Vendor Managed Inventory Solutions
Keeping Wheels on the Ground and an Eye on the Future
New Flyer Industries was founded in 1930 as Western Auto and Truck Body Limited. Since then, New Flyer Industries has become the largest transit bus and motor coach manufacturer in North America. Their fabrication, manufacturing, distribution, and service centers across the United States and Canada, make them the largest parts distributor in the market, employing nearly 6,000 team members.
The New Flyer Group has over 50 years of experience manufacturing zero-emission buses (ZEBs). Of their 44,000 heavy-duty transit buses currently in service, 7,300 are powered by electric motors and 1,600 are zero-emission. New Flyer is building on their 85+ year legacy of innovation to deliver transit solutions which meet the complex demands of today’s and tomorrow’s communities.
How do you provide consistently strong support for a rapidly growing partner? New Flyer, longtime partner Westburne and Panduit, was expanding their operations in the United States and required help driving efficiencies in their new plants.
Our solution was to provide a full VMI solution to ensure quality distribution that matched the demand for increased New Flyer production. By spending time in the production plant, Westburne and Panduit were able to identify where improvements could be made to improve New Flyer’s rate of completion.
By streamlining their production process, New Flyer is better equipped to handle increased production at the same standard of quality they built their reputation on. With the full VMI solution provided by Westburne and Panduit, their production process has less stalls, faster production time, and reduced maintenance needs.
The Heart Of The Challenge
New Flyer Industries has been a long-standing customer of Westburne and Panduit for many years. Casey Koniuk from team Panduit provided NFI with various solutions and multiple channel partners when NFI was purchasing a tenth of what they do today in Panduit product. Since then, Panduit has evolved into one of NFI’s most trusted solutions partners.
When the NFI organization transitioned from a privately owned to a publicly traded company 11 years ago, they underwent dramatic changes which fueled rapid growth. With growing demand, their processes and supply chain needed refining. Westburne successfully secured a single source agreement with NFI, and since then Paul Stoynich (Panduit) and Jarrett Oneschuk (Westburne) have diligently partnered to assist NFI with best in class solutions and new streamlining processes through their vendor managed inventory service.
Creating A Best In Class Solution
Today, Westburne’s Winnipeg team oversees vendor managed inventory at New Flyer for right sized inventories and just-in-time service to the factory floor. During a recent plant visit, the Westburne and Panduit teams had the opportunity to spend time touring the NFI facility, which assembles and delivers over 29 coaches per week. They witnessed the 40’ and 60’ tandem motor coaches being assembled from raw metal framing, the installation of wire harnesses, and the delivery of the final painted product. Working alongside the engineering team and lead hands gave Panduit and Westburne the opportunity to ask questions, resolve issues, and suggest automated solutions to streamline their production process.
Today, annual sales of Panduit product to NFI through Westburne has increased tenfold, and with the acquisition of rival MCI (Motor Coach Industries), it is expected to grow significantly. With New Flyer’s continued growth, they are expanding their North American footprint. As a trusted advisor, Panduit has had the privilege of sending John French (technical sales engineer – Panduit) to the St. Cloud and Crookston Minnesota plants for internal process audits which will drive efficiency and provide NFI with best in class solutions. Today NFI is a key partner in Panduit’s Wire Harness Program. Panduit provides rebated tooling solutions which complement the daily needs of NFI’s wire harness bundling and organizational needs. Panduit’s supply chain optimization program allows Westburne to provide these solutions easily and effectively.
New Flyer Industries is a complex yet streamlined manufacturer, and through Panduit and Westburne’s contributions, they are better equipped to address customer expectations of all kinds. Their finished product is in thousands of cities across North America and their world class solution is responsible for transporting millions of men, women and children safely throughout the community daily. Panduit’s infrastructure solutions mean higher performance, reduced maintenance, improved safety, better use of space, and fewer headaches. Alongside Panduit, Westburne’s certified experts work closely with you and your team to provide the best solutions and service to help grow your business.
The Right People Working Together
As NFI internalizes more processes and production, there will be many new challenges to overcome. NFI and their dedicated engineering team collaborate with our teams on new projects that have clear end goals in mind. With the expertise of a channel partner like Westburne, and a best in class manufacturer like Panduit, we provide NFI with the solutions needed to meet constantly changing market needs. Today Panduit and Westburne work closely with NFI as they expand into markets which they had previously outsourced solutions to. Panduit’s team of engineers and business leaders from our OEM division train and certify New Flyer’s employees to ensure NFI’s final product can safely transport passengers to their desired location.