Take Control of Material Costs with Automated Nesting Software

Monday, March 18, 2013Categories: Apparel/Fashion, Blog, Nesting, Software

Automated nesting software helps companies of all sizes create the most efficient markers possible. These systems analyze multiple nesting algorithms to arrive at a marker with the greatest material utilization. They are typically more efficient than manual marker making because they run for hours, without operator intervention, until they arrive at the most efficient result. Through the power of automation, companies have the freedom to explore various production scenarios without the need to staff a large team of technical designers.

Recently, a +$1 billion American sportswear company partnered with us to perform an extensive cost engineering evaluation project. The goal was to accurately estimate their fabric needs and material costs for an entire season. Prior to this, the company found it difficult to validate whether the production quotes they received from their many suppliers were accurate.

The Business Challenge:

On average, the company works with 15 suppliers around the globe to produce two to three seasons each year. They manufacture approximately 125-150 styles per season with an average cost of material of $6 per yard. They needed a way to effectively estimate anticipated material costs.

The Procedure:

The company provided more than 100 markers made by their suppliers. Gerber’s AccuNest™ automated nesting software analyzed multiple options, adjusting for material widths, mix-of-style scenarios and size ratios.

The Results:

Results of the evaluation provided the company’s sourcing and technical design teams with critical information about material yields, quantities and costs. AccuNest improved upon their suppliers’ costing markers by as much as 30 percent, eliminating as much as 25 inches of fabric in some markers. Armed with this information, the company now had a tangible way to verify the material utilization data their suppliers were reporting and, as a result, were able to make better-informed sourcing decisions.

Regardless of your production capacity, the number of styles or seasons you produce each year, using automated nesting software to create efficient markers is a quick and relatively inexpensive way to reduce material and labor costs.