There are three ways to track work-in-process using the BellHawk software:
Track work-in-process materials as they move from work center to
work center. Here license-plate
tracking methods are used to track each part or container of parts
as they move from work center to work center.
Track when an employee starts and ends work on each operation for a
work order. This records the status of each work order and the labor
required for each operation.
Track the consumption, transformation, and production of materials
on work-order operations. This is in addition to optionally tracking the
work-in-process location and labor
Comparison of Methods
If all that is required is to track where serial numbered items are in their assembly, repair, or test process,
then simply tracking the work-in-process materials provides a very simple way of getting real-time visibility into the status of each customer order.
If the primary goals are to be able to see the status of batches of material or individual items and to capture the labor required
in the manufacture, repair, or testing then the second option should be used.
If the primary goal is to capture a materials traceability history so that this can be used to track back from defective finished
products to the raw materials used and to track forward from defective ingredients to the products in which these ingredients were used,
then the third option is essential.
If the primary goal is to accurately capture labor and materials cost data then
a combination of all three methods should be used. This can be augmented by
capturing the setup, run, and down times of the equipment or machines used.
Options 1 and 2 can be performed by the BellHawk SMTS (simple materials
tracking system) and SPTS (simple production tracking system), which are
available through BellHawk Online. Option 3 needs the full BellHawk Job and
Materials Tracking System (JMTS).
It is recommended that clients start with the simplest method that meets their initial objectives. Then clients can always upgrade their BellHawk software to include the additional capabilities they may need in future.