With annual sales exceeding $2 billion, La-Z-Boy Inc. (Monroe, MI) is the United States’ largest single manufacturer of furniture, and the world’s leading producer of reclining chairs.

The company has chosen Camstar Systems Inc. (Campbell, CA) collaborative manufacturing execution (CME) software as part of a planned systems expansion and upgrade program for its residential furniture division.

InSite replaces the company’s internally developed shop floor tracking software, increasing real-time visibility and control over manufacturing operations while uniting the division’s 10 plants into a coordinated production network.

The software implementation includes integration with the forecasting and scheduling software that drives La-Z-Boy’s manufacturing. This provides real-time communication between the business, planning and execution layers of the system. "This is all part of creating the technology baseline for our future," says Bill Knight, corporate project manager. "It was very important to us that we be able to base our operations on the use of the same execution backbone at each of our plants. Otherwise our maintenance and support costs would eventually go through the roof."

The new system allows the company to add efficiency to its make-to-order manufacturing by directly communicating order and scheduling information in real time to the shop floor. This will permit the dynamic redirection of production operations to maximize the use of all production assets, while creating a paperless environment that can respond quickly to changes in customer requirements. "By having improved software control over our manufacturing, we’ll be able to respond more quickly to our customers while lowering our production costs," says Knight. "The combination of execution, forecasting and scheduling software will form a solid platform to which we can add logistics, material management and warehouse management software for additional benefit and return on investment."

La-Z-Boy selected InSite because it is solidly based on Microsoft technologies and is the closest match to the company’s IT standards. It also has an architecture that is built to handle the company’s manufacturing systems requirements now and in the future.

For more information on InSite collaborative execution system, call 408-559-5700 or visit www.camstar.com.