Bose Corporation


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SUPPLY CHAIN MANAGEMENT AT BOSE CORPORATION Bose Corporation, headquartered in Framingham, Massachusetts, offers an excellent example of integrated supply chain management. Bose, a producer of audio premium speakers used in automobiles, high-fidelity systems, and consumer and commercial broadcasting systems, was founded in 1964 by Dr. Bose of MIT. Bose currently maintains plants in Massachusetts and Michigan as well as Canada, Mexico, and Ireland. Its purchasing organization, while decentralized, has some overlap that requires coordination between sites. It manages this coordination by using conference calls between managers, electronic communication, and joint problem solving. The company is moving toward single sourcing many of its 800 to 1,000 parts, which include corrugated paper, particle board and wood, plastic injected molded parts, fasteners, glues, woofers, and fabric. Some product components, such as woofers, are sourced overseas. For example, at the Hillsdale, Michigan, plant, foreign sourcing accounts for 20% of purchases, with the remainder of suppliers located immediately within the state of Michigan. About 35% of the parts purchased at this site are single sourced, with approximately half of the components arriving with no incoming inspection performed. In turn, Bose ships finished products directly to Delco, Honda, and Nissan and has a record of no missed deliveries. Normal lead time to customers is 60 working days, but Bose can expedite shipments in one week and airfreight them if necessary. The company has developed a detailed supplier performance system that measures on- time delivery, quality performance, technical improvements, and supplier suggestions. A report is generated twice a month from this system and sent to the supplier providing feedback about supplier performance. If there is a three-week trend of poor performance, Bose will usually
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