In the aerospace industry an effective supply chain is absolutely crucial. The right products must be in the right place, at the right time. If not, costs will increase greatly - and in the worst of cases it will affect security. As packaging has a key role in the flow, it can be strategically used to secure the quality of the supply chain and reduce total costs.
Nefab is a global packaging manufacturer specializing in aerospace. We offer complete customized packaging solutions for delivery and service for production, repair and maintenance. With extensive experience in the commercial aviation and defence sectors, we have a deep insight into the complex aerospace industry. We develop proven design solutions for all product categories - from operating systems to the hull, cabins, equipment and miscellaneous materials. Our specialized, globally coordinated team consisting of key account managers, designers and engineers - delivers to runways worldwide.
KLM Engineering & Maintenance is a subsidiary of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. The head office is based at KLM home port, Schiphol, and service the whole world from here. They are responsible for KLM's own fleet but they also offer other airlines their services. The maintenance is done on many different ways: in its own premises at Schiphol or at service stations around the world. This brings with it a variety of complex part flows.
"Our total inventory includes 25 000 different items to be delivered quickly, efficiently and in good condition. We estimate that we have reduced our total packaging costs by 20-30%."
- says JOS DE KLEINE, MANAGER LOGISTIC DEVELOPMENT, KLM ENGINEERING & MAINTENANCE
With a variety of packaging including more than three thousand different packages, delivered by roughly twenty different manufacturers and distributed to five different locations, the company faced many problems. The packaging was difficult to find because it was hard to know which hangars they were stored in. Many return packages were lost in transit around the world. As a result, many components were put into the wrong packaging - resulting in delays and damage to sensitive spare parts. Packaging was purchased at the last minute, even if the right packaging was in stock in the next hangar a few hundred meters away.
The company decided to outsource the packaging supply to Nefab. Nefab set up a complete packaging solution for maintenance, repair and overhaul operations. A new standardized packaging system was designed, reducing the number of items to around four hundred. A new database answers the questions "What", "How" and "Where", and the entire returnable packaging system was made traceable using RFID. KLM has achieved full control over the packaging flow, and deliveries are made from Nefab warehouses to KLM one per week. Nefab's global presence has also helped ensure quality at other facilities than just Schiphol.
Driven by increasing passenger and freight transports, the number of aircraft is estimated to double in the next twenty years. As a result, new aircraft programs are developed and production increases. Leading aircraft manufacturers are changing their supply concepts, and redefining their demands on the vendors. Parts are to be delivered in smaller quantities, in shorter cycles, and just-in-time. Nefab has longstanding relationships with leading aircraft manufacturers and OEMs. Our experience covers every component of the fuselage, propulsion systems, airframes, cabins, equipment, and systems. Our global network of designers and engineers share experience and solutions in a common innovation bank with hundreds of existing packaging designs for aerospace. Development and FEM-analyses are executed in highly equipped testing facilities and supplied to our customers from our facilities around the globe.
"Inoperable parts" tend to be an expensive problem for most airlines. If the supply chain doesn't support the need of spare parts, the aircrafts stay on the ground. The solution is to have a well though out packaging system to facilitate coordination of product protection and on-time delivery. This way, the risk of product damage and additional costs are heavily reduced. Nefab collaborates with some of the world's most reputed airlines in Europe, Asia and North America. We're providing systems with warehouses services and delivery of tailored or standardized packaging for spare parts to hangars all over the world. A strong focus on logistic solutions - mangement of returnable packaging, tracking services with RFID or GPS and just in time delivieries - helps save valuable time for our customers.