Actalent Takes on Crucial Engineering Tests to Support Automotive Client
Results at a Glance
The Client and Challenge
The client is a multinational automotive corporation with operations across the globe. Its subsidiary manufactures diesel engines, primarily for heavy-duty, on-highway and vocational trucks. The client needed to conduct performance testing on multiple engine programs each year to comply with regulatory requirements, both for new models and existing products. This included specific vehicle testing in lab conditions and winter/summer road settings. However, the client did not have the program capacity to oversee and manage existing and future testing requirements without sacrificing time spent on core work.
The client had set vehicle performance testing deliverables on current and future programs. To ensure successful completion, it required a collaborative services partner to learn internal standards and take on this testing work to free up internal bandwidth.
The Actalent Solution
Our service model and support infrastructure for the client’s various vehicle test services were developed through close collaboration between the client and Actalent. Work packages were based on truck demand schedule and annualized tests. We broke down the technical work to establish workflows, deliverables, reporting structures and project management requirements so that a managed Actalent team could execute specific work packages in alignment with the client’s standards and schedules. Our partnership started with the deployment of team leads who established closely-aligned, independently-managed, on-site teams to support vehicle testing programs in both lab and road conditions. Team leads managed the deliverables and output of the engineering team and provided direction to technicians. Under this model, Actalent developed test procedures and performed them on behalf of the client for multiple product years and lines.
The Actalent teams served as an extension of the client’s engineering teams and handled all testing based on specific conditions and parameters to ensure engines meet standards. We developed a standard, formalized process to capture all testing service requirements. We incorporated lessons learned and best practices from our own expertise in this field to develop this process. SharePoint was used as a common data integration space to initiate and track work requirements. Actalent’s technical leads and engineering specialists used the SharePoint site to access work requirements, create test cases, perform and manage testing and provide the test results back to the client. If a test failed, test results were sent back to client management with an analysis and potential recommendation on field test data.
Actalent was responsible for providing test summaries and engineering feedback on the Design Verification Plan and Report (DVP&R). Specific areas of support include:
- Vehicle performance testing for heavy- and medium-duty truck platforms
- Hardware and software engineering support
- Department of Energy truck program support
- Engineering support for emissions and durability testing
Actalent’s performance was measured based on the quality of our analysis, timely completion of testing requirements and quality of results/recommendations. We actively support between 25 and 65 vehicles in testing across multiple locations. All DVP&Rs have been submitted on time and with a high degree of quality. The client has come to fully rely on Actalent to complete this workload, enabling internal technical leads and engineers to focus time and effort on core functions.
Actalent’s model provides a complete, managed service that enables client management to focus on core engineering work. Through consolidated Actalent program management, we operate as an independent extension of the client’s engineering teams. Across the organization, Actalent has high-level relationships that have been built through providing quality deliverables, sharing performance feedback, learning from best practices, and adapting our program as market conditions around talent and engineering requirements change.
Actalent’s ability to operate independently and support these engineering work packages with the client’s best interests in mind is our key benefit. The functional testing expertise Actalent has is critical, as Actalent is able to serve as a strategic, consultative partner for the customer’s critical non-core technical requirements. Actalent's team is the most knowledgeable about these tests and the ways to maneuver internally for completion and milestone-driven dates.