Executive Briefings

How Celestica Enables Supplier Collaboration

As a leading contract manufacturer of electronics, Celestica works with a diverse supply base comprised of thousands of vendors. Six years ago, the company began a major initiative to gain better visibility and control of supplier performance, an effort that led to creation of a proprietary supplier collaboration tool known as Live Share.

Live Share is powered by E2open software, a vendor chosen by Celestica "after a very diligent process," says Jerry LaGrange, director of global supply chain strategy and operations at Celestica. "We chose what we believed was the best solution in the marketplace at the time and we still think it is the best in the marketplace," he says.

Live Share is designed to enable supplier collaboration, facilitating the communication of purchase order and other procurement information to suppliers. "Vendors can take that information and integrate it into their own systems and drive responses back to us, which is a pretty important process," LaGrange says.

LaGrange explains that before Live Share, a lot of communication that Celestica had with suppliers was by fax or email, with some EDI communications. "Celestica's buyers would have to interpret the information from suppliers and then re-key that information back into our SAP systems," he says. "It was a very inefficient process."

The solution Celestica envisioned would enable it to take information from the supplier and upload it directly into SAP. "Our buyers could then avoid all that non-value-added work and be able to manage by exception," he says. Live Share has accomplished this. "If there are discrepancies in POs coming back from our supply base, we can jump on those and fix the problem, which saves a lot of time and inefficiency downstream. This is really a case where an ounce of prevention is worth pounds of cure," says LaGrange.

Over time, Live Share has helped Celestica streamline its data, particularly in areas like part numbers and vendor codes, which can quickly proliferate with thousands of suppliers and components. "We have a very long tail of suppliers, but half of our vendor codes are for suppliers from whom we buy one or two parts, which is not a situation that lends itself to a collaborative interface like Live Share," says LaGrange. To better serve those suppliers, Celestica is looking at a simplified web interface. "Ultimately this will become another step in the Live Share project," he says.

For larger suppliers, Live Share has been a great success. Around 900 of Celestica's largest suppliers, representing from 75 to 80 percent of its part numbers, are using Live Share, LaGrange says. In addition to better and faster communications, Live Share has provided Celestica with valuable information about supplier performance. "Live Share gives us a report card that we can take back to our customers and say, 'this is how your selected suppliers are performing for you.' We can show them how quickly suppliers respond to our request - response time is important because our customers are dealing with short-term opportunities in the marketplace. If a supplier does not get back quickly with an answer as to whether it can deliver, that information is of great value to our customer base."

To view video in its entirety, click here


Keywords: High-Tech/Electronics, Sourcing & Procurement Solutions, Collaboration & Integration, Supply Chain Visibility, SC Planning & Optimization, Supply Chain Security & Risk Mgmt, Quality & Metrics, Business Process Management, EDI Communication (XML/EDI), Customer Relationship Mgmt., Software Architecture & SOA, HR & Labor Management, Business Strategy Alignment, Global Supply Chain Management, purchase order and procurement information, E2open

Live Share is powered by E2open software, a vendor chosen by Celestica "after a very diligent process," says Jerry LaGrange, director of global supply chain strategy and operations at Celestica. "We chose what we believed was the best solution in the marketplace at the time and we still think it is the best in the marketplace," he says.

Live Share is designed to enable supplier collaboration, facilitating the communication of purchase order and other procurement information to suppliers. "Vendors can take that information and integrate it into their own systems and drive responses back to us, which is a pretty important process," LaGrange says.

LaGrange explains that before Live Share, a lot of communication that Celestica had with suppliers was by fax or email, with some EDI communications. "Celestica's buyers would have to interpret the information from suppliers and then re-key that information back into our SAP systems," he says. "It was a very inefficient process."

The solution Celestica envisioned would enable it to take information from the supplier and upload it directly into SAP. "Our buyers could then avoid all that non-value-added work and be able to manage by exception," he says. Live Share has accomplished this. "If there are discrepancies in POs coming back from our supply base, we can jump on those and fix the problem, which saves a lot of time and inefficiency downstream. This is really a case where an ounce of prevention is worth pounds of cure," says LaGrange.

Over time, Live Share has helped Celestica streamline its data, particularly in areas like part numbers and vendor codes, which can quickly proliferate with thousands of suppliers and components. "We have a very long tail of suppliers, but half of our vendor codes are for suppliers from whom we buy one or two parts, which is not a situation that lends itself to a collaborative interface like Live Share," says LaGrange. To better serve those suppliers, Celestica is looking at a simplified web interface. "Ultimately this will become another step in the Live Share project," he says.

For larger suppliers, Live Share has been a great success. Around 900 of Celestica's largest suppliers, representing from 75 to 80 percent of its part numbers, are using Live Share, LaGrange says. In addition to better and faster communications, Live Share has provided Celestica with valuable information about supplier performance. "Live Share gives us a report card that we can take back to our customers and say, 'this is how your selected suppliers are performing for you.' We can show them how quickly suppliers respond to our request - response time is important because our customers are dealing with short-term opportunities in the marketplace. If a supplier does not get back quickly with an answer as to whether it can deliver, that information is of great value to our customer base."

To view video in its entirety, click here


Keywords: High-Tech/Electronics, Sourcing & Procurement Solutions, Collaboration & Integration, Supply Chain Visibility, SC Planning & Optimization, Supply Chain Security & Risk Mgmt, Quality & Metrics, Business Process Management, EDI Communication (XML/EDI), Customer Relationship Mgmt., Software Architecture & SOA, HR & Labor Management, Business Strategy Alignment, Global Supply Chain Management, purchase order and procurement information, E2open