Reduce delays—and the unnecessary costs that come with them—with a production schedule template. Create a production schedule template to easily replicate your production process and keep work on track.Create your template
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Timely production and deliveries are crucial. Many companies rely on a schedule to track the production process, give realistic estimates for product completion, and determine shipping dates. But it’s not enough to just throw some dates on the calendar—for production schedules to be effective, they need to incorporate the most important parts of your production process.
While a predetermined schedule can help you plan work and estimate timing, the reality is, production is complex and unpredictable. For example, a supply chain disruption can cause an unexpected delay, or a product might take longer than planned to build. So how do you ensure that your schedules are consistent—and that production stays on track and organized—while also staying flexible when the unexpected occurs?
Answer: with a dynamic production schedule template.
A production schedule template is an outline of your production schedule, where you track the production process from start to finish. Production schedules give the basic details of the process—what you’re making (the product) and when it will be ready (the due date).
Production schedule templates are typically used in manufacturing production, where it’s common to produce hundreds—or even thousands—of products a day. But any team, organization, or industry that builds products can benefit from using a template. Once you save your master production schedule template, you can build and launch a new schedule in a matter of minutes.
Your production schedule tracks the production process, supply, and demand— helping you deliver the products your customers want, on time. Templatizing your schedule saves you the time and effort of creating a new one from scratch every time you make a new product. If you’re managing a variety of product schedules across multiple production teams, using a project schedule template keeps scheduling cohesive. Plus, it can help you track other crucial aspects of your production, such as forecasting trends and supply chain movements.
Traditionally, manufacturing businesses and other industries have relied on static project schedules, like Google Sheets or Excel templates. But these don’t allow you to view your production template visually or work effectively across teams. Alternatively, when you use software with more functionality, you can visualize your production schedule in different ways (such as a Gantt chart or calendar template). Getting this big-picture visual overview makes it easier to catch and remove potential bottlenecks. In this format, you can also look at the planned vs. actual production to identify lags or opportunities to make your production cycle more efficient.
You'll find a variety of free production schedule templates on the web—but the key to an effective schedule isn't just the template itself, it’s the software that supports it. By creating your template in a dynamic platform, such as work management software, you can use features to further enhance and optimize production. For example, you can use automations for inventory management that instantly update your inventory as you make new products.
When creating your production schedule template, use sections to clearly show stakeholders exactly what you are producing, and when they can expect it to be finished. To do this, include:
Order details: List the order number, item description, customer name or other identifying information about the order, so it’s easy to reference what’s in production.
Production status: Update your production status as you move through the process to show stakeholders where each order is, and if it’s on track.
Work schedule and due dates: Build a work schedule with clear due dates indicating when production will start and end. Be sure to include the tasks and milestones in between these dates, and list any dependencies—from pre-production all the way through completion.
Orders (quantity): How many products do you need to make? Tracking this helps to show the expected production rate versus the actual. If there’s a difference, you can adjust your process to ensure each production schedule meets your quota, and you don’t fall behind.
Raw materials needed/used: What do you need to make your products? Use these numbers for resource management and capacity planning, so you can get more accurate estimates for what it takes to produce specific items or fulfill orders.
Try these features and app integrations to customize your production schedule template and fit your team's unique needs.
List View. List View is a grid-style view that makes it easy to see all of your project’s information at a glance. Like a to-do list or a spreadsheet, List View displays all of your tasks at once so you can not only see task titles and due dates, but also view any relevant custom fields like Priority, Status, or more. Unlock effortless collaboration by giving your entire team visibility into who’s doing what by when.
Timeline View. Timeline View is a Gantt-style project view that displays all of your tasks in a horizontal bar chart. Not only can you see each task’s start and end date, but you can also see dependencies between tasks. With Timeline View, you can easily track how the pieces of your plan fit together. Plus, when you can see all of your work in one place, it’s easy to identify and address dependency conflicts before they start, so you can hit all of your goals on schedule.
Automation. Automate manual work so your team spends less time on the busy work and more time on the tasks you hired them for. Rules in Asana function on a basis of triggers and actions—essentially “when X happens, do Y.” Use Rules to automatically assign work, adjust due dates, set custom fields, notify stakeholders, and more. From ad hoc automations to entire workflows, Rules gives your team time back for skilled and strategic work.
Custom fields. Custom fields are the best way to tag, sort, and filter work. Create unique custom fields for any information you need to track—from priority and status to email or phone number. Use custom fields to sort and schedule your to-dos so you know what to work on first. Plus, share custom fields across tasks and projects to ensure consistency across your organization.
Google Workplace. Attach files directly to tasks in Asana with the Google Workplace file chooser, which is built into the Asana task pane. Easily attach any My Drive file with just a few clicks.
Dropbox. Attach files directly to tasks in Asana with the Dropbox file chooser, which is built into the Asana task pane.
OneDrive. Attach files directly to tasks in Asana with the Microsoft OneDrive file chooser, which is built into the Asana task pane. Easily attach files from Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more.
Gmail. With the Asana for Gmail integration, you can create Asana tasks directly from your Gmail inbox. Any tasks you create from Gmail will automatically include the context from your email, so you never miss a beat. Need to refer to an Asana task while composing an email? Instead of opening Asana, use the Asana for Gmail add-on to simply search for that task directly from your Gmail inbox.
You can create a production schedule template in a doc, but it won’t be as efficient. Instead, create your template in a dynamic platform, like work management software, to use automations, tracking, and reporting features that will streamline your production process. When building your template, include relevant information such as order and customer details, the production status, and relevant due dates.
Production schedule templates ensure that every team is structuring their production schedules in the same way, company-wide. Companies often have many different products they’re working on at the same time, so templates are a way to trim down on planning work (because you don’t need to create a new schedule from scratch every time). Plus, using one consistent template for your production schedule makes it easier to identify bottlenecks or recurring issues, and make changes for a smoother, more efficient process.
The five components of production scheduling in manufacturing are planning, routing, scheduling, dispatching, and execution. If you’re using your production schedule template for manufacturing, you’d create it during the production planning stage.
Learn how to create a customizable template in Asana. Get started today.