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SEEBURGER Solutions for the Automotive Industry
In an industry where an hour of downtime can cost millions, highly complex interactions between suppliers, logistics, production and sales must be seamlessly coordinated and optimized. Data security and reliable, fast, standardized communication channels are essential for providing everyone in the automotive supply chain with the parts they need in the right place at the right time. The digital transformation of the automotive industry, led by innovations in cloud technology, aims to consolidate all business processes, systems and partners, making processes lean, precise and sustainable with constant optimization. Today, you can quickly and efficiently locate new suppliers and easily integrate them with existing digital ecosystems. This is how digitalization in the automotive industry successfully contributes to ensuring that all systems are as streamlined and accurate as possible with an operating profit margin that maximizes shareholder value.
SEEBURGER has more than 35 years of experience working with OEMs, thousands of suppliers, and all tiers of auto manufacturing. We provide out-of-the box connectivity with pre-built partner mappings and industry know-how. Drive digitalization in the automotive industry with a focus on real-time transparency, process automation, and accurate, reliable data transmission with high security.
Without Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), today's JIS/JIT processes would not be possible. The first data was transferred in the supply chain as early as 1985. Over the past 40 years, the formats (EDIFACT, ANSIx12) and communication methods (OFTP2, AS/2, SFTP) have constantly evolved in line with the latest technology developments.
Industry-specific B2B EDI solutions support fast integration of business partners and processes. They also support connectivity with key B2B EDI standards and can be extended by API technologies (REST, JSON). A key factor for the success of digitalization in the automotive industry is the ability to centralize all current and future technologies in one integration platform, a Business Integration Suite.
APIs in the automotive industry provide access to data for increased communication about the supply chain such as impulses (geo-coordinates) of deliveries and content (such as serial numbers). Semiconductor shortages and disrupted supply chains make it increasingly important to know exactly when a required part will be available.
Knowing exactly which mode of transport (lorry, ship or train) is used to send marked parts (parts tracing) and where they are located (GPS coordinates and license plate identification) at any given time (track and trace) is becoming increasingly important for ensuring smooth running production lines. VDA4998 is the first industry-wide recommendation for using APIs in the automotive supply chain.
A supply chain in the automotive industry can only be as good as its weakest link. That’s why the automotive industry is strongly promoting the networking of companies. On the one hand, this involves setting up new processes (transport status (IFTSTA), ordering and processing empties) or new message versions (EDIFACT syntax version 4).On the other hand, this involves connecting additional partners, such as upstream suppliers and logistics providers via EDI and APIs. A supplier onboarding campaign tool such as the SEEBURGER Community Management Application (CMA) can successfully support these processes. As for the question of blockchain or EDI in the supply chain?: Blockchain technology can be utilized to support origin tracing and to trace the journey of parts along the value chain.
Proof of operational security through ISO27001, ISAE3402 and TISAX certifications is an increasingly important requirement in the automotive industry, because the systems for collecting and transmitting data must be set up securely for availability (AA cluster), compliance regulations, confidentiality (DataStore) and vulnerability (SecureProxy). Data security involves a high degree of internal and financial efforts, which makes it a non-value-added activity. This is why the automotive industry is outsourcing the integration disciplines of EDI and API to specialized providers. In doing so, process skills can also be used for cloud or iPaaS models.
In addition to the logistics chain, digitalization has entered the production chain. For Automotive Industry 4.0, machines are increasingly supplying data to systems that can document production quality and ensure the traceability of safety-relevant parts, right through to delivery notifications. Real-time data in smart manufacturing is becoming increasingly important, as well as ensuring integration via corresponding internal integration systems (EAI/ESB). To collaborate on a standardized platform in the automotive industry, worldwide associations like the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG), an American non-profit organization founded by representatives of the three largest North American automotive manufacturers Ford, GM and Chrysler and with over 800 members including OEMs, parts manufacturers and service providers to the automotive industry, and the AAF (ASEAN Automotive Federation) have been founded. In Europe, Catena-X is a platform specific to the automotive industry and based on the secure European network GAIA-X. It follows the principles of the International Data Spaces Association (IDSA).
Sustainability is a core value in the automotive industry which includes the shift towards a "net-zero economy" and developing sustainable solutions to transform both products and the value chain. The development of a new kind of mobility includes the use of renewable energies, new types of batteries, networking, autonomous driving, e-mobility and shared mobility. Providing information on the carbon footprint of production equipment and reducing the carbon footprint, as well as avoiding unnecessary truck journeys ("empty runs") helps increase sustainability in the automotive industry. Energy labelling offers manufacturers an opportunity to highlight the sustainability of their products, while it helps consumers choose products based on energy efficiency, energy consumption and performance. Digital product passports are being developed to digitalize product life cycles and digitally track the origin of components and raw materials, as well as energy label information, in order to achieve a circular economy in the automotive industry. Here is where the link to connectors and APIs in the automotive industry can provide concrete support for sustainability strategies. For example, APIs enable new transport orders to be received by transport management systems (TMS) in order to optimize capacity utilization.
To meet the requirements of the automotive industry now and in the future, smooth EDI processes are indispensable along the entire supply chain. Kautex therefore decided in 2015 to replace the EDI service of a VAN provider, which had previously been used and regularly led to escalations.
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In these times of fragile supply chains, it is imperative for all parties in an automotive supply chain to ensure a reliable supply of materials. And this is why efficient supply processes play such a key role in the industry.
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