Technical Fibre Products (TFP) has over 30 years experience working with and supplying leading companies in the areas of defence, aerospace, fuel cells and composites, to name but a few. The business provides composite surface finishing, lightweight veils, conductive pathways in composite structures, gas diffusion layer substrates, electromagnetic shielding, lightweight carrier substrates, fire protection and thermal insulation.
Their team of experienced materials scientists, engineers and support staff have a long history of building strong, productive collaborations with our customers, developing new materials optimised to meet specific performance, processing, or aesthetic requirements. TFP’s new laboratory and pilot-scale facility, as well as their extensive converting facilities, include a high spec laminator, fibre plating line, particle plating facility and nanocoating line. These machines enable effective material design and smooth scaling up from concept to larger-scale production.
The business was using an increasingly dated Microsoft Access driven database scheduling system that required manual data input. They were looking to replace this with a multi-stage planning tool that could provide detailed visibility of production scheduling and provide flexibility to adapt production processes to changing market conditions. They also needed a system which was capable of handling multiple resources as the business had recently invested in new making machines and slitting machines and needed to maximise the efficiency of this equipment.
opt-Studio was an ideal solution for TFP. The block scheduling functionality matched the firm’s existing planning scheme for weekly production runs on the shop floor. Integration Manager allows orders and updates to be passed between the ERP system and opt-Studio, while WebReports allow production schedules to be automatically updated based on the live data in the system.
TFP is owned by James Cropper PLC, and we had already installed our opt-Studio system in their papermaking factory which shared the same site. This meant that installation and implementation were seamless, and training was subsequently delivered on Zoom because of Covid restrictions.
The initial installation operated alongside the old system for the first few weeks, after which the previous system was discontinued and TFP became totally reliant on opt-Studio.
The team were quick to realise the benefits. They no longer needed to manually input orders and they were able to reduce the time required to confirm each week’s production plan. Full order visibility makes it easy to amend schedules, update customers and plan paper replacement schedules – activities which can all be managed remotely through browser-based reporting.
“I really enjoy the ease of use of opt-Studio. Support is easy to access, though I rarely need to ask for help, and I’d happily recommend Greycon because of the support we were given during the implementation process.”