Business strategies must translate to information system application function. That statement makes sense but frequently there is a disconnect between the strategic vision and the deliverable functionality of a system application. This can be avoided by aligning the objectives of the business and the requirements of the application early in the process. We suggest a quick overview to identify the opportunity and set the direction with a quantified identification of how and where the business will be affected. CSI provides guidance toward setting strategic objectives in collaborative manufacturing, manufacturing execution systems, supply chain management, business process management, and real-time enterprise initiatives.
Senior Executive Briefings
If you want to learn about manufacturing system applications you can call an application vendor and get a sales pitch on their product. Call us and we will provide a high level executive view presentation that will explain the application basics along with how your business will be affected. Our focus is on your business process, not on a vendor’s application.
System Opportunity Assessment
If you are examining the potential opportunity for a Manufacturing Execution System, a Supply Chain Management initiative, or a plan to engage collaborative manufacturing concepts such as CPFR® or PLM, we can provide a fast review of your current practices and business processes that might support or be affected by the initiative. The assessment will provide a high level overview of the “as is” condition, examining your supply/value chain, your information systems, and current business processes to determine the applicability of the planned technology initiative and what business improvement might be expected.
Reduce your technology application risk by writing a thorough needs specification document that has been developed through an internal team. Software system vendors are likely to be knowledgeable in your industry but will they address your specific needs. The most successful system applications are based on identifying and meeting the needs of your business processes and the people in your company. A well developed specification also helps the vendors respond to your business issues on a level playing field basis providing the clearest and most competitive proposals for evaluation. CSI can plan the requirements development process with your team, work as a specification development team member or lead the process.
Identifying and including the best qualified vendor participation is crucial to meet the competitive and operational conditions for your initiative. Vendor system evaluation and project implementation progress management will help ensure meeting schedule milestones and confirm compliance with the specification requirements.
Technology initiatives can have a number of participants including vendors, supply chain participants and various internal departments. It may be better to go outside of your company for third party project management to guide participant performance and ensure schedule compliance. CSI can act as a member of your team or as an independent project manager participating in any part of the process from initial requirements identification to user training.
Available training programs provide a range of insight from an executive overview to direct hands-on user training. Our focus is on the business improvement gains of technology applications, not the inner workings of the technology itself. A newly installed technology solution is only as strong as the people that use it. Ensuring they are fully enabled to understand the business process issues as well as the system functionality will only enhance the return on investment.
Manufacturing General Assessment
The general assessment is a review of the current practices and
business processes that are related to or could be enhanced through
applying collaborative strategies. Collaborative manufacturing strategies
including product life-cycle management, synchronized inventories/production,
collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment, and manufacturing
enterprise collaboration will be examined to determine potential
areas of application Current practices will be reviewed examining
supply chain management, information systems and business process
methods to determine the applicability of collaboration concepts.
The general assessment will provide an overview of the "as
is" condition with a brief report (30 to 50 pages) on possible
collaborative strategy deployment opportunities and will provide
exposure to collaborative ideas for the client participants.
Manufacturing Current Condition Examination
The current condition examination follows the General Assessment
overview. This document defines the "as is" condition
of the enterprise taking the general assessment information to a
greater detail that identifies and measures the current manufacturing
collaboration environment. This study will cite specific examples
within the organization functional areas and provide some rationale
for applying collaborative strategies. Demand and supply sides of
the extended enterprise are included in the "as is" review
through visits and discussion of specific potential inclusion in
collaboration initiatives. The General Assessment is used as the
base to define the breadth and direction of the proposed study and
to identify immediate focus points. The "as is" will identify
areas of opportunity within business processes of the external and
the internal supply chain.
Manufacturing Strategy Development Plan
This study is the next step following the current condition examination
effort and is the "to be" vision of a possible collaboration
strategy deployment. The study will provide an in-depth review of
areas of possible collaborative strategy implementation including
analysis of the potential for each of the four collaboration categories.
The development program will include identification of objectives,
identification of system boundaries, outlines of specific methodologies,
expected timelines for implementation, area of magnitude costs and
a review of the expected operational and financial benefits. This
is intended to provide well-founded decision making data for investment
and operational commitment.
Strategy Program Management
CSI can provide staffing to either manage and direct collaboration
implementation or support a client managed implementation program.
This includes heading or supporting the implementation team, identifying,
developing and setting objectives, establishing system requirements,
setting up pilot programs, establishing training requirements, establishing
vendor requirements, assisting in vendor selection and management,
monitoring testing and confirming compliance with strategic and
financial objectives. In certain instances project size will suggest
it will be necessary to acquire resources from or work with other
consulting organizations. CSI has developed relationships with other
companies or we can work with your designated sources
and Trust Review and Training
The most effective deterrent to an effective collaboration environment
is the inability to build trust. Trust is the primary foundation
of collaboration but trust between supply chain constituents can
be contrary to corporate culture. This program is designed to identify
areas where effective collaboration may be stymied by cultural conditions
and/or the inability to establish trust between departments or companies.
The program will provide a forum and the tools to proactively deal
with these human elements by identifying underlying issues and providing
training and a full orientation on collaborative ideas and benefits.
CSI provides three training programs that give clients a broad understanding
of collaborative manufacturing and how the ideas can be applied
in their company. Training programs including a executive level
orientation to collaborative manufacturing that is concise and related
specifically to the executive interest issues and additional programs
aimed at varying levels of involvement.
Level Collaborative Manufacturing Orientation
This is a two day program with a minimum two hour presentation to
executives at the president/vice-president level. The program will
provide an overview of collaborative manufacturing concepts and
specific benefits as could be applied in your company. The presentation
is based a review of your existing supply chain management initiatives
and information technology systems and how they might support a
collaborative manufacturing environment.
Level Collaborative Manufacturing Training
This is a two day program with one day devoted to a review of the
company plus one full day of conference room instruction for operating
managers including plant managers, purchasing directors, engineering
managers and manufacturing managers. The presentation will include
the basic concepts behind collaborative manufacturing and the real
time information tools currently in use in your company and a review
of potential areas of improvement using collaboration concepts.
Level Collaborative Manufacturing Education
This is a five day training program for up to ten people assigned
the task of developing and implementing collaborative manufacturing
initiatives. This program might include operating managers, program
leaders, team members and other participants involved in the program
including supply chain partners. The program includes one day of
company process review and three full days of classroom work. There
will be some formal presentation by the instructor but the program
will rely on facilitating participant discussion using existing
company processes and conditions as examples. The program finishes
with a presentation to the chief operating officer by the team leadership.
This program is preferably held offsite from the offices of the
Manufacturing Strategy User Training
As a part of the implementation of collaborative strategies it may
be necessary to facilitate changes in personnel job functions. Custom
training programs can be developed to fit the operational changes.