The world-wide recession is having a particularly damaging effect on the automotive industry, with virtually all companies contending with plunging sales figures, liquidity bottlenecks and problems with financing. Automotive manufacturers and their suppliers are being compelled to reduce their costs sharply, gain quick access to liquidity reserves and permanently adjust their global capacities; at the same time, they are under pressure to maintain and in many cases to improve on delivery capacity and performance within their supply chains for the long term.
Against this background, the market continues to demand more model ranges, shorter product lifecycles and faster access to innovations. Soon, companies will also be required to pay close attention to the growth markets of China, India, Russia and Brazil. This increasing complexity of both products and markets entails the global orientation of the value chain, from sales and distribution to procurement which must be made more flexible in order to facilitate cooperation and the adaptation of the vertical integration and thus enable companies to respond rapidly to market requirements.
The way many OEM’s and suppliers are combating the pressure to improve is through lean and six sigma methodologies. Many have been doing this for years, if not decades, but they still find the need to do more. Many have gotten comfortable and have taken their foot off the continuous improvement throttle. Now they are in a critical state, many striving to survive the down economy and are turning back to lean. Our professionals have the industry experience to help get your company back on-track.