Tuesday, April 7, 2015

SG Systems’ Cosmetics Batch Control System with Dynamics AX Interface



SG Systems (Mexico) - Bissu Cosmetics was founded in 1991 with the purpose of making available to the Mexican market a wide range of beauty products with the highest quality standards worldwide.

The Conroe, TX manufacturing facility produces a wide range of high quality cosmetics products. Bissu Cosmetics develop, manufacture, distribute and technically support hundreds of cosmetic products for the heavily regulated and fashion conscious consumer market.

To control the manufacturing and quality processes in their state of the art operation, Bissu Cosmetics decided to invest in the Cosmetics Batch Control System from SG Systems LLC, to make their already robust batch weighing process even tighter. Bissu Cosmetics needed to take their manual batching process to the next level and bridge the gap between their Microsoft Dynamics AX ERP System and the shop floor weighing operations. Dynamics AX software typically manages a company’s business processes, including the Bills of Materials (BOM), Production Schedule and Inventory.

SG Systems has a history of Cosmetics Batch Control Systems with installations in many countries over many years, providing compliance with 21 CFR parts 73, 74, and 82. (See inspection guides produced by the FDA Cosmetic Good Manufacturing Practices)

For any business running ERP, it is important that ERP remains the master database. SG Systems were able to demonstrate a clear, safe and practical method for handling ingredient data. In addition, SG Systems is a company who is flexible enough to customize hardware & software to meet the needs of a demanding, high productivity, production led operation.

Companies usually print the Production Schedule and BOM’s from Dynamics AX onto a sheet of paper and hand it to the production team to complete the weighing and batching processes, and then return the completed paperwork to the production supervisors to enter the inventory used and batches made into Dynamics AX. This process is now well known to be problematic. Operator errors in the weighing process and inaccuracies in lot control are usually not reflected in the paper trail – this can cause problems with accounting, inventory and purchasing in addition to the quality of the product from batch to batch.

The Solution – Vantage RFS (Cosmetics Batch Control Systems):
It begins with a download from Microsoft Dynamics AX. Once a manufacturing order has been created in Dynamics AX, a file is transferred to the Cosmetics Batch Control Systems containing the Production Plan (number of batches, required batch size, substitutions and production locations) and the BOM containing the recipe steps and target weights. The available inventory is made available for the system to consume from lot numbers, stock codes and quantities.

The Production Plan is then available at the custom made operator workstations. The station consists of a Touch Screen User Interface, 2 Sartorius High Resultion Industrial Scales, a Label Printer and Barcode Scanner.

The Vantage Touch Screen User Interface allows the Production Plan (transferred from Dynamics AX) to be displayed using easy to follow screens. This eliminates paper schedules and prevents operators making incorrect or out of sequence formulations. After selecting the required recipe, the operator follows simple screens which prompt for lot number scans. A simple speedometer display ensures the weighed items are portioned correctly and within tight, management set tolerances.

The operator cannot weigh up too much or too little as the system will not accept out of tolerance weighing. This has a big impact on batch consistency and overall product quality.

‘Mistake Free’ Paperless Lot Traceability:
After the weighing is complete and the ingredients have been labeled with a unique batch number, the system uses a Vantage Bagging Terminal and Barcode Reader to allow the whole bags to be collated with the partially weighed ingredients. This is a critical control point as the batches can be over 100kg and contain many color pigments which are critical to the success of the batch.

The Bag Terminal allows the correct whole bags to be collated with the correct partially weighed items, ensuring the batch is 100% accurate. To provide paperless traceability, the Vantage System creates inventory usage files in real time (after each batch is complete) which are in turn used to deduct inventory from the customers ERP (Located in Mexico). This improves inventory visibility in Dynamics AX, reduces man hours spent on data entry and saves time double handling data.

In addition, the Cosmetics Batch Control Systems provides actual usage based on the scaling weights, instead of theoretical usage based on target weights. This allows accurate yields to be calculated which provides visibility for supplier inventory accuracy. SG Systems comments “The new Vantage Cosmetics Batch Control Systems installation ensures the correct material is weighed out at the correct amount every time, we have seen greatly improved inventory accuracy and client confidence & trust in our traceability is hugely satisfying… not to mention making audits quicker and easier.“

For more information about the Formula Control and Lot Traceability Solutions from SG Systems click here.


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