<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=163851757554412&amp;ev=PageView &amp;noscript=1">

How to Set up Good Production Planning in a Chinese Factory

September 30, 2014

 by David Collins III

Manufacturing Team

David Collins explains what constitutes a good production planning system: taking into account what is ordered by customers, how long to get materials in, how to manage holiday periods, how to prepare the tooling as needed, and so on.


Production planning is a large problem here in China. Factories want to make money. So frequently what they do is they’ll take your entire order bank and build the things that they want to build first prior to building the things that they don’t like or a little hard or a little bit more costly. So without good production planning you end up getting a lot of some products and not enough of some of the other products that you need to fill up your container to get it back to your customers and what they actually want.

With strong and good production planning the contract manufacturer or even your own manufacturing organization will learn how to put parts onto the line and put them out the door quickly. The big part about production planning of course is the initial order: What does the order bank look like? What kind of products are in that order bank, and how does that order bank look to you? When do you need the products? The other part is raw materials. When are the raw materials available and needed? No sense putting into the plan if the raw materials aren’t going to show up for another month. With a good production plan though, that raw material problem will start to slow down and you’ll start to find out how to get those raw materials to you in time.

The other part of production planning is, what time of year is it? Is there manpower available? If it’s Chinese New Year, you might have a problem. Manpower available and then the tooling that needs to go up onto the line. If you have complex and complicated product offerings the tooling has to change over a lot. With good product planning and production planning, you’re able to make those tooling changes very quickly and very easily.

The overall key to good product planning and, again, good product planning, things can be worked out on Excel spreadsheets in this day and age and setup very simply so that you can do it. Of course there’s expensive automatic programs that do it, also and some medium price once. But with a good Excel spreadsheet, you can do an excellent product plan between yourself and your factory, and you can get the resources necessary to make the product you need when you need it, how you need it, at the right time for your customers.


22 Signs Of Good Factory Management in China eBook

Topics: Production Planning

David Collins III

David Collins III

David was a Senior Strategy Consultant for Deloitte, served in Iraq as a Special Operations Civil Affairs soldier, and as a Governance Advisor to the Afghan Government with the Department of State. At CMC, David advises clients on strategy and investments.

Subscribe to receive CMC tips & resources

Related articles

Manufacturing Plant Relocation in 9 Steps

David Collins III

Read More

8 Manufacturing KPIs Your Factory Managers Should Measure in 2022

David Collins III

Read More

Process Discipline: 6 Questions To Gauge Effectivity

David Collins III

Read More