We understand how rapid technology advances, especially in the electronics industry. Items from microchips to washing machines contain more capability and capacity than ever before. We see electronic manufacturers not only create advanced products, but plenty of additionally designed components to go along with them. Often, needed components are unnecessary to create and already exist elsewhere, but development teams can’t locate them. The result is a proliferation of excess parts and components.

This can cost your organization a lot of money, time, compliance issues, quality issues and loss of customers. Our goal is to equip electronic manufacturers facing these challenges with powerful software solutions. We help ensure you see complete and accurate component data, up-to-date information and recommendations by your procurement group. Convergence Data can make it easy to find the right component to meet material compliance and lifecycle requirements. We integrate with content partners, like IHS, and can federate cleansed data to eCAD libraries.

These kinds of capabilities allow strategic component reuse strategies, simple component revision processes or proper access for development teams to complete projects on-time and under budget. These scenarios and more are possible with Convergence Data.

We invite you to review how our solutions have been deployed, by whom and what some have to say.

Use Case

Whirlpool has over 4,000 people developing products in 26 countries. They have 66 manufacturing and technology centers around the world. How can they control part proliferation and excess inventory?

Step one was to gain access to all their parts and components, worldwide. If the development team didn’t know about it, how could their Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) strategy include parts reuse? Step two was to make it easy for them to access and find information, useable information. This was essential since Whirlpool’s growth is founded on innovation and variation, demanding new designs and components, or so they thought. Whirlpool avoided the trap with a Convergence Data supported material strategy.

Once the Convergence Data implementation was completed, they realized a 35% component reduction, 20% average component cost reduction and among other benefits and netted $400M in cash. To this day, Whirlpool utilizes Convergence Data’s software tools as part of their business operations strategy, keeping them #1 in their industry sector.

Software Solutions

Whirlpool installed Design for Retrieval (DFR) onto their system (name of system if applicable). They used DFR as the Master Data Management solution to capture and manage detailed information about products, parts and assets, starting with buy items. SmartFind was also installed as the key tool to search and find parts among all their locations.

Whirlpool now utilizes integrated workflows, an enhanced governance process and a worldwide searchable parts database operation.

Primary Capabilities of DFR:

  • Leveraging part clustering capabilities to support direct material cost reductions.
  • Federating cleansed content to eCAD, PLM and Search Tools.

Question & Answer

We facilitated this Q&A session between an appliance manufacturer and a global aerospace and defense company (our customer).

How have you handled the speed of approval? Usually when people ask for parts, they want it right now. How does it compare to using excel or email request forms?

We integrated DFR into our other tools. We linked to the eCAD workflow, which starts in parallel. It made a big difference and saved a substantial amount of time, both with delivering a suitable part or starting the new part request. The other advantage is that this electronic workflow creates an audit trail. So later, someone can look up a part and see the entire history and actions taken.

How do you track the benefits using Convergence Data CSM tools?

I look at percentages, how many new part requests get switched over to something already in our system. Of course, it depends on what reference you use. There’s been industry standard numbers published that say it costs $27,500 to hold something in inventory. We like to use $10,000 in our system, which is based on Coopers & Lybrand. Our initial goal was to get $10M/year out of the software. We did that. It’s climbed over the years, approaching $60M, which is the size of a small program.