Supply Chain / Logistics

Built-in Load Monitoring Revolutionizes Fastening Applications

Although fasteners may form the smallest parts of your application, their failure can produce enormous problems. In critical industries like mining, processing, and energy production, joint failure can lead to work interruptions, employee downtime, equipment breakdowns, structural collapse, injury, and death.

Even though replacing problematic bolts can cost thousands of dollars at a time and cause expensive work shutdowns, businesses have gotten used to such costly changeovers, sometimes daily. Bossard is introducing a new product that helps end these complications.

The Maxbolt Load Indicating Fastener™, patented by Valley Forge & Bolt, reduces the potential for catastrophic joint failures through sophisticated technology. It contains an accurate and durable load-monitoring device.

Technicians know immediately the load placed on a bolt by looking at custom Maxbolt labels that show either desired operating ranges using a green zone or precise load values. No clumsy external measuring devices are necessary because the load indicators are on the fastener itself. If the clamping load falls out of spec, the tech addresses the issue now, instead of waiting for surprise equipment failure in the future.

Measurements based on tension eliminate the inaccuracies of torque control. Even inexperienced assemblers can put together complex joints that contain uniform clamp loads within +/-5% of design specs. Maxbolts ensure the best initial conditions even before the assembly is in service.

Once in service, Maxbolts can warn of initial relaxation and subsequent loosening as they are happening. A quick glance confirms the load status of a fastener. This constant monitoring provides ultimate reliability and safety in a bolted joint. You’ll always know how a fastener is holding up to its load stresses. This adds to the safety and reliability of an assembly.

Industries that can benefit from this technology include mining, oil and gas, steel, rail, petrochemicals, and nuclear. Valley Forge & Bolt has documented at least one customer that has saved $20 million by switching to Maxbolts.

If you want to know more about how the Maxbolt Load Indicating Fastener™ can revolutionize your applications, please contact us today at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com.

March 13, 2020
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A Brief History of Bossard

Bossard Campus

Bossard has an interesting international history that stretches back almost 200 years.

The Early Years

In 1831, Franz Kaspar Bossard-Kolin had a small problem. The family’s Swiss silk trade business, which had started 75 years earlier, wasn’t going so well. War, dry spells, and environmental issues were taking their toll. So, fresh from his stint as a French National Guard officer who stormed the Bastille, Franz decided to open an iron and steel shop on Kolinplatz in Zug, Switzerland. This shop flourished as the town’s local hardware shop, supplying everything from screws to tools.

Regional Growth

Despite the shortages caused by World War II, Bossard prospered in the 1930s and 1940s, particularly because of the demand for sophisticated engineering products and fasteners grew. The company expanded its offerings with a focus on tools, fittings, and screws. The distribution network grew to meet the needs of a customer base that was moving from an agricultural to an industrial base, particularly in Switzerland.

Global Expansion

In the 1970s and 1980s, the growth of international markets expanded the company across Switzerland. Many businesses throughout the country started to choose Bossard as their supplier because of its international connections. The company went public in 1987 and is currently traded on the Swiss Stock Exchange.

The recession of the early 1990s prompted the company to focus on fastening technologies by selling off its units involved in handicrafts, fittings, and tools. In 2012, Bossard acquired the fastening division of the KVT Koenig Group. KVT Fastening specialized in high-quality fastening and sealing applications throughout German-speaking countries.

Today

Bossard remains proud of its rich heritage and unique global footprint. Our headquarters have since moved from Kolinplatz but is still located in Zug, Switzerland. We encompass 77 locations that include China, India, France, Japan, Australia, South Africa, and the United States. We have 31 logistics centers, 14 application engineering labs, and 2,500 employees. Our international experience enables us to meet your supply needs with high-quality and safe products wherever you are.

To see how our global company with a rich history can help you, email us at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com.

March 06, 2020
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4 Reasons Why Using a Global Fastener Distributor Can Benefit You

Geography Map

You may know Bossard as a distributor of fastening elements and product solutions and a provider of logistics and engineering services. But we are also a global company that can offer you advantages that aren’t available for enterprises that only work on a local or national scale.

1.   Global Reach

Because manufacturing is becoming more globalized, only a supply network that spans nations can react to your needs more efficiently. Bossard boasts 77 locations, 41 logistics centers, and 14 application labs around the world. Our 2,500 employees stand ready to service your concerns wherever they are.

2.   Greater Resources

We’re not confined to one location when it comes to accessing materials and supplies. When issues arise in one area, such as disruptions related to materials, weather, or labor, we can sidestep them by going somewhere else. We gain access to new materials and resources as soon as they’re available without waiting for them to reach our shores. This enables us to bring you quick solutions that grant you faster access to your markets and customers.

3.   Larger Pool of Talent

Our employees form our most valuable assets. And we can draw them from a bigger pool of international talent. It’s not unusual for our work teams to consist of colleagues from around the world. We’ve discovered that having diverse backgrounds, experiences, and knowledge often contributes to better manufacturing solutions. What may be an unusual and unsolvable problem in one culture may already be old hat in another culture.

4.   Global Knowledge

Do you know what it takes to create products that are usable in India? What standards do you have to meet to enter the German market? How do assembly lines in China handle supply delays? Bossard can answer those questions because we have offices and experts in all those locations and more. And we’re willing to pass along our expertise to you so that you can succeed globally.

For more information about Bossard and how we can help you globally, contact us today at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com.

February 21, 2020
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Optimize Your Material Flow with Last Mile Management and Autonomous Mobile Robots

Bossard Management

When you need to move supplies from a central storage location to an individual work cell, Bossard can help with Last Mile Management and autonomous mobile robots. This solution saves time with your material flow by relying on paperless and intuitive instructions, shorter paths, and full transparency when replenishing supplies.

How Last Mile Management Works

Bossard implements Last Mile Management with autonomous mobile robots as follows:

  1. The work cell demands materials either automatically or because someone makes a request using a mobile device or desktop system.
  2. ARIMS, which is Bossard’s inventory management software, receives the request and adds it to the digital picking list.
  3. Use the digital picking list to locate and pick the material at the warehouse, supermarket, or other central storage location.
  4. After placing the needed materials in an autonomous mobile robot, it receives a route plan to replenish the work cell. To complete the delivery of materials, the robot then goes to the work cell automatically using an optimized and paperless path, which saves time. Other than possibly moving materials to and from the robot, no human intervention is necessary.

Benefits

Last Mile Management with autonomous mobile robots offers the following benefits:

  • Fewer movements in internal logistics because of the optimized material flow.
  • Real-time and transparent data on how much and what types of material usage at each work cell. Analysis of the data can occur at any time.
  • Improved efficiency because of nearly instantaneous order placement and shorter deliveries that are semi-automated.
  • The use of autonomous mobile robots can distribute the storage area and work cells anywhere that the robots can reach. This allows for flexibility when configuring assembly and work areas.

Want to know more about how Last Mile Management can improve your material flow with autonomous mobile robots? Please contact us at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com.

February 07, 2020
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Why Supplier Consolidation Solution? 8 Benefits to Improve Your Inventory Management

An inventory of Bossard products

Are you looking for a better way to manage your inventory, so that you can simplify administration, enhance visibility, maximize control, and reduce costs? The Supplier Consolidation Solution by Bossard may be your reliable, efficient, and seamless answer. It gives your business the following eight benefits.

1. A leaner process with more efficient procurement. By monitoring stock levels with full or partial automation, they can trigger replenishment orders automatically. This minimizes the procurement steps and can reduce or eliminate employee effort to produce a leaner process.

2. Significant reduction of administrative effort. Human involvement and record-keeping become unnecessary when supply orders are automatically generated, sent to a supplier or proposed to your ERP, and shipped.

3. Higher delivery performance and reliability. The use of smart systems reduces errors, saves time, and eliminates wasted effort, resulting in greater reliability and better performance.

4. Reduced inventory. Automatically tracking stock levels, replenishment orders, and deliveries let you work with lower inventory levels. You won’t have to devote space to storing extra inventory just because you may need them sometime.

5. Increased efficiency. You minimize the transactions and time needed to track, identify, order, and ship needed supplies, which makes for a more efficient process.

6. More time to focus on core activities. By spending less time managing your inventory, you can focus more of your time on the core activities of running your business and increasing productivity.

7. Highest supply guarantee. Using an automated inventory management solution virtually guarantees that you’ll have the correct supplies with the highest quality available when you need it.

8. Reduction in the cost of ownership. All these time-saving strategies and efficient transactions lessen capital commitment and lower process costs. This leads to a lower Total Cost of Ownership, which enhances your profitability.

If you have any questions about the Supplier Consolidation Solution and how we can implement it for your enterprise, please contact us at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com.

January 24, 2020
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Bossard’s Smart Factory Logistics Systems Explained

An employee transfers material

Among the many factors responsible for your success are increasing your productivity and reducing your Total Cost of Ownership. Bossard Smart Factory Logistics Systems help you achieve both by taking care of your B- and C-parts management. They’re listed below from most conventional to most advanced.

Conventional

The following logistics systems bring the C-parts you need to the right place at the right time:

  • Bossard Code puts a bar code on a bin that contains regularly used items. When the number of items falls below a minimum level, you can record the item information and wirelessly send a refill order for the items.
  • Bossard 2bin relies on two bins filled with parts and placed one in front of the other. When the first bin is empty, it moves to the rear. Bossard then picks up and refills the bin at regular intervals. In the meantime, the second bin, which is still full, moves to the front.

SmartCard

The Bossard SmartCard combines the original Kanban card with RFID technology. This makes it easy to fit into any kind of production process. Once an item is out of stock, an employee puts the RFID Kanban card into an electronic mailbox, which then transmits the refill request to Bossard.

SmartLocker

Store your most valuable items and consumables in the Bossard SmartLocker. SmartLocker is an intelligent and fully automated inventory control system. Only those with the correct RFID codes can access the high-value items. When supplies run low, the SmartLocker informs you via ARIMS, the Interactive Supply Chain Platform of Bossard.

SmartLabel

By attaching the SmartLabel to any container in your warehouse, you can avoid disrupting your existing infrastructure while upgrading B- and C-part management. The SmartLabel shows you the product image, important product information, real-time order status, and delivery date. When users need to order replacements, all they must do is push a button.

SmartBin

Because it integrates a weight sensor, the SmartBin continuously transmits its current inventory and demand levels. Bossard can then automatically deliver refills based on this information. Three versions are available:

  • SmartBin Classic works with centralized and decentralized Kanban pools.
  • SmartBin Mobile relies on mobile trolleys that contain wireless communication and battery power so that you can roll the collection of C-parts to the necessary location.
  • SmartBin Flex packs all the technology into a self-contained bin. You can then put this bin wherever you need it, even at the point of use.

To see how Bossard’s Smart Factory Logistics can improve your productivity, contact us at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com today.

November 29, 2019
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How ARIMS Mobile Can Make Your Supply Chain More Efficient

Two people study ARIMS mobile results

With ARIMS Mobile, you can put all the functions of our interactive supply chain platform into the palm of your hand. This will free you from having to run to your desk every time you need to access logistics information. Instead, you’ll be able to track your orders, manage inventory, access smart analytics, and get a holistic overview of your B- and C-part management from your smartphone, tablet, or another portable device.

The app is available on Android and iOS devices and gives you full control even when you’re on the production floor. Because ARIMS is cloud-based, the mobile version integrates with the platform you have on your desktop and with the information supplied by other ARIMS Mobile users at your location.

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App Advantages

Among the many advantages of this app are the following:

  • Customize system parameters, so that they fit the way your enterprise operates. The interface is easy and intuitive, so you spend your time entering or accessing information, rather than trying to figure out how everything works.
  • Access all your supplier information in a single streamlined supplier base.
  • Scan or enter data at the point of delivery, storage, or use.
  • Get real-time status of your deliveries or inventory wherever you are at your facility. Because this app integrates with your Enterprise Resource Planning System, the inventory revealed by ARIMS mobile matches your physical stock.
  • Locate inventory items faster than ever by using the most advanced NFC (Near-Field Communication) technology.
  • Manage how materials and information flow for your global inventory by putting shop intelligence and logistics in your pocket.
  • Improve efficiency and predictability by accessing data at the point of use.
  • Submit change requests as soon as you discover a need and look at current and past changes.
  • Expedite the implementation of Industry 4.0 at your facility by implementing communications from machine to machine (M2M).

Want to know more about how ARIMS mobile can make your supply chain more efficient? Contact us today at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com to learn more.

September 27, 2019
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How to Solve Key Supply Chain Management Challenges

A man carries materials.

Taking Supply Chain Management to The Next Level

Managing your business is not easy. With more competition on the scene than ever thanks to e-commerce, you must focus on your supply chain. If there are issues with your ability to get the supplies that you need, it can make it harder to meet deadlines and get everything in front of your clients when they demand it. At Bossard, we offer the supply chain management services that you need.

Supply Chain Management

There are challenges when it comes to supply chain management. This is where it’s critical to know what they are so that you can overcome them.

The most common problems include:

  • Higher costs
  • Materials wasted
  • Production errors
  • Changing market demands
  • Global client base
  • New technologies

None of these must be a showstopper for you. Instead, it’s about choosing the right distributor to work with. Many of the problems that you deal with can be overcome by working with Bossard.

We stand out from our competitors. What makes us unique?

  • 53 service locations
  • 25 warehouses
  • 10 application engineering labs

This allows us to focus on providing a lower total cost of ownership to you while being able to increase your productivity. We’re capable of meeting the deadlines that you have, which is why we’re across the globe. When you’re expanding your business to offer global manufacturing, we can support your global supply chain management needs.

Stay Up on the Trends

The trends happening within your industry are of the utmost importance. You may have issues such as globalization, localization, or new technology fighting to affect your operations. We can make shifts to accommodate you. Further, our end-to-end visibility allows you to see when you’re going to get what you need.

At Bossard, we provide seamless order management to ensure that we can produce what you need when you need it – and get it to you wherever you are. Supply base consolidation is our specialty and we look forward to partnering with you. Contact us right now at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com to learn more.

September 20, 2019
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6 Key Features of Bossard’s Interactive Supply Chain Platform

ARIMS

How materials flow through your supply chain is critical to the productivity and profits of your enterprise. The key to getting a handle on this process is having accurate information. ARIMS, our interactive supply chain platform, lets you manage your orders and inventory with an intuitive interface. With it, you can:

  • Merge all your suppliers into a more streamlined supplier base.
  • Integrate with your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system so the inventory recorded in your systems matches your physical stock.
  • Coordinate the flow of materials and information for your global inventory.
  • Improve predictability and efficiency by accessing your data at the point of use, such as through a smartphone.
  • Analyze big data about your supply chain in real time and make changes 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Bring Industry 4.0 into your factory by implementing machine-to-machine (M2M) communication.

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ARIMS rewards you with these benefits by providing the following functions for managing B- and C-parts:

  • ARIMS Analytics reveals your articles, locations, orders, and deliveries using reports and graphs. Users are also able to export this information. This function relies on big data to deliver real-time data, allowing you to look at how your production is doing at any time.
  • ARIMS Interactive lets you optimize your production by adjusting assembly lines. You can submit changes and view your current and past change requests. Customize your dashboard and system options to fit the way your enterprise operates.
  • ARIMS Mobile enables complete access through Android and iOS devices such as smartphones and tablets. Even if you’re on the production floor, you can locate articles and check orders in real time.

Do you want more information about how ARIMs can improve your supply chain? Please contact Bossard today at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com for a demonstration.

September 06, 2019
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How to Reduce Costs with Bossard Expert Assortment Analysis

Expert Assortment Analysis

It may be surprising to learn that only 15 percent of the total cost of a fastener comes from itself. The remaining 85 percent stems from other activities like procurement, logistics, and assembly prep. So, if you’re looking to reduce costs by examining your fasteners, you need to reduce the number of different ones that you use.

Helping you define what fasteners to rely on is the core of Expert Assortment Analysis. It assists you in determining head shapes, recess types, materials, property classes, platings, and dimensions. When utilizing this method, there are many advantages:

  • Cut unnecessary elements by looking for similarities and substituting when possible.
  • Reduce the complexities of purchasing, warehousing, and assembly by defining the fastener assortment from which you can pick.
  • Increase productivity, which improves profitability.

You can choose from three service packages:

  • Basic analyzes your entire production line to look at the assembly tech, such as fasteners, the assembly processes, and tooling. It then estimates cost savings based on Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) principles and presents proposals on what you can do.
  • Advanced includes Basic services but adds Technical Verification to verify that the proposed technical improvements will work with your processes. We also create a bill of fastener materials in drawings. These are all presented in a report to you that includes physical samples.
  • Superior builds on Basic and Advanced by developing an implementation plan. We create a project team and define priorities. We then support a Research and Development engineering team that implements the plan. Finally, we conduct training for your employees both at our facilities and at your location.

If you want to know more about how this service can improve your company’s bottom line, please contact Bossard today at ProvenProductivity@bossard.com. Expert Assortment Analysis is one of the many services we deliver, which can include Expert Education, Expert Teardown, and Expert Walk. We’re here to serve you.

August 30, 2019
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