SiliconExpert and Arena Work Together for Resilient Supply Chain Operations
Managing a product’s lifecycle has never been more important, or more difficult, than it currently is. We just passed the one-year anniversary of the World Health Organization declaring the novel corona virus as a pandemic. It has had a profound effect on supply chains around the globe. Consumer demand has shifted while suppliers’ ability to furnish parts varies. Two examples of shifting consumer demand are sales of new vehicles were down about 15% in 2020 while the compound annual growth rate of webcams is expected to be 16.6% in the next five years.
Guarding against external pressures is an important aspect of lifecycle management. Decreased market availability of the parts required to build in-demand products will have adverse effects as manufacturers and their suppliers pivot to get different types of products to market.
Keeping track of every possible event that may affect your supply chain is a full-time job. In just the last few months, a fire broke out at one of the three biggest printed circuit board manufacturers in the world, another top chip manufacturer was added to the United States Department of Commerce’s Entity List, and a few more were subject to a loss of power stemming from unseasonably cold weather in Texas.
Reduce Supply Chain Risk
If your supplier is on this list, you need to think about having a Plan B. Cross reference parts need to get into the hands of the design engineers that can confirm form, fit, and function. Software solutions like Arena product lifecycle management (PLM) were designed to help companies design, produce, and deliver by managing all parts and assemblies required to get products to market quickly. Arena PLM enables the sharing of information between cross-functional, geographically dispersed teams. But where does that information come from?
Arena Supplier Item Lookup (SIL) with SiliconExpert brings the latest component information into Arena so it can be reviewed and approved by all impacted teams and supply chain partners. SiliconExpert has a massive team of electronics engineers curating a database of over one billion parts. They have leveraged their relationships with suppliers and manufacturers to provide accurate information to be used in strategic decision-making.
SiliconExpert information goes beyond form, fit, and function by identifying issues with availability, risk, and compliance. If you are affected by one of the events like those previously mentioned, you can investigate market availability of your parts and find the cross references that will support your Plan B.
Gathering environmental compliance information for RoHS, REACH, and Conflict Minerals is done with a few clicks. Component datasheets and the latest product change notifications are also available. Arena SIL enables every product team member to work in a single product development system to gather, review, and specify the best components for every product design.
Quuppa’s Success Story
Quuppa provides the world’s leading location technology platform. The Quuppa Intelligent Locating System™ uses RFID tags to keep track of objects in warehouses, hockey rinks, and hospitals. Their devices record and share location information to improve efficiency, enhance team performance, and save lives. To accomplish these goals, Quuppa must keep their production lines running effectively and on schedule.
Quuppa recognizes the importance of up-to-date information for the components that make up their devices. Before using SiliconExpert, their product team would research parts using Google searches to find and review datasheets. The resulting information was entered into spreadsheets and shared with other team members, which took key resources away from research and development and caused product launch delays.
To address the inefficiencies, Quuppa first decided to outsource their part research. They gave contractors a list of part numbers and then had to wait for the results. Frustration mounted when they realized how long this research was taking. Their supplier would come back several hours after being given a list of 10 – 15 parts.
When looking for a better way, Quuppa chose Arena in large part because of the Arena SIL with SiliconExpert solution. Having automated access to up-to-date component information significantly decreases the time required to identify and select the right parts. Quuppa is now confident with the environmental compliance of their devices and is concentrating on adding value elsewhere. Learn more about how Quupa uses SiliconExpert and Arena together here.
Quuppa works with the Finnish Hockey League to provide analytics for the teams and an enhanced experience for their fans. They tag the players and the pucks, saving data on their movements. You can see how this works here. Though not an initial reason for their collaboration, Quuppa’s real-time location services help combat the same virus that has disrupted supply chains around the globe. When one of the players contracted COVID-19, Quuppa’s location information provided contact tracing.