Driving Collaboration to Create Win-Win

Partnerships Between Customers & Suppliers

October 23-24, Detroit

Day One
Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Day Two
Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Chair’s Remarks

Standardization, Standards or Framework: Discussing Approaches for the Automotive Supply Industry


  • Evaluating the objectives and motivations of those in the supply chain that are utilizing cost information, and promoting cost structure standardization
  • Revealing the positives and negatives of standardization, standards, and frameworks as routes to encourage transparency and collaboration between customers and suppliers
  • Discussing as a group the common inhibitors for standardization currently, and takeaways to action back in the office to help support the change

Optimizing the Use of Cost Estimation to Improve Your Business

  • John Monica Internal Business Consultant, Siemens PLM Software


  • Understanding cost as essential to your quotation process: how to ensure profitability and avoid mistakes
  • How to successfully identify the “should cost” of purchased parts to drive successful negotiations with suppliers
  • Discovering how to select the right analytics to drive and improve your business

Morning Refreshments

Cost Modeling Fundamentals for Printed Circuit Board Assemblies

  • Jeff Miller Director of Global Manufacturing Engineering, Panasonic Automotive Systems


  • Exploring printed circuit boards: what are the key cost drivers?
  • Discussing manufacturing processes and component technologies for the electronics, and subsequent modeling assumptions you can make
  • Revealing tips and tricks to improve your cost modeling process with PCBA

Stamping and Die Costing throughout the Product Development Cycle

  • Pamela Larson President and General Manager, AutoForm Engineering USA


  • Exploring the benefits of estimating stamping and die costs early in the process development cycle
  • Obtaining cost comparisons based on different manufacturers and facilities
  • Discussing methods for quick and easy cost comparisons of different manufacturing processes

Managing the Diverse Range of Cost Breakdown Structures across Numerous Customers & Suppliers

  • Jason Sienko Director – Product Launch, E&E Manufacturing


  • Hearing how improved communication between customers and suppliers can help ensure cost breakdowns include the right information in the right format
  • Exploring ways to reduce the time spent filling in new forms, and what to do when a form doesn’t align with the data you have on cost
  • Determining the potential for standardization between partners and beyond to significantly improve efficiency

Audience Discussion: Benchmarking How the Industry is Gathering, Validating & Storing Cost Data from Multiple Sources


  • Mapping out the sources of labor, equipment and material costs across the world: what’s the minimum number of sources that can be used to find everything you need?
  • Assessing the trust placed on each source and what to do when sources are inconsistent
  • Comparing organizational structures for data gathering: do you have specialists, or is it a shared responsibility of all cost professionals?

Networking Lunch

13:00 Reducing the Disruption during the Transition to a New Software

  • Setting expectations for the deployment of new software: what does the roadmap look like?
  • Considering the training and time your staff will need to learn a new tool, while continuing with their day jobs
  • Maximizing the benefits and use of the software to retain buyin from staff and executives

Surya Chiravuri, Senior Manager VA/VE, American Axle & Manufacturing

13:40 Audience Discussion: Revealing the True Return of Investment for Modern Costing Software

  • Quantifying the time savings of using a dedicated software platform compared to using Excel
  • Reviewing the accuracy of cost estimates and quotes compared to traditional methods
  • Considering the business case for you: Would your team benefit?


13:00 Case Study: Outlining Best Practices for Estimating & Controlling Costs for Vehicles Beyond Automotive

  • Providing an overview of the challenges when working with lower volumes and specialty applications
  • Considering how process selection, machine set-up and equipment costs are incorporated as a higher percentage of total costs
  • Outlining the state of the supply chain and how quotes and targets are negotiated – how to deal with a limited supply base alongside government audit requirements

Michael Skrzypchak, Director of Cost Management, Oshkosh Corporation

13:40 Panel: Reflecting on Cost Engineering Processes for Lower Volume, Heavy Duty Components

  • Determining shared challenges between automotive and other vehicle cost engineering: where can industries best learn from
    each other?
  • Identifying issues that are unique to lower volumes and how to overcome those challenges
  • Brainstorming how professionals in the niche non-automotive vehicle market can develop a community to share ideas and improve best practices

Elysse Blank, Purchasing & Supplier Quality Cost Analysis, VA /VE & Special Projects, Webasto

Jessica Koslen, Senior Cost Estimator, MAHLE

Ed Pretzel, President, Collaborative Supply Chains

Afternoon Refreshments

Panel: Benchmarking the Pros & Cons of Alternative Ways Cost Engineers Are Integrated into the Organization


  • Understanding why cost engineers may report into engineering, purchasing, finance or elsewhere – and why it matters
  • Assessing how departments can be structured to promote internal cooperation and sharing of project data and ideas: are our engineering, purchasing and finance teams working harmoniously together?
  • Exploring the optimal job roles and responsibility of a cost engineer: which responsibilities and authority do you hold, and is this optimal?

Incorporating Lessons Learned from Unsuccessful Bids to Continuously Improve Costings & Win More Business


  • Hearing how feedback on a lost bid is gathered and reviewed: is this done at all? Who is responsible for doing this?
  • Tracking information from one feedback meeting to the next bid: how are the lessons stored and remembered?
  • Improving staff training and corporate record keeping to ensure that lessons learned are understood by new staff

Chair’s Closing Remarks

End of Conference