The International Material Data System: Global Data Collection for the End-of-life Vehicle Management
The International Material Data System (IMDS) is an internet-based application for the global collection of material data within the automobile supply chain. As outlined in the EU Directive 2000/53/EC concerning End-of-life vehicle management the data for future recycling has to be gathered before 2015. Eight automobile manufacturers together with the IT service provider Electronic Data Systems (EDS) developed and implemented the system in 2000. Subsequently, other car manufacturers have also joined and the participation of more companies is being negotiated.
The application was initiated by the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) but relies on a bottom-up approach to data enry. Thus the lowest tier in the supply chain (tier n) must be the first to provide the material data on their products and pass them to the next tier supplier (n-1) who would have ordered the product. They, in turn provide information on the product they have made from the tier n supplier. As the whole automobile supply chain is involved, the success of IMDS is based on three critical issues: firstly, everysupplier must have access to good IT equipment; secondly, there must be a good inter-departamental co-operation and thirdly, there must be a good working relationship between the different tiers in order to glean accurate information. Assuming that the three critical factors are a precondition for a successful e-business solution and that the response to IMDS is an indicator of the ability to pass on the data through the electronic network, the paper concludes that the electronic measures for efficiency improvement have been less successfully applied and offers reasons why this may be so.
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