The Importance of Industrial Engineering Software in Apparel Manufacturing

There is no denying that one of the goals of any business is to reduce overall operational costs and enhance productivity. The apparel industry is no exception to it. And much like other industries, they are confronted with similar challenges.

The apparel business is often plagued by challenges not limited to increased production costs, shorter lead times and fulfilling production targets while estimating an accurate daily production goal. The modern manufacturing system, which is widely used in mass garment production units, necessitates solutions that assist in achieving the required level of productivity and quality while reducing cost and production waste.

The solution to these complications is something that industrial engineering can help achieve.  

What is Industrial Engineering?

The application of industrial engineering in apparel manufacturing is not a new concept. It deals with the simple concept of eliminating major challenges in the manufacturing unit. These issues can be related to the wastage of the operator’s time, money, materials, machine time, and other resources. The primary goal is to remove any non-value-adding factors. It not only assists manufacturing units in achieving maximum productivity while maximising efficiency and profitability, but it also improves quality at the end of the production line. 

How has IE changed?

Previously, apparel manufacturing companies used industrial engineers and work-study teams to create operational data in spreadsheets and conduct capacity studies on how to improve productivity on production lines. However, most times, the process turned exhaustive pretty soon, and the results never came out right the first time around. Hence, more time was spent rebalancing the process rather inadequately.

Today, times have become competitive, and businesses have absolutely no time to entertain any type of quality or production-related issues. To enhance the already efficient industrial engineers, apparel businesses have switched to optimising industrial engineering software.

Benefits of IE Software

Other than improving efficiency, focusing on enhancing product quality, utilising resources where best required, and reducing operational costs, there are several other noteworthy benefits of IE software. Let us take a look at a few of them. 

Line Balancing

When mass apparel production is considered, the products are made in lines and on a set of machines. Production varies depending upon the allocation of manpower to a particular operation, the operator’s skill level, and the machine’s capacity. To remove any bottlenecks, industrial engineering software allows IEs to develop a digital skill matrix using prior data of operators. It enables industrial engineers to readily match skilled operators to their most productive work processes and machine. 

Shop Floor Productivity

Managing productivity in the apparel industry is trial and error unless the time required to perform a specific task and operation is accurately evaluated. Industrial engineering software allows users to record every detail about each workstation and the output it can produce. It enables management to understand output efficiency and make decisions as needed to meet production targets and schedules.  

Features to Look For in an IE Software 

Mobile Tools

  • Perform real-time study on operators.
  • Easy shop-floor modification.
  • Use mobile dashboards to view line efficiency and make quick decisions.
  • Receive alerts when KPI targets fall below a certain threshold.

Real-Time Matrix

  • Detect each operator’s skill and operational efficiency automatically.
  • Update skill efficiency from the production floor automatically with the use of a mobile app.
  • Upload data in bulk using easily accessible web applications.

Cloud Computing

  • Easy line setup
  • Display operators’ skill history along with their past operational efficiency.
  • Match operators to stations based on their skill matrix.
  • Generate changeover reports as and when required.

For hassle-free operation on the production line, the apparel industry needs a cloud-based solution that can help them streamline their business operations and improve overall productivity.

The traditional apparel manufacturing process is being transformed by cloud-based solutions. All critical data is stored centrally and is available in real time. It assists businesses in maintaining system transparency. And a robust industrial engineering software that enables a wide range of solutions that aid in increasing efficiency, reducing NPT, saving manpower and improving product quality on the factory floor line – is designed to serve various yet critical stages of the apparel manufacturing business.