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FACULTY OF TECHNOLOGY

SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING

Feasibility study for the implementation


of the Quality Standard TL9000 for
Intcomex Ecuador across its supply
chain of Cisco equipment and services.

Student: Isabel Estefania Cano Davila


Student Number: 734590
MSc Course: Technology Management
Supervisor: Dr. Regina Frei
Second Assessor: Mariana Dotcheva
Industrial Mentor: Diego Peña
Host Company: Intcomex Ecuador

September 2015

This Report is submitted in partial submission for the degree of Master of


Science.
ii

ABSTRACT

Supply chain is the key to the success for a distribution company, nowadays logistic
challenges have change and it it’s important to improve the chain which means
significant benefits for the company and can only be achieved by assuring quality in
every process. A value added supply chain requires a clearly stated quality vision
and proper documentation. For the Information and Technology (IT) companies it
has been created a specific quality standard called TL 9000 which covers the
particular needs of supply chains within the telecommunication industry. This
dissertation explains how this standard works, demonstrates how lean techniques
can be applied to different processes of Intcomex EC., an Ecuadorian company;
and measures the levels of quality regarding internal processes, metrics taken from
the products, services and customer feedback, leading it in this way ,to achieve the
TL9000 quality standard.

Keywords: Supply Chain, Quality standard, TL9000, lean technique, Intcomex EC,
Distribution case study, telecommunications metrics.
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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Thank you to all the people who help to make this project possible: the government
of Ecuador; Dr Regina Frei for believing in this idea and my colleges and friends at
Intcomex EC and Cisco Systems EC for their invaluable support.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
ABSTRACT .......................................................................................................................................ii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ..............................................................................................................iii
TABLE OF CONTENTS ................................................................................................................. iv
LIST OF TABLES .............................................................................................................................v
LIST OF FIGURES .......................................................................................................................... vi
INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................................. 8
1.1 Background .................................................................................................................... 8
1.2 Objectives........................................................................................................................ 9
1.3 Plan of Work ................................................................................................................. 10
1.4 Thesis Outline .............................................................................................................. 10
LITERATURE REVIEW ................................................................................................................ 12
2.1 Supply Chain Management Systems. ......................................................................... 12
2.2 Quality in Supply Chain ................................................................................................. 13
THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK .................................................................................................. 15
3.1 QuEST Forum ................................................................................................................ 15
3.2 TL 9000 ........................................................................................................................... 15
IMPLEMENTATION ...................................................................................................................... 21
4.1 Planning ............................................................................................................................. 21
4.2 Requirements .................................................................................................................... 22
4.3 Measurements ................................................................................................................... 31
RESULTS ....................................................................................................................................... 38
DISCUSSION ................................................................................................................................. 42
6.1 Framework ............................................................................................................................... 43
CONCLUSIONS ............................................................................................................................ 45
RECOMMENDATIONS ................................................................................................................ 47
REFERENCES .............................................................................................................................. 48
APPENDIX A. TL 9000 Requirements Release 5.5 ................................................................. 51
APPENDIX B. TL 9000 Metrics and Product Categories. ....................................................... 55
APPENDIX C. Survey applied to customers of Intcomex EC. ................................................ 57
APPENDIX D. Msc. Project Proposal……………………………..……………………………………………………..59

APPENDIX D. Msc. Interim Report…………………………………………………………………………………………61


v

LIST OF TABLES

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Table 1. Quality Standards for Specific Industries …………………….……….……………...15

Table 2. Requirement elements overview…………………………………………….….………….18


18

Table 3. Measurements Description…………………………………….…………………………19


19

Table 4. Categorized Products and Services of Intcomex…………………………………21


21

Table 5. Stages of requirement elements……………………………….…………………………...23


23

Table 6. Technical requirements…………………………………………………………………………24


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Table 7. Quality metrics for Intcomex EC…........…………………………………………..……….31


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Table 8. Hardware metric PR for WS-C2960X-24PS-L…………………………………….…33


33

Table 9. Hardware On time Delivery for Cisco switch SLM2008T-NA………….........34


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Table 10. Return Rate for WAP321-A-K9. ……………………………………….......................…35


35

Table 11. Metrics for Cisco Smart Services ……………………………………………..…………36


36

Table 12. General Results for Hardware Metrics………….…………………………………….39


.39

Table 13. General Results for Services Metrics………………..……………………...……….39


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LIST OF FIGURES

Figure 1. TL 9000 Structure……………………………………………………………16


16

Figure 2. Supply chain strategies vs Stages of PLC………………………………..24


24

Figure 3. Proposed purchase process flow diagram..……………………………..26


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Figure 4. Overview of the Cisco sales model……………………………………….27


37

Figure 5. Survey Result - Stock Products……………………………………………37


37

Figure 6. Survey Result - Made to order…………………………………………….37


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Figure 7. Survey Result – Warranty products………………………………………38


38

Figure 8. Survey Result – Reverse Supply Chain assessment………………….38.


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8

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background

Intcomex S.A. Is an international premier company dedicated to distribute a


wide variety of information technology (IT) products for top
telecommunications enterprises in the last 25 years, among its main partners
are Hewlett-Packard, Apple, Intel, Samsung, Toshiba, Huawei, Microsoft and
Cisco Systems Inc.

With presence in north central and South America and headquarter in Miami,
Intcomex S.A. has been acting as a wholesale aggregator in key countries for
the Latin America and the Caribbean (LATAM) region, these are: Costa Rica,
Jamaica, Chile, Colombia, Uruguay, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Ecuador.

Over the last 6 years Intcomex Ecuador, has become one of the most
important branches for the company and has considerably contributed with
the economy of the country as well as provided vital data and quality
information for the business performance in Ecuador according to the on-line
magazine Global Media-IT ( 2014).

One of the biggest contributors for this development is the strong partnership
between Intcomex EC and Cisco Systems Inc, one of the biggest worldwide
manufacturers of networking and telecommunication infrastructure
equipment. This valuable supply chain alliance has increased the presence
and sales of Cisco Systems within the region, and it is expected to continue.

Based on this premise, and in the fact that a strong supply chain is vital for a
distribution company; it is of great importance to rely on a proper quality
system to foster a good performance across the supply chain improving the
processes involved, and the overall functionality. The best way to have the
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quality that any industry requires is to achieve a quality standard certification,


where the parameters are listed according to a determined industry.

TL 9000 is a global quality management system (QMS) that aims to meet the
supply chain quality requirements of the information and communication
technology industry, of which both Cisco Systems and Intcomex EC are part.
Intcomex is aware of the internal lack of documented supply chain tools,
metrics and processes and is also aware of the importance of qualifying for
this standard of quality to continue leading the region and to shorten
systematic distances with the manufacturer Cisco Systems, which is certified
since 2003 as shows the information provided in the official webpage of Cisco
(2015).

The reason stated above has encouraged the elaboration of this project, to
provide a path Intcomex can follow to achieve the TL 9000 quality standard
trough supply chain methodologies only for Cisco products and services. And
help to improve the overall business quality in Latin America, a region with a
big potential of development.

1.2 Objectives

The main aim of this dissertation is to help Intcomex achieving the quality
standard for the IT industry (TL 9000), by analysing supply chain techniques
for distribution and give guidelines to meet the requirements stated in the
formal documentation of the standard through the following objectives.

 Diagnose the current situation of the Quality Management process for


Cisco chain inside Intcomex EC.

 Describe the product categories, requirements and metrics for


hardware, software and services defined in TL 9000 standard.
10

 Define a model for implementing the applicable requirements,


according to the standard, in Intcomex EC across the supply chain of
Cisco products.

 Measure the performance of the supply chain for products and


services.
 Evaluate the new scenario and formulate guidelines for obtaining the
TL 9000 standard.

1.3 Plan of Work

Objectives in this dissertation will be addressed by studding on one hand the


initial situation of the supply chain for Cisco products and services inside
Intcomex Ec, and studding on the other hand the quality standard
requirements an and metrics and the needs of the company, this elements
will merge and will create a new scenario in with the company can develop a
better supply chain.

Sales reports will be used to select and classify previous data of product and
services metrics. Lean tools will be adapted for the particular needs in this
case of study. And surveys will be created and provided to customers to
obtain valuable information about the distribution service and to maintain a
good relationship between them and Intcomex.

1.4 Thesis Outline


This document consists of seven chapters; which collect the relevant data
and information that have made the culmination of this project feasible and
describe the events in every stage.

Chapter one describes an introduction about the context in which Intcomex


EC, the collaborating company, exists and the importance of counting on the
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results this dissertation will provide. The general and specific objectives are
also listed which provide a structured way to divide the work in stages.

The relevant literature review is detailed in chapter two,


how companies have change by improving their supply chain and what tools
have they used. This harper also reviews how develop this matter is in Latin
America.

The origins and regulation of the standard, benefits, and evaluations from
companies, who have implemented it within a general framework, are
explained in chapter three the information provided in this chapter covers the
context for all IT companies.

Consequently, chapter four contains the key processes needed to develop


the study inside Intcomex with a comprehensive description of supply chain
tools and quality. The two sections are developed in detail according to the
scope of work and the scope of registration defined previously with the
company.

Chapter five allocate the results obtained of the processes implemented, the
raw outcome of the measurements of each product category and the results
of the customer satisfaction surveys applied.

Analytical discussions are placed in chapter six and a final conclusion of the
work done in this dissertation is given in chapter seven, together with the
guidelines for Intcomex to successfully implement the TL 9000 quality
standard.

At the end, in chapter eight, recommendations are stated for future works in
the same or similar field, to avoid any difficulty and the good and bad aspects
when working on a study of quality of supply chain.
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LITERATURE REVIEW

Theoretical and experimental researches have been done focusing on every aspect
of supply chain quality management systems in order to adapt them to the constant
changes the word demands but there are not many researches about defined quality
standards to follow in an official way in all industries; previous analysis and future
trends will be discussed below.

2.1 Supply Chain Management Systems.

Industry nowadays it is clearly different than it was before, there are new supply
challenges and the structure to support a good supply system needs to care more
about the environment, resources usage, disposal, reuse and recycle and
sustainability of the production. McKeller (2014) define the supply chain
management as an evolving discipline, which means future processes also need to
change; and it is exactly what can be seen since the term ‘’supply chain
management’’ was first introduced in 1982 by Keith Oliver as is anecdotally
described in Oliver (2013), the concept has attracted the attention of the world and
has created a discipline that becomes stronger every year, through all the different
attempts of industry to have the best SCM system it is now known that there is not
as standard model but the key to a success or a failure is to have a management
system that is flexible enough so can easily adapts to this uncertain future
conditions.

An interesting study developed by Sengupta (2013) has identified the principal


trends for supply chain management for the next ten years this trends include
operations as well as control activities and will be used for allocating resources for
tailoring quality management according to each process, an what period of supply
chain the company is facing. Four are the main relevant trends for this dissertation:

 Service chains will gain more importance than product chains.


 Supply chain Management will have standards certification processes.
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 Technology is essential to support SCM.


 Artificial Intelligence will be part of mainstream SC activities

Not every trend applies for all industries, for instance product chains are more
important than service chains in food industry and quality management systems
shall use techniques that address individual needs. Morris (2005) take the most out
of services supply chains to increase profit given the potential they have, and has
identified the lack of systems geared towards this special chain, Enterprise resource
planning systems are not good enough as are limited to traditional material and
distribution problems.

2.2 Quality in Supply Chain

Having revised the situation around supply chain management systems there is now
the need to integrate quality to the value chain, meant to increase productivity and
customer satisfaction, as DeBenedetti 2014 says quality control is critical for
maintaining a competitive edge otherwise, waste will prevalent beyond a tolerable
amount.

To demonstrate the importance of quality, Li (2010) has extended the study of


Supply Chain Operation Reference Model ( SCOR) working with data from 232
companies with ISO 9000 certification adding quality metrics to the five decision
areas of the reference model, plan, source, make, deliver and return; results showed
that maintain processes in every stage makes a positive impact on external and
internal customer facing supply, decision making in early sages also get positive
impact for cost and asset planning.

Apart from the operational activities and according to Atrek et al. (2014) a vital
aspect to consider in a supply chain system is the quality of the relationships
between members as it significantly affects the output in the final product or service,
it can be noticed in further related works and official documentation that is
fundamental to have customer interaction for assure good quality levels. This can
reduce gaps when working with different levels of leadership and culture.
14

Li (2011) gives three perspectives to assure quality; in multilayers supply chains, in


outsourcing processes and information management and sharing. All the studies
demonstrated that due to the large amount of variables in a supply chain in in
necessary to have procedures in place to prevent products and market reaction
failures and manage the divergent expectations between customers and suppliers.

Every industry needs to have common quality settings to validate criteria and
establish standardized parameters, the initial steps for standard certification process
have been done and there is a big area of growth and improvement for every
industry as the aim of a quality standard is to measure and compare every supply
chain management system, and to set international regulations and this is still not a
reality for all companies.

There are isolated quality certifications mostly for quality tools as six sigma awarded
by the American Society for Quality and also lean certifications. And general quality
certification by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) organization
(2015) which also awards environmental, energy, risk and information security
management and social responsibility among others. Despite the great contributions
this organization brings to the world is it still the need for particular quality standard
organizations that has been arise in the last years.

All the effort so far has been done in adapting quality to management systems, but
there have not been official targets to meet, as an example, according to Vora (2015)
only 16% of USA firms have documented strategy for their supply chain. The
challenge now is to create specialized quality standards for every industry, the
Information and Technology sector is been one of the pioneers industries to
implement this model and so it is mandatory to is to achieve and maintain the
standard to lead the industry.
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THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK

This chapter is entirely dedicated to review the framework with the structure of the
standard TL 9000 as it is necessary to understand it for being able to adapt it to the
specific needs of Intcomex.

3.1 QuEST Forum

The Quality Excellence for Suppliers of Telecommunications Forum denominated


‘’QuEST Forum’’ is an organization with global impact, was formed 1998, and aims
to achieve the highest quality and performance excellence over the information and
communication technology (ICT) industry. Creating partnerships and workgroups
around the world the forum has implemented a set of quality requirements, a leading
measurement system of supply chain and a repository of the best practices and
benchmarking data that concern the whole industry which provides reliability and
enhance the performance of products and services as reviewed in the official web
page of QuEST Forum (2015).

3.2 TL 9000

TL 9000, is a quality management standard developed by the QuEST Forum, as the


main product, it is recognized globally and it is designed to meet the supply chain
requirements of the telecommunications industry in particularly, amongst its
objectives are maintain a common set of QMS requirements which can reduce the
number of standards needed, continuously protect the integrity and use of products
and services and provide assessment processes for QMS implementation as states
the overview in TL9000 (2013)

TL 9000 studies the requirements since the early stages of the production beginning
from the design, to the delivery and installation of the product or fulfilment of the
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service, going through maintenance and all the way back with the logistics of the
reverse supply chain.

The benefits of obtaining this certification are remarkable not only from the product
side; the cost of doing business is reduced when eliminating multiples QMS
systems. All parties across the supply chain will benefit from it: buyers can assure
quality by working with certified suppliers and the performance and benchmarking
data help to evaluate them in the best way and suppliers can reduce audit costs and
systematized and customized reports for customers.

TL 9000 is not the only standard created for a particular industry. Table 1 shows
the comparison between the former and the leading similar standards.

Standard Industry Requirements Measurements Customer


Role
TS Automotive Specific adds on Collected for business Not Specified
16949 for the industry. objectives and improvement.
Are no defined inside the
standard.
CMMI Any Detailed In-process measurements Not Specified
domain requirements for and best practices.
the industry
TL9000 Telecom Only requires Collected for benchmarking Strongly and
goals to be met and improvement processes. actively
under best involved
practices.
Table 1. Quality Standards for Specific Industries.

The structure of TL 9000 is shown in figure 1. And describes input, layers and output
the model purpose.
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Figure 1. TL 9000 Structure

Adapted from the official requirements handbook release 5

The standard is divided in two sections, Requirements and Measures, these are
explained below:

3.2.1 Requirements

The requirements section is based on ISO 9001-2008 and has built on top of it an
extension of 8 fundamental points for the telecommunication industry. The
international for standardization in organizations (ISO) is the regulatory organization
for all quality matters and rule to all the companies worldwide, it has develop quality
standards with environmental concerns, international quality standard is called ISO
9000 , currently It is in the 2008 version which is valid until 2016.

This section is presented in the ‘requirements handbook’, a guide of 88 pages which


contains a list of requirements and standard quality processes a company should
meet , the general requirements are listed in table 2, the complete list can be found
in Appendix A .
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REQUIREMENTS OVERVIEW
Management Responsibility
Quality System - Element
Contract Review - Element
Design Control - Element
Document and Data Control - Element
Purchasing - Element
Control Of Customer-Supplied Product
Product Identification And Traceability
Process Control
Inspection and Testing
Control of Inspection, Measuring, And Test Equipment
Inspection And Test Status
Control of Nonconforming Product
Corrective And Preventive Action
Handling, Storage, Packaging, Preservation & Delivery
Control of Quality Records
Internal Quality Audits
Training – Element
Servicing – Element
Statistical Techniques
Quality Improvement And Customer Satisfaction

Table 2. Requirement elements overview

3.2.2 Measurements

This section is documented in the ‘Measurements handbook’’, through its 168


pages, this book describes in detail the measurements needed for each category,
the correct way to use them and the source where the data should be taken from.
The intended uses for collecting these measurements are listed in Quest Forum,
(2013):
 Provide benchmarking information suitable for the industry
 Improve processes and products
 Identify improvement opportunities
 Standardize assessments.
19

The standard presents metrics for every product category, many metrics are
common for hardware, software and services and others are specific to each
category. The general metrics and their purpose acting as a quality metrics are listed
in table 3. And the entire list including the subsections with the corresponding
categories, applicability and period of measurement for hardware, software and
services can be found in the Appendix B

If the data that should come from the customers is partially available the supplier
can complete information based on statistics information.

CODE METRICS DESCRIPTION PURPOSE


Common
Indented to simulate ongoing
Number of Number of complaints improvements reducing the number of
NPR Problems reported during the life problems and expenses. A high index of
Reports cycle of the product. NPR implies rework for suppliers and
less customer loyalty.
The official
Problem Report
responsiveness of the Quantifies the responsiveness to
FRT Fix Response
supplier to reported customers and set closure criteria.
Time
problems (RP).
Overdue
Problem Report To quantify the responsiveness of
Rate of closure of
OFR Fix overdue PR. Shrink the threshold fix
overdue PR.
Responsiveness time for unfixed problems.
Measurements
To qualify the delivery performance by
On-Time
OTD Timeliness of delivering. the agreed time. Create timely
Delivery
processes and meet completion dates.
Hardware and Software
To reduce the outage frequency and
Describes the partial of
downtime in a system and with them
total interruption of the
System Outage the associated cost. This metric
SO main function in a
Measurement represents the Mean Time Between
telecommunication
Failures (MTBF) and the availability of
system.
the system.
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Hardware
Metric intend to observe the
quality in the first stage, to
Set of indexes of the rate of
reduce dead on arrival (DOA)
RR Return Rates returning products in a
products, an in the subsequent
determined period of time.
stages to measure the in-service
operation and life cycle costs.
Software
Describes the behaviour of
softwares during the
To evaluate the quantity and
installation and the effort on
Software level of defective software
the maintenance. There are
Installation and installations and quality of
Maintenance three options given for any
maintenance processes, and
telecommunication software:
updates.
Updates, Updates and patching
and application releases.
Intend to generate generic
The number of changes made releases and non-defective
Software Updates
SWU to a software during its features on a timely basis
Quality
lifecycle. minimizing the risks for
customers.

Services
Provide accurate information for
stablishing parameters for
Conformance of a given service
continuous improvement of a
Service Quality according to criteria previously
service deliver. This metric is
agreed.
also dispersed inside NPR, OFR,
SQ FTR, OTD.

Table 3. Measurements Description


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IMPLEMENTATION
4.1 Planning

In this chapter it is going to be developed the work for allocating Intcomex in the
path for achieving the standard TL 9000, after reading and understanding the two
handbooks, the first step is to select the scope of products that will be consider for
the certification and are the starting point to select the appropriated requirements
and metrics.

As the standard TL900 allows certifying a company per product category and is not
restrictive to certify it as a whole, it has been decided to work with certain products
of the Cisco line, excluding other brands Intcomex also distribute. These products
have been selected according to the turnover they produce to the company and the
percentage of stock rotation they have. These products have been also categorized
according to the standard in appendix 2. Table 4 shows the products to be
considered in this feasibility study and the corresponding TL 9000 product category.

General type Category TL 9000 type Series


SMB 300
SMB 500
Switches 1.2.2 Switching Catalyst 2960
Catalyst 3650
Catalyst 3750
RV120
RV180
RV220
Routers 1.2.9.3 Access
Cisco 800
Cisco 1800
Cisco 1900
WAP 500
WAP 300
Aironet 3700
Terminal Equipment 6.2.8 Home Base Station
Aironet 2700
Aironet 1700
Aironet 1200
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General type Category TL 9000 type Series


Services 7.6.2 Sourcing/Purchasing
Services Services
7.10 Consulting Services
7.11 Services Products Customer Assistance

Table 4, Categorized Products and Services of Intcomex.

4.2 Requirements

The first formal requirement to achieve the standard is to write up the scope of
registration, in this case type of certification is Hardware and Services and the
scope statement is:

Distribution, operations and support of networking solutions for the following Cisco
product lines: SMB 100, SMB 200, SMB 300, SMB 500, Catalyst 2960, Catalyst
3650, Catalyst 3750, RV120, RV180, RV220, Cisco 800, Cisco 1800, Cisco 1900,
WAP 500, WAP 300, WAP 100, Aironet 3700, Aironet 2700, Aironet 1850, Aironet
1700, Aironet 1200 sourcing, purchasing, consulting and customer assistance
services.

The requirements needed for the product categories are the common requirements
and the specific ones for hardware and services, they are taken from the appendix
1 excluding the requirements marked with an ‘’S’’ in the column ‘’type’’ as the scope
for this case study does not include Softwares.

From table 1 which shows the general elements of requirements. In table 5 each
element has been classified in stages according to the model proposed in the plan
of work. These stages reflect the current situation of Intcomex with regard of the
requirements needed for the standard. Requirements in the Plan stage are not part
of regular activities of the company and should be introduce in a near future; the
Review stage contains processes that are somewhat undertaken by the company
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but need to be filtered or rearranged. The last stage shows the elements that
Intcomex use regular but need to be polished and documented.

From table 5, elements that need a technical approach and can be developed with
specific techniques are selected, excluding requirements that involves big changes
and elements with details closer to the certification for instance the contract element.
The list is extended to the sub-elements of each category as appropriated and can
be observed in table 6.

REQUIREMENTS / STAGE Plan Review Develop

Management Responsibility x
Quality System x
Contract Review x
Design Control x
Document and Data Control x
Purchasing x
Control Of Customer-Supplied Product x
Product Identification And Traceability x
Process Control x
Inspection and Testing x
Control of Inspection, Measuring, And Test x
Equipment
Inspection And Test Status x
Control of Nonconforming Product x
Corrective And Preventive Action x
Handling, Storage, Packaging, Preservation x
& Delivery
Control of Quality Records x
Internal Quality Audits x
Training - Element x
Servicing - Element x
Statistical Techniques x
Quality Improvement And Customer x
Satisfaction

Table 5. Stages of requirement elements.


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Element Sub element


Quality System Life Cycle Model
IT Measurements (section 3.3)
Purchasing Purchasing Procedure
Process Control Service Delivery Plan
Corrective and preventing action Control of Nonconforming Product
Preservation of a product Handling, Storage, Packaging
Training Course Development
Quality Improvement And Customer Customer-Supplier Relationship
Satisfaction
Customer Satisfaction

Table 6. Technical requirements

4.2.1 Life cycle model

The life cycle of a product describes its progress in a sequence of stages from
introduction to growth, maturity, and decline. The standard requires activities for
development, operation, maintenance and disposal of products and while it is true
that this tasks should be developed and are vital for the manufactures is it also true
that distribution channels are a key component of the progress of a product as they
will create the demand for it.

One of the principal activities provided by a distributor is enable the upstream and
downstream flows of communication, Intcomex is the main channel for Cisco to sell
their products in Ecuador and is also the first contact point for customers; this fact
can make the difference in spanning the life cycle of a product in every stage, if
there is no sufficient or adequate information from the supplier to the customers the
downstream flow will be interrupted and the introduction stage might produce a false
negative balance and delay the period of time a product is actively present in the
market.
25

A second aspect to consider is the flexibility the supply chain should have for
matching the different requirements of different products in different stages; this can
also be seen as having shorter product life cycles while the product is the
responsibility of the wholesaler, where the introduction stage will be the purchase of
the product and the decline stage would be the sale of the product.

Aitken, (2013) propose different strategies that can be implemented while dealing
with a product in each stage, figure 2 shows an adaptation of this model in a different
scale for a reduce product life cycle and it is a good lean approach for Intcomex to
apply.

Where, in the introduction stage the strategy is to design and build the correct supply
chain management defining transport, delivery times, availability and contingency
plan. In a manufacturing process the growth stage is governed by a Material
requirements planning (MRP) that, according to the encyclopaedia Inc., (2015)
which is a system to manage the production ensuring the availability of materials,
and the inventory maintaining low levels of products in warehouse, analogously in
the reduced product life cycle he aim is to ensure the availability of product ready to
dispatch and maintain low levels of constrains that can cause bottle necks to the
delivery service. This strategy is also present in the decline stage where the
distributor needs to be aware of the product stored for a long period and is no longer
useful.

The maturity stage is ideally the longest period and therefore it needs a more
structured approach, Anderson, (2010) describes Kanban system to control the
logistic of the supply chain aiming hirer levels of production free of defects by a
didactic chain of cards; this system can be applied for maintaining high levels of
quality deliveries for all of the product portfolio in the maturity stage at the same
time.
26

Figure 2. Supply chain strategies vs Stages of PLC

4.2.2 Purchasing Procedure

In this section, TL 9000 standard solicits the following control points for the
purchasing process:

 Extend of control and effect upon the output of the process.


 Evaluate and select suppliers based on the ability to conform to internal
requirements.
 Establish criteria for selection evaluation and re-evaluation

For accomplishing this control points is necessary to organize the current situation;
Intcomex EC counts with four suppliers of Cisco products, The main one is Cisco
Systems, It delivers the purchased products from factories in different countries
including USA, China, and Singapore, from wherever the product is available;
Intcomex also acquires part of their inventory from three distributors of Cisco based
in USA, executing the good practice of creating alliances with competitors.
27

Products for stock can be sourced from any supplier as these will be used to feed
the push system and with and with sufficient planning time the delivery window is
flexible. Intcomex manage to replenish their inventory with an empirical re-ordering
point based on non-schedule inventory inspections; this technique will improve
significantly only by adding two factors to the formula, the first one is to define
periods to inspect the inventory on a regular basis, this action will allow knowing n
advance the holding quantity of products. The second point is to consider delivery
times from each supplier and combine them with the result of the inspection to
ensure a steady level of the high rotation products. The formula for re-ordering level
is equals the Maximum Rate of consumption times maximum lead time

An Economic Order Quantity (E.O.Q) analysis solves the question of how many
items will be purchased at a time avoiding on one hand overestimated quantities
and on the other hand higher costs for transportation of smaller batches.

Meanwhile with regard of products delivered upon request it is needed a different


sourcing approach for the pull system to succeed, A product with this characteristics
will need more time to reach the customer and for the due to considerable less
amount of this products compared to the stock products, it is likely for this process
to be stalled in every part of the chain, factory delays are out of control of Intcomex,
but the distributor shall assure a right delivery of true information about the stage
they are currently in, the constrains that have found and the time that will take to
solve them, implementing again a type of Kanban System to request information;
this will make possible for the distributor to correctly give information to the customer
and covers the first point required by the standard which is to extend control over
the output of the purchase.

The number of suppliers in this case of study are fixed and will hardly change in the
near future, but the selection of them and combination according to the immediate
needs of customers make the difference for a good quality delivery. Criteria for
selection shall include how they use state of the art technology, support after the
28

purchase and the logistics in forward and reverse supply chain; the former has
presented issues in the past for not having stablished process causing delays to
customers.

Finally, products that for any reasons are still in inventory for more than 6 months
have a limited shared funding between the factory and the distributor, this equipment
will be part of the laboratory Intcomex have for academic and marketing purposes
the aim is to reduce this portion of the inventory as low as possible with the correct
application of sourcing an inventory techniques.

Figure 3 contains a proposed flow diagram for the purchase process showing the
inventory managements stage at the beginning and the analysis of time and
information delivery from each supplier to make a more accurate choice.

Figure 3. Proposed purchase process flow diagram.


29

4.2.3 Customer-Supplier Relationship

Distribution is not only about the merely fact of moving boxes in a pack and ship
service procuring product from the supplier and sell it to the nest level, it involves a
deep logistics work and a set of value added services that precisely will add their
value of worth and will make customers trust In a reliable company instead of just
obtaining the product. These value added services are present from the pre-sale to
the support of the sale and the post-sale periods.

TL 9000 asks in this section for the following requirements:

 Strategy and criteria for customer selection;


 A method for sharing expectations, goals and improving quality of products.
 A method to track the resolution of issues.

Due to a defined sales strategy from Cisco Systems shown in figure 4, a distributor
is not authorized to sell directly to an end customer, therefore the first criteria to
select a customer is to make sure that it is a 2-tier partner or another distributor
under certain conditions.

Figure 4. Overview of the Cisco sales model.

A second criteria is to revise the level of certifications the resellers and end users
have, to classify them into the appropriated product categories they can acquire, if
a reseller sells to an end customer with no certification for a particular project the
30

whole chain might be subject to inconvenient, for this reason is responsibility of


Intcomex o identify the right customer. The criteria and strategy for clients who do
not meet these requirements is to give appropriated information and organize
certification plans to accept them as clients in a near future.

Sharing expectation and goals between the supplier and the customer cannot be
left to assumptions and the best method to concrete and document this objectives
is to have regular meetings, it is suggested two types of meetings one is individually
with the most valuable or strategic customers and the second type are group
meetings gathering clients on the same level, this will also help them to interact with
each other. This strategy covers he second control point given in the standard.

To meet the third point, it is appropriate to hand in feedback forms to customers


after training sessions, special purchases and special deliveries; under normal
circumstances feedbacks should be done periodically and also should involve he
capability and will of the staff.

Through the appropriated management of these stages and strategies, it will be


created and strengthen a relationship with the customer, endeavouring an
atmosphere of friendship, support, knowledge, security and reliability.

4.2.7 Customer Satisfaction

One of the easiest ways to collect information about the quality of the service or a
product from the customer perspective is through a survey; ten questions have been
created focusing in the quality of the delivery service, to help measuring the level of
satisfaction and to know the areas of improvement Intcomex should work on. This
is done in order to execute the control point provided by the standard where it says
that the supplier shall stablish and maintain a method for collecting data from the
customer with regard of the feeling of satisfaction on products and services.
Appendix C contains the survey that had been given to a sample of customers of
the company and its results are discussed in further chapters.
31

Definitely, actions worth more than words and in surveys the responses may not be
completely honest, in consequence, a second powerful and easy tool to measure
customer satisfaction is trough sales reports, customers who are satisfied with the
overall service will buy again and will become loyal to the company and in the same
way, customers who do not like the quality and service will stop buying almost
immediately; the aim at this point is to evaluate how many clients does Intcomex
have in the second group and should be ideally under twenty percent of customers
according to (Hayes, 2008) .

4.3 Measurements

Table 7 shows the measurements that Intcomex has to implement according to


section 3.2.2 and the applicability for Hardware and services.

Theoretical Metrics Intcomex Metrics


Code Common Measurements
Units Sold x
NPR Number of problem reports X
FTR Problem report fix response time
Overdue problem report fix
OFR Responsiveness measurements
OTD On time delivery X
Hardware and software Measurements
SO System Outage
Hardware Measurements
RR Return Rates X
Software Measurements
Software Installation Maintenance
RAA Release Application Aborts
CPQ Corrective Patch Quality
FPQ Feature Patch Quality
SWU Software Update Quality
Service Measurements
SQ Service Quality X

Table 7. Quality metrics for Intcomex EC.


32

4.3.1 Metrics for products

To accomplish the key requirement for achieving the TL 9000 standard and as
explained in chapter 2, it is needed to provide specific metrics for every product
category defined in the scope for registration statement..

 Units Sold (US)

This is a necessary metric and the starting point of the other, it is taken from the
sales report provided by the company. This report is confidential and it cannot be
included in this dissertation. Data is presented in the results section.

 Problem Reports (PR)

This metric should be calculated as the number of incoming problems divided by a


normalization factor per year predefined for each product in Appendix 2 with the
following formula:
Np1 x Afactor / S (1)

Where, Np1 is the number of problems report per period, 1 month in this case.
A factor is the number of problems report in a year.
S, is the normalization factor listed in tables for each product category
depending on the period of measure.

To complete the measurements, problems have been classified into Critical, Major,
Minor and Service problems reported in the chosen period which are labelled Np1,
Np2, Np3 and Np4 accordingly.

Once the units have been normalized, the result is called Normalized Problem
Reports (NPR) and is showed in Table 8 for the 2960-series switch WS-C2960X-
24PS-L. This table is used for all the products in the scope of the feasibility study,
results are in the following chapter.
33

Problem Normalization NPR Measurement


Reports Severity A factor Factor (S) Result
Np1 = 0 Critical 12 30 NPR1 = 0 H/S Critical
Problem Reports
Np2 = 4 Major 12 30 NPR2= 1.6 H/S Major
Problem Reports
Np3 = 15 Minor 12 30 NPR3 = 6 H/S Minor
Problem Reports
Np4 = NA N/A 12 30 NPR4 = N/A Reports per unit
maintained per year

Table 8. Hardware metric PR for WS-C2960X-24PS-L

 On Time Delivery (OTD)

Number of order accepted on the Customer Requested Date (CDR), its calculated
multiplying the accepted orders on one month, times 100 and divided by the total of
orders occurred in the same month. For a distribution company On Time Delivery
measure the percentage of orders and services delivered on time using the following
formula

(Si / Sv ÷ Cs / Cv ) x 100 (2)

Where: Si are items accepted during the period.


Sv are services accepted during the period.
Ci, is the number of items sold during a month.
Cv, is the number of services given over the month.

Table 9 presents the measurements of the switches 200-series, SLM2008T-NA from


the purchases order of the month of July. This table is used for all the hardware sold
in July.
34

PO Line Qty CRD Split Qty Actual OTD

Item Ordered Order Delivered CRD

PO1 1 1 7/10 1 7/10 1

PO2 4 4 7/12 4 7/13 1

PO3 3 3 7/17 3 7/18 0

PO4 1 6 7/20 6 7/22 0

PO5 2 13 7/22 y 3 7/22 1

y 10 8/9 0
Number Number orders On-time

of of Line due in Orders

Orders Items July Si

TOTAL: 5 6 6 3

July OTD OTD =

Si/Ci 33%

Table 9. Hardware On time Delivery for Cisco switch SLM2008T-NA

 Return Rate (RR)

Return Rates are divided in initial return (IRR) , One year return (YRR) and long-
time return,( LTR), Due to an internal policy, Intcomex does not accept returns after
one year, measurements will be applied for IRR and YRR. With the following
formulas:

IRR: Ri / Si) x Afactor x 100 (3)


YRR: Ry / Sy) x Afactor x 100 (4)

Where: RY is umber of return within a year of shipping period.


Ri is the number of returns within an immediate shipping period.
35

Si / Sy Units shipped within an immediate or yearly shipping period


correspondingly.
Table 10 shows as an example, the returns rates for Cisco Access Points WAP321-
A-K9 for an initial period of six months after shipping. From January to July of 2015.

Ship Date /
Month of
Return Jan-15 Feb-15 Mar-15 Apr-15 May-15 Jun-15 Jul-15

Jan-15 2
Feb-15 0 0
Mar-15 5 3 1
Apr-15 1 6 3 0
May-15 6 2 5 0 0
Jun-15 7 1 1 0 1 3
Jul-15 3 0 1 0 2 2 0
Shipments 52 46 80 34 21 15 64

Table 10. Return Rate for WAP321-A-K9.

4.3.2 Metrics for services.

Metrics needed for services are applicable to services provided by Intcomex and
services provided by Cisco which are sold as products by Intcomex. These metrics
are explained below.

 Service problems report (SPR)

Services problems reports are measured by all the interactions with customers in all
services against the unsolved interactions. Table 11 contains the problems report in
the month of July for Cisco Smart Services.
36

Problem Normalization NPR Measurement


Reports Severity A factor Factor (S) Result
Np4 = 25 N/A 12 30 NPR4 = 10 Service Problem
Reports per unit
maintained per
year

Table 11. Metrics for Cisco Smart Services

 Service Quality (SQ)

It is calculated by subtracting from 100% the number of non-conformities, which in


turn is calculated dividing the number of defects by the total number of services,
defects can be interpreted as any non-conformity within stablished internal
parameters as it follows.

% Service Quality (% SQ) = (1 – counted item/service volume) x 100 (5)

Table 13 shows the measurement of Customer assistance services in the month


of July.
July

Number of defects 12
Total Number services 100
Service Quality Measurement 98%

%SQ July = (1-12/100) = 88%

4.3.2 Customer satisfaction metrics.

All products and services are applicable to use customers satisfaction metrics, these
metrics are intended to measure Quality of: delivery, service, pricing and customer
service. This metrics can be as detailed as each company wants; for accomplish the
standard surveys need to be applied at least once per year. This metrics were
presented in a survey to a sample of customers.
37

Each question in the survey in Appendix 3 is intended to measure one of the metrics
in the list below. Questions were chosen according to priorities of the company. The
results are detailed in the next section.

 Time of relationship
 Best attribute of service delivery
 Worst attribute of service delivery
 Waiting time to receive a product held in stock
 Waiting time to receive a product upon request
 Waiting time to receive a new product due to warranty
 Assessment of the reverse supply chain
 Assessment of value for money
38

RESULTS

Following the structure of this report, in this chapter results are presented for the
requirements and measurements sections of the standards.

For the first section the results shows two important things to point out. First of all it
is not sufficient to achieve an international Quality Standard to work with empirical
processes in a company that is considerable big in the local market and is a
reference for smaller companies; after define the processes that should be present
among the stages of the supply chain it is observed that is a big difference between
an empirical process and a process developed with specialized techniques, result
that leads to the second major point to consider: there are several approaches to
improve supply chain processes but they need to be implemented according to the
specific needs of every company, if incorrectly applied the result might be worse.
Considering the activity of the company, the volume of sales and the organization
Intcomex currently have and according to the priorities set by the company at the
beginning of the project, improvements it were developed in tree mayor areas, these
are inventory management, purchase processes, and customer relationship.

 Measurements results

Table 12 shows the results of the measurements obtained from the selected
category products combining all models in each category; for problem reports the
rate is not high compared to the units sold, on the other hand the on time delivery
does not always meet the targets, and the return rate is higher than expected due
to le lack of previous measurements, which did not allow Intcomex to see this
number in perspective. Data gather the selected products and the corresponding
measures taken from the sales report and customer feedback of the month of July
of the present year
39

Metrics
Problem On time Return Rate
Series Units Sold
Reports delivery DOA11
SMB 300 12 3 80% 2
SMB 500 10 2 33% 0
Catalyst 2960 53 1 75% 0
Catalyst 3650 2 2 20% 0
Catalyst 3750 0 0 0% 0
RV120 18 5 75% 1
RV180 9 2 60 0
RV220 9 0 43 0
Cisco 800 20 4 70% 0
Cisco 1800 11 0 30% 0
Cisco 1900 7 0 30% 0
WAP 500 0 0 0% 0
WAP 300 15 4 85% 2
Aironet 3700 2 0 35% 0
Aironet 2700 3 0 35% 0
Aironet 1700 0 0 0% 0
Aironet 1200 4 0 35% 0

Table 12. General Results for Hardware Metrics

For the services the results reveal the staff is very capable and deliver a good level
of services but bottlenecks have been identified in the schedule of attention, this is
due the lack of defined structure of service delivery, although the service itself is of
a good quality it could be improved by educating the customer creating rules for they
to follow, adding value to the chain. Table 13 shows services quantified according
to the metrics given by the standard.

Metrics
Service Problem Reports Service quality
Sourcing/Purchasing
Services
15 70%
Consulting Services 20 95%
Customer Assistance 60 80%
Cisco Smart Services 25 88%

Table 13. General Results for Services Metrics

1
Applies to Dead on Arrival Returns only.
40

Finally, surveys confirm the results obtained from the metrics, there are no major
problems in the overall service but the on time delivery can improve specially when
dealing with products upon requests. Figures 5 to 8 show four questions delivered
in the survey the most outstanding impact for the company.

Waiting time to Waiting time to receive


Just in Time Just in Time
receive stcok made to order products.
products.
15 more days 15 more days

Within 1 Within 1 month


month
More than 1 More than 1
month month

Figure 5. Survey Result - Stock Products. Figure 6. Survey Results - Made to order.

Waiting time to receive


warranty Porducts Just in Time

15 more days

Within 1
month
More than 1
month

Figure 7. Survey Result – Warranty products.

Reverse Supply CHain


assesment
Very good
Good
Fair
Poor

Figure 8. Survey Result – Reverse Supply Chain assessment.


41

A big gap can be observed between the products held in stock which work in a very
agile supply chain and the delivery of products upon request which generally take
more than a month to be delivered. This indicates that the internal logistics is in a
good condition but Intcomex need to stablish parameters with the suppliers ensuring
the correct flow of information to respect the customer orders.

Figures 7 and 8 share a positive correlation, and it is all about their reverse supply
chain, when a customer ask for a replacement and the product is in Death On Arrival
(DOA) period, this is immediately replaced thanks to the distributor warranty policy;
but it problem is reported after this period, he warranty is responsibility of the
manufacturer and the process to contact the factory with this matter can take very
long times. This has also been identified to be a regional problem for Latin America
as this s not the case with warranty replacements in the USA. At the end the
customers feels the little presence of a good reverse logistic systems: on the other
hand Intcomex competitors does not even mention the possibility of a reverse
logistics in their service.
42

DISCUSSION

For a Latin American Company, implementing lean techniques will turn it into a state
of the art enterprise. For Intcomex this is not a distant task especially because these
techniques can be introduced in small projects and early stages and expands those
afterwards to bigger processes, it can also be implemented on other areas of the
company and make the system more robust. Currently there are empirical
processes running but a company of the size of Intcomex cannot allow keeping
working with no documented procedures of at least core activities, every employee
will assure quality in every stage by controlling small processes.

One of the biggest issues found in this dissertation according to the surveys and
metrics, is the lack of a good reverse logistic service, generally when this service
fail, customers tend to feel used only for the purchase and without after sales
support. As part of Cisco line, there is an extended warranty service offered by
Cisco, and sold by the distributor as a product, customers easily confuse the service
provider and bring all requirements to Intcomex, it needs to demarcate services
provided by Intcomex and services provided by the manufacturer so both can benefit
the customer appreciation.

During this dissertation, services had to be classified first so they can be measured
according to the metrics needed for the standard, this implied a restructure inside
Intcomex and a change of mentality that was being left behind, services were treated
as an obligation of the company with no extra cost for and specialized service;
customers demand all services, and not having level of services due to stand out of
the competence was creating a weak link for the supply chain.

It is important to say that results obtained in this dissertation can now be compared
with the initial status of the company, where there was not the intention to ensure
quality neither the knowledge of how to do it. Once the standard is implemented
results will be compared with results from other companies which will allow Intcomex
43

to profit of common data and plan their objectives accordingly and will also highlight
the importance of the standard for other companies to adopt it.

Academic works regarding quality standards for supply chain are noticeably scarce,
and the majority of them focus only in general quality management as this
dissertation have been focused on a particular industry and on an established and
worldwide standard of quality, it will be usefully not only for Intcomex to achieve the
IT industry standard but also will contribute for other academic purposes on related
topics with a particular point of view and a particular pattern to measure quality. It
can also be the starting point for other industries to adopt a similar standard.

Gathering lean tools for implement them at Intcomex it is not only matter of force the
company to fit the tool, it is instead a tailored process according to its particular
needs; the life cycle approach was designed from a general product life cycle and
adapted to a smaller period of time in which the product is strictly responsibility of
the distributor and can be in charge from beginning to end.

This dissertation also includes the customer as a main part of the quality cycle,
closing the loop with the appropriate feedback, data collected in the survey for this
study showed the lack of a reverse logistic system in the company and how
important is for the customer to have one, without this survey if could not have been
possible to realize the interest of customers to improve the reverse supply chain, so
far a neglected topic inside Intcomex EC.

6.1 Framework

To summarize the work done in this dissertation below are guidelines for Intcomex
EC., to improve quality processes; After defining the initial situation of the company
which is already revealed, these guidelines will provide a framework to achieve the
TL 9000 standard in a near future.

Narrow the operative load by separating it into small processes; this will facilitate
the completion of every project and assure a good management.
44

Once the processes have been defined, these shall fit in appropriate sections of the
requirements and measurements of the TL 9000 standard.

Some processes have been selected in this study according to priorities of the
company, gradually all processes shall be involved and be entirely fulfilled to meet
the standard with proper documentation.

A standard procedure needs to be implemented to control the flow and usefulness


of information between the suppliers, the distributors and the customer.

The scope of the standard should be defined by the senior management, it is


recommended to write in the scope statement the entire product subcategory
instead of each model of equipment, this way other models can be added gradually
at no more cost.

Finally there should be a continuous improvement methodology for both updating


the standard requirements each selected period and systematise the quality
processes and quality management process.
45

CONCLUSIONS

This dissertation has helped Intcomex to get one step closer to achieve the TL 9000
quality standard for the IT industry by analysing supply chain techniques and applied
them to relevant requirements that fit into the needs of the company, guidelines have
also been given to fulfil the requirements and measures stated in the official
documentation of the standard.

The current situation of the quality management process over the supply chain to
deliver Cisco products has been diagnose stating what quality processes should a
company have and which of them Intcomex has and the stage they are. The
outcome of the diagnose evidenced that there is not a stablished quality
management system and the process are empirical but yet the company has
succeed in the market over the past years.

Product Categories, requirements and metrics, found in both the Requirements and
Measurements handbooks developed by the QuEST Forum were described in deep,
finding their purpose of requirements and metrics to measure quality systems and
their contribution to the IT Industry in particular. It was detailed the list and guide to
allocate every product in the correct category which is the basis to match them with
the corresponding metric and requirements, contradistinguishing common metrics
and requirements from the specifics for hardware, software and services.

Based on the current situation of the Quality management at Intcomex explained


above, it was developed a model to classify and implement the requirements
according to the phase each of them are currently in. A portion of them have no
development yet, another part of them are functional but in an empirical way and
others are ahead in the process but it is not documented properly.

By means of sales reports and customer input data was obtained to fulfil the metrics
indicated by the standard and in this way measure the performance of de supply
chain of products and services delivered, quantification of metrics including number
46

of units sold, return rate, on time delivery and problem reports were successfully
concluded; some of the metrics to measure performance of particular equipment are
not recorded in this project report due to Intcomex does not have yet demo
equipment for all models to be used as a sample.

The new scenario is proposed and after the given guidelines it is concluded that
Intcomex is on the lead of others companies and it is in a good positon for achieving
the standard, the strongest necessities were addressed with lean techniques for
supply chain and the strongest qualities were guided to a proper documentation.
Also the concept of metrics from quantitatively measure the quality performance is
introduced from scratch. At this point, It is only left to the high management to
approve and start the quality certification process.

It concludes that the benefit of this work will also be applied to the bigger picture;
once this standard is implemented, it will enable the interest and motivation of other
IT companies in Latin America, this in turn will enhance the potential to count with a
solid network of quality supply chains and quality techniques implemented inside
companies from little everyday process to bigger logistics networks.

Excellence is not an isolated activity, is a habit instead. It is concluded then, that


for achieving an ideal level of quality inside a company, it must developed an
intelligent way of working every day to see positive results including a correct
management of resources, implementing tools for inventory management,
minimizing wastes and improving electiveness of the delivery service on a regular
basis.
47

RECOMMENDATIONS

Many services and softwares need an electronic delivery, it is incorrect to think that
the electronic via is not part of the supply chain and it should be not left a side of the
processes, this is called a Service supply chain and opposite to the former
approach, working on this aspect could avoid important point of failures. It is
recommended to work on this specific type of supply chain tailored to the needs of
Intcomex or any company in a similar situation, especially when service supply chain
are the future trend. .

It is recommended to have the sufficient demo equipment in any company desiring


to achieve a good level of quality, to make an acceptable sample of technical
measurements according to the standard. Otherwise the technical measurements
will need to be interpolated with statistics data and may not be representing
important changes in the processes.

As general interest it is recommended to deepen in supply chain trends, study new


requirements and challenges, for every industry and consolidate this matter to cover
a potential gap in Supply Chain logistics as this filed is not explored yet

When writing a report, the structure and presentation namely the format is equal or
sometimes even more important than the content itself as it is necessary to guide
the reader gently and properly trough every section, giving meaning and structure
to the technical content presented. Failure to do so, will truncate the delivery of the
intended information.

Care must be taken with the language used in writing up the report; it should be
composed with technical language according to level of the intended audience;
combining recommendations the success of a project will be measured by
quantifying how ready is it for publications.
48

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http://logisticsviewpoints.com/2014/12/03/the-links-between-product-lifecycle-and-supply-
chain-management/

Sumantra, S,. (2013 –July) Supply Chain 247 Magazine: 10 Supply Chain Trends for the
Next 10 Years. Retrieved from:
http://www.supplychain247.com/article/10_supply_chain_trends_for_the_next_10_years

Vora, M., (2015). 7 Steps to Link Quality Improvement to your Supply Chain. In Supply
Chain Management Review. Jul/Aug2015, Vol. 19 Issue 4, p44-51. 8p. Retrieved form:
http://eds.b.ebscohost.com/eds/detail/detail?sid=5084a433-9393-423b-be75-
cbf5f56ac197%40sessionmgr111&vid=0&hid=121&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmU%3
d#AN=108406959&db=bth

Vorne Ind.(2013). Top 25 Lean tools in LeanProduction.com. Retrieved from:


http://www.leanproduction.com/top-25-lean-tools.html
51

APPENDIX A

TL 9000 Requirements Release 5.5

Appendix A contains the complete list of TL 9000 requirements in the current


version released in 2013, and their original source.

Requirement

90003:2004

ISO 12207
GR 1202

GR 1252

IS0/IEC

TR 179
Forum
Type
4.2.3.C.1 Control of Customer-Supplied Yes C X
Documents and Data
5.2.C.1 Customer Relationship Development Yes C X
5.2.C.2 Customer Communication Methods Yes C X
5.2.C.2 NOTE X
5.4.1.C.1 Quality Objectives Yes C X
5.4.2.C.1 Long- and Short-Term Quality Yes C X
Planning
5.4.2.C.1 NOTE X
5.4.2.C.2 Customer Input Yes C X
5.4.2.C.3 Supplier Input Yes C X
5.5.3.C.1 Organization Performance Feedback Yes C X
5.5.3.C.1 NOTE X
6.2.2.C NOTE X
6.2.2.C.1 Internal Course Development Yes C X
6.2.2.C.2 Quality and Process Improvement Yes C X
Concepts
6.2.2.C.3 Product Quality Training Opportunity Yes C X
Awareness
6.2.2.C.4 Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) Training Yes C X
6.2.2.C.5 Advanced Quality Training Yes C X
6.2.2.C.6 Hazardous Conditions Training Yes C X
Content
6.2.2.HV.1 Qualification of Personnel Yes HV X
6.2.2.HV.1 NOTE X
6.3.C.1 Infrastructure Yes C X
6.4.C.1 Work Areas Yes C X
7.1.C.1 Life Cycle Model Yes C X
52

7.1.C.1 NOTE 1 X
7.1.C.1 NOTE 2 X
7.1.C.2 Disaster Recovery Yes C X
7.1.C.2 NOTE X
7.1.C.3 Product Security Yes C X
7.1.C.4 End of Life Planning Yes C X
7.1.C.5 Tools Management Yes C X
7.1.C.5 NOTE X
7.1.HS.1 Configuration Management Plan Yes HS X
7.1.HS.1 NOTE X
7.1.V.1 Service Delivery Plan Yes V X
7.2.2.C.1 Closure Tracking Yes C X
7.2.2.C.2 Contract Review Yes C X
7.2.2.C.2 NOTE X
7.2.3.C.1 Problem Severity Yes C X
7.2.3.C.1 NOTE 1 X
7.2.3.C.1 NOTE 2
7.2.3.C.2 Problem Escalation Yes C X

7.2.3.C.3 Problem Report Feedback Yes C X

7.2.3.HS.1 Organization’s Recall Process Yes HS X

7.2.3.HS.2 Design and Development Process Yes HS X


Quality Measurements Data Reporting
7.2.3.HS.1 Notification About Critical Problem Yes HS X
Reports
7.2.3.V.1 Notification About Critical Service Yes V X
Disruption
7.2.3.V.1 NOTE X

7.3.1.C.1 Project Plan Yes C X

7.3.1.C.1 NOTE 1 X

7.3.1.C.1 NOTE 2 X

7.3.1.C.1 NOTE 3 X

7.3.1.C.1 NOTE 4 X

7.3.1.C.2 Requirements Traceability Yes C X

7.3.1.C.2 NOTE X

7.3.1.C.3 Test Planning Yes C X

7.3.1.C.4 Risk Management Planning Yes C

7.3.1.C.4 NOTE X

7.3.1.C.5 Integration Planning Yes C X

7.3.1.HS.1 Migration Planning Yes HS X

7.3.1.HS.1 NOTE 1 X

7.3.1.HS.1 NOTE 2 X

7.3.1.HS.2 Design and Development Process Yes HS X


Quality Measurement Planning and
Implementation
7.3.1.HS.2 NOTE X
53

7.3.1.HS.1 Computer Resources Yes S X

7.3.1.HS.1 NOTE X

7.3.2.C.1 Customer and Supplier Input Yes C X

7.3.2.C.1 NOTE X

7.3.2.C.2 Design and Development Yes C X


Requirements
7.3.2.C.2 NOTE X

7.3.2.C.3 Requirements Allocation Yes C X

7.3.2.C.3 NOTE X

7.3.2.H.1 Content of Requirements Yes H X

7.3.2.S.1 Identification of Software Yes S X


Requirements
7.3.3.HS.1 Design and Development Output Yes HS X

7.3.3.V.1 Services Design and Development Yes V X


Output
7.3.5.C.1 Verification of Documentation Yes C X

7.3.5.HS.1 Stress Testing Yes HS X

7.3.5.HS.2 Abnormal Conditions Yes C

7.3.5.HS.3 System Testing Yes S

7.3.6.C NOTE X

7.3.6.HS.1 Release Management Yes S X

7.3.7.C.1 Change Management Process Yes C X

7.3.7.C.1 NOTE X

7.3.7.C.2 Informing Customers of Design Yes C X


Changes
7.3.7.C.3 Problem Resolution Configuration Yes C X
Management
7.3.7.H.1 Component Changes Yes H X

7.4.1.C.1 Purchasing Procedure(s) Yes C X

7.4.1.C.1 NOTE X

7.4.1.C.2 Supplier Performance Management Yes C

7.4.1.C.2 NOTE 1 X

7.4.1.C.2 NOTE 2 X

7.4.1.C.2 NOTE 3 X

7.5.1.C.1 Customer Service Resources Yes C X

7.5.1.C.2 Product Delivery Yes C X

7.5.1.HS.1 Emergency Service Provisioning Yes HS X

7.5.1.HS.2 Installation Plan Yes HS X

7.5.1.HV.1 Operational Changes Yes HV X

7.5.1.S.1 Patching Procedure Yes S X

7.5.1.S.2 Patch Documentation Yes S X

7.5.1.S.3 Replication Yes S X

7.5.1.V.1 Software Used in Service Delivery Yes V X

7.5.1.V.1 NOTE X

7.5.1.V.2 Tool Changes Yes V X


54

7.5.3.H.1 Traceability for Recall Yes H X

7.5.3.H.2 Traceability of Design Changes Yes H X

7.5.3.HS.1 Product Identification Yes HS X

7.5.3.HS.1 NOTE X

7.5.5.C.1 Protection from Electrostatic Yes C X


Discharge (ESD) Damage
7.5.5.C.1 NOTE 1 X

7.5.5.C.1 NOTE 2 X

7.5.5.HS.1 Packaging and Labeling Verification Yes HS X

7.5.5.HS.1 NOTE X

7.5.5.HV.1 Deterioration Yes HV X

7.5.5.S.1 Software Virus Protection Yes S X

7.6.C.1 Equipment Identification Yes C X

8.2.1.C.1 Customer Satisfaction Data Yes C X

8.2.3.C.1 Process Measurement Yes C X

8.2.4.H.1 Periodic Retesting Yes H X

8.2.4.H.1 NOTE X

8.2.4.H.2 Content of Testing Yes H X

8.2.4.H.2 NOTE X

8.2.4.H.3 Frequency of Testing Yes H X

8.2.4.H.4 Testing of Repair and Return Yes H X


Products
8.2.4.HV.1 Inspection and Test Documentation Yes HV X

8.2.4.HV. 2 Inspection and Test Records Yes HV X

8.2.4.S.1 Test Documentation Yes S X

8.4.C.1 Trend Analysis of Nonconforming Yes C X


Product
8.4.HS.1 Field Performance Data Yes HS X

8.4.V.1 Service Performance Data Yes V X

8.5.1.C.1 Continual Improvement Program(s) Yes C X

8.5.1.C.1 NOTE X

8.5.1.C.2 Employee Participation Yes C X

8.5.2.C NOTE X

8.5.2.S.1 Problem Resolution Yes S X

Common 49
Hardware 27
Software 24
Services 11
55

APPENDIX B

TL 9000 Metrics and Product Categories.


56
57

APPENDIX C

Survey applied to customers of Intcomex EC.


58
59

APPENDIX D
MSc Project Proposal ENG704

Feasibility study for the implementation of the Quality


Project Title standard TL9000 for Intcomex Ecuador across its
supply chain of Cisco equipment and services.

A. Project Background

Intcomex is an international premier technology distribution company serving some of the


best known telecom enterprises with a variety of IT products, with presence in north,
central and south America. In this context Cisco Systems is one of the main companies
that has chosen Intcomex as it distributor. During the last years, the branch office of
Intcomex in Ecuador (www.intcomex.com.ec) has developed a remarkable growth within
the region for Cisco and it is expected to continue.

Quality management is one of the most important processes that should exist in any
business as the continuous improvement is vital for success. Intcomex is aware of this
premise and they have expressed their need to implement a quality standard.

TL9000 has been chosen as it is a quality management standard designed to enhance


quality of the supply chain in the telecommunications sector. It defines a set of
performance-based measurements to evaluate the results of the Quality Management
System implementation.

TL 9000 gather all requirements of ISO 9001 and also delivers specific requirements for
the telecom industry including collection and report of metrics; examples are circuits
return rate, number of problem reports and software update quality.

B. Aims and Objectives


60

 Diagnose the current situation of the quality management process for Cisco chain
inside Intcomex Ec.
 Describe the product categories for hardware, and the applicable metrics for
software and services defined in TL9000 quality standard.
 Define a model for implementing the measurement process at Intcomex Ec.
across the supply chain for cisco products.
 Measure the performance of the supply chain for products, and services.
 Evaluate the new scenario and formulate guidelines for obtaining the TL9000
standard.

C. Methodologies (state how to implement your project and to achieve objectives)

 Analyse the current supply chain for Cisco products inside the company and what
is the quality current process involved.
 Study the Handbooks for the standard and identity the adequate product and
services categories that will be adapted to the needs of the company.
 Analyse the best way to collect all the data for the performance metrics by defining
the parameters in each metric.
 Collect and classify the data and match it with the standard specifications.
 Identity the new outcomes produced by the new metrics and compare them with
the original scenario.

D. Resource Requirements and Availability (equipment, materials, technician, software,


etc.)

 TL9000 Requirements handbook (USD 95.00)


 TL9000 Measurement handbook (USD 95.00)
Both will be purchased with the funds given by the scholarship sponsor.
61

 Cisco equipment based in Ecuador, and tracked from the factory to the user.
 Cisco Webex software for video calls: Provided by Intcomex Ec.
 SENTAI Enterprise Resource Planning software: Provided by Intcomex Ec.

E. Ethical Clearance

Are there any ethical issues raised on this project?

NO

If NO, complete the fast track web review at http://ethicsreview.port.ac.uk (login using
University account), print and show it to your supervisor.

If YES,

1. Please read and fill in the form at:


K:\Student\Technology\Eng\MDE\TewkesbG\Ethics

2. Please attach this form to this proposal and submit it to the departmental
representative on the Faculty Ethics Committee (Dr Giles Tewkesbury) for approval.

F: Signature and Approval


62

APPENDIX E
MSc Project Interim Report ENG704
Feasibility study for the implementation of the Quality
Project Title Standard TL 9000 for Intcomex Ecuador across its
supply chain of Cisco equipment and services.

A. Aims and Objectives

1. - Diagnose the current situation of the Quality Management process for Cisco chain
inside Intcomex EC.

2. - Describe the product categories, requirements and metrics for hardware, software
and services defined in TL 9000 standard.

3. - Define a model for implementing the applicable requirements, according to the


standard, in Intcomex EC across the supply chain of Cisco products.

4. - Measure the performance of the supply chain for products and services.

5- Evaluate the new scenario and formulate guidelines for obtaining the TL 9000
standard.

B. Completed Work and Progress

According to objective 1, the initial situation of the quality process inside Intcomex EC,
has been diagnosed getting as a result the lack of any quality process at all, and the
necessity of implementing one due to the purpose of IT equipment and the amount of
customers working on sensible projects. The performance of the distribution channel is
measured only by the total sales at the end of every fiscal period (per quarter and per
annum). Valuable information is not consolidated and properly presented, and although
the company possess a big amount of useful data, this data is spread in a disorganized
63

and non-official way. Delays on receiving and delivering orders for instance could
potentially be reduced if this data is organized and incorporated into management tools.

Fulfilling the objective 2, books described in the standard were analysed and are
resumed as follows:

Requirements Handbook.- Is a guide of 85 pages describing documents a company


must have to achieve the standard qualification, mostly based on ISO 9001 2008, a
generic quality standard for organizations and adds specific requirements for the
telecommunication industry.

Measurements Handbook.- One of the most important parts of the requirements


described in the handbook above is the measurement of performance of products being
distributed according to particular metrics, this handbook composed by 168 pages
examine in depth the categories in which the products needs to be classified, the metrics
for each one and the way to calculate and present them.

The critical process for achieving the standard is to define the scope of application, as TL
9000 certifies per categories of product, it is not necessary to meet all the requirements
given in the handbook and submit all the categories, but it is mandatory to specify the
scope. Metrics and requirements vary depending on the scope.

Requirements and metrics are identified in the document as ‘H’, ‘S’ and ‘V’ for hardware,
software and services respectively.

For Intcomex EC, as a distribution channel, its added-value supply chain is the key to the
success of operations. The scope statement was chosen considering the guidelines given
in the literature and the needs of the company to distribute Cisco products in the best
possible way, aligned with the scope that the manufacturer Cisco already has.

Metrics needed to measure the performance are described to emphasize the importance
of the supply chain and why were they chosen as a quality reference.
64

C. Plan for the Second Stage

Having defined the scope, the next step is to tabulate the particular requirements and
metrics for each product category.

To work on these requirements, It was decided to model it in three stages: Plan, Design
and Develop, so the weaknesses and strengths can be identified in each process.

Some of the requirements will be developed until the last stage, for instance the
’’PURCHASING – ELEMENT ‘’ (included in the requirement handbook) as is a regular
task for the company, but the process lacks of structure and important inventory
techniques that can be included. In the same way, some of them will fit in the first stage
for process the company does not have and will not be implemented soon due to
restrictions and in the second stage for processes that Intcomex in willing to implement.

On the measurement of metrics side which is one of the requirements, the data will be
collected and tabulated to begin with the process Intcomex should carry continuously. As
it is a feasibility study the measurements will be taken in an example period of 1 month.
After complete these tasks, objectives 3 and 4 will be fulfilled.

A final conclusion will be given at the end comparing the first scenario and the proposed
second scenario.

D. Constraints and Difficulties

One of the first difficulties is that the standard has much effort involved in dealing with the
measurements of metrics, with the certification, these data will be submitted in a
repository and contribute with the telecommunications community but in this case the
company needs to work on the other processes described in the requirements handbook
and since the metrics are part of the requirements, should be treated like so.
65

Determine the scope of application was a hard task to complete; It was done a study of
the main products and importance to the company. Also it was required a lot of interaction
with the ‘’Quest Forum’’ the organization responsible for the standard. Part of this
difficulty is the time that takes to communicate with people. Fortunately Intcomex is very
keen to help.

Information and examples of how to implement a quality process were taken from
companies in Ecuador, and is has been a constraint to reach local companies in the UK
to share this information, small companies say that they do not know about the standard,
or are not planning to implement it for now, and reach big companies is time consuming.