Bentley motor, which manufactures luxury automobiles, was established in 1919 founded by W.O. Bentley. However since 1998, the company owned by Volkswagen Group and the business located at Crewe, Cheshire, United Kingdom (BentleyMotors, 2012). Bentley motor can be described as traditional craftsmanship, ambitious environmental policies and ultimate luxury. The company currently has employs approximately 3,726 workers and has annual revenue (estimated) of $ 779,792,550 (Manta, 2012).
“We are Bentley Motors – the definitive British luxury car company, dedicated to developing and crafting the world’s most desirable high performance cars ( BentleyMotors, 2012)”.
The company’s mission is “To build a fast car, a good car, the best in its class ( BentleyMotors, 2012)”.
Bentley’s Logistics Operations
Bentley’s logistics operations work with suppliers and third party Logistics to determine optimum supply chain routes and develop suitable packaging to maintain component quality throughout transportation and handling (BentleyMotor, 2012).
Inbound logistics is the activities of receiving, storing, disseminating incoming inventory parts or material for use (BusinessDictionary, 2012) from suppliers to the manufacturing or assembly plants. Bentley used to collect the inbound material from other suppliers at different countries. 80% of them come from Europe and also Germany (AutomotiveSupplyChain, 2012). Most of the inbound logistics activities were handled by outsourcing. A material requirements planning system (SAP/R3) is used to plan the daily / weekly inbound delivery schedules of components from the supplier base. Vendor planners are then responsible for ensuring the on time delivery of components, to support production, whilst minimising transportation and inventory holding costs (BentleyMotor, 2012).
Transportation of Inbound Materials
Bentley has found a third party logistics firm to handle the transportation of the components from suppliers/vendors. According to Yusen Logistics (Europe), NYK Logistics has extend a contract between Volkswagen Logistics in order to provide inbound logistics services for delivering the components into Bentley Motor’s production facility located at Crewe. NYK Logistics is responsible to deliver all these components to the Crewe plant from suppliers throughout Europe. Through “collect to manifest” system, Bentley parts will be cross-docked at NYK hubs in Germany and UK before all of it send to Crewe plant. This system can assure Bentley complete control over their inventory and vendor (YusenLogisticsEurope, 2009).
Receiving Process and Movement of Material
In the same year which is 2009, Bentley has also invested £13.6 million in Integrated Logistics Centre (ILC). The construction of ILC has dramatically improved the reaction time. The kanban system has been implemented, and there is a picking cycle of every 45 minutes on 8 routes which go to different areas of assembly line. This has contributed to 30% reductions in material movements and £3.5 million annual revenue costs have been saved. The receiving process and movement of material to the factory become more efficient (AutomotiveSupplyChain, 2012).
Automated Material Handling System
As the components and parts were stored at Crewe plant, the management of inventory will be more complex. Furthermore, Bentley as a luxury automobiles manufacturer, the uniqueness of the materials and components also contributed to the complexity.
Due to limited space, Bentley has relocated its part centre at Crewe and TGW Logistics Group fit-out this new facility with an automated warehousing solution (HSSSearch, 2012). There is no longer manual order picking of parts that is labour intensive. An automated storage and retrieval system by TGW Logistics has implemented which has significantly improved the speed and accuracy of the order picking system (HSSSearch, 2012). In order to service...
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