Supply Chain Quality | Product Safety | Risk Management
Bulletproof 360 is a leading food, beverage and content company widely known for their popular Bulletproof Coffee, collagen protein product line and more. The company provides science-based information, techniques, and products to help people take steps toward a sharper, stronger self through better performance, increased focus, and enhanced energy.
Bulletproof was founded by the "Father of Biohacking" and New York Times bestselling science author Dave Asprey. Bulletproof is on a mission to create products that radically improve lives. Bulletproof products are sold in Whole Foods and other leading retailers nationwide, Bulletproof Cafés, and online at Bulletproof.com and Amazon.com.
Rapid Growth | Regulatory Complexity
Bulletproof 360 has experienced rapid growth in the last several years. They've added to their product lines and have grown quickly through expansion of the brand's grocery distribution footprint.
All this expansion though was starting to put a strain on their supply chain management and quality assurance teams, systems, and processes. They were struggling to keep pace as the business scaled. Bulletproof also has the unique challenge of falling under both food and supplement regulatory requirements based on the types of products they produce as a manufacturer. This increases the complexity they have for information management, work processes and record keeping requirements.
In 2018, Bulletproof identified the need to invest in a true enterprise supply chain quality management platform designed to help them gain control and visibility over their supplier and distributor network, and better manage the continuous quality, consistency, and compliance of their products. They also needed to improve their processes for managing risk and make these processes scalable and repeatable as they continued to grow.
CMX began working with Bulletproof's Supply Chain and Quality Operations group in early 2019. The challenges they were facing are common for fast growing manufactures operating in a complex regulatory environment.
Those challenges included:
- Work processes were largely manual and Bulletproof had an over-reliance on people to ensure things were getting done and done properly. Workflows were not automated, repeatable or consistent.
- Information was stored in MS Excel and Dropbox, making visibility and access to data for trend analysis and decision making nearly impossible.
- Raw Material Specifications were not tied to their Product's Finished Product Standards. Testing was disjointed and relied too heavily on human review and verification.
- While work was getting done, the overall program was inefficient and was susceptible to errors and mistakes - which could potentially lead to future failure. The risk was too great to not take action.
“Our business is complex in that we need to navigate both food and supplement regulations. We ultimately selected CMX and their supply chain quality management solution [CMX1} because of its breadth and depth of functionality,” said Keith Bone, Vice President of Supply Chain, Quality and Regulatory Operations for Bulletproof 360. “It addressed our needs without requiring customization. In all of our extensive research and evaluations, we didn’t see any other platform that came close or was as user-friendly as CMX1.”
Master Data Management
CMX1 provides a single consolidated view of all of Bulletproof's supply chain partner information, regulatory documents, product data, and related quality assurance information. This includes all their partner's corporate offices, facilities/locations, contacts, data, and related documents. Change Management controls allow for partners to initiate information updates, and approvers at Bulletproof to review and accept those changes. These controls ensure integrity and completeness of partner master data. Partner information is kept up-to-date through the use of monitoring, notifications, information maintenance requests, and document management capabilities.
This reduces the cost, time, and manual work previously associated with this critical aspect of achieving and maintaining Quality Excellence.
Product Specifications and Ingredient Management
Bulletproof uses CMX1 to manage all their finished product and raw material specifications, formulations and common ingredients for their various product lines. Utilizing CMX1's authoring, review and approval workflow, the team is able to collaborate across departments, and with suppliers to create data-rich specifications. Specifications are created utilizing intelligent forms that can include header information, product formulations, finished product standards, processing control points, packaging, storage and shelf life requirements, and attachments.
Revision and Variation capabilities allow Bulletproof to manage and track specification changes over time and keep impacted suppliers informed of updates automatically.
Supplier and Distributor Onboarding and Approval
CMX1 is utilized to streamline and automate the onboarding and approval process and approving those partners to produce specific ingredients or finished products for Bulletproof.
Suppliers interact with the system to provide information and documentation during the evaluation and approval process. This includes the collection of master data and regulatory documents, execution of legal agreements, and the review of the supplier's programs and compliance for Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and Good Manufacturing Program (GMP) requirements. Areas include the supplier's Environmental Monitoring Program, Allergen Control Program, Pest Control Program, Product Traceability, and Foreign Material Control Plan.
Product category and sub-category specific business rules may dictate the additional collection of a facility audit, nutritional values, certifications, allergen declarations, lab test results, sample graphics for labeling and packaging, and the identification of tier 2 suppliers and/or Country of Origin.
Through the use of intelligent forms, workflow automation, business rules, document management, and notifications, CMX1 ensures all the requirements are accounted for prior to providing a supplier "Final Approval". CMX1's automatically assigns tasks to Bulletproof's Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), who are responsible for reviewing and approving information and documents submitted during each step of the process.
Distributors are also onboarded in a similar manner.
With CMX1, the onboarding and approval process is automated and orchestrated so the team at Bulletproof knows exactly the status and next steps at any time.
Bulletproof utilizes CMX1's powerful document management capabilities to ensure critical supply chain partner and product related compliance and regulatory documents are present and always up-to-date. Self-service tools allow for the configuration of varying document attributes and workflow rules for how documents are managed and maintained over time. Legal documents are dynamically generated from supplier data and templates and are acknowledged or signed, reviewed and approved by Bulletproof. As documents expire, CMX1 manages the renewal and archival automatically. When requirements change, the team can initiate individual or bulk requests to partners for updates and track those requests to completion. Record status, notifications, task management, escalations and reporting - all ensure no documents are missing and nothing falls through the cracks.
Insights, Business Intelligence, and Data Visualization
The team at Bulletproof utilizes CMX1's standard business reports with advanced options for searching, sorting and filtering data. This includes reports for areas such as supplier status, supplier risk rating, ingredient tracing and tier 2 ingredient sourcing, approved supplier list, aligned products to suppliers, and document status.
In the future, the teams plans to utilize the integrated self-service capabilities of Tableau. CMX1's integration with Tableau will allow Bulletproof to create their own data visualizations, embedded dashboards and reports for their various stakeholders and department managers.
Bulletproof has also identified a number of future areas to further automate in 2020 using the CMX1 Platform including:
Monitoring Lab Tests and Performing Product Evaluations
CMX1 will be utilized to capture and monitor the results of ongoing lab tests performed on Bulletproof's products by 3rd Party Labs. This will provide a key aspect for quality and compliance monitoring of their suppliers, based on the finished product standards and test methods as defined in their finished product specifications.
Bulletproof will also utilize CMX1's Product Evaluation capabilities to perform physical tests on products at the item, bag, and case levels. This will give more "real-time" status for quality and compliance to production runs and lot releases.
Since adopting CMX1, Bulletproof supply chain information, supplier data, documents, product specifications and ingredients, workflows, processes and more is now centralized, streamlined and standardized. The ability to track work, monitor supplier compliance and product quality, identify issues, and address risk has been greatly enhanced.
“We’ve been quite impressed with CMX1 in the initial rollout,” said Bone. “We’re a data driven company when it comes to decision making. Having visibility and access to supplier compliance and product quality data for trend analysis and taking proactive measures toward improving quality is a corporate mandate. CMX1 is easy to use and implement. Sometimes you have to compromise with technology solutions, but so far CMX1 is exactly the solution we wanted and needed.”
For more information and other Client Stories, please visit www.cmx1.com or call 1-858-866-8888.