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.