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Technological innovations for the automobile industry’s supply chain

21/03/2018

Tendencias sector automoción

Innovation in technology is having a huge impact on the automotive industry in recent years. Not only at a design and vehicle functionality level, but also in digitalization of logistics processes and internal management of stakeholders involved in the production and supply chain.

The large automobile manufacturers and their suppliers need to adapt to the markets, and to consumer demand. To do this, there is an ever-greater need for faster and more efficient technologies and process management. In addition, globalization of the economy and the offshoring of businesses has resulted in the need to connect with any business anywhere in the world. Nowadays these changes are associated with what is known as industry 4.0 or the “intelligent business”.

This term references the advances and adaptations of businesses at a production level that convert them into an intelligent business, from design, manufacturing, logistics, distribution and sales. This digital transformation offers competitive advantages to businesses in relation to automation and real-time monitoring of processes.

EDI, a key to digital transformation

Part of digital transformation is related to the digitalization of services, such as the electronic exchange of data, which allows transactions to take place between businesses in a global environment, without manual intervention. The automobile sector is one of the industries with the greatest amount of experience in the field of EDI, given that the nature of its workflows has always demanded rapid integration of companies linked to the supply chain, but also have to meet very short manufacturing and delivery deadlines.

In recent years, some of the technological trends observed in the sector are as follows:

  • Automation and integration of processes: Part of the digital transformation of businesses involves the automation and digitalization of processes. The large number of documents and suppliers involved in this sector generate the need to delegate technology with the electronic exchange of data related to communication tasks and the exchange of commercial documents instantly, optimizing supply chain flows and reducing the time involved.
  • Flexibility and reduction of production times: The electronic exchange of data speeds up the delivery of documents and responses between commercial partners. In addition, from a single EDI platform, it is possible to increase and add new messages in accordance with business needs.
  • Shorter and more personalized production: Nowadays, the consumer looks for personalization in practically all services. Along with more optimized production, adapting manufacturing to consumer demands, improved segmentation and production along with an increased variety of products offered can be achieved.
  • Big Data: The handling of large volumes of data throughout the supply chain is made efficient through its management, of which, it`s analysis serves to improve productivity on the production line as well as the reduction of costs. The aim is to incorporate tools that allow improved works management throughout the production line. The adoption of EDI cloud solutions allows the automation of a large part of communication tasks between the various agents, which allows the provision of resources to production and the optimization of workflows to eliminate logistical complexity.
  • Intelligent and automatic logistical models: Warehouses and factories are becoming ever more reliant on robotic systems and automatic processes that manage to optimize the supply chain, achieving high levels of productivity at low costs.
  • Instant and effective communication: The large quantity of stakeholders involved in the automobile industry need to exchange a multitude of information, signifying the integration of documents with ERP and the automation of the sending of commercial documents, which increases the efficiency throughout the chain. The ability to receive information in real-time helps to plan better and improve management of resources in the short term.
  • Optimization and traceability of manufacturing: Having real-time information of the manufacturing processes as well as orders and shipping status allows the constructors to know at all times where each car is, what components are missing, when missing parts will be received etc...
  • Taking care with the environment: Sustainable production that respects the environment is a growing concern for the consumer, and maybe a decisive factor when deciding on which car to buy: Green IT or green technology continues to be implemented in factories and logistics centers, in order for the full manufacturing process of a vehicle to be done sustainably.

EDICOM has vast experience as a technological partner of some of the main businesses within the automobile industry. Our solutions and services ensure transparent communication as well as fail proof connectivity with any agent within the sector. Irrespective of the details related to data structures or specific communication protocols such as OFTP2.

Furthermore, EDICOM’s solutions allow our customers to meet new needs of the sector, both legal, as well as the implementation of VAT compliance and electronic invoicing in various countries, as well as in relation to their own requirements, for example, the exchange of information between the various systems and applications that exist within these large organizations.

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