Randall Manufacturing
Archive | Printer Friendly Version | Send to a Friend | www.mhi.org | MHI Solutions magazine January 21, 2015
 
Tauber Institute for Global Operations at University of Michigan
EBN -- The electronics supply chain has been mastering the art of just-in-time (JIT) delivery for years now. Before it used to take a week or so to get products from your suppliers or distributors' warehouses to the factory floor. Then it was a couple days. And, now the norm has dropped to few hours thanks to vendor-managed inventory programs and campus hubs that keep suppliers and OEM operations in close vicinity to each other.

Let's look ahead to what the future could bring next. Imagine what your JIT manufacturing strategy could look like if, say, drones were able to deliver parts from your suppliers' warehouse straight to your factory line, bypassing the four-hour time gap and all the associate traffic on local roads? What if deliveries could be made in less than 30 minutes?
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TED Magazine -- Through the use of industrial robots, Amazon has sharply reduced the time its workers take to pick, pack and ship products, creating a strong competitive edge over its rivals, a list that could eventually include distributors and manufacturers.

The robots have led to Amazon being able to receive, process and pack orders onto delivery trucks in less than 15 minutes, down from an hour when done manually. 

Instead of warehouse workers having to walk through the facility picking products, the robots bring the shelves to the packers, increasing the picking speed time by two to three times. The products are then sent on conveyor belts, some of them many miles long, to be packed and shipped. This Christmas season was the first time the robots were in full use and the robotic program seems to have met expectations.
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The Washington Post -- With the population explosion in the South and West expected to continue and aging infrastructure requiring a massive overhaul elsewhere, the Obama administration on Monday began to map out a 30-year framework to meet those needs.

"Our point is to say that if we don’t [address] these things, is there a cost? The answer is yes," Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in an interview Friday. "We keep thinking the transportation system is like a merry-go-round: You put a quarter in it and it goes around again. Well, it’s not."
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Supply & Demand Chain Executive -- Will 2015 become a technology tipping point for the shipping industry and those who interact with it? Several signals point to that distinct possibility. Though cloud-based solutions, social media and mobile technologies are now the norm among many shippers, freight forwarders and some carriers, there are still a number of risk-averse players that are lagging behind.

Tech advances that once seemed risky are now becoming trusted, mainstream capabilities that can help companies transform their business and improve their bottom line. 
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Vidir Inc.
Material Handling & Logistics -- The recent robust manufacturing performance should continue in the near-term despite marginal declines in some indicators, according to the quarterly MAPI Foundation Business Outlook, a survey conducted by the MAPI Foundation, the research affiliate of the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation.

The survey's composite index is a leading indicator for the manufacturing sector. The January 2015 composite index slipped to 66 from 67 in the October 2014 survey, the second straight decline after six quarters of incremental improvement. Still, it marked the 21st consecutive quarter the index has remained above the threshold of 50, the dividing line separating contraction and expansion. 
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Logistics Viewpoints -- North America is facing a huge shortage of truck drivers, and the problem is expected to get worse.  In order to continue moving product, trucking companies are pushing more and more freight onto the rail system, but that solution is not sustainable as it is also showing signs of being at capacity.  Service in both modes is getting worse.  

The American Trucking Association cites a shortage of approximately 35,000 drivers, which is projected to rise as the struggle to find qualified drivers continues (Reuters, 2014). There are numerous reports of trucking companies refusing hundreds of truckload shipments every day. 
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Forbes -- My ARC Advisory Group colleague Sid Snitkin and I recently had a thought-provoking discussion on the future of the Industrial Internet of Things with Mark Morley, Director of Industry Marketing for Manufacturing at OpenText.

The Industrial Internet of Things offers the potential to enable industrial organizations to improve performance and enhance competitive ad-vantage — not only in an individual facility, but across company’s supply chain and throughout its value network.
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Refrigerated Frozen Food -- Coloma Frozen Foods, Coloma, Mich., needed to consolidate its frozen storage capacity. As a provider of quality frozen fruits, vegetables, juices and cherry juice Coloma Frozen Foods racking systemconcentrates, the company had previously outsourced or leased its frozen storage to four commercial facilities spread out over a 20-mile radius in southwest Michigan.

"Transferring product between four inter-company locations for production, frozen storage and repacking was costly and inefficient," says Brad Wendzel, president of Coloma Frozen Foods. "One of the leased freezer facilities had aged beyond its useful life, and much of the racking was too low, requiring inefficient pallet unstacking and restacking before shipping."
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Logistics Management
December 2014 retail sales were consistent when compared to previous months in that they were down slightly compared to November but showed decent annual gains, according to data issued today by the United States Department of Commerce and the National Retail Federation (NRF).

Commerce reported that November retail sales at $442.9 billion were down 0.9 percent compared to November and up 3.2 percent compared to December 2013, and total retail sales from October through December were up 4.1 percent annually. 
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Western Pacific Storage Systems
Supply Chain Digital -- Brad Huff, Executive Vice President & General Manager of TAKE Supply Chain discusses how delaying supply chain improvements could impact both margin and market share.
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Logistics Viewpoints -- Very often any predictions you can make for a one year period are not about a brand new thing that will occur, the prediction is really part of a larger megatrend that has not only been going on for some time but will also continue for many years to come.
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Material Handling & Logistics - While large BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) have accounted for much of the logistic sector’s investment in emerging markets, Saudi Arabia climbed to No. 2. in the 2015 Agility Emerging Markets Logistics Index. It ranks behind China, which has 47 times the population and 12.5 times the economic output.

The Index ranks emerging markets based on their size, business conditions, infrastructure and other factors that make them attractive for investment by logistics companies, air cargo carriers, shipping lines, freight forwarders and distribution companies.
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EBN -- The ultimate goal of a supply chain manager is to achieve end-to-end supply chain excellence. Supply chain managers who command global supply chains at international corporations, though, continuously grapple with how to manage and enhance critical production constraints effectively.

According to a JDA Software whitepaper, the business environment for manufacturers has become more challenging in the last years. The need to achieve and sustain long-term supply chain excellence is, thus, of paramount importance. The paper compiles five core principles to which global market leaders adhere to in order to achieve supply chain excellence. 
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Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute
The Maritime Executive – Attacks against small tankers off South East Asia’s coasts caused a rise in global ship hijackings, up to 21 in 2014 from 12 in 2013, despite piracy at sea falling to its lowest level in eight years, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Maritime Bureau (IMB) has revealed. Pirates took 442 crewmembers hostage, compared with 304 in 2013.

IMB’s annual piracy report shows 245 incidents were recorded worldwide in 2014 – a 44% drop since Somali piracy peaked in 2011. Somali pirates were responsible for 11 attacks, all of which were thwarted. However, IMB warns shipmasters to follow the industry’s Best Management Practices, as the threat of Somali piracy has not been eliminated.
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Business Because -- As global supply chains become more of a focus in companies in diverse industries, business schools have delivered a range of courses that service supply chain management.

Yet complex and fast-moving supply chains have been given "late recognition" at business schools, says Kasra Ferdows, professor of global manufacturing at Georgetown McDonough Business School.
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EBN -- Technology OEMs talk a lot about the newest technologies in their product portfolios and on their drawing boards. To succeed in today's fast-paced market, though, looking at the technologies being used by logistics partners may be equally important.

"For years, logistics companies have faced a commoditization," said Chris Saynor, CEO of eft in a press statement. "The industry is finally in a place where real innovation is being implemented, but more importantly demanded by customers." 
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Engineering Innovation
 

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