Industry trend: turnkey solutions


More and more machine manufacturers and suppliers are finding themselves obligated to act as general contractors as part of their contractual agreements with producers and processors in the industry, especially with OEMs in the automotive and other high-tech industries. Mechanical engineers not only have to deliver machinery and systems, but also are required to realize complete ready-to-go production lines. These turnkey solutions are in demand, and the OEMs are placing a lot of responsibility on their technology suppliers.

This means the requirement is not only to deliver 180 machines within one and a half years, plus 200 systems for the technical periphery and material flow. The functional specifications set down further duties, such as coordinating the shipment and inside delivery of the machines, preparing unloading points and temporary storage, positioning the machines, and establishing operational readiness. And all this in combination with a formidable number: 1,000 truckloads of equipment.

Turnkey solutions: high demands on mechanical engineers

As if it weren’t already challenging enough to develop, produce, and deliver profitable high-tech machines, there are now even more services for mechanical engineers to provide, such as bringing in, setting up, and commissioning machines, taking care of advance planning and logistics, reconciling buildings and production line geometry, and integrating feed systems and conveyor belts into sensible material flows.

This complete set-up, including the transport chain and related services, is posing major challenges to small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in particular: Mechanical engineers do not have enough human resources or logistics expertise, let alone inside delivery equipment, or cannot do the job all alone in the client’s desired time frame.

SCHOLPP handles the entire transport chain and site logistics

“Growing into the role of a general contractor takes time; it doesn’t happen overnight,” said Götz Schleith, Regional Director at SCHOLPP responsible for southwest Germany. Nevertheless, SMBs should not shy away from complex major orders, because partners like industrial service provider SCHOLPP can take on the services they can’t provide themselves.

Coordination of deadlines, preparation of unloading and temporary storage, proper unloading, inside delivery, and cross transportation, final positioning and alignment – SCHOLPP takes on all the services having to do with the transport chain and on-site logistics in this turnkey solutions project.

However, the benefit for the customer is not only evident in the end result, the complete construction of production lines and indoor facilities in a whole factory. “We at SCHOLPP are constantly on-site with staff during a project and can take action around the clock, regardless of when and how many equipment transports arrive,” said Götz Schleith of the logistics process. This means deadlines can be met, and all project tasks can be efficiently controlled. The machine manufacturer’s experts can concentrate on their key skills in machine design, manufacture, and commissioning.

Project management is the key to success

“Mechanical engineers benefit from SCHOLPP’s logistics expertise, inside delivery technologies, and installation experience when they share the general contractor duties with us in complex turnkey solutions projects,” said Götz Schleith, looking back. This is how SCHOLPP freed up the resources of the mechanical engineer in project management. SCHOLPP not only managed truckloads of equipment deliveries, but also took care of 1,000 little things from foundation calibration to final adjustments. “You need all of this to produce commissioning readiness on time, professionally, and in an organized fashion,” concluded Götz Schleith.