Randall Manufacturing
Archive | Printer Friendly Version | Send to a Friend | www.mhi.org | MHI Solutions magazine June 12, 2013
Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute
A recent report by Colliers International titled, "CapEx or Capsize," underscores the idea that cities need to spend the capital to upgrade their ports, or risk "capsizing" their economies. According to the report, America needs $3.6 trillion in funding for infrastructure by 2020 to remain competitive in light of the upcoming Panama Canal expansion in 2015. Currently, the U.S. ranks 23rd globally in infrastructure competitiveness.

U.S. ports which invest in infrastructure linkages will be poised to receive larger post-Panamax vessels in 2015 and stand to benefit from accelerating growth in Latin America, Canada and Russia, while ports which are unwilling or unable to spend on infrastructure risk capsizing their local economies. Cities which don't invest capital expenditures in their port infrastructure may be negatively affected economically.
A new UN report that warns of $100 billion in annual losses from natural disasters should prompt supply chain managers to update risk management strategies and adopt more resilient practices.
The report, "Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction 2013," paints a gloomy picture. If news of direct economic losses from disasters walloping past $100 billion annually for three consecutive years -- a figure that does not include uninsured losses -- isn't nervous-making enough, the report says in its first sentence on its first page, "the worst is yet to come."
The international supply chain is here to stay. That means working with multiple partners, many of whom have hundreds of partners themselves and some of whom lack the expertise or funding to connect to supply chain management systems. Cloud platforms could change that, according to Accenture.
When Carly Simon sang the words "...they were clouds in my coffee" in her 1972 megahit, "You're So Vain," the notion of industrialized cloud-based computing was several decades in the future. Steve Jobs, speaking at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference in 1997, alluded to the fact that the concept had actually germinated some 10 years earlier.
Modern Materials Handling
It’s hard to imagine that nearly 10 years has passed since Walmart shined a spotlight on RFID technology in the retail supply chain. Fast forward a decade, and department store leader Macy’s is two years into an aggressive roll-out of RFID technology.

The two initiatives couldn’t be more different from one another. First announced in 2003, Walmart tagged cartons and pallets to speed up the receiving process in its distribution centers. The ROI was expected to come from automatically reading all those cases and pallets as they passed through an RFID portal at the dock doors. Tagging individual items in the store was way off in the future.
Dusseldorf, Antwerp and Rotterdam and are the best logistics hubs in Europe, according to a report by Colliers International.

This report, "Top European Logistics Hubs," compares the most mature and emerging logistics and industrial centers in Europe with each other against a series of key parameters that typically play a determining role in site selection for manufacturing and distribution.
Logistics Manager
Ultra-responsive logistics will play a key role in helping vehicle manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers adapt to tougher economic conditions, a survey of delegates at an automotive industry conference has revealed.

81 percent of the delegates at the conference in Bonn, Germany, supported the view that the need for emergency logistics  was being fuelled by a number of potentially turbulent factors, including the increasing trend towards global platforms, narrowing timescales, single-sourcing and supply chain balancing.
The Raymond Corporation
Material Handling & Logistics
As anticipated, FedEx Freight, the less-than-truckload (LTL) subsidiary of FedEx Corp., has announced it plans to increase shipping rates by an average of 4.5%, effective July 1, 2013. This rate change applies to eligible FedEx Freight shipments within the U.S. (including Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands), between the contiguous U.S. and Canada, within Canada, between the contiguous U.S. and Mexico, and within Mexico.
FedEx Freight’s rate hike follows similar announcements by rival less-than-truckload carriers UPS Freight, ABF and YRC Freight of their own rate increases.
Development Magazine
Too expensive to return to their place of origin, used shipping containers pile up by the thousands at ports in the United States. The abundance and relative cheapness (some sell for as little as $900) of these containers during the last decade comes from the deficit in manufactured goods departing from North America. The goods come from Asia and Europe, in containers that are often shipped back empty. So what can be done with the used containers that have reached their final destination?
One forward-thinking developer is working to repurpose some of these cargo boxes into residential and commercial structures. Three Squared, Inc. is a commercial and residential property development firm based in Detroit, MI that plans to complete construction of the Rosa Parks multifamily project on Michigan Avenue by April 2013. The company is also building 65 recreational cabins on 67 acres in Lake Tahoe at a cost of $4.5 million.
Supply & Demand Chain Executive
The supply chain evolved over the past century to become a critical strategic business function, of which its success directly supports an organization’s accomplishments. Technological advancements now enable supply chain managers to better understand the needs of their individual systems and to plan materials demand more intelligently than ever before.
Still, nearly half of all companies had not transitioned away from manual processes for forecast planning and collaboration in the supply chain, according to a 2011 study by Aberdeen Group. As a result, this leaves major chances for losses in efficiency and redundancies in work processes.
Industry Week
With supply chains growing longer and more complex, the likelihood of supply chain disruption increases dramatically. Companies have new exposures in new geographic regions, and the interconnected nature of the global economy makes problems more and not less likely to arise.
In a report developed in concert with the World Economic Forum, "Building Resilience in Supply Chains," we looked at some of the natural disasters and emerging threats that dominated headlines in 2012 and have continued to perplex managers into 2013. Just in the last 12 months, we have seen armed conflict and political upheaval in the Middle East affecting oil shipments; the closure of ports and airports in the northeastern United States due to Hurricane Sandy; and severe, prolonged drought in the U.S., leading to crop failures and the lowest levels for the Mississippi River in nearly two decades.
When supply chain professionals implement a new, faster process or procedure, they need to take time to plan great questions -- high-gain questions -- before moving forward.
Too many questions won't help, but asking consultative, or high-gain, questions fosters progress. By planning high-gain questions in advance, you garner information and buy-in for winning results.
Plant Engineering
Material handling equipment new orders grew 7.2% in 2012 and are expected to grow between 5.0% to 6.0% in 2013 and 10.0% or more in 2014, according to the latest Material Handling Equipment Manufacturing Forecast (MHEM) released by MHI.
"As the current US economic expansion shifts from capital expenditure driven to consumer-led, we anticipate modest, positive MHEM growth for 2013. Housing, automotive rebounds and expansion in industrial, warehouse and commercial buildings (over 69% from 2014 to 2018) will contribute substantially to improved MHEM growth for 2014 and beyond," said Hal Vandiver, MHI executive consultant.
Industry Week
One way many companies are trying to make their Supply Chain’s Leaner is through "Near-Sourcing."
Near-Sourcing is a term used to describe a business placing some of its operations close to where its end-products are sold. This is the opposite of the longer term trend of outsourcing manufacturing operations to developing nations having lower labor costs.
Companies are usually responding to increasing costs in their supply chains (ex: fuel costs), as well as rising labor costs in developing nations where they’ve outsourced manufacturing or assembly.
Material Handling & Logistics
Each day, another 10,000 Baby Boomers turn retirement age. Their eventual retirement will have an impact on the job market, candidate pool and economy. While past predictions had the mass exodus underway by now, that’s not happening. In fact, a significant percentage of Baby Boomers are not leaving the workforce just yet. According to a study conducted by the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI), a nonprofit trade group selling retirement-related investment products, Baby Boomers have other plans.
Warehouse managers today are "all looking for an edge," says Quellhorst. They’re scrambling to adapt to a changing distribution environment and new service demands from customers. One solution, he says, is to reconfigure warehouses to handle higher volumes and a greater variety of product. Better management of the labor force is another key effort.
Technology offers a number of tools for streamlining operations and boosting productivity. Smartphones and iPads are among the devices that are being re-purposed to operate effectively in distribution environments.
Naylor, LLC


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