Case Study

Greenfield Facility Design for a Construction Equipment Manufacturer

Wednesday August 8, 2012

A construction equipment manufacturer was designing the layout for a greenfield facility and needed to estimate their machine spacing requirements. The machines in transit were large and would have been extremely costly to move after installation, so management needed to ensure the plant layout allocated enough space for staging work in-process (WIP) inventory. The client knew the characteristics of their system, but needed help translating that information into reliable in-process inventory estimates to inform machine placement for the new facility. The machines were already in transit overseas, so the client needed these answers quickly.

The manufacturer also sought answers to several supplementary questions about their proposed system, including:

  • Will the proposed system meet annual production targets?
    • If so, when? With what margin of safety?
  • How fast should materials be released for production?
  • What system configurations minimize in-process inventory?
  • What operating conditions have the greatest impact on system performance?
  • How should products be batched and routed through the system?