Randall Manufacturing
Archive | Printer Friendly Version | Send to a Friend | www.mhi.org | MHI Solutions magazine December 11, 2013
 
Tauber Institute for Global Operations at University of Michigan
MHI
Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in November for the sixth consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 54th consecutive month, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®. Manufacturing expanded in November as the PMI™ registered 57.3 percent, an increase of 0.9 percentage point when compared to October's reading of 56.4 percent.

"The PMI™ registered 57.3 percent, an increase of 0.9 percentage point from October's reading of 56.4 percent. The PMI™ has increased progressively each month since June, with November's reading reflecting the highest PMI™ in 2013," said Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, chair of the Institute for Supply Management™ Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. 
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Refrigerated Frozen Food
The importing and exporting of refrigerated and frozen foods requires the most efficient supply chain, not only in terms of technology and know-how, but also in terms of timely delivery. 

The global rise of food demand will no doubt continue to put pressures on supply chains, making it even more challenging to import and export refrigerated foods. In this changing regulatory landscape, it’s imperative that companies pay close attention to importing and exporting requirements in order to prevent supply chain snags.
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Manufacturing.net
The supply chain is getting greener and discussions about sustainability are cropping up in more calls and conferences than ever before. What this means for you is that the "green-ness" of your supply chain will soon be a deciding factor for your manufacturer and shipper partners as well as your other customers.

A recent study from ProPurchaser found that 80 percent of supply chain professionals favor suppliers with green business practices. FAQ Logistique notes that 29 percent of shippers depend on 3PL partners to provide visibility for carbon emissions and fuel efficiency, with more than half of shippers saying visibility is important for picking a 3PL.
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Vidir Inc.
World Trade
Ask anyone what the "next big thing" in global logistics will be and guaranteed there will not be unanimous opinion. Nevertheless, there are several forward-moving ideas in motion, and nearly all of them do focus around the idea of a customer-centric supply chain that delivers the goods in ways that completely meet customer expectations.

In a majority of cases, this requires an intermodal approach to transportation. From a logistics standpoint — as well as an over-arching supply chain strategy — this approach can deliver quality and timeliness to customers, regardless of which channel they choose (e-commerce, brick and mortar store, etc.).
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Modern Materials Handling
If a new process for handling consumer electronics continues to deliver results, the future of materials handling may include a striking red robot with big digital eyes, bushy digital eyebrows and a quizzical expression that makes you want to smile.

At Genco’s campus in Ft. Worth, Texas, Baxter, as the robot is known (Rethink Robotics), is working side by side with team members on a packaging line. The campus includes 1 million square feet of distribution space spread across three buildings and handles the return, repair and refurbishment of consumer electronics products such as cell phones and GPS navigation systems.
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Internet Retailer
Online retail sales in five of the largest markets in the Asia-Pacific region will soon surpass all e-retail sales in North America and Europe combined, Forrester Research Inc. predicts. Each of those five markets is quite different, however, and requires a distinct strategy for international brands hoping to sell online.
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Western Pacific Storage Systems
EBN
A brainstorm of the German government to promote its acumen in manufacturing and software-intensive embedded systems globally, the more-than-intelligent factory is becoming more than buzzwords. It's becoming disruptive enough to be called a revolution -- the fourth industrial revolution in the world, hence the name, Industry 4.0.

But what is it and why now? Picture this: A product itself talks to a machine or robot, and tells it what to do next in the production process. This smart factory of tomorrow is based on products that will be able to communicate and act autonomously within an intelligently networked production process.
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Supply & Demand Chain Executive
Consider your car for a moment. Do you need your car to run reliably and efficiently to get you from point A to point B? Of course. So, you take care of its basic needs by keeping the gas tank filled and taking it to the mechanic for regular checkups. You may even invest in a new hybrid for greater efficiency. 

But there is a big difference between your car running efficiently and running responsively. You want to know that when you push the pedal down to the floor, your car is going to respond quickly, and that when you shift into fourth gear, your car reacts. Without your car’s efficiency, you would not make it to point B. However, responsiveness is also a key component in the car’s overall functionality.
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Supply Chain Brain
In adding 13,500 jobs in November, the retail industry in the United States is said to be slowly but surely shaking off the recession.

"While we are far from fully-recovered, we are seeing a more consistent picture of the market, which should support further economic and employment growth in 2014," according to NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. "Today’s solid jobs report is welcome news that the economy is continuing to shake off the recession and adding jobs. Retail continues to lead the jobs recovery with retailers and merchants bringing on thousands of additional workers to assist customers this holiday season.
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Strategy Business
For business executives, separating true technological breakthroughs from wishful thinking is inherently challenging. As Danish physicist Niels Bohr stated, "Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future." Most of us can recall examples of misguided technology predictions great and small, such as the Internet bubble and the Segway. 

Perhaps the best example today of an innovation whose surrounding hype may be obscuring its substance is 3D printing. It thus provides an ideal case study on the importance of applying time-tested forecasting tools before getting too caught up in new-technology excitement.
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Manufacturing.net
When you think of strongholds for the electronics industry, you might think of Asia.  But you could be wrong.

Over the past few decades, the electronics components industry has seen countless companies pursue production overseas in an effort to reduce costs. OEMs have gone abroad to find the best value-added locations for building boards via offshoring: mainland China, Southeast Asia, and more recently Eastern Europe.  However, this trend is shifting. 

Wages in China are steadily rising at an annual rate in the double digits. Tax incentives for foreign manufacturers are expiring, energy costs continue to increase, and the costs associated with shipping are increasing.  In short, China is becoming a far less attractive manufacturing option for American companies.
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Material Handling & Logistics
When MH&L asked me to update my article on radio frequency identification (RFID) published a little over year ago ("Ready for Identifiable Deliverables," July 2012), my muse whispered that unless there was something dramatic that could be highlighted, she'd help me to do a rewrite of something I wrote two or three years ago. 

Dismissing that alternative as a cop-out and having a reasonable perspective on the technology and current state of the market, let's take a look at what's happened.
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EBN
The financial accrual calculation process stymies manufacturers of all shapes and sizes. Let's look at why it's so difficult to calculate accruals, how an organization can smooth out the process, and what types of return it should expect.

I've spoken with customers in the pharmaceutical, consumer goods, electronics, and even beverage manufacturing industries. Each administers its own blend of rebates and promotions, but they all struggle to calculate accruals for forecasted payments efficiently and accurately.
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Seegrid Corporation
 

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