Kaufbeuren, 30 March 2020 – The rapid spread of the Corona virus (Covid-19) puts a massive strain on both the German and international economies. Long before the current crisis, STW has developed a service that reduces the default risks to a minimum and guarantees long-term availability of STW components through component and obsolescence management. This means STW remains able to deliver its products.
As a manufacturer of electronic assemblies for tough and rough operating conditions, the long-term availability of products is essential. The STW product lifetime of more than ten years, for example, is well above the standard in the automotive sector.
Nevertheless, STW, like all other manufacturers of electronic assemblies, is affected by the changes in the electronic component market and – as can be seen currently – unpredictable crises. The ever shorter life cycles and faster innovation cycles of the manufacturers initially stand against the desire for long-term availability. In addition, some component manufacturers change their products over the course of their service lifetime in terms of e.g. color, shape, function, place of manufacture, test site, etc. Some products are discontinued completely and are then no longer available (obsolete). And in extreme cases, companies may have to shut down their operations completely due to drastic economic changes.
Updates on such changes reach STW in the form of PCNs (Product Change Notifications) or PDNs (Product Discontinuation Notifications).
For unprepared manufacturers, discontinuations in particular represent a major challenge. The effort involved in searching for a replacement type, the resulting redesigns or component storage mean high costs.
In order to be prepared for such challenges, STW's "Component and Obsolescence Management" intervenes at a much earlier stage.
Of course, stable processes within STW are indispensable for such a forward-looking approach. Further support includes access to a professional database and membership of COG Deutschland e.V. (Component Obsolescence Group), which has more than 150 members throughout Germany.
This way customers are involved in the life cycle planning of the future product from the initial project phase, where strategic component decisions are made to guarantee a long lifetime of the assembly group. Regular reviews during the product life cycle ensure that the risk of sudden component discontinuation is minimized. STW thus guarantees its customers functionality, quality and the ability to supply the products for years to come.
At STW, the currently unclear and critical situation due to the Corona pandemic is of course viewed with great concern. Up to now, STW has not experienced any economically induced delivery difficulties and is able to continue to offer its customers good and reliable service despite adapted working conditions.
As an internationally active company with Headquarter in Kaufbeuren, we stand for the digitization, automation and electrification of mobile machines for over 30 years. With generic or customer-specific products, systems and solutions developed and manufactured at our headquarters in Germany, we support our customers with innovative technology on their way to making their machines the best in the world.
Supplemented by partner products and accompanied by our training, support and system teams, we help medium-sized companies and large OEMs to increase the performance and efficiency of their machines and increase safety. Through communication between machines, connectivity with our cloud platform and additional partner services, we enable the integration of mobile machines into business processes.