The world’s airlines currently serve 3.5 billion passengers a year, and this figure is expected to nearly triple by the year 2030. Airlines are expanding their fleets in preparation: At one air show in Abu Dhabi alone, airlines invested $100 billion U.S. in medium- and long-haul jets. While the increase is good for the industry, it’s not without its challenges in an increasingly complex supply chain. The orders can create a backlog for aircraft manufacturers, and for their suppliers. And with a single wide-bodied jet composed of more than four million components, coordination can be a logistical challenge. Systems and processes must work together seamlessly to ensure that manufacturers and their customers have access to a reliable supply of high-quality products.
- The aviation and aerospace industry is growing rapidly – how can we organize our business model to manage this growth?
- Do we have the right portfolio of products and services?
- How do we deal with bottlenecks?
- Have we clearly defined all of our core areas of expertise and core technologies?
- How will we anchor continuous improvement in our corporate culture?
Porsche Consulting has successfully completed more than 200 aviation and aerospace projects since 2005. Our international team of consultants has expertise in a wide range of specialties, from manufacturing to maintenance and operation of commercial aircraft.
We draw on our learnings from the automotive industry to make the aviation and aerospace supply chain more efficient. Improving supply chain coordination requires three key things: transparent processes, better quality planning and a new understanding of the roles each stakeholder will play. Aircraft manufacturers will set the tone by taking responsibility for planning the entire supply chain, including planning product innovation, and by increasing transparency. First-tier suppliers will then become the link between the manufacturers and the supply network, making them an even stronger driving force behind innovation. A shared understanding of these new roles will help everyone involved work together more effectively, optimizing the system.
Our industry-tested company analyses identify the changes needed to bring a new product portfolio to life. In an industry in which growth is often realized through acquisition, teams and divisions are frequently compartmentalized, with little knowledge-sharing and collaboration between them. We create an overall view of the technologies and areas of expertise available throughout the organization, allowing aviation companies to match resources to future demands. Consider, for example, the processing of carbon-fiber composites: Expertise in this field can be applied to structural components for commercial aircraft, lightweight concepts for aerospace or high-performance components for the defense industry with equal success.
International airlines are ordering more aircraft than manufacturers worldwide can produce, which puts agreed-upon supply deadlines at risk. When ramping up production, manufacturers need to ensure stability. At Porsche Consulting, we use strategies tested and proven in real-world scenarios. With one factory, for example, we analyzed all existing processes and compared them to benchmarks to identify the magnitude of potential improvement. We identified a bottleneck in one hangar where equipment was being installed: Three production lines supplied sections for the rear fuselage in the hangar, and ten workstations fitted them with electronic systems and cables. Components were piling up, even though operations were pushed to the limits. We were able to divide the work in new ways, setting up an eleventh station and adjusting the takt time, resulting in an increase in production of 10%.
Our consultants help clients:
- Rapidly industrialize new aircraft lines.
- Increase production rates of current aircraft models.
- Set up additional production sites based on standard factories and integrated production networks.
Inventory levels can be deceptive, giving the illusion of security. While it might seem difficult to reduce inventory levels, doing so frees up capital for investments and enables a greater ability to respond to market developments or changes. Our consultants deliver measurable results by enabling organizations to create the conditions to reduce unneeded inventory. We define the optimal logistics chain, from supplier to final assembly, for each component and define and monitor KPIs for key system parameters, such as reserve levels and throughput times. We’ve helped organizations across the aviation industry reduce inventory levels for raw materials and semi-finished products by 25% and finished items by 15%. We also help effect the cultural changes, including new roles and responsibilities, required to ensure that improvements in efficiency are sustainable.
Aircraft only make money when they’re in the air, which means that every repair required eats into the bottom line. We help airlines improve airline operation by analyzing maintenance processes, luggage conveyance, passenger processes and airplane dispatch. In maintenance, for example, our methodology has been proven to reduce down times by 20 to 30% and significantly decrease the dollars lost every year due to passenger and luggage delays.