Although from a technological point of view, all electronics manufacturing facilities use the same processes, every individual EMS facility is different and unique. These differences can be significant. Differences in machine types and brand selections, differences in the level of automation and differences in the individual cost levels for factory location, taxes, employees and many other costs, such as IT and automation.
When preparing a quote, the material costs of a product, but also the manufacturing costs of a requested lot size (or multiple lot sizes), must be calculated. This is the “Job Costing” process.
In the accountancy world, the different job costing methodologies are mostly used for balance sheets and bottom line result calculations. These methodologies cannot be compared with the costing model used in QuoteArchitect. QuoteArchitect is a quoting system, not an accounting system.
Configuring the Virtual Factory
Configuring the Virtual Factory is a one-off operation, comfortably supported by the QuoteArchitect plant definition logic. The settings and data are easily maintained to keep the Virtual Factory synchronised with your real factory developments over time.
The Virtual Factory is activated by filling the model with information about labour costs, overheads and production hours, as well as your operations and processes and their individual variables, parameters, speeds, capacities and limitations.
The virtual factory model allows the integration of any process type within the configured operation.
- - The SMT assembly operation calculations are highly automated. SMT part codes are auto-allocated and the calculation models typically use the shape and part-code definitions of the BOM items and the individual machine configurations to drive the automatic line balancing in multiple pick & place machine operations to obtain well-balanced machine loads and accurate production times.
- - Automatic assembly for THT parts (Axial, radial and pin) is also supported in the virtual factory model (although this is slowly disappearing).
- - A robot assembly for any odd parts or modules is supported in the virtual factory model, anticipating contemporary and future trends.
- - Manual assembly for both SMT and THT, as well as cable harnessing, mechanical assembly, box build and system build is extensively supported in the virtual factory model.
Manufacturing Flow definition
The production engineer defines the production flow based on the BOM and all other additional requirements for the product to be built (e.g. quantity, complexity, complications, technology).
QuoteArchitect allows a free flow definition to cover all possible production scenarios. While running a product in the requested quantity and a selected manufacturing flow through the Virtual Factory, the cost analysis and calculation is executed and recorded in real-time.
Based on a selected production flow the rules-driven “Costing engine” generates a specified manufacturing cost overview for the job volume. A drill-down function allows the individual cost elements in the calculation to be analysed in detail.