David Giambrone

CIO - Global Supply Chain, GE Aviation

Supernova Award Category: 
Tech Optimization and Modernization
The Organization: 

GE Aviation(GEA) is a world-leading provider of jet engines, components, & integrated systems for commercial & military aircraft. GE Aviation has a global service network to support these offerings.  From the turbosupercharger to the world's most powerful commercial jet engine, GE's history of powering the world's aircraft features more than 100 years of innovation. 
GE Aviation has over 65,000 military & commercial engines in service.  With its global partners, GE has built the world's largest operational engine fleet & established a firm business foundation.  GE Aviation has more than 80 facilities across the globe, with customers & operations in 130 countries.

The Problem: 

GEA has made significant investments to develop world-class A&D products . Many of these have become available in the last 6 years. In response to the pandemic, inflationary pressures, supply chains shortages & a paradigm shift toward more sustainable fuels & engines, many commercial airlines are re-fleeting their aircraft with these modern engine platforms.  
Despite the pressures, the GE Leap 1-B engines for narrow body planes continue to have a strong order backlog of  $259B. By 2023, the intended output of Leap1-B engines is planned to 2000 engines per year with an increased ramp.GE remains steadfast in its support of current Air Force programs & ready to accelerate innovation & support the Air Force of the future.
Currently numerous business processes & large-scale IT systems are unable to support the business growth & desired outcomes.Difficulty in meeting stringent, evolving regulatory requirements, like the US DoD & UK MoD due to 35+ yrs old legacy platforms.
Legacy, disparate systems drive rework, complexity & lag competitors.Data quality due to interconnectivity drives rework, manual processing, timing delays & ~10% MRP reschedules.
Lack of data visibility limits business capability for quality & cost,drive rework on shipping docks & in warehouses 

The Solution: 

GE Aviation has been on a strategic mission to modernize, standardize and consolidated over 300+ IT applications and full-scale ERP platforms.  Leveraging lean principles and process standardization, the team is transforming how we operate from wing to wing.  The primary focus is replacing 10 legacy mainframe and custom applications dating back to the 1980s that support government billing and asset management, indirect procurement, inventory management and shop floor execution systems. 
•    Modernize technology away from 35+ year old IT systems into strategic Oracle instance
•    Implement world class manufacturing execution systems to support Component manufacturing and Assembly & Test across 20+ sites
•    Redesign order-to-cash, order-to-remittance, and quality processes across $7.5B+ supply chain

The Results: 

To date, the cross-functional team has fully sunset 5 of the 8 legacy mainframe platforms and has achieved significant business benefits.  Consolidation into strategic Oracle ERP instance and affiliated pillar quality platforms have delivered business process simplification, reduction of waste and data quality/visibility improvements.  Real-time data availability to shop floor mechanics, functional users and suppliers has been provided at scale. IT simplification, risk reduction and supportability have also been achieved across the pillar platforms.  The business has also provided signiificant user exerience improvements by replacing "green screen" systems with best in class technologies and tools.  


•    20,000+ GE associates impacted through change acceleration
•    Target to achieve 95% engine one time delivery for all GE engine product lines with quality 
•    New capabilities support 75% reduction in defects per engine, 5.5 inventory turns, help support unlocking of $1.5B of cash
•    Enable technology obsolescence remediation, ensure cyber posture improvements and CMMC compliance
•    $30M cash pulled forward by accelerated billing frequency
•    Military forecast improvement delivering $5.8M annual savings in inventory avoidance and termination charges
•    Transportation optimization to maximize logistics that drives $1-2M/month in cost avoidance
•    +4% Military spares OTD improvement via direct shipment process
•    900K duplicate shipping transactions per year eliminated

The Technology: 

The core footprint has been designed to leverage modern Oracle ERP and GE Digital MES solutions, along with cloud based, integrated platform for Quality and Time and Attendance solutions. The full ecosystem includes best in class 3rd party cloud solutions for integrations, data transfer and shop floor/warehouse workflow management.  The solution accounts for heavily regulated and evolving cyber and military customer requirements.  

Disruptive Factor: 

Our investment in modern technology and commitment to business process transformation has unlocked hidden value that provided unprecedented ability to achieve our business targets.  The foundational systems now in place will enable the GE Aviation business to meet or exceed outcomes tied to Safety, Quality, Delivery and Cost in an unprecedented ramp with a very challenging business climate. Some examples of positive change was our ability to add the GE90 engine line to the Oracle Order-to-Cash process, allowing management of $4.5B RSP backlog in our ERP vs. a legacy system.  The team also transformed special tooling management across our $3B portfolio with over 300k items, many owned by US government customers.  The program has also improved effeciencies at our logoctsics centers.  One key win was a process and system change that enables Military small part shipping directly to the customer from our small parts warehouse, removing a second delivery step at our Military Packshop.  Benefits included $2M annual cost savings, $1M annual inventory reduction and a 4% OTD improvement. Lastely, we have enabled better forecasting management though the implementation of automated, real-time processes with Demantra to remove waste and enable a collaborative platform for data aggregation to improve forecast accuracy.  This will provide inventory reduction of ~ $5M and OTD improvements of ~5%.

Shining Moment: 

For the first time in out 100-year history, GE Aviation is and will continue to consolidate into a single view of operational visibility.  The system changes that we are making provide significant simplification from raw material order to final product delivery to our end customers.  The changes underway will impact our associates from the shop floor to our 600+ suppliers, airframers and the airlines around the globe. 

About GE Aviation

GE Aviation, a subsidiary of General Electric, is headquartered in Evendale, Ohio, outside Cincinnati. GE Aviation is among the top aircraft engine suppliers, and offers engines for the majority of commercial aircraft.  Every 2 seconds, aircraft with GE engine technology takes off carrying ~300K people at a time.