Unicut Precision of Welwyn Garden City, the leading UK sub-contract precision machinist and BTMA member, is maximising the potential of its investment in PSL Datatrack production management and business administration software. It is helping the company to improve productivity in the provision of high quality, cost-effective parts produced on single cycle CNC automatic lathes. The company can take care of all customers' needs with component requirements up to 64 mm diameter and can provide a onestop solution for difficult to machine and very complex multi-featured components. PSL Datatrack has given Unicut the in-house capability to control and monitor any project or process from initial enquiry, through order processing, manufacturing, quality control, despatch and invoicing.
Unicut Precision first invested in PSL Datatrack in 2005 and since then has benefited through the modular structure of the system by adding to it over a period of time to meet the demands of the growing business. The initial investment in PSL Datatrack by Unicut was made in order to improve the administration around the production, on short lead times, of large numbers of batches for companies from many different industries. PSL Datatrack allowed Unicut to create files for quotations, materials and tooling which could be immediately called upon when the orders were received.
Modules for material stores, stock holding and subcontract processes, such as heat-treatment and plating, were also integrated into the route card together with on-line inspection report data and the printing of part identification labels. All information was automatically integrated with the company’s accounting software to produce delivery notes and for invoicing purposes.
Subsequently, PSL Datatrack’s shopfloor data collection module has also been acquired and provides up to date information on the progress of every job. Further expansion of the system allowed Unicut to take advantage of parts scheduling and machine performance monitoring. Parts scheduling ensures that the right parts in the correct quantity are available in stock as required for any production batch and are issued as required or replenished. The machine monitoring module checks the performance of the company’s automatic lathes, identifying any deviances in the performance that may affect product quality, and in doing so, cutting out potentially time wasting operations.
A quality control module provides information on supplier performance and reports are generated with accurate statistics about suppliers and their ability to provide their parts and services at the agreed and predetermined times and quality. This has resulted in a well controlled materials system, making the best use of cash flow, maintaining accurate stock information, avoiding over and under ordering and so ensuring the production line always has the correct supply of the highest quality raw materials.
PSL Datatrack have continued to provide on-going development where Unicut required specific production information such as custom and management reports for analysis of contribution by dept., bar-coded shop floor data collection and material allocation.
Shop floor responsibilities were enhanced by the ability to delegate the preparation of production route cards and job packs directly at the shop floor using information provided by the work-to-lists from the integrated scheduling system, presenting information in exactly the required format.
Everyone at Unicut has intranet communications and can quickly access information and make decisions about the productions process based on real time data. Staff can also file jobs notes between shifts, exchange setting information, therefore ensuring accurate records of what is happening. Prior to consolidation, Unicut Precision ran PSL Datatrack across sites in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire and Bourne End in Buckinghamshire. Both factories used PSL Datatrack via remote links to share all the technical and commercial information generated by the system.
“PSL Datatrack has allowed us on a step-by-step basis to improve our complete production and business administration systems. Initially used simply to prevent duplication of administration and paperwork, it has grown into a system that helps us meet customer requirements for shorter lead times and different batch sizes with the confidence to meet those demands,” says Director, Jason Nicholson.