Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M) is the maintenance, repair and overhaul arm of Air France KLM, one of the top five airlines in the world. The MRO unit supports 1,500 airplanes operated by 150 airline customers, and its 300 facilities worldwide remove parts from those planes, repair or refurbish them, or provide scheduled maintenance. Tracking all of these parts posed a logistical challenge, but the company has deployed a radio frequency identification system to automate the process and cut costs.
With any discussion regarding the future of industrial distribution, the impact of AmazonSupply is sure to come up. Distributors seem to have differing views on this impact, ranging from fear of ArmageddonSupply to a shrug indicating "this too, shall pass."
U.S. manufacturing executives have an opportunity to make their factories even more competitive through parts and components de-costing programs. De-costing is simply a term that refers to removing cost from operations period-over-period. Parts and components usage is a great place to focus because improvements can provide such clear returns.
A combination of rebounding sales and an unprecedented number of new models in the works has stretched the auto parts supply chain so taut that the entire industry is holding its collective breath that it does not snap and jeopardize the recovery.
Analyst Insight: The top strategic action tied to improving parts management for service and support organizations in a recent Aberdeen research study on service parts logistics was to integrate service parts planning, forecasting and execution with overall logistics functions (i.e., procurement, supply chain management, inventory management) to ensure the delivery of the right part to the end customer when an asset goes down or is not operating at full efficiency. - Aly Pinder Jr., senior research associate, Aberdeen Group