Today on the flexis blog we take a moment to chat with flexis team member Melroy De Souza in a new series titled Meet the Team. The goal of these posts is to introduce readers to critical members of the flexis team to learn more about what they do, why they do it, and how they work within the organization to establish flexis as a crucial thought-leader in today’s automotive supply chain.
Melroy De Souza works as Team Manager in the flexis Toronto office.
Nick Ostdick: Can you tell me a little about your history with flexis and what you do within the company? What is your primary role? What do your daily tasks consist of?
Melroy De Souza: I started working at flexis in August 2007, so it's almost been 10 years. In this span of time I have come a long way from just being a contributor or worker bee on a project to someone who is a go-to SME (subject matter expert) and also someone who can lead / manage a project to completion. As a team manager, my primary responsibility is with the operations team in the Toronto office. But aside from that I must also wear multiple hats, in that I am also a SME and a PM (project manager) for various projects. Many of my day-to-day tasks are usually filled by calls with our existing clients; whether it is to discuss issues they are facing, new project ideas, or on-going project related activities. Additionally, I also work on my own project-related tasks.
How and why do you believe flexis has emerged as a thought-leader in the automotive industry? How has flexis positioned itself within the automotive supply chain to succeed in both the short and long-term?
I believe flexis has a fantastic group of consultants that are fully capable of integrating themselves into a customer's business process. This allows them to understand the struggles our customers face in their day-to-day business (as well as potential long term issues). With their understanding of the customers struggles, they are able to create a solution (simple or complex) that will address and resolve the customer's issues. Speaking of the long-term, all the knowledge and solution concepts our consultants are able to build can be converted into standard solutions by our amazing development team for both our current and future customers. This is no simple task, but it’s one that flexis must embark on in order to promote a higher ROI on our large knowledge base.
Let's talk a little about the challenges and opportunities flexis - or any company in the automotive supply chain - faces in today's business climate, particularly given the nature of new and expanding markets across the globe?
The biggest challenge flexis has in the automotive supply chain is we are a smaller company that is competing with the giants of our industry. flexis is able to compensate for this because the team at flexis is composed of highly knowledgeable people who are very passionate about our industry. We are also very flexible (as the name suggests) in being able to easily adapt our solutions to meet the demands of our clients. In the event that we do not have an existing solution, we are more than capable of working with our clients to create a solution to fit their needs. Of course, with expanding global markets, we need to be cognizant about the differences in the various markets and we need to ensure that our solutions are capable of being adapted for those different markets.
Can you speak more broadly about the automotive supply chain industry in general? What is the status of the industry right now? What are the critical conversations taking place?
Based on what I have seen, the current state of the supply chain industry is that it has become deeply integrated (manufactures and suppliers) and manufacturers are now able to consume all the available capacity from their suppliers. This would indicate the industry is healthy. However, with little or no available capacity from suppliers, I believe that there will be a strong push to have parts/components being more multi-sourced. This change will require more complex solutions to be able to better manage these scenarios.
Lastly, what are you most excited about for flexis in the near future? What developments are on the docket that you believe will help flexis succeed in the years to come?
I am most excited to see a large project we have been working on with one of our clients to go live next year. It is extremely exciting for our North American team, who has been collaborating and working with our customer on a solution that will allow car dealerships to make direct changes to their order within existing factory constraints at the latest possible timing prior to the order being released to the factory. This solution can be seen as bridging the gap between the factory, the sales organization, and dealer network.
I am also excited to continue to see the maturation and innovation within our core products and solutions. flexis has continued down a path to convert and develop our core products in new technologies which provide improved efficiency and performance. flexis has also been converting our products and solutions into platforms which are cloud enabled. This approach represents a shift in the flexibility of our software and should lead to a reduction in implementation costs and overall customer IT costs to support implemented applications. In the future, I look forward to seeing our software applications running on mobile devices (where applicable).
We’d like to thank Melroy for taking the time to chat with us about the role flexis is playing in today’s automotive supply chain and how his work directly impacts that role. For more information about flexis and the company’s history, read our recent interview with flexis CEO Philipp Beisswenger.