With some tech trickery and supplier support, Sun Microsystems transformed its production model from a warehouse-centered system into a one-touch supply process. The initiative continues to evolve as Sun strives toward greater efficiency by offering customers mass customization capabilities. This innovative approach to supply management means a bright future for Sun Microsystems.
Eugene McCabe, executive vice president of worldwide operations for the Santa Clara, California-based network computing infrastructure solutions company, says Sun's manufacturing process is more than 90 percent outsourced to global contract manufacturers. The distribution process, prior to the implementation of the one-touch system, involved warehousing Sun-built product and fulfilling customer orders against the stock in the warehouse. "The challenge is forecasting the correct mix of product because you invariably finish with too much or too little in the distribution warehouse," says McCabe. "What we set out to accomplish was to eliminate the need to have a warehouse between the source of the product and our end customer."
Source: Inside Supply Management, http://www.ism.ws
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