While it may be easier and faster to delete work orders after they are completed, archiving work orders is a much better practice. From improving your shop floor performance to protecting your company and your work, archived work order data can be an invaluable resource for your business. Archiving a work order retains all information about it in the database, but moves it out of the work order list and into the archived work order list.
How to Use Archived Information
The stock reports that are created for archived work orders provide in-depth information about the history of each work order. You can use them to track machine use, scrap rates, rejected part rate, when programs were posted, when work orders completed, sheets used, total cutting time, and more.
All this information can be very useful when analyzing past shop performance and looking for ways to improve your shop floor process. For example, you can use the data to see when your busiest seasons are, so that you can adequately plan, stock, and staff for these times of the year.
Using Archives for Audits
In addition to ensuring part quality and customer satisfaction, work order archives can protect against business audits and potential lawsuits. By keeping a full history of parts produced, work orders processed, sheets consumed, and all other work order information, you can ensure that any and all relevant information is available to verify that correct processes and records were kept accurately.
For example, if your company is being audited, archived work orders can prove that the materials purchased were used for business expenses. If a part were to fail in use and cause injury, you can track how that part was produced all the way back to the sheet supplier by knowing which sheet that part was nested on and verifying that the sheet quality (as provided by your supplier) was up to spec as well.