Experience Report Qun Xiu
Supplier developer at Xuzhou Rothe Erde Slewing Bearing Co., Ltd.
My job is actually a little special. In simple words, I support and develop our suppliers or potential suppliers to contribute to our current and future business success.
I analyze the respective suppliers in regards to their cost position, logistic performance or quality issues. My role in the company focuses on solving the production needs, saving production cost, reducing the purchase price and even making the whole supply chain more competitive.
The supplier development and improvement is an essential part of strategic procurement activities and also offers a variety of benefits for the supplier. To help suppliers improve their quality, capacity and performance while reducing costs at the same time raises the competitiveness of the supplier for their own sake – a win-win situation!
My team and I also need to constantly research more suitable production technologies, explore new processes with our suppliers and improve product quality and competitiveness. It requires both, deep professional knowledge and good teamwork skills.
My typical working day
As the supplier's quality management engineer, I need to be aware of the product quality and the production in our own company. So cross-functional discussions with various stakeholders belong to my daily tasks. It is a significant channel to understand the demands of the product, and an essential direction to discuss with suppliers on how to improve the product. Therefore, my job is not only to deal with product quality issues, but also to understand the needs of technical/production personnel and think about how to improve the product quality by spending time to communicate with on-site workmates. And of course a big share of my time, I work at the suppliers sites to discuss and align the direction of their future development with them and how to reach set targets of improvement.
I think a major challenge is to merge the different and sometimes competing internal requirements and targets together and to communicate this in an appropriate manner to the supplier. On the other hand, the business strategy of the supplier should match our own company goals. To balance and align this can be difficult sometimes.
We know what technology we have, which equipment we want to use and which manufacturing capacity we need. Further, we combine these during the definition of product requirements with comprehensive needs of our customers, the possibilities of our suppliers. It is important to be able to communicate and integrate all these relevant elements and related stakeholders. We for example cannot produce with excessive quality but wasting plenty of manufacturing costs at the same time, the balance needs to fit.
In my job I am responsible for the performance and the footprint of a supplier in general and the quality of their products. It requires a high level of technical qualities, a good understanding of the requirements and performance of products, as well as a good understanding of how to produce and manufacture products. Moreover, it can also include services, logistics and transportation, how to improve technology, save cost and create more value. Last but not least, it is all about communication.
It is an inspiring job and I have been engaged in technical, production, quality management and other former work.
Our slogan is „engineering. tomorrow. together.” Together means for me …
Being “together” means a lot to us. We have a common understanding of the job we have to do and where the company wants to develop in regards to suppliers, market development and customer requirements.
The current market competition is extremely fierce and even cruel. In my position, I hope to create more reliability, more efficiency, more stability and more competitiveness in the supply chain management. I am fully convinced, that only in this way we can expect a better tomorrow, together with our customers and supply chain partners.
My employer thyssenkrupp rothe erde
The first thing I learned about thyssenkrupp rothe erde is that they have quite a long history. After entering the company, I noticed the differences between China and the western world, such as culture, philosophy and of course, food. I like the strong corporate culture very much, which I suppose is probably the reason why Germany is on top of the manufacturing industry worldwide.
On the premise of doing my own job well, I am sure I have the possibility to develop further in the future. I am a person who craves for challenges and I have the luck to work for a company that supports my development for future perspectives.