Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Kinaxis: BreconRidge reduces response times to customer changes by 80 percent

September 11, 2009
By André Voshart

THE COMPANY: As a provider of design engineering and manufacturing services for electronic products, Kanata, Ont.-based BreconRidge collaborates on voice, video and data applications with the world’s leading communications, industrial, medical, aerospace and defence OEMs.

THE CHALLENGE: Collaborative partnerships with customers are the cornerstone to BreconRidge’s value proposition, making responsiveness and service paramount to maintaining its competitive edge and managing multiple, geographically dispersed manufacturing sites. Therefore, it needed to improve data availability and analysis to support decision-making and response times. Managing order promising and on-time delivery in response to order or forecast changes were urgent needs in particular. As well, effectively managing engineering changes is an ongoing focus; many of the company’s business engagements with customers are at the design and first-time build stage.

THE STRATEGY: The company then decided to deploy Kinaxis RapidResponse globally in multiple areas of the company, which arms it with the ability to drive rapid resolution to persistent changes across the supply chain. Users can access accurate and detailed information in an easy-to-use spreadsheet-like interface embedded with ERP analytics and automatically populated with live data feeds from BreconRidge’s SAP system. Participants from across various functional groups can instantly model ERP data to simulate and share the impacts of countless “what-if” scenarios in response to changes in supply, demand and product. They can then rapidly score these scenario alternatives against set performance metrics to ensure that decisions are aligned with corporate goals. The RapidResponse solution offers key functionalities the company says is not found in traditional planning systems, such as component to sales order allocation/pegging, clear visibility of projected delivery dates of demand records, and business metrics and trend analysis/reporting.

THE RESULTS: With RapidResponse, the company was able to offer its customers more accurate original-commitment information and supporting details for constraints or problem materials through improved “capable to promise” analysis, increasing on-time delivery performance by 40 per cent in just eight months. What’s more, the software’s ability to provide readily accessible, actionable data reduced the company’s response times to customers for demand change requests by 80 per cent. RapidResponse provides accurate product lead-time information internally and to customers – all with the supporting detail required to simulate and assess inventory reduction options. With the help of the tool, manufacturing lead times have been reduced by 20 per cent and confidence in the accuracy of the lead time is very strong. For one customer who strategically invested in inventory, RapidResponse aided in defining the investment needed to meet a certain flexibility factor, which allowed product lead times to be reduced by 50 per cent overall.


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