What Can OCMs Do to Retain Long-Standing OEM Customers?

By Logan Wamsley

There is very little understanding as of now to just what the long-term effects of COVID-19 will be for supply chains, and more specifically, supply chains as they relate to component manufacturers (OCMs). Recent news has been somewhat positive as many component manufacturers prepare to resume production, but resuming at full capacity is largely out of the question for now. This is due to two primary reasons: (1) OEM demand levels will be drastically reduced as they continue to prioritize the health and safety of their workers, and (2) OCMs will need to operate under strict health and safety guidelines of their own. The reduced capacity over time may lead to a significant shakeup of the industry if OEM customer demand ultimately exceeds OCM capacity; if one OCM cannot meet their production needs, the OEM will continue to explore the market until they find another who can.

This means that additional strategies must be taken if OCMs wish to create and retain long-standing OEM customer relationships. One such strategy is to direct OEM customers toward solutions that will resolve many of the issues of the current market as well as future uncertainties. For example, the Partstat EOL Last Time Buy Solution entails using Partstat’s own capital and infrastructure resources to purchase, store, and fulfill last time buy inventory for schedules lasting over 20 years. Implementing such a solution all but eliminates the disruptions typically caused by obsolescence and allows the relationship between the OEM and OCM to remain un-strained. To retain customers, the key is to stand out, and unique solutions such as this give OCMs the opportunity to go above and beyond their traditional duties.

The OCM receives noticeable benefits, as well, when their customers opt to implement such a solution. Incentivizing last time buys, for example, makes it much easier for OCMs to transition components toward obsolescence without creating additional friction with long-standing customers. Additionally, through an EOL Last Time Buy Solution OCMs receive immediate payment from Partstat.

Partstat also offers solutions related to long-term storage that OCMs can use to leverage their standing with OEM customers. Partstat offers OEMs who do not have the ability to adequately store sensitive electronic components and semiconductors full access to a suite of ISO 9001-2015 and AS9120 certified storage options including a custom storage vault and die and wafer banking capabilities. These are the kinds of solutions that the current manufacturing environment requires, and the OCM who is willing to go the extra mile to introduce them to their customers will be remembered.

Surviving the COVID-19 pandemic will require OCMs to think outside of the box, to find new ways to both find new customers and retain long-standing ones. Partstat, just as it is the solution to virtually all sources of supply disruption, is the solution to maintaining such critical relationships for years to come.