Randall Manufacturing
Archive | Printer Friendly Version | Send to a Friend | www.mhi.org | MHI Solutions magazine September 4, 2013
 
Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute
Modern Materials Handling
The U.S. skills shortage will be far less of a problem than many people believe in the short term, and it is unlikely to prevent a resurgence in U.S. manufacturing in the next few years, according to a new report by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG). The report – titled "The U.S. Skills Gap: Could It Threaten a Manufacturing Renaissance?" – was released today.

"Is the U.S. really facing a manufacturing-skills crisis?" the report asks. "We believe such fears are overblown – at least for the near term. Our research finds little evidence of a meaningful and persistent skills gap in most parts of the U.S., including in its most important manufacturing zones."
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The Washington Post
A handful of smaller companies are convinced there’s a way to get products to consumers just as quickly, with greater satisfaction and at a fraction of the overall cost. The future, these companies argue, is in on-demand 3D printing.

These two ways of delivering goods couldn't be more different. One relies on scaling and infrastructure to reduce transportation time. The other eliminates as much infrastructure as possible and instead sinks money into materials and on-site manufacturing. Yet both share a common dream: achieving a just-in-timeness never before seen in the history of commerce.
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Material Handling & Logistics
In the midst of elevated global trade security risks and regulations, companies are positioning their supply chains to overcome these challenges and to create new opportunities in the marketplace. The success of a business’s global supply chain, however, depends on the rigor of their approach to managing and mitigating risks.

From mapping cargo flow and identifying business partners, to conducting threat and vulnerability assessments, it all boils down to having an effective and secure trade plan. Don’t know where to start? These steps are outlined in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) "5 Step Risk Assessment Process" for managing an effective C-TPAT program.
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Vidir Inc.
Digital Supply Chain 
A spate of recent disasters and product failures is impacting on manufacturing supply chains, leading to a rise in the insurance premiums associated with certain types of specialist cover, such as business continuity insurance.

Global supply chain failures, such as General Motors India’s recall of its Tavera multi-utility vehicle, which was allegedly due to safety risks posed by a specific component, are having a significant impact on manufacturing supply chains. Disruption caused by political unrest is also having an effect, for example, there have been issues sourcing wiring harnesses from North Africa since the onset of the Arab spring. With supply chain upheaval becoming more prevalent, some businesses have noticed that insurance premiums are rising and in some instances, cover is becoming more difficult to obtain.
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MHI
MHI is deeply saddened at the news of Jock Menzies' passing.

Jock was the co-founder and president of American Logistics Aid Network (ALAN) and his passion and dedication was a natural fit to lead this organization. After witnessing the breakdown of relief efforts in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Jock organized an effort and engaged supply-chain professionals and trade associations (including MHI) to come together to help victims of disaster. And that's just what ALAN has done thanks to Jock's efforts from Haiti to Hurricane Sandy to this year's mid-west tornadoes.
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EBN
Say the words "supply chain disruptions," and things like natural disasters, delivery delays, or part shortages are first come to mind.

But, have you thought about how emerging technologies such as intelligent robotics, 3D printing, and open-source electronics will cause a different wave of disruptions?
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Manufacturing Business Technology
The use of RFID is becoming more and more prevalent in manufacturing industries.  But the rationale behind RFID process automation has evolved over the years, from supplier mandates, to cost reductions, to performance improvement.  

Over the past year, we've observed manufacturers using new metrics to define RFID deployments -- five major trends that are driving the adoption of RFID and RTLS in manufacturing.
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Starke Material Handling North America
Industry Week 
More than 1,400 subcontractors represented thousands of workers responsible for building the Freedom Tower. Contractors and project managers alike were required to know the professional experience of each subcontractor to ensure quality craftsmanship.

How could each individual company on this massive worksite be thoroughly vetted? That could require its own workforce, especially for the primary contractor on the project. A comprehensive, scalable third-party due diligence program is essential to meeting organizational and regulatory standards through project completion.
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Material Handling & Logistics
Despite the recent focus on the U.S. trade deficit, little attention has been paid to the fact that the country’s exports have been growing more than seven times faster than GDP since 2005, according to a report from the Boston Consulting Group. As a share of the U.S. economy, in fact, exports are at their highest point in 50 years.

The Consulting firm projects that the U.S., as a result of its increasing competitiveness in manufacturing, will capture $70 billion to $115 billion in annual exports from other nations by the end of the decade. About two-thirds of these export gains could come from production shifts to the U.S. from leading European nations and Japan. By 2020, higher U.S. exports, combined with production work that will likely be "reshored" from China, could create 2.5 million to 5 million American factory and service jobs associated with increased manufacturing, the firm concludes.
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Forbes
In the latest State of Logistics Report, it is reported that the trucking industry is currently short by about 30,000 drivers. And logistics professionals are frequently warned by trucking trade associations and big carriers about how CSA regulations have reduced the driver pool, how Hours of Service will reduce driver productivity by perhaps 8 percent on average. We are also told that we have an aging driver workforce and that there will be a large turnover due to retirement in the next ten years (the article cited below says that 14 percent of drivers are between the ages of 55 and 65). In short, we are told, things are bad and getting worse. One key cause is that the government has become too intrusive and needs to roll back these regulations.

And yet if you look at driver salary trends, there is a real disconnect with the driver shortage story. The National Transportation Institute (NTI) has the best ongoing statistics on US driver pay. 
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Industry Week
It seems that no time is convenient to pause the action and review strategy. When you’re in the thick of the battle to produce a product on time, under budget, with superior quality, a strategic review may seem like a waste of time or a misuse of resources. That said, failure to review strategy may result in getting to the wrong destination while doing so very efficiently.

By asking five basic questions and considering the answers, you might optimize business performance and not just operations performance.
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Western Pacific Storage Systems
Logistics Manager
If there is one thing logistics providers can be pretty sure of, it’s that customers will be looking for lower costs. After all, buying a logistics service is not like buying designer clothes – there is no kudos attached simply to spending a lot of money. 

Kudos comes from getting the right service level at the right price. There are plenty of organisations for which that is a critical balance, having an impact on both the availability and pricing of products.
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BCG Perspectives
Export manufacturing has recently become the unsung hero of the U.S. economy. Despite all the public focus on the U.S. trade deficit, little attention has been paid to the fact that the country’s exports have been growing more than seven times faster than GDP since 2005. As a share of the U.S. economy, in fact, exports are at their highest point in 50 years.

But this is likely to be just the beginning. We project that the U.S., as a result of its increasing competitiveness in manufacturing, will capture $70 billion to $115 billion in annual exports from other nations by the end of the decade. About two-thirds of these export gains could come from production shifts to the U.S. from leading European nations and Japan. By 2020, higher U.S. exports, combined with production work that will likely be "reshored" from China, could create 2.5 million to 5 million American factory and service jobs associated with increased manufacturing.
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Modern Materials Handling
I grew up outside of Youngstown, Ohio, in what is affectionately – or disparagingly – referred to as the Rust Belt. For years, communities like Youngstown were given up for dead because they were industrial cities where people got their hands dirty making and moving things at work. Industrial America was old school. The future was in financial services and, of course, the Internet. No business in its right mind wanted to own infrastructure and assets when it could put its time and money into all things digital.

This may be anecdotal, but it seems as if that’s about to change. I’m not just talking about the re-shoring of some manufacturing, which appears to be real, or the fact that one of the most sophisticated distributors in the world is Amazon, the epitome of a digital company. Rather, just this week, I noticed two data points in stories in the Wall Street Journal.
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Multichannel Merchant
When Classic Alaska Trading Company decided to revamp and upgrade its online and shipping operations the challenge seemed almost as daunting as climbing to the top of the highest peak in Mount McKinley.

The outdoor retailer, which started as a small surplus store selling Army/Navy gear in Anchorage in 1947, has grown into one of the 49th state’s premiere wilderness outfitters with five Alaskan locations, 100 employees, and an impressive inventory of 40,000 SKUs.
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Naylor, LLC
 

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