A frozen zone is the scheduling time horizon during which no alterations to the master production schedule are allowed.
That provides more balance and control to the master production schedule.
According to Gartner(Global research and advisory firm), all organizations face one critical problem. That is the planning and execution of sales orders.
Organizations do sales and operations planning in the unfrozen zone, that means liquid zone, and execute sales and processes in the frozen zone.
A time fence separates these two zones. Outside the fence, that means in the liquid zone, you can change the purchase order and production plans.
But inside the fence (frozen zone), you can not change the purchase orders and production plans. You have to work in the real world.
How do you unfreeze the frozen zone?
It is challenging to deal with unexpected orders, delays in shipping even if you plan and forecast carefully. Dealing with this problem is not possible with a planning tool.
You need a supply and operations execution(S&OE) platform’s automation tool to support and control your supply chain inside the time fence.
With the help of this automation tool, you can unfreeze your frozen zone effectively.
- This tool helps you to get a clear vision of shortages and alerts you with early warnings.
- It allows you to take preventive actions by discovering issues immediately.
- It helps the people in the supply chain to interact with each other.
- It centralizes communication and keeps track of discussions and decisions.
- It allows you to boost your operations with the help of analytics of previous data available to you.
Frozen zone example
You know, in the frozen zone, the production order is fixed for a set period. So after updating the production order, generally, the first calendar month is considered a ‘frozen zone.’
At this period, you can not change or cancel the number of products in the production order. You can change the number only when both vendors and buyers mutually agree upon it.
Frozen planning period
A frozen planning period is a time interval at which the organization does not alter its supply plan for products. The frozen planning period is crucial to avoid short-term alterations in the plan.
Usually, the frozen planning period will be the addition of review time and lead time for products. The recommended period is 1-2 weeks.
A frozen planning period helps to bifurcate the different domains like demand planning, supply planning, and execution.
What is frozen period?
A frozen period is the planning horizon, at that setting, the plan will be considered frozen. That means at that point you can’t make changes in the plan.
Get more definitions about Frozen zone and other ERP-related terms here.