TOC solution Drum Buffer Rope (DBR) helps in reducing lead time by a factor of 2 to 6 times. It is a method for scheduling and managing operations, that have an internal constraint or capacity- constrained resource.

  • Drum: Schedule at the bottleneck
  • Buffer: The amount of time raw material is released before it is required at the bottleneck
  • Rope: The mechanism of choking the release of raw materials to match consumption at the constraint; do not release the material too soon

The drum schedule combined with the rope mechanism helps limit work in progress inventory which, in turn, reduces lead time and increases output. Ensuring that the inventory is balanced, and full kit is available prior to start of production is critical in reducing lead time, WIP and increasing On Time Delivery.

A necessary pre-condition for successful implementation of DBR is Full Kit, which refers to ensuring availability of all inputs (raw materials, tooling, specs, etc.) for an upcoming order prior to release of the order to the shop floor.

In this short clip, Ravi Gilani, Founder & Managing Consultant, Goldratt Bharat explains Drum Buffer Rope with a simple example. The process of identifying the constraint and scheduling production as per its capacity helps in reducing lead time dramatically and improving on time delivery.