Lot size

What is a batch size?

The batch size refers to the quantity of products or parts that are produced directly one after the other without interrupting production, e.g. 5,000 screws. Each changeover of the machines therefore causes set-up costs and times, as production cannot take place during the changeover. For this reason, it would make sense to produce relatively large batches. However, this results in high stock levels, which have to be stored until they are delivered and entail storage costs.

Determining the optimum batch size

At this point, lot size planning is used to determine the optimum lot size. Determining this key figure is of crucial importance in companies. It determines the ideal production quantity at which capacity is utilized, throughput time is optimized and production costs are minimized. In theory, there are various models, such as the Wagner-Within method or Andler's lot-sizing formula. In practice, however, these models can only be used to a limited extent, as they often do not correspond to the real conditions.

Trend towards batch size 1

In the age of Industry 4.0, the trend is towards batch size 1 - a custom-made product. Thanks to the support of modern manufacturing processes, individual productions can now also be realized at the cost of series production. In make-to-order production, data processing is an important means of displaying the production processes transparently, checking the current production status of a part and when it is required in the subsequent production process. The integration of a warehouse management system can be an important step, as all IT systems must ensure seamless communication along the value chain and exchange data in real time.


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