Establishing a Global Procurement Style That Is Uniquely Yamaha
Deputy Chief General Manager, Procurement Center, PF Model Unit Cost Innovation Section, Olivier Prevost
About five months have passed since you assumed your post. Have your impressions of Yamaha changed since you began actually working at the headquarters?
Before the move to Japan, I worked 20 years for Yamaha with regular trips to YMC. I thought that I knew Yamaha, its operations, and something about Japanese culture.
But I was mistaken. Since my arrival, every single day I have been learning about what Yamaha is, and what Japanese life is. Not only have my impressions of Yamaha changed, I changed－and this is how Yamaha Revs my Heart!
Yamaha has a diverse product line-up and conducts complex global operations through the support of all its stakeholders. Each activity requires clear policy, strategy, and coordination to accomplish. I then understood the importance of the Headquarters' role in efficiently activating the global Yamaha network.
After having worked in the Yamaha Group for many years, what do you consider to be the company's strengths and weaknesses? Also, what do you view as necessary in order to expand on the strengths?
Yamaha's philosophy is based on Kando, creativity, and persistence. One of Yamaha's strengths is to be able to implement this philosophy in daily operations. I worked many years in new model development, always referring to this philosophy for my actions and decisions and considering which product, features, and innovations will Rev the customer's Heart.
This way of thinking is followed not just by me, but by every Yamaha employee in all divisions. This is one of Yamaha's strengths, I believe.
On the other hand, Yamaha is a manufacturer with a global presence, but has no large automobile operations, as its main competitors do. This limited size in terms of production scale and organization can be seen as one weakness.
At Yamaha, we have to take advantage of our specificity, working locally with lean, responsive organizations that are based on local members function and close to suppliers and customers, to contribute globally to Yamaha as One.
To achieve this, it is important that Yamaha members acquire local and global knowledge by alternating assignments at headquarters and branches. That is why I am here!
What specific matters do you intend to pursue in the Procurement Center?
The Procurement Center's policy for this Medium Term Plan is to establish a procurement style that is Uniquely Yamaha.
The aim is to satisfy local Monozukuri requirements and Yamaha strategies in order to strengthen model competitiveness and contribute to productivity.
These are the actions being taken to implement this policy:
- Establish a competitive global supplier network able to achieve new-model QDC targets through innovation and collaboration with Yamaha.
- Deploy a cost innovation process, quality standards, and a control system for procurement information to enable the group to work as One Yamaha.
- Develop human resources to create a single procurement network able to represent Yamaha locally with consistency.
Communication and efficient collaboration between YMC's Procurement Center and local Yamaha offices and suppliers are the keys to success for these actions. Open minds and diversity will be essential to successfully establishing global teamwork for Procurement and deploying a Uniquely Yamaha procurement style with our global partners.
We in the Procurement Center are working as one to achieve this!
In 1993, graduated in mechanical engineering from Ecole Centrale de Lyon in France at the age of 23. Joined MBK (MBK Industrie S.A.) as engineer in September 1994. Became Project Leader and later Vice General Manager of MBK R&D in 2003. In 2004, transferred to Milan (Italy) for the establishment of YMRE (Yamaha Motor R&D Europe s.r.l.). Became President of YMRE in 2014, then came to Japan and assumed current positions in February 2016.