How to Financially Justify a Nesting Software Purchase

Cost Justifying a Nesting Software Purchase

Cost Justifying a Nesting Software Purchase

Most project managers we meet, who are tasked with investigating a nesting software purchase, inevitably come to the fork in the research road where they need to make a case for the software to the boss.  Those who come equipped to management with an argument for why and how the nesting software will pay for itself in a short period of time, come out ahead for their efforts.

The question then becomes, how does the nesting software pay for itself?  Or you may be asking, really, can the nesting software pay for itself?  The answer to both questions unfolds several ways.

We’ll break the ways to make that case for cost-justification down here.

Material Savings

What is the old adage in real estate?  “Location. Location. Location.”  Well, something very similar can be applied here.  Although it’s not the only way to justify a nesting software purchase, material savings is the approach most often taken and not one to overlook.  So, we could say “material, material, material” is the first place to look for cost justification.

Nesting software can, in most circumstances, demonstrate a multiple percentage reduction in material use.  That is, a manufacturer can see is material usage drop by 5% to 15% in relatively short order with the use of effective nesting software. That percentage when multiplying it times the cost/pound, can easily represent the monthly expense saved through nesting software.  It’s important to notice that these are hard costs, real expenses, which are measurable and can be clear witness to the impact the nesting software is having on the amount of material used.  A perfect basis for cost justification.

How do you know how much material a nesting software will save?  Ask for a benchmark to be done.



Throughput Increases

Streamlining the Fabrication Process

Throughput or productivity in this discussion is about the amount of product that moves through the shop and out the door within a given period of time.  Impediments to throughput or productivity come in many forms.  They can be additional processes, i.e. shearing before punching.  It can be the number of machine set ups as a function of changing sheet sizes or turret configurations, which are time consuming.  It can be the hassle and time-involved material management such as loading and unloading, transporting sheets from one process to another, stacking and/or counting sheet inventory.

Automatic nesting software can minimize or eliminate redundant or additional steps streamline the process and increase throughput.  If the machine operator changes out the turret fewer times, if there is less need for shearing, if there is fewer sheet sizes to manage, time and money is saved.  Because it is measureable time, which can be multiplied times the labor costs, it can be the basis for a cost justification for nesting software.

Optimizing the Cut Path

Another method to achieve greater throughput is by looking at the cut path or tool path.  This is the time and distance used by the cutting head or turret to cut or punch the entire sheet.  Logically, the shorter the distance from start to finish the faster the cut time and the greater the throughput.  Automatic nesting software can optimize for this benefit.  Further, the time and distance can be measured and compared to existing practices  with the help of a benchmark – yet another tool for a cost justification.

Programming Time Savings

Sometimes the significant (up to 90%) savings in programming time can be used as justification for the nesting software purchase.  There are three ways to find the cost savings here.  1) When engineers are at or exceeding capacity and either their time could be more cost-effectively used elsewhere then the better use of their time can be a basis for justification.  2) When engineers are unable to keep up with production demands and productivity and throughput suffer, then improving the speed of programming can and does increase throughput (capacity), which can be the basis for justification. And finally, 3) if the demand on programming is so great as to incur overtime costs, employing nesting software to expedite the process and reduce overtime can lead to direct, justifiable savings.  The best way to quantify the time savings is to benchmark or test the programming time in an alternative software, then use those numbers to compare to the present situation.  The difference is the justification.

In Conclusion -

As we’ve seen here there are several ways to meet the needs of the decision makers when looking for a cost justification for a nesting software purchase.  The answer may mean looking to one or more of these approaches, running the tests, doing the analysis and creating a cohesive, compelling argument.  If that sounds daunting, that’s okay, there are experts at Optimation, who travel this road every day and can help.

How about you?

Are you looking to build a case to justify nesting software?  What’s your approach?

If Optimation can help you build a justification, please contact us.



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