TOOLS FOR EFFECTIVE OUTSOURCING AND POU DELIVERY
Bills of material must be accurate and current to facilitate effective sales and operations planning. When planning for POU or outsourcing, ensure timely ECO analysis, including review by suppliers for quality and delivery tradeoffs. Changes to the factory floor need to be timely, including determination and implementation of a kanban process. If andon light signals are used to make shortages visible, the location of these and escalation procedures need to be finalized.
Suppliers must be qualified and past history performance should be carefully reviewed. Good supplier communications are essential—consider setting up supplier networks (suppliers cooperate globally as a team versus competing for piece part wins). Maintain up-to-date part information, including unit prices and revision levels for purchase orders, and provide suppliers with part and assembly forecasts for 3-, 6-, and 12-month rolling windows.
KEY PLAYERS DURING POU AND OUTSOURCING
Marketing and Sales
They drive sales and operation planning to minimize numerous unique low volume configurations while still being flexible to customer needs and wants.
The master scheduler prepares the planning bill of material and identifies high-usage parts to ensure demand flows smoothly into supplier part forecasts and subsequent POU and outsourcing deliveries.
Suppliers must be customer-driven and give high priority to quality, delivery, reliability, flexibility, and agility. Suppliers should maintain high quality levels (approaching six sigrna—very low parts per million) and excellent on-time delivery (99 percent or higher). They should offer value engineering skills, be proactive problem solvers, and consider long-term as well as short-term relationships. They can and will work with existing approved vendor listing (AVL) suppliers. They maintain excellent communications and are "open kimono": they don't hide or shield problems.
Buyer/planners play a tactical role. They release purchase order authorizations for POU and outsourcing. They monitor trends in part usage and coordinate how suppliers increase/decrease inventory levels based on rolling forecast information from the master scheduler. They discuss delivery status with suppliers and are the early warning to the factory when shortages loom on the horizon. They are the first and last communication point for redline drawing resolution. They communicate new part revision levels after ECO approval and participate in ECO reviews to address impacts to suppliers. They monitor supplier compliance with negotiated minimum inventory levels, find gaps (lower than needed), and proactively work countermeasures to restore inventory levels.
Supplier (Quality) Engineer
Supplier engineers can play both a tactical and strategic role and are key contributors to POU and outsourcing. Supplier engineers work with manufacturing during request for proposal (RFP) preparation to verify accuracy of drawings, schematics, specifications, commercial part information, and testing requirements. They qualify suppliers and monitor supplier capacity. They constantly monitor key suppliers for delivery and quality performance. They visit and train suppliers, and help the supplier to achieve first article build, test, and approval. They work with manufacturing to plan for seamless introduction of POU parts and outsourced assemblies to the factory floor. They help expedite redline drawing closure and resolution with design engineering. They work supplier corrective actions for defective material return and are also an early warning system for supplier process failures.
To Be Continued
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