Gaining competitive advantage through material efficiency

Workshop on the VerMat sponsorship program

As part of the “Competitive Advantage through Material Efficiency” workshop held in the Stuttgart House of Commerce, the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) and the Steinbeis Transfer Center for Management Quality presented VerMat – a sponsorship program designed to improve material efficiency profitably. Gerhard Weindler, head of the Transfer Center and an accredited head consultant, spoke alongside BMWi on the different options for gaining sponsorship, ways to cut costs and how to save on materials.  

To show how much potential there is to make savings, Gerhard Weindler took two case studies from medium-size companies. One was a Bavarian automotive supplier with eight employees. It identified savings in procurement, production start-ups, manufacturing processes and the supply chain. The company drafted an action plan based on data thrown up by a “potential analysis” and a business evaluation. The analysis pinpointed potential savings of 16.6 per cent of materials used and a payback period on the one-off investment of seven months. The other example involved a Baden-Württemberg company that processed metals and material surfaces. Here the analysis pinpointed potential savings of 48.9 per cent of materials used and a reduction in the time spent reworking materials. The payback period on the company’s one-off investment was six months. Both companies saw the “profitable improvement of material efficiency” sponsorship program as a useful support in safeguarding their competitiveness as a manufacturing company.

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