Washing machines, refrigerators, built-in ovens – every day, BSH Hausgeräte GmbH (BSH) manufactures thousands of products, each of which consists of thousands of its own components. Even in a production planning environment that’s now based on SAP HANA, this presents a number of challenges.
At a single factory in Traunreut, Germany, BSH assembles more than 6,000 built-in ovens daily. According to the calculations of Ernst Schroll, who oversees the company’s supply chain, this requires 1.6 million individual parts. To ensure that each one is available when needed on the assembly line, SAP Advanced Planning and Optimization (SAP APO) supports BSH’s planning logic, while SAP HANA recently began providing an added performance boost. “We’ve only been making proper use of SAP APO since we implemented SAP HANA,” Schroll reveals.
As a result, the company is reaping significant benefits in its everyday operations.
BSH can now handle its planning between 30 and 50 percent faster, and its lead times are also shorter – which means products are finished more quickly. According to Dietmar Baumann, head of BSH’s supply chain factory (IT), this is thanks to SAP HANA unleashing the full potential of SAP APO’s planning logic. “Besides being able to plan on multiple levels, we can now check material availability much more often, as well,” Baumann reports. This reduces both the company’s stock levels and its warehousing costs.
If problems occur with deliveries or quality issues crop up in individual components, the system calls attention to the potential risks in BSH’s supply chain. The company’s MRP controllers can take action more quickly as a result, which accelerates the overall process.
For BSH logistics expert Ernst Schroll, using SAP HANA in connection with its factory workflows also offers another advantage: the ability to manage a complex environment with fewer MRP controllers. “We’ve gotten much better at dealing with scarce resources,” he affirms. If absolutely necessary, these employees can even access their process planning programs from home.
Anticipating Problems Before They Occur
When BSH is about to launch a new product, it can now run an advance inspection to predict whether the processes at hand could run into problems and put production at risk. Previously, this was only possible after the fact in follow-up checks. “Our planning is now faster, more reliable, and capable of looking further ahead,” Schroll states.
Ultimately, BSH – an organization that generated over €11 billion in revenue in 2014 and employs more than 53,000 people around the world – is focusing on realizing its vision of an end-to-end supply chain. Doing so will require nothing less than complete transparency and traceability down to the smallest components that go into its washing machines, dishwashers, and ovens.
To learn more about how BSH is using SAP Advanced Planning and Optimization powered by SAP HANA, check out this video: