Michael Kaas, Application Engineer, Bossard North America
"Why keeping up with this innovative American car manufacturer was a major challenge!"
The biggest challenge was time. The American electric car manufacturer had only two and a half years to develop its latest model from sketch to assembly line production.
Leaner processes, more efficient procurement, faster to market
It was during this hectic time that I got into the game as an application engineer at Bossard North America Inc. My job was to assist the company with identifying the best fastening technologies and to coordinate with suppliers. Just in the chassis alone, there are 59 different catalog and engineered products being used. It was thus difficult to not only keep track of them all but also respond to changes fast enough to avoid supply chain interruptions.
The goal was to optimally provide fastening elements within the shortest possible time while upholding extensive quality controls for corrosion, embrittlement and friction coefficient. We took over these responsibilities in full, which relieved the customer from a lot of work. The young firm was then able to concentrate completely on its core competencies: electric drive technology and automotive engineering.
What‘s more, we literally revolutionized the logistics for the fasteners for our customer – using SmartBin of course, our storage system with weight sensors and automated reordering. We have now installed nearly 1 500 SmartBin containers at their factory.
Ease of doing business
The customer benefits as well from one-stop shopping, now using us as sole business partner for sourcing fastening elements. I myself spent a lot of time on site with the customer discussing the latest developmental steps and parts list optimizations with company engineers. The auto industry is highly dynamic, which is why the customer had very strict requirements in terms of timing and cost. We successfully kept pace with this innovative American car manufacturer.
Our operational focus has changed since the latest 2012 model went on the market. The objective now is to reduce complexity by standardizing fasteners for various applications and streamlining the BOMs to enhance our customer‘s competitiveness. This innovative manufacturer is set to revolutionize the automotive industry. It will be a big win for the environment as well.