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What is a Virtual Assembly Factory?

Virtual Assembly Factory is a complete solution for both Global Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and Small to Medium Enterprise (SME) product companies striving to better utilize their assets and scale their businesses. Leveraging decades of experience working with the most demanding product and manufacturing companies globally, WCI has unified a solution that includes integrated procurement, data-rich assembly, customized order fulfillment, and dedicated project management. The solution provides customers the ability to quickly increase capacity, reduce assets deployed, and increase their profitability for products and assemblies with complex assembly requirements and significant supply chain content.

Learn more about how the Virtual Assembly Factory can benefit your company.

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Virtual Assembly Factory Elements

To understand the Virtual Assembly Factory better, it is helpful to understand each of the key pieces of the solution:

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Integrated Procurement. 90% of many industrial products are purchased (manufactured by suppliers). Without systems and expertise, inventories and purchased material costs quickly rise, putting pressure on the total cost. The root of the problem is different for OEM and SMEs. OEMs struggle with inflexible ERP systems and a proliferation of complexity. SMEs often suffer because of sub-par systems and a lack of supply management expertise. A Virtual Assembly Factory solution solves these issues with proven processes that are both robust and flexible.

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Data-rich Assembly. Call it Industry 4.0, call it Factory Automation, or call it Digital Manufacturing: the technology exists to create highly capable and data-rich processes to put products together with world-class levels of quality and eliminate cycle-time waste. The catch is often cost and complexity. For SMEs starting down this path, high-priced consultants are often the only option. OEMs typically have in-house Factory Automation resources, but getting it deployed to all assemblies is challenging with the riskiest, most labor-intensive processes getting resources while other assemblies are ignored. WCI solves both issues by pulling available technology together into a seamless solution using in-house expertise.

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Order Fulfillment. Getting completed assemblies to the next step in the value stream can be complex. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems often struggle to keep pace with the latest logistics strategies and interfaces. Additionally, various fulfillment techniques can be used by the same customer – for instance, sequencing, Kanban, and traditional purchase orders. SMEs often have a different desire – reduce logistics and warehousing costs by shipping directly to their customers’ end-customers. By consistently updating our ERP system and customizing it for customer requirements WCI’s Virtual Assembly Factory can seamless fulfill orders based on customer preference and strategy.

Learn More by Exploring Specific Use Cases

Outsourcing the Virtual Assembly Factory value stream is useful in many instances and many industries:

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Global OEMs. WCI has specific experience working with Global OEMs with incredibly complex and sophisticated operating models. Using our Virtual Assembly Factory solution, Global OEMs have been able to increase throughput by assembling higher in their bill-of-materials, improve asset utilization by outsourcing, and maximizing cost savings through supply partnership. Explore WCI’s Global OEM solution page.

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SME Product Companies. Virtual Assembly Factories are also valuable to SME Product Companies. Innovation is the name of the game for SME Product Companies who frequently storm the market with new products and features developed over months instead of years. Virtual Assembly Factories ensure that the resulting demand from this innovation can be scaled up in time to fulfill customer demand. Explore WCI’s SME Product Company solution page.

With an innovative model that brings to bear Procurement, Assembly, and Order Fulfillment, a turn-key Virtual Assembly Factory solution can unlock value at both Global OEMs and SME Product Companies. WCI’s proven track record and decades of experience make the engagement and implementation straightforward and low risk. Implementation timelines are accelerated using WCI’s dedicated project management team.