“We support our customers in the factory along the entire value chain. With our many years of experience in in-plant logistics and maintenance, we are now taking spare parts management to the next level together with our partner Sparetech,” explains Dr. Bernd Voelpel, Global Head of Smart Factory Group at Leadec.
Leadec brings its expertise from daily work in more than 300 factories worldwide to the partnership, Sparetech its data processing and data retrieval software for industrial spare parts.
Higher spare parts availability thanks to data
Spare parts worth more than 100 million euros are held on average by a company with several sites in the automotive or consumer goods industry, according to analyses by Sparetech. That is between 90,000 and 350,000 different material numbers in the ERP system, and the number increases by about 12 percent annually.
In order to be able to react quickly in the event of production downtime, companies keep a large number of spare parts in stock. Up to now, however, there has been no transparent data on which parts are available at which plant – and this despite the fact that the common parts rate at many companies is 15 to 25 percent, in some cases even above 40 percent. This is mainly due to poor data quality: up to two-thirds of all data records in the ERP system are incorrect. Typical sources of error are inconsistent spellings, hidden duplicates or recoded data records.
“This is where we come in with our solution. The first step is the unique identification of spare parts. State-of-the-art technologies from the fields of semantic data management, big data and automated data processing are used. In the second step, duplicates, discontinuations and common parts across sites are made visible and original manufacturer product information is added. The complete and error-free database is the basic prerequisite for inventory management across sites, in which several plants access a central spare parts warehouse (inventory pooling). This reduces inventories and saves costs while at the same time increasing availability,” explain Martin Weber and Dr. Lukas Biedermann, Sparetech’s Managing Directors.
Smart spare parts management and data-based maintenance
Particularly in start-up projects, which Leadec and Sparetech manage on an ongoing basis for joint customers, the use of the solution pays off as soon as the first parts lists are checked. In addition, customers benefit from lower production costs through the combination of more efficient spare parts management with data-based production equipment maintenance (PEM). Downtime decreases, quality increases and companies need to invest less.
Leadec and Sparetech already have their eyes on the spare parts management of the future: “In the next step, spare parts procurement can become even more flexible if several companies access a spare parts pool. Spare parts are supplied on demand and financing models can reduce working capital by up to 90 percent – while at the same time increasing availability in production,” says Stephan Hihn, who heads Product Management for Leadec in Europe.