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7.19 - Component and Supplier Management (CSM)

Component and Supplier Management (CSM) solves part proliferation problems caused by independent business units not benefiting from corporate co-operation in part selection, design and sourcing.

Symptoms of a CSM Problem

  • Redundant sourcing and re-design of parts
  • Designers constantly specifying new components…from new suppliers
  • Too many functionally equivalent parts for the same basic specification
  • Multiple part numbers for the same parts
  • Divisions buying similar parts…from the same suppliers…without Corporate volume agreements
  • Maintenance Repair & Operations (MRO) buying “out-of-control:
    • Too many Purchase Requisitions
    • Too many suppliers
    • Extreme specifications

Multi-site Component and Supplier Problems

Problem Usually Caused by:-

  • Multiple sites each with its own:
    • Part numbering schemes and parts database(s)
    • Part and commodity classification schemes
    • Information Technology Systems for:
      • CAD, PDM, MRP & Procurement


Single (or Virtual single) corporate parts database and decision support systems with:-

  • Cross references all part numbers to others
  • Cross references to supplier parts catalogues
  • Allocates central part numbers and local numbers in local formats
  • Processes to ensure Preferred Parts usage


Are you re-inventing the Wheel?

  • Classification allows re-use at single business unit level
  • CSM extends it to a corporate level and supports Strategic Sourcing
  • Supplier Reduction
  • Enables Strategic Sourcing
  • Supports Corporate Commodity Buying teams


See guide 6.17 for further information on classification

Some PLM systems are capable of handling CSM requirements for part classification but require separate systems to handle the corporate part requirements and supplier consolidation issues.

This usually means consolidating the requirements from each of the business units into some form of data fact tables in a data warehouse.

It also requires considerable attention to the units of measure used for raw materials (e.g. some business units may specify units of length and others units of mass for the same or similar items).

Further Reading