New: Jobs on “Standby” and Enhanced Job & Component Template Concept

    Jan Viergutz
    August 1, 2023

    As you all know “jobs” are of essential importance in just plan it, because they each form a separate unit for the automatic finite scheduling engine. In our July 2023 sprint, we, therefore, focused on new and improved functionality around jobs. As of now, you can benefit from

      • new functionality to set jobs on “Standby”,
      • extended functionality to manage jobs that were created based on job and component template master data,
      • enhanced options to handle visualization of data in the job view.

    Set Jobs on “Standby”

    We got feedback from several customers that all described the same structure of a particular use case. In this use case the job need to run through three major stages:

      1. Internal creation of drafts
      2. External approval of drafts
      3. Manufacturing of approved design/scope

    The particular challenge here is that the second stage, i.e. the date of approval by the customer, cannot really be reliably estimated as the responsiveness of customers varies greatly in reality. The related scheduling use case proceeds as follows: 

    • The respective job is scheduled in the normal way. For the duration of stage 2, a conservative average is taken. With this, our customers can schedule and communicate a “rough” end date like: “If my draft is o.k. and I get your approval within the next three weeks then I can deliver in cw50”.
    • When it comes to execution, then stage 1 is also executed in the normal way. After that, the generated draft is handed over to the customer. Unfortunately, very often customers need way longer to approve the draft than calculated in the rough delivery date. In this case, the corresponding job gets a "standby" position, since it is unclear when it can be continued.

    For this scheduling challenge, when the continuation of a job cannot be predicted, and the pending tasks of the job must be taken off the schedule accordingly for an indefinite period of time we have developed the job status "Standby".

    What happens when a job is put on "Standby” status:

    • No tasks that are not already finished or started will be scheduled and visualized in the Gantt chart views, without losing the respective data for later activation.
    • The job will get a new sequence number within the “Standby” section of the job view (see picture below).

    Standby status of a job in just plan it - production scheduling for HMV

    Jobs and tasks on “Standby” are highlighted as follows, to alert you that they are currently not scheduled:

    • With dark yellow coloration in the table part of the job view
    • With dark yellow coloration of bars in the Gantt charts when the “default” color scheme is activated.

    In addition, of course, the new “Standby” status is also available in filters and highlight schemes for you.

    Last but not least, you can set the job status to “Standby” in both the job list dialogue and the job details dialogs as before. If you set a job from “Standby” to any other scheduled categories, e.g. “quoted” then the respective job is added at the end of the schedule with the lowest priority but is fully scheduled and shows the full routing again.

    Watch our recorded webinar from August 8, 2023, when we present the new features live. >>>

    Extended Job & Component Template Concept

    As you know we have powerful functionality to help you build your jobs quickly based on job master data. You can use templates, both for entire jobs and for repeating task structures with components.

    Before now though, making any changes on a specific job or trying to edit any task that is part of a component would lose the template binding and even remove structural aids like the additional levels in the job view. The only exception was setting shopfloor feedback, which would keep the component template intact. This meant that when needing to do even small adjustments to the planning data, you would lose information about that job's origin or have no changes to see a task component at a single glance.

    With this update, you will be able to find job template information even after making changes in the new field “Created From Job Template” available in all reports. This field is read-only and will be populated by the last job template name selected to fill the job. You will also be able to get reports on the origin of tasks in the reports by referencing the new field “Created From Component Template”.

    Additionally, we now enable you to keep the component structure, even when you need to make changes to the component template used, like needing to update quantities or runtimes for specific uses of the component, without impacting all other jobs making use of the same component template.  

    new component template in just plan it - production scheduling software for HMLVThis allows component templates to be used as mainly structural information, in addition to representing functionally more or less independent parts. If you have repeating process structures that differ just in some of the details, there is now no need to have component templates for any and all variations, as you can have the base and just make the necessary adjustments quickly.

    Enhanced options for data visualization in the Job View

    Planners have to have an eye for details while not losing sight of the overall picture. That can mean expanding jobs in the job view collapsing them again or switching to the resource-centric views before switching back and looking for your next problem case.

    That can sometimes leave you with lots of jobs expanded from your previous troubleshooting and you have to close them all again to prepare the next steps.

    To make things easier for you we added “collapse all” options to all categories in the job view.  

    Collaps all jobs function in just plan it - production scheduling software for HMLV

    We also added two new context menu items to allow you to collapse specific jobs and all of their task details as well as expand a job to the lowest level, meaning all subtask and multi-resource information gets expanded as well, saving you a couple of clicks and given you all the info immediately.

    Collaps all & extend all function for jobs and related tasks in just plan it - production scheduling software for HMLV

    That’s it for today. Included in the release are of course also bug fixes and minor enhancements to the underlying workings of just plan it.

    If you have ideas for future enhancements that would help you schedule even better with jpi let us know!

    As always, we are happy and eager to receive any feedback from you guys and to answer any questions you may have.

    Until then, Happy Scheduling!

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