders to the warehouse when materials are missing – Prevent production orders that require full reservation from being released to the warehouse unless all materials are available for pickup.