Automotive Industry

We have consulted with several automotive manufacturers and importers on issues surrounding the ordering and allocation of automobiles. This work stems from our experience in distribution and logistics. Traditionally importers were at a disadvantage with respect to domestic manufacturers due to the relative distance between the site of manufacture and the market. As a result of the long lead times vehicles had to be ordered several months in advance of delivery and rarely could be special-ordered. This created two problems. Market shortages if volumes were underestimated requiring the allocation of the product, and a disparity between the vehicle attributes — model, color, trim levels — of the vehicles being produced and what the market was demanding.

IT Strategies has worked with several Asian and European importers to develop business processes and information technology to more closely match production to market demand. Engagements include working with the North American division of a large European importer of luxury automobiles who wanted to implement a new automated allocation, order entry, physical distribution and inventory management system for finished vehicle. IT Strategies' consultants worked with company executive to determine the specific objectives for the processes, defined the new business requirements and designed the ordering and allocation processes to meet the objectives. Subsequently the consultants carried the design forward into development and implementation.

A Japanese manufacturer who planned to enter the luxury segment of the automotive market asked IT Strategies to develop an information technology plan for all aspects of the import business including sales and marketing, customer service, order entry and vehicle distribution and service and retail channel management through their network of dealerships, field offices, and headquarters. IT Strategies undertook a detailed analysis of the luxury car market and define the process and systems necessary to support the company's entry into this market place.

The US division of a major Japanese automobile manufacturer wanted to reengineer the ordering and allocation of vehicles from assembly plants to dealers to ensure a fair and equitable allocation method and to more closely match production with market demand. IT Strategies designed a new ordering process that incorporated dealer's knowledge of the market place into the ordering process by allowing dealers to state their preferences based on what their sales history was telling them were the most popular combinations of model, color, and trim. IT Strategies then integrated this information into the established production ordering system, balancing the market demand with the constraints of the production process. The resulting information system was extremely well received by dealers and manufacturing plants and went on to form the basis for a whole new production ordering process.