Where supply chain meets value chain


In this article, TTI business development manager, Steve Brahosky, explores what it takes for a supply chain partner to become a true value chain partner

An OEM is excited about a new project which includes innovative design ideas. However, several components are unavailable for months and there may be compatibility issues with integrating various parts. To compound the problems, the company’s most trusted supplier rep has just retired.

Parts headaches, design hiccups and supplier hassles can turn any project into a nightmare. Instead of relying on multiple sources, unpredictable timelines and design dead ends, what if manufacturers had a primary source who could provide component design expertise, supply chain assurance and collaboration on future needs?  

A value chain is defined as a series of consecutive steps that go into the creation of a finished product from initial design to arrival at a customer’s door. As more companies face the challenges of supply chain disruptions, they are increasingly relying on full-service distributors that act as solutions consultants from design through delivery of components across multiple technologies and suppliers, coupling both value and supply chains. The following describes what these distributors provide.

Available, quality parts

At a time when inauthentic and even counterfeit parts are entering the marketplace, finding a fully authorized distributor for available, reliable, high-quality components is critical. Additionally, while stocking inventory is fundamental to a distributor’s value proposition, value can also be delivered by offering multiple supplier options across technologies for customer consideration.

Product availability, authenticity and multiple options provide a big advantage today when many supplier lead times are extending or unreliable. Knowing one can rely on a supply chain partner to get the right parts when needed may be a game changer. 

Design expertise

For today’s technology driven projects with enhanced device, connectivity, data processing and user interface demands, literally hundreds of components are required, properly integrated in a functional design. It’s not just about acquiring the parts, it’s getting them to work together optimally.

Though most companies have in-house engineers, what if manufacturers had access to multiple personnel with different skills and levels of expertise who could assist from early conceptual development through the stages of design, prototyping and manufacturing, to the total satisfaction of all stakeholders? More distributors are offering this kind of product technical support to ensure optimal productivity and performance.

An invested, trusted partner

The most effective distributors have supply chain solutions that are forward-looking, nimble and reliable. They deploy process tools constructed to provide timely, critical information so customers can plan or react accordingly. Since they know projects from their parts selections to complete function, they have inside knowledge and a vested interest in success.

These distributors become consultative partners, not just parts brokers. The results are seamless communication, greater efficiency, lower costs and enhanced overall performance. 

TTI is a partner who collaborates with customers to see beyond the bill-of-materials and works with them to achieve the results they need.