I can see a bunch of E.E.'s in a meeting w/ all interested parties trying to find a cross for an obsolete part. One of them whips out their smart phone shows the group and higher ups a drop in replacement @ a Digi-Key type disti w/ stock. they agree it is worth buying a sample qty have them overnighted & plugged into the board the next day for eval. in this case the app helps build consensus and things get done w/out more meeting and more blessings and sign offs.........bing bang boom off to market they go....
It seems to me mobile parts shopping may be limited but the opportunity to explore, review parts and instantly respond to design engineers, procurement, CFOs and other interested parties is valueless. Instead of waiting to share information, anyone involved in the supply chain design, procurement, manufacturing and support activities can quickly, anywhere respond and inform. That's incredible advantage in today's just in time everything. That's what I ses as the greatest opportunity mobile apps offer to the supply chain.
I think having purchasing apps available would be a great idea. You are starting to see more tablets in meetings and being used on the floor while looking at equipment. If the purchaser could order what was needed from a tablet or smartphone while sitting in a meeting or looking at some equipment it would make things so much easier. Yes, this can be done with a laptop by going through the normal channels, but rarely are you going to be looking at some equipment carrying a bulky laptop.
I am curious how many people actually shop on mobile devices for parts. I feel like we all want part shopping to be easy, and there should be lightweight apps to help with part shopping, but what are some use cases of mobile apps for part shopping? I'd love to hear peoples' opinion on this.
Also, I wanted to put forward another suggestion for a part shopping tool that Arena Solutions has released in a labs environment called Arena PartsList. It's pretty cool - - if you import designs from your ECAD tool and select Autofill, PartsList will automatically pull the data sheets and key component attributes for all the parts in your list. If you're browsing parts online, you can use the PartSaver browser button to capture critical component information—including datasheets and vendor information.
I see the value in apps for information-seeking while you are on the go. I'm less convinced a lot of component buying actually takes place because of apps. For low-volume, engineering orders it might work, but your standard bill of material is so complex and so far-flung that I think it would be difficult to manage even on a smartphone. But I'm open to a contrasting opinion ...
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.