Plex Systems Goes Mobile (and More) at PowerPlex 2014

Plex SystemsPlex Manufacturing Cloud offering has long had mobile capabilities on ruggedized devices on the shop floor. Most recently, though, at its PowerPlex 2014 conference, the vendor announced new mobile business intelligence (BI) capabilities, enabling manufacturing professionals to access and share role-based enterprise and plant-level analytic dashboards from virtually any mobile device.
Delivered in 2013 and available on iOS and Android devices, SmartPlex Mobile provides the relevant info to business and operations leaders with insight, communication, and control for all manufacturing and business operations. Users can tap into their role-based library of IntelliPlex analytic dashboards and reports (powered by embedded Information Builders tools), with visibility into any data or transactions across their organizations. IntelliPlex makes it easy to analyze data from all aspects of the manufacturing supply chain, as well as business operations. This is a major leap forward from the traditional desktop-only Plex user interface (UI) that could only run in Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) browser. Currently available in SmartPlex are role-based menus with notifications, document control, and the IntelliPlex BI portal.


Enter Plex Finite Scheduling
Plex also announced the availability of a new Plex Finite Scheduling application, which gives managers real-time control over plant operations, including people, tools, fixtures, and work centers to maximize resources and ensure just-in-time (JIT) delivery for end customers. Part jobs are scheduled automatically, taking into account the constraints of work center capacity, available resources, job priority, and due date. In the past, Plex was offering a partner solution, TACTIC by Waterloo Manufacturing Software, but that is an on-premises only solution. For the lack of solid cloud finite scheduling solutions that Plex could partner with (or possibly even acquire), the vendor embarked on a jointly funded product development with a group of interested customers.
As a result, Plex Finite Scheduling includes capable-to-promise (CTP) analysis, along with dynamic calendar and scenario planning for what-if analysis. Organizations can plan based upon load/capacity with configurable logic, using historical production data, forward-looking forecasts, or both in their calculations. New planning capabilities also enable operations managers to schedule appropriate jobs to run concurrently, or sequence activity in overlapped or parallel processes.
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