Vikram Kirloskar, President, SIAM, said “Today, most auto OEMs as well as suppliers have mature IT platforms and technology-enabled transactional processes. Most of these IT interventions have been internally focused to improve the efficiencies of the respective organisations. However, these IT interventions have resulted in customised, company-specific documents and data formats resulting in significant additional efforts by the industry in integrating with each other.”
In most cases, each OEM has a dedicated portal to publish delivery schedules, upload/data entry of supplier transactions and publish financial settlement data to suppliers. Suppliers customise their systems to each OEM’s portal for to upload/download transaction data. This process obstructs real time data integration between industry players, and such a complexity adds to shipment delays, and dilutes OEMs’ JIT/JIS initiatives.
Focussing on the urgent need for an effective, collaborative, industry-wide solution, Harish Lakshman, President, ACMA, remarked “The respective IT Committees of SIAM and ACMA realised the need to come together for reducing the complexity and have been working on an action plan since 2010 which has now resulted in setting up of the EDI platform — AutoDX. The solution has undergone successful pilot testing by 10 companies and is now ready for a progressive rollout. This common cloud-based platform can enable seamless information exchange not just between OEMs and its Tier 1 suppliers, but also with the upstream value chain, logistics partners, financial institutions and others who serve the auto industry. Our broader vision is to facilitate adoption of standards wherever structured information is exchanged, be it in the form of electronic or paper document or labels such as barcode and RFID”.
Vijay Sethi, Chairman, SIAM IT Committee, giving details of the initiative mentioned “In a first-ever joint initiative between SIAM and ACMA, UN’s EDIFACT-based standards have been adapted for standardisation of information exchange between OEMs and suppliers. While KPMG helped us in setting standards, IBM is our technology partner for this initiative. Exchange of information on various critical logistics and financial transactions like delivery schedules, commercial documents, logistics information etc., can be now done seamlessly between supply chain partners without any manual intervention. While improving efficiency, it will also lead to reduced transaction costs. The initiative makes digital collaboration amongst supply chain partners in the Indian automotive industry comparable to any industry globally.”
Commenting on the benefits of the AutoDX, Ravi Machani, Chairman ACMA IT Committee said “An estimated 40 OEMs (SIAM members) and over 700 suppliers (ACMA members) are expected to leverage the IBM Sterling B2B Collaboration Network solution to derive business benefits through Standardisation of information exchange and use of Common EDI Technology Infrastructure which will address a long-standing hurdle that has prevented tighter collaboration between supply chain partners. It will increase supply chain efficiency, reduce transaction costs for both and in the long run, provide end-to-end tracking and traceability of goods across the supply chain.”