Digital Illustration of 4 slot Kanban board

Saving Money with Electric Kanban

Saving Money with Electric Kanban

// February 9, 2015 //

You never want to run out of material on your shop floor, but you also wouldn’t want extra material just sitting around either. You want to have material when you need it and you need a way to ensure that happens.

Kanban is a part of lean manufacturing and “just-in-time” production that helps manufacturers avoid stocking too much or too little material. A Kanban loop is a scheduling tool that streamlines material: you replenish only what you need, materials are there when you need them, and extra material isn’t wasting space—which costs your company extra money to carry unneeded inventory.

How does this work?

Typically, Kanban is done visually using Kanban cards. When a bin becomes empty, a card for that bin is placed on a Kanban board which indicates that it needs to be replenished. Unfortunately, this method can lead to issues such as the wrong card being replenished or even lost cards. To solve these problems, another way to implement Kanban is electronically through a Manufacturing Execution System (MES) like Paper-Less MV2.

Electronic Kanban

Using the MV2 MES system, Kanban can be done electronically. Using electronic Kanban, cards are printed from the system and scanned full or empty using a barcode scanner. When a bin is reported empty, a notification can be sent by the Kanban software for a recommendation to reorder more material. In addition, using our MES system, Paper-Less MV2, you can create unique Kanban orders that appear directly on the supplier’s work in process (WIP) page. There are a number of different types of notifications that can be customized and sent through our MES system which notify the person responsible for filling an order. (It is important to note that this does not automate ordering. Our MES system does not make any orders but instead sends notifications for an order recommendation.)


When electronic Kanban is utilized, Kanban loops are organized and streamlined to notify the right people, at the right time, to make sure your shop floor has the materials it needs, when it needs them, and avoids having extra material lying around. If you haven’t already, consider implementing an MES system, such as Paper-Less MV2, to make your shop floor run as smoothly as possible.

Want to see electronic Kanban in action? Click the button below to watch a demo of our Kanban application in Paper-Less MV2, or contact us today to learn more.

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