This paper presents a new job release (JR) and scheduling methodology for one-stage parallel machines where sequence dependent setup times exist. A decision support system (DSS) based on job release is developed in order to enable the application of the methodology. First, mathematical programming models for both job release and job scheduling are devised. Then, due to the NP-hard nature of the problems, heuristics are proposed. As for the interaction between JR and scheduling, job scheduling is integrated with job release for the proposed heuristic solutions so that the capacity achievement provided by scheduling can be utilized for job release. In brief, product design characteristics oriented scheduling affects JR in the proposed approach. Moreover, value stream mapping (VSM) approach is used with the aim of stating the effect of the proposed methodology. Furthermore, the presented methodology was applied in a real life electric wire-harness production system. The application, based on 120-day production data, revealed that the proposed methodology provided 25% decrease in in-plant manufacturing lead time. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.