Tackling supply chain and procurement challenges in the aerospace industry

The Aerospace industry faces growing procurement challenges, the primary ones  being around the administration of the supply chain, which represents a significant  area of spend and untapped savings and which is often a source of great risk, and an  over-emphasis on cost-reduction without looking at process and performance  optimization. Both issues touch on the relationship and interactivity between the  manufacturer and its suppliers. 

A major characteristic of this industry involves the frequent exchange of engineering  data, technical specifications, and production instructions between buyers and  suppliers, which involve inquiries, change requests, waivers, and clarifications. This  information is often exchanged using e-mail, phone calls or face-to-face meetings, all  of which lead to time-consuming misunderstandings, delays, and errors. 

Another is the abundance of strict quality assurance processes, which are performed  manually, using e-mail or hard copy reports and documents. Invoices are then  approved to pay only after quality assurance confirmation – a warehouse receipt is  not sufficient. This means that companies must manually track the QA process and  approve an invoice only if it is successful – a slow and error-prone process that results  in payment delays. 

Nipendo offers different ways to address these problems: 

It’s Q&A module enables information collaboration between suppliers and customers  around any, and all issues, allowing suppliers to send questions and requests to their  customers in connection with a particular document or process, as well as to add  attachments, manage the inquiry status and receive a built-in response from the 

customer. The system documents all information exchange for future tracking and  auditing. 

Nipendo’s Quality Management module provides complete management of all  communications between the buyer and its suppliers around quality, including  management of defect messages, opening of MRB, etc. Nipendo enables the  configuration of process compliance guidelines in its RPA (Robotic Process  Automation) engine, which then automatically validates invoices using 4-way matching, where it waits for QA confirmation before the invoice is approved and  sent to the ERP system. In the event of failure, the invoice is rejected or placed on hold, including a detailed explanation that’s sent to the supplier regarding the  particular QA problems and how they can be corrected. As an example, 6% of  invoices sent to a Nipendo customer in the Aerospace industry over the past 90 days  were rejected while, in the same period of time, 89% of invoices were processed  without human involvement.