Minimum FCS Standards

Minimum FCS Standards

Written by: Bill Kirchmier 4/11/12

IPPSA has established minimum performance standards required to qualify as an approved FCS system. These are universal functions typically available in high level commercial FCS systems. The scheduling functions support modeling task orientated scheduling application to achieve user defined objectives including but not limited to:

  • Finitely define all resources
  • Schedule all operations for all work orders accurate to the minute
  • Calculate all queues of all operations accurate to the minute
  • Manage all constraints essential to the user’s application
  • Manage all additional constraints defined by the user
  • Define routines including material and capacity resources
  • Produce feasible schedules

These core functions support the many higher level functions required for comprehensive scheduling. The functions are universally useful for FCS applications. The minimum standards listed are but a few of many features supported by advanced FCS systems; and developers continue to add new features and functions.

Some developers concentrate on industry specific applications and others concentrate on more universal industry applications. Some developers offer a standard set of features and functions at a specified cost for the FCS system and offer optional features at additional cost.

New features and functions are usually created to solve a problem for a specific client’s application. Developers may add the new solution to their standard FCS product when it solves a universal problem or offer the new feature as an option. The number of active FCS developers that professed FCS capability in 1990’s began to expand and reached approximately 200 over the next ten years; however most failed to meet acceptable standards and the industry contracted to less than 20 and remains at that level in 2012.

Prospects interested in evaluating FCS technology are encouraged to enroll in an IPPSA seminar. A long list of features, functions and capability are discussed in the sessions. Participants will leave the session with an in-depth understanding of FCS capabilities and the confidence to decide if FCS will be a cost effective benefit for their company.

This list of minimum standards will assist companies to distinguish between vendors that meet the minimum standards and vendors that simply add the term “FCS” to their product literature. Contact IPPSA for assistance in evaluating FCS systems.