The Metals industry is strongly characterized by a number of relevant aspects, such as: product master data developed on characteristics that, generally, are dimensional or qualitative, a usually extensive item portfolio, and logical aggregations often used as a tool for identification and work. Usually in the metal industry, routings and BOMs are highly variable depending on the features of the finished product.


The type of product being processed, by its very nature, includes a wide range of qualitatively compatible materials and different permissible production lines depending on the characteristics of the material chosen and the load in place. Production is generally planned by campaigns, and crucial materials are allocated to minimize delays, given the long purchasing lead times. It also becomes essential, to provide a solution for cutting plan optimization in order to minimize scraps (if it is part of the company’s core production).


Companies have increasingly placed quality at the center of their strategy, focusing on the introduction of superior quality products into the production chain, improving efficiency and metal yield, and eliminating the possibility of processing radioactive materials.


In order not to lose market shares and profit margins, companies operating in the metals industry have had to cope with the consequences of such a change, reacting quickly to manage much larger and more disparate areas of action.

A real case

A client in metal industry successfully implemented a solution that covers the full range of planning processes: from demand and production planning to manufacturing execution. The solution covers the processes in the two owned plants: one for rolling and one for converting.

The processes involved in the development of the sedApta project revolutionized the business reality starting with the inclusion of a Demand Management with statistics and collaborative approach. A Material Requirement Planning plan was also carried out, which contributed to the finalization of a Finite Capacity Production Planning.

The Manufacturing Operations Management area includes a Production Scheduling, and the installation of a MES tailored to the customer’s needs.

The main objectives and benefits of Sedapta’s project led to the following results:

  • Higher reliability of plans, thanks to a forecast validated in accordance with production capacity, thanks to a regular review and update of the plan involving sales and production managers.
  • Increased flexibility and capacity to adapt to changes in demand by the generation of what-if scenarios that may lead to adjusting production capacity and material allocation in advance.
  • Cost saving thanks to cutting optimization algorithms, used to generate optimal cutting plans to minimize scraps of coils / reels both in rolling and converting processes.
  • Reduction of raw materials and semi-finished products stock quantities thanks to a better visibility of demand and an improved stock assignment process.
  • Setup time optimization while reducing costs thanks to sequencing optimization of production campaigns.
  • Full control of the manufacturing activities progress and consumption in the plants thanks to MES, which let to identify improvement areas and efficiency.

sedApta solutions for Metals offer you:

  • Demand Planning, through automatic generation of statistical sales forecast at different level of the product/market hierarchy, based on sales history and past promotions, and powered by predictive ML/AI algorithms. New product introduction, phase in-phase out and de-listing are available as well. On top of that, collaborative digitalized approval flows are offered to orchestrate a demand validation process among different roles in central HQ and local subsidiaries (top-down or bottom-up), generating a consensus forecast.
  • DRP and Inventory Management, which aim to compute the ideal replenishment plan of your distribution network, optimizing the stock deployment based on timing and costing of different routes. Optimal warehouse allocation with a choice between alternative raw materials, e.g. different steel qualities in order to maximize volumes produced and minimize shortages.
  • Production Planning at finite capacity, with rolling and converting production optimization. Thanks to the implementation of verticalized algorithms it is possible to optimize the cutting plan to minimize scraps, generate production proposals aligned with available material capacity and the time required to produce the finished or semi finished product. Powerful multi-simulation engines are available to create and compare different “What-if” scenarios, integrating transportation tracking real-time data. Definition of production campaigns to optimize set-up times on critical equipment, based on product features (e.g. diameter of pipes), lot sizing and planning horizon. Definition of details of the order, in particular to generate routings and BOMs according to the dimensional/qualitative features of the material (e.g. on a pipe: length, diameter, thickness and steel grade). Flexibility in the management of routings and multi-level BOMs, for example if the number of operations is not known in advance (e.g. operations entered after measurements/quality checks, potentially several times)
  • Material Planning, starting from a feasible production plan, allowing better synchronization with suppliers of raw materials and components. DDMRP is as well available to support alternative de-coupling points approach.
  • Collaboration with suppliers and subcontractors resulting in increased visibility across the entire supply chain. This approach improves flexibility and avoids the inefficiencies that currently plague you. Increase the quality and timeliness of reminders to suppliers and subcontractors by synchronizing external activities with internal production. Shipping management and ASN uploading are available for the supplier
  • Scheduling at plant level, generating automatically optimized work plans, considering order delivery dates, availability of production resources, materials, production sequences, and equipment setup times. This approach offers better synchronization between raw materials, semi-finished and finished goods, by managing batch-to-batch connections and managing the coupling points. Responding quickly to various change requests by being able to easily run various simulations
  • MES allows tracing and monitoring all internal production activities (progress/scrap), integrating machines (Industry 4.0), in order to understand performances, OEE and losses, identify improvement actions. Data Acquisition Systems (DAS) integration is available in order to receive process parameters and integrate them with MES. Production monitoring and management of used materials with lot traceability. Usage of the checklist module lets to manage process variables detected automatically by plants or declared manually by the operator for each lot. Use of the Orchestrator to synchronize various entities according to production events (maintenance, logistics/warehouse, quality)
  • Road transportation planning and tracking: plan your Shipment starting from Order Lines or Deliveries sent by ERP; select Optimal Carriers, comparing Agreements or Spot Quotations, and Evaluate your Shipments. Check Technical Capabilities calculated by NextRoute and mapped by each Service Provider; manage Bookings and Check-In through a Collaborative Process
  • Over-seas transportation tracking: it allows you to check the status of your inbound and outbound shipments from the moment they are shipped from the supplier until they are delivered to the warehouse, integrating commercial data (sku and order) linked to the logistic data (container), with AI/ML powered predictive ETA.

Expected benefits from sedApta Suite implementation

  • Greater reliability of sales forecasts verified at finite capacity, thanks to periodic reviews shared between sales force and production planning
  • Rationalisation of the steel/raw material quality available in storage, determining the best stock allocation to orders to maximize volumes produced
  • Product yield improvement (scrap reduction)
  • Increase in service levels to over 90%
  • Decrease of raw and semi-finished materials stocks
  • Optimization of finished product stocks
  • Increased reliability of the customer order dating process
  • Optimization of setup times and service levels based on company goals
  • Rationalisation of the purchasing process and greater visibility on requirements, also in terms of metal quality
  • Stronger integration between company departments

Companies supported by the sedApta Suite

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