DELPHI AUTOMOTIVE Systems will trial a new web-based supply chain management tool at its Ellesmere Port site, which it believes will deliver major cost and efficiency benefits.
The new system holds scheduling information on a web server accessible to 73 suppliers across Europe delivering to the Ellesmere Port Supply In Line Sequence (SILS) Centre.
Suppliers to the facility can read and update information in real time, receive orders and confirm quantities and times for despatch – all from a conventional internet browser. In turn, Delphi’s system can respond in minutes with confirmation of acceptance or notice of any shortages. Its logistics supplier can also schedule an appropriate vehicle to transport the order.
Stan Chadwick, manager of the Ellesmere Port SILS Centre, said the system has the potential to save 20 man-days per month: `It offers increased accountability, transportation savings on between 30 and 40 vehicles a day and better quality data – all at a significantly reduced cost to ourselves and our suppliers.’
Alongside the many financial benefits, the system gives flexibility to Delphi’s own highly time-sensitive deliveries to the adjacent Vauxhall car plant.
Chadwick commented further that the telephone, fax and EDI-based system being replaced was slower and far more resource-intensive. `EDI in particular has proved to be complicated and expensive, and its uptake among our suppliers has been understandably poor,’ he said.
Some of Delphi’s smaller suppliers were understood to be unhappy with the high level of investment needed to connect via EDI.
In contrast, the new system requires little more than a standard PC and modem to use, and supplier take-up has been faster than expected. All are expected to be using it by the end of the year.
The new system was developed in conjunction with IT giant EDS, and will be evaluated for use at Delphi’s sites worldwide.
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