Faurecia: Achieving Organization, Transparency, and Responsiveness
The Interior Systems Division of Faurecia, a key player in the automotive equipment market, is using Sciforma solution to manage their projects and optimize their use of resources worldwide.
Since 2009, the Interior Systems division, which has 21,000 contributors and accounts for 22% of Faurecia's turnover has standardized all its projects and restructured its entire organization around the Sciforma’s platform.
Faurecia is the 8th largest international automotive parts manufacturer in the world; in 2013, it was number one for vehicle interiors and emission control technology. One in four automobiles is equipped by Faurecia.
To find out more: http://www.faurecia.com/en
Financial Crisis Leads to Need for Organization Transformation
The economic and financial crisis in the autumn of 2008 shook up the automotive sector in particular, which was already weakened by increasing globalization. In order to survive this period of economic turmoil and adapt to changes in the sector, the Faurecia Interior Systems Division (which designs and manufactures the entire vehicle interior, except for the seats) launched a program to significantly improve project management and organization.
"Faurecia's project teams, especially those in the Interior Systems Division, are located in countries all over the world. The profound changes that have occurred in the automotive sector meant that today, a car destined for the European market may well be designed on another continent, with all the consequences in terms of logistics and human resources that this entails. Until the crisis, we did not really have a solid, unified base that permitted us to really optimize cost, planning, resource management, and cooperation between our teams all over the world. The need to purchase a project management tool had become obvious, so much so that the program managers who head our activity had made it a strategic development objective," stated David Duval, Faurecia Senior Program Manager in charge of the PSNext Project.
Faurecia studied the different products on the market and chose PSNext, the platform developed by Sciforma, and hired the services of the integrator ASI, which understood the solution perfectly, to support the changeover.
"We chose Sciforma for several reasons, even if our main business driver was the time factor. We had to adapt quickly to our customers' new requirements because of the collapse of the market, which had accelerated with the 2008 economic crisis. Based on our order book, Sciforma seemed to be the simplest and quickest solution to implement as well as having the range of features and the flexibility needed for large-scale deployment and to ensure a high level of user satisfaction and adoption," added David Duval.
An Implementation Where Users' Functional Needs Were Central
After a conclusive Proof-of-Concept carried out jointly by ASI and Sciforma, Faurecia then implemented the tool in successive stages, gradually including new possible scenarios so as to personalize the tool to the needs of all its users. The division's top management closely monitored the progress of the project and made sure that the functional requirements were understood since the well-being of the division depended on the success of Sciforma and its acceptance by the final users. The program managers also insisted that Sciforma be deployed by the existing operators (this was not a decision made only by the IT service), so as to ensure the success of the operation.
"The ASI team's strength was knowing how to put themselves in the place of the final user. The internal processes were well-assimilated thanks to a large number of workshops that we put in place. They allowed the integrator to understand all our internal needs and to improve collaboration and synchronization between Faurecia's human resources, whatever their geographical location. The perfect correlation between the understanding of our needs, the skills of the integrator, and the performance of the tool was probably one of the main factors in the success of the project," concluded David Duval.
After the POC, training on the tool began for the first teams in July of 2009. The project really started three months later and ended in February of 2010 with the delivery of the final version. A two- to three-month pilot test phase followed with a pilot project in each region of the world. This permitted the on-going integration of the comments and changes suggested by the teams around the world that reflected their different work habits. There was still difficulty in integrating the system while keeping within a worldwide, standardized framework with a need to reinforce the overall company culture, an indispensable element in the smooth running of an essentially multi-cultural structure like Faurecia's. Sciforma was fully functional as of July of 2010. Today, it has more than 1,500 users who have been trained internally by the Faurecia Interior Systems Division.
Necessary Change Management Carried Out in Perfect Harmony with Top Management
Obviously, a project of this scope had to include a change management policy that was implemented at all stages under the watchful eyes of top management. Most users, who only "planned" their work using an Excel spreadsheet, were satisfied to see a simple, effective tool that allowed them to organize their daily tasks. The change was managed by a pilot committee that included the ISD Group and the division's Vice-President of Programmes. The committee was in contact with the key users on the ground (one per region) so as to have effective communication regarding the progress of the project in the various geographical areas and to pass on any possible problems.
"The project is now supervised by a team of four people, assisted by several on-site contacts who preach the good word at the local level and report any possible needs in one region or another to us. Sciforma is always supervised in Europe and the integration of functional expectations into the tool is always a priority one year after the project has become the standard tool of the business unit," added Laurent Labbe, Sciforma solution administrator, in charge of the continuing improvement of the software at Faurecia Interior Systems.
Several modules of Sciforma are used today: planning, collaboration, reporting, management, and resource planning functionality plus conflict management. Now, a conflict that is not entered into the tool has no real existence within the structure. Sciforma has also made it possible to modernize the existing project management processes while making them clearer by implementing their methodological scope directly in the tool. Planning the hours spent on each project in the world is currently being integrated.
Tangible Benefits in Terms of Organization, Responsiveness, and Transparency
The integration of Sciforma into Faurecia Interior Systems is a success. A growing number of users are using the tool naturally and systematically. Its value-added in terms of standardization, coordination, collaboration, and the centralization of important information is now obvious to the great majority of them. Conflict management is also a much appreciated internal tool as it makes it easy to pass on problems to the division's management. Apart from the benefits for the staff, the whole Interior Systems business unit benefits from Sciforma.
"Faurecia has come out of the crisis well; it has been able to land several big new contracts in 2010, and Sciforma has contributed to this. Thanks to the Sciforma tool and its fit with our needs, we are more responsive and flexible when faced with a customer who announces the launch of a new model. The managers can read the possible concerns of their teams better. Budgets are more transparent and it is much simpler to understand the distribution of the teams at the different sites so as to attend better to the expectations of our customers. Sciforma has made it possible to modernize the way that Faurecia looks at a business opportunity and a customer project by making the division more responsive, despite its considerable size," added Laurent Labbe.