Sustainable and Responsible Supply Management
Ford Motor Company continues to improve their sustainability performance throughout its supply chain system, through their advanced supplier partnership initiatives.
The automobile supply industry can be one of the most complicated of any industry. Automakers like Ford rely on thousands of tier-one suppliers to provide the materials, parts and services to make its final products. Since, many suppliers serve multiple automakers, and those suppliers, in turn, have multiple suppliers. There are many other industries like the electronics industry who are also interlinked to the automotive supply chain. You may see in upwards of 10 levels of suppliers between automakers, and the sources of raw materials used in this manufacturing process. Because of the inter-connections of these auto suppliers makes it unusually difficult to efficiently manage this part of the business and any sustainability issues it hopes to achieve.
To efficiently engage suppliers throughout the supply chain, Ford took a three-phase approach; addressing individual facilities, in training and capabilities, which are the fundamental basics of Ford's sustainability program that is supported by evaluations of individual tier-one supplier factories. Ford is building stronger supplier relationships and leveraging corporate engagement with innovative supplier partnerships, called the Aligned Business Framework (ABF), to enhance supplier ownership at the corporate level for supply chain sustainability management, and performance systems among its suppliers throughout the supply chain.
Ford is also driving partnerships and industry tool development for global supply sustainability issues through industry and cross-industry partnerships. (Newton)
To strengthen supplier relationships and manage supply sustainability performance across its supply chain included its ABF. Building strong relationships with suppliers is based on communication, clear and consistent expectations, and requirements to the processes. In 2005, Ford introduced the ABF with its strategic suppliers to strengthen collaboration, increase mutual profitability, improve quality, drive innovation and help ensure a shared commitment to sustainability goals. (Newton)
With these new joint agreements with ABF suppliers Ford systematically influences specific business obligations. The network includes 102 supplier companies that represent 65 percent of Ford's annual total global buy of US$75 billion, up from 34 percent in 2006. (Newton)
These include long-term sourcing agreements, improved parts cohesion, increased communication among all suppliers for products and manufacturing parts, and increased communications in forecasting information. This also includes data transparency among all suppliers, and partners, continued commitments to minority groups, and other enterprises that bring leading-edge technology and innovation to Ford.
One example is to convert...