The Ask:

UK-based bespoke urban furniture manufacturer – Woodscape, approached Explic8 for guidance and expertise on the implementation of the Material Resource Planning software (MRP) MRPeasy, as their current system was under utilised, resulting in the company remaining heavily reliant on complex spreadsheets requiring manual intervention to conduct their production planning and inventory control.



Results and Benefits

  • Centralised cloud-based software allowing access to production planning, inventory and procurement management
  • Visibility of manufacturing costs and customer order profits to enable enhanced strategic planning capabilities
  • Multiple complex planning documents made redundant
  • Increase in accuracy of stock control through implementation of shopfloor reporting at the point of usage
  • Visualisation of production planning and Gantt chart of manufacturing operations


  • Over 70% of products were categorised as highly customised versions from a standard product catalogue or bespoke products based on customer specifications
  • Development of production planning data with the creation of bill of materials, routings and standard operating procedures
  • The incorporation of timber inventory control and processing requires satisfying regulatory requirements set by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)
  • Business process development required the MRPeasy software to be utilised by 40 employees and multiple business functions


  • Continued reliance on offline production planning documents would require investment in hardware infrastructure.
  • High levels of manual intervention required to ensure inventory levels were updated and managed.
  • Complex planning documents could not be accessed simultaneously.


  • Implement the cloud-based MRP system MRPeasy with shopfloor reporting and capacity capabilities.
  • Develop the methodology to deliver accurate production planning information requirements for products.
  • Increase the information available to Woodscape to allow for analysis of production costs through material and labour, capacity, profitability and inventory usage.

The Approach:

  • 4 month project centred around consulting, analysing and developing processes to match system capabilities.
  • Analysis conducted into company processes to identify opportunities for improvement and to implement control and stability before the implementation of MRPeasy.
  • Mentoring internal problem-solving to develop solutions allowing for the successful implementation of the MRP software.
  • Strengthening interdepartmental relationships to share information and brainstorm solutions to challenges faced.

The Challenge

To support the preparation of an IPO, a government owned railway operator wanted to improve its turnaround time for train refurbishment, the average for which was in excess of 90 days and the fastest had been 87 days.

The company loses revenue when the trains are out of service so it was critical to return the trains to service in the fastest possible turnaround times.

The Challenge

A global pharmaceutical company’s conversion (manufacturing) cost in $USD per 1000 tablets had increased steadily in recent years and the company wished to take steps to reduce it.

Explic8 consultants defined the Lean strategy for the USA division.

The Challenge

A global medical device company was unable to supply its products to the market because of delivery failures from vendors.

The company was so frustrated, it was considering building a brand-new, giant warehouse facility to hold stock of the offending items.  However, this strategy was fraught with issues such as cost of buildings, increased stock holdings, increased transport costs, effect on cash flow and profit and the time taken to plan and build.

The Challenge

A pan-European group with turnover in excess of £130m employing over 1300 people was failing to hit its customer service promise of 99% next day delivery by a large margin and the actual achievement figure was below 45%!  The company was seeking ways to achieve its customer service promise of 99% next day delivery without increasing costs or stock.

A major coach and bus manufacturer was considering closing one of its manufacturing sites in the UK as it was not performing; it was a loss making site; quality was poor, and it was market contracted by over 20%. Pressure was coming from the company’s joint investors who perceived that there were inefficiencies and over capacity across its operational sites in Europe.

The company engaged Explic8 to review its operations and provide a road map to avoid site closure.

The Challenge

The quality of output had slipped significantly while costs increased, and customers were becoming frustrated. The site was set up to produce both coaches and buses but was doing neither well.

The site was sprawled over 600k ft2, comprising several buildings. Part-built vehicles were being towed between buildings to complete the manufacturing process, exposing them to the elements and creating significant inefficiencies.

In addition, every vehicle was taking up to 20 weeks to build and each one was a loss-maker as they had been costed on a superseded design that gave them the ability to produce 1200 vehicles annually, but this was no longer the case.

It was clear that a radical shift was required to give the company any hope of retaining the site. However, with a ‘died in the wool” unionised employee base, workers had historically benefited from powerful union control. This dominance created an environment that was not conducive to change.