Aircraft IT MRO Issue 50: Winter 2021

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Aircraft IT MRO Issue 50: Winter 2021 Cover

Articles

Name Author
CASE STUDY: Smartwings journey to a more effective digital supply chain Petr Barton, Head of Logistics & Stores, Smartwings View article
CASE STUDY: Cargolux & TRAX eMOBILITY Q&A Part 2 Stephane Kastler, Director of Maintenance & Production, Cargolux View article
WHITE PAPER: Technologies for a promising future Rob Mather, Vice President, Aerospace and Defence Industries, IFS View article
CASE STUDY: Rolls-Royce and QOCO; working together for PLM Nick Ward, Head of Product Management for Digital Services, Civil Aerospace at Rolls-Royce View article

CASE STUDY: Smartwings journey to a more effective digital supply chain

Author: Petr Barton, Head of Logistics & Stores, Smartwings

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Standfirst Petr Barton, Head of Logistics & Stores, Smartwings explains how the airline brought about improved digital supply chain processes during pandemic.

Facing the challenges of operating an efficient supply chain during the COVID pandemic, Smartwings turned to digital technology to develop and deploy its own supply chain management APP, MATMen. This is the story of that app and its associated modules but first, a few words about the subject airline.

SMARTWINGS GROUP

The Smartwings Group includes two brands, Smartwings and Czech Airlines, plus subsidiaries in Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Germany, operating scheduled flights, charter flights and private flights. In 2019, the group carried 9.6 million passengers from 14 bases across seven countries.

Smartwings

Based at Václav Havel Airport in Prague with a fleet of 43 aircraft (mainly Boeing 737 variants: -700, -800, -900 and MAX), Smartwings is the largest airline in the Czech Republic and one of the fastest growing carriers in Central Europe. It operates flights to holiday destinations plus dry leases to other airlines as well as scheduled local flights and business charters with a fleet of Cessna 680 business jets.

Czech Airlines

Czech Airlines is 97.74% owned by Smartwings and is the fifth oldest airline still operating in the world. The fleet consists of two aircraft, Airbus A319 and A320, operating scheduled flights.

AVIATION SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT APP, MATMen

Smartwings Group app for supply chain management is MATMen – a solution that was developed by Petr Barton (BARTON Aviation Software), in a real airline environment, and that fully understands and addresses the needs of a modern airline supply chain and spare parts management.

About MATMen

MATMen was created in 2016 as small project focusing mainly on the inventory management for outstations plus their need to have to have an easy-to-use app and to have up to date internal systems. Today, in 2021, MATMen covers all key functions across the supply chain from parts quotation to installation on the aircraft. It also saves money with correct and cost saving decisions.

This article will set out to introduce some of the key modules that, during the pandemic, have helped Smartwings to gain a clear visibility of the inventory 24/7, reduced costs and have been accessible from any place (office or home) in the world.

INCOMING SHIPMENTS

The incoming shipments module was developed to improve efficiency in our main store, which was previously not so efficient, and to reduce human errors in the process of receiving of incoming packages that are delivered to our stores. Using the module today, we can pre-alert our stores team to any shipment that is on the way; they can then plan the necessary staff numbers and see, in one place, all the incoming shipments and what volume to expect. Using the module, we are able to track the real-time status of the package: for example – whether it has been collected, is in customs or has been fully delivered to our stores.

This module also automatically creates a driver task when a shipment needs to be collected by our driver. All departments can check the shipment status at any time without any extra communications and emails needing to be send to the stores. Each person can set-up a real time notification so the process of the collection for incoming shipments is visible to everyone.

STORES DRIVER APP

The stores driver app was created to provide real-time information about the collection of incoming and outgoing shipments. The module enables us to have a real-time notification when the shipment is physically received by our staff or delivered to the forwarder, or handling company. This module covers the functions listed below, so that our drivers have all the required information in one place and available to them on their tablet or mobile device:

  • Driver Tasks Overview;
  • Tasks Overview per locations;
  • Incoming Shipments Overview;
  • Map Overview;
  • Car Journey Logbook.

The module is fully connected with incoming or outgoing shipments so that real-time status from the driver is immediately visible across the platform.

QUOTATIONS MANAGEMENT

The quotation management module was created to simplify the quotation process for spare parts and to streamline the flow. At the moment we have a perfect overview of quotations received from suppliers so that our staff can be properly informed to decide on the selection of the supplier. This module can automatically send the requests for quotations directly to the relevant suppliers with all required details; so, the staff are no longer sending unique emails to each supplier, and they can focus more on their work.

Lukas Kapek, AOG Desk Officer says of the MATMen app quotation management module: “For a daily user, such as me, quotation management is a very important part in the process of locating spare parts on the market. Instead of contacting the vendors manually via email it provides the possibility to assign all the necessary information into the system in few steps, and to create one quotation header. After selecting the specific vendor an automatic email will be sent with all the details and instructions such as part number, priority, aircraft registration and location where the part is needed. This whole process takes no more than a minute and it really simplifies my job. Once the offer from a vendor is received and assigned again into the system via one simple step, it appears in a well-organized list of all offers from which I can easily choose the most suitable one. It really is a time saving and I honestly can’t imagine working without this module.”

SUPPLIERS TRANSPORT CONCEPT

We have created a unique solution within which Smartwings can set-up a transport details / concept for each supplier to help our teams correctly decide which forwarder will be a perfect fit for the required priority and when will be the expected arrival date for the delivery (figure 1).

Figure 1

EXCHANGE MANAGEMENT

This module was developed to provide a clear overview of exchange orders. For each core return there is an automatic email core return notification generated and sent to the supplier, containing information about the returned unit and shipping details. The module then monitors the exchange return period and notifies the teams internally if the unit is not returned on time, to avoid penalty charges from the supplier. This module is fully connected to the repair management module enabling users to monitor the repair costs of the exchanged core units.

REPAIR MANAGEMENT

This module was created to monitor Smartwings’ external repair process and enable us to have a quick overview of outstanding open repair orders that are not quoted or not delivered and returned by the supplier. The module also sends automatic reminders to the suppliers and provides a repair costs history for each part number.

With this module we can monitor the following details, which we did not have the opportunity to monitor before:

  • Shop Capabilities;
  • Repair Tenders;
  • Repair History;
  • Repair Costs Overview;
  • Repair Quotations Management;
  • Incoming & Outgoing Repair Orders monitoring.

Michael Cizek, Exchange Cores Management & Repairs says of the Repair Management module: “I love to work with MATMen because it makes my job easier and less time-consuming. It allows me to have a perfect and quick overview of my open and closed cases: plus, everything is simple and well-structured. Thanks to MATMen’s notifications, I cannot miss any deadline; pre-set automatic emails are far more efficient, and it has really improved communication within our team.

AOG DESK 3.0

During recent years we have worked hard to improve the efficiency of our AOG Desk at Smartwings, as the AOG Desk plays the key role when an aircraft is on the ground. The correct information is important if the Desk is to predict and know what parts are required and when they will be delivered. We improved our unique AOG Desk module to allow our staff to effectively manage open cases, insert comments and send updates about parts, create quotes requests, and monitor shipments in one place.

PROJECT DETAILS

If you have any questions or requests regarding this project, you can contact Petr Barton directly via email: petr@barton-as.com

Contributors’ Details

Petr Barton

Starting at Smartwings in 2013, as storekeeper, after two years Petr was promoted to team leader of the exchange control department and then, in 2016, to Inventory Manager with responsibility for the main store and outstations supply chain. In March 2018 he was appointed Operational Supply Chain Manager to build and manage a new Operational Supply Chain department focusing on outstations’ material management, logistics activities and a 24/7 AOG Desk. In 2019 he was promoted to Head of Logistics & Stores with responsibility for the AOG Desk, Logistics and Stores.

Smartwings

Smartwings, with subsidiaries in Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Germany, operating scheduled flights, charter flights and private flights. In 2018, the group carried ten million passengers from a total of 14 bases across seven countries with a fleet of 45 aircraft: Boeing 737 variants: -700, -800, -900 and MAX, plus Cessna 680, Airbus A319 and Airbus A320.

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