La-Z-Boy, a $2 billion US furniture manufacturer, is to deploy Camstar Systems’ InSite collaborative execution system in ten plants of its Residential Furniture Division. Systems integration will be carried out by Unifi Technology Group of Charlotte, NC.
The resulting implementation will enable La-Z-Boy to maximise the use of its production assets and increase visibility into plant floor operations, while creating a common and consistent software backbone to which other applications, such as logistics and warehouse management, can later be added.
‘Our Residential Furniture Division has been capturing information from the shop floor since the mid 90’s,’ said Bill Knight, corporate project manager. ‘This data is vital to our operations, and we have recognised the need for a more flexible system that will support the addition of future modules such as payroll, shipping, material management and warehouse management. Our goal is to move as smoothly and quickly as possible into enterprise-wide e-Manufacturing.’
As part of the initial implementation, Unifi Technology Group will directly link Camstar’s InSite collaborative manufacturing software to La-Z-Boy’s enterprise-level forecasting and scheduling systems.
This will provide two-way communication between the business and shop floor systems, allowing changes in scheduling and order processing to be transmitted, in real time, between the two operating layers.
‘Ours is essentially a make-to-order business,’ said Knight, ‘and we need to be able to track and manage production down to the single-unit level to maximise the output of our processing lines. The system that Unifi Technology Group is creating will give us the agility required to support this kind of make-to-order manufacturing in a cost-effective way. It will also give us a real-time view into manufacturing that will let our customers know, at any time, exactly where their orders are.’
Initial deployment of InSite will be at La-Z-Boy’s plant in Florence, SC, followed by rollout to the remaining nine plants by the end of the year.