4 Reasons Why You Need a Balancing Solution

Posted by Nick Ostdick on Oct 4, 2016 9:00:00 AM

To understand the importance of a balancing solution in supply chain management, think about the knobs and dials on the average stereo system. Treble. Bass. Mid. Fade. These elements, when adjusted and mixed properly, provide the best possible sound quality optimized to the kind of music being played and based on the listener’s desires. The harmony of these different audio components is what makes or breaks how good or bad a piece of music sounds, which can seriously impact how the listener feels about the music - if they’ll be likely to play the music again, recommend it to someone else, and so on.

An optimized balancing solution is very similar in that it accounts for a number of variables, restrictions, and constraints in assigning customers orders to specified production programs with the right part levels and resources to ensure on-time delivery. Much like how the right mix of audio elements creates a harmonious sound on your stereo, balancing solutions foster a harmonious workflow wherein production, logistics, and sales factors work in conjunction to create a well-balanced production program with stabilized parts demand and an even distribution of manpower in assembly and production.

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Topics: Supply Chain Planning, End-to-End (E2E) Visibility, Sales & Operations Execution (S&OE), Demand Capacity Planning

Connecting the Dots: A Mid-Year Review of 2016 Trends

Posted by Nick Ostdick on Jul 19, 2016 9:00:00 AM

Back at the beginning of the year, we discussed the most likely trends for 2016 in the automotive supply chain industry and how these developments would shape the landscape of production and supply for the next 12 months and beyond. Now, as we’ve passed the halfway point of 2016, we thought it would be interesting to revisit our predictions and review which ones have come to fruition and how these trends have impacted day-to-day operations in the manufacturing and supply stream.

Like we discussed in that initial blog entry, each new year brings fresh opportunities and obstacles for supply chain planners and managers in maximizing efficiency, containing costs, and maintaining steady growth. But as we’ve seen in the first half of 2016 alone with the passage of the TPP, the Brexit movement, increased manufacturing presences in Mexico, and other geopolitical and economic developments, the production and supply playing field can vary from month to month or even week to week.

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Topics: End-to-End (E2E) Visibility, Supply Chain Trends, Demand Capacity Planning

Playing in Perfect Harmony: The Importance of E2E Visibility

Posted by Nick Ostdick on Jun 23, 2016 9:00:00 AM

Ever listen to a great orchestra or symphony perform a classic piece of music? If so, then you’ll know how crucial the balance and delicate interplay between each instrument is in creating a harmonious sound that achieves a certain artistic goal or elicits a desired emotional response.

Each part must be played with precision and an uncanny sense of timing, and the musicians must know the piece of music like the back of their hand in order to add complexity and depth to the overall piece of music rather than subtract.

Just like a great symphony, much of the precision, accuracy, efficiency, and insight is true for the automotive manufacturing and supply landscape in an effort to create end-to-end (E2E) visibility across a company’s entire value chain. Such visibility is critical in cutting through the complexity of today’s global supply network and leveraging best practices to ensure the right products arrive at the right place at the right time in the right quantities. Obviously, this is not only crucial to keep up with demand and planned production schedules, but it’s also integral in reducing waste, increasing efficiency, and enhancing communication and collaboration at each touch point in the supply chain.

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Topics: Planned Production Programs, Logistics, End-to-End (E2E) Visibility