We have developed a cloud-based APS software with capability to plan and schedule production within multi-site scope globally – and transparently. Next step would be to connect suppliers to the planning chain. The problem has nothing to do with major software development either. The problem is how to deal with sensitivity issue? An example might clarify the situation: APS software shows to OEM in real-time that a supplier delivering components is late or in risk to be late. This would be indicated for instance by activating a color within supplier’s work progressing bar (in gantt) where OEM has access. Red would mean late, yellow in risk to be late and green would mean the delivery is in schedule. Now, if the color is red OEM might instantly select alternative resource i.e alternative subcontractor from a pool of suppliers and reschedule the plan with substituted supplier. OEM would be pleased to be able to keep the delivery in time. Supplier on the other hand would not be that happy. This was an illustrated scenario. Given that technology is there question is how to deal with sensitivity issue between OEM and suppliers in a global production supply chain which would be fair both for a subcontractor pool and individual suppliers and at the same time would give true transparency to an OEM to be able to track in real-time the status of supplier schedules?
Heikki Aalto, 19.6.2015