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Frontiers March 2013 Issue

Supply in demand Supplier Management transformation cuts costs and improves efficiencies By Antonella Bellman Last year, more than 1,000 jet aircraft engines left the GE Aviation plant in Peebles, Ohio, on flatbed trucks that headed west toward Washington state. From the foothills of the Appalachian mountains, the engines were transported some 2,400 miles (3,900 kilometers) to Boeing’s commercial jetliner plants in Renton and in Everett, where they are used on all the company’s 7-series jets—737, 747, 767, 777 and 787. It’s a trip that typically takes about four days. Those engines, worth millions of dollars each, include the GE-90-115B, the world’s most powerful commercial jet engine, each delivering some 115,000 pounds of thrust (510 kilonewtons) for the 777. Making sure all the engines get to the Boeing plants on time is essential for the company to maintain its production schedules and meet customer demands as production rates go up. But getting components needed for assembly to Boeing factories takes more than simply contracting with a transportation service. It takes a team of employees from Supplier Management and Supply Chain Logistics, both part of the Shared Services Group, who know the ins and outs of the freight and logistics industry. “While we don’t purchase the engines that go onto Boeing planes, we are responsible for finding and contracting with freight PHOTO: After a four-day trip from Peebles, Ohio, GE aircraft engines arrive just as the sun comes up in Everett, Wash. GAIL HANUSA/BOEING BOEING FRONTIERS / MARCH 2013 33


Frontiers March 2013 Issue
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