Design and Operations Improvement Through a Vendor Crisis

  • Rick Bauer
  • Director, Media Qualification
  • Corporate Technology Services
  • Janelle Hampton
  • Engineering Manager
  • Donaldson Company, Inc.

Manufacturing firms depend on their vendors. What happens when a key vendor experiences production problems? The customer, a manufacturing operation, struggles to meet schedules. Such is the experience of Rick Bauer and Janelle Hampton at Donaldson. They describe a major problem: availability of materials from a single source supplier. They collaborated to redesign their processes. They involved their colleagues in multiple functions to successfully solve unknowns, risks and glitches created by the supply loss. Their practical experiences, especially regarding interactions with a variety of people who react and respond differently to crises, is a valuable lesson in the current climate of unforeseen operational disruptions.