On September 13, more than 70 business leaders in the Aerospace cluster attended the SCV Aerospace & Defense Coalition (ADC) Breakfast, which featured as its keynote speaker Kevin Mitchell, Vice President of Global Supply Chain at Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems.
In his current role, Mitchell is responsible for developing and maintaining a strong supply base for the broad set of products produced for Aerospace Systems customers. The Global Supply Chain organization comprises subcontracts, procurement, pricing and estimating, transportation, kitting and production support. Mitchell has more than 27 years of experience and success in managing large-scale operations. Since joining Northrop Grumman in 2003, he has held a number of positions with increasing responsibilities.
The event was organized by the Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corporation whose President and CEO Holly Schroeder opened the speaker series after providing a short update on workforce development.
The topic of the keynote speech is “Building a Stronger Supplier Partnerships”, and in his engaging presentation, Mr. Mitchell touched upon a diverse range of topics, including the company’ strategic sourcing objectives, its global supplier diversity program, supplier qualification and ranking, how to become a Northrop Grumman supplier and the company’s focused growth opportunities.
For those who did not have a chance to attend this ADC event, see below a quick summary of the key takeaways of Kevin Mitchell’s presentation.
Northrop Grumman Today: The leading global security company recorded annual sales of $23.5 billion in 2015 and a backlog of $35.9 billion as of Dec 31, 2015. According to Mitchell, the company maintains a 95% win rate and an excellent record in on-time delivery.
Small Business Opportunities: Northrop Grumman is required to meet a statutory requirement of 23% of contract being awarded to small businesses. As a result, the company welcomes participation of different types of small businesses, especially those in the category of Service Disabled Veteran Owned Businesses and Historically Under-utilized Businesses Zones.
Leveraging Supplier Relationships: Not all suppliers are created equal, and it pays for a supplier to move up in the ranking. Among more than 800 suppliers, 8% have achieved the top Platinum Preferred status, and another 7 are ranked as Platinum suppliers. From a strategic perspective, the company is driving more business towards those who have achieved these two top levels.
How to become a Northrop Grumman Supplier: The first step, according to Kevin Mitchell, is to do your homework by becoming familiar with the company’s products, future priorities and requirements. Next, a potential supplier can input its info into Northrop Grumman’s database. It helps to check with the company’s Global Supplier Diversity Office, which can advise suppliers on potential subcontract opportunities.
Key to Becoming a Supplier: To qualify a potential supplier, Northrop Grumman follows a stringent internal system. A potential supplier should try to build credibility, demonstrate quality product, on-time delivery, and proven performance, and know the system through networking and attending industry events.
The Aerospace & Defense Coalition (ADC), managed by SCVEDC, is made up of over 80 SCV aerospace and defense companies that meet quarterly in the SCV. To support the coalition, the SCVEDC pursues the following services: industry promotion, quarterly events, business attraction and outreach events, annual guide to workforce training, and info & data provision.
If you want to learn more about how to be part of future ADC events or if you are interested in obtaining a copy of Kevin Mitchell’s presentation, please contact Sue Arellano, Business Assistance Manager at SCVEDC at SueArellano@scvedc.org
The Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corporation (SCVEDC) is a unique private / public partnership representing the united effort of regional industry and government leaders. The SCVEDC utilizes an integrated approach to attracting, retaining and expanding a diversity of businesses in the Santa Clarita Valley, especially those in key industry clusters, by offering competitive business services and other resources.