Randall Manufacturing
Archive | Printer Friendly Version | Send to a Friend | www.mhi.org | MHI Solutions magazine January 14, 2015
Tauber Institute for Global Operations at University of Michigan
MfrTech -- When the material handling and logistics industry’s premier event, ProMat 2015, opens on March 23 it will include over 800 exhibits from leading solution providers and a comprehensive Educational Conference of over 100 sessions focusing on what's next in best-in-class solutions for manufacturing and supply chain operations. 

The goal is to bring the industry together to collaborate and develop into a community that shares knowledge and addresses current and future manufacturing and supply chain issues. 
Supply & Demand Chain Executive -- Getting a product to the right market at the right time in the right quantity—no big deal, right? While you’re at it, how about doing that across thousands of shelf-keeping units (SKUs), parts, suppliers and manufacturing partners in eight different time zones? While commerce and manufacturing become increasingly global, digital and interconnected, there is a growing awareness that every major enterprise is built on a complex, global supply chain. So bearing all this in mind, as for those goals above, it’s really not that easy.
Modern Materials Handling -- Robotics is one of the most exciting emerging technologies in the materials handling industry. Over three blogs, I’ll take a look at the development of a new mobile piece picking robot by a start-up with roots at Carnegie Mellon, and a pilot test at a pharmaceutical and medical supplies distribution facility. The columns aren't meant to be an endorsement of any one company or its solution, but a look at one project.
Material Handling & Logistics -- By 2025, three out of four people in the workforce will be from the Millennial generation. This workforce comes with considerable strengths according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Millennial Report:

Given their strength in numbers and abilities, how can companies start attracting this workforce now before the Baby Boomers retire?
Multichannel Merchant -- For years, marketers have had two goals. They wanted to truly be able to engage with customers uniquely, based on both their interests and their value to our retail brand. They have also wanted to manage that conversation across every digital marketing channel, unifying email, web/mobile sites, display ad, and social efforts. While widely viewed as two separate goals, they were innately connected – how can you have cross-channel marketing without knowing who, specifically, you are communicating with? 2015 is the year when the promise of cross-channel marketing nirvana is fulfilled, finally.
Vidir Inc.
EBN -- For some supply chain and logistics functions, rugged wearable computers can be a real boon. At the same time, the cost of managing these devices can be daunting. Too often, rugged wearable computers cost 5x to 10x the cost of consumer electronic devices with one-third features. Are you looking to reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO) on these rugged devices? If yes, you are not alone.
Supply Chain Brain -- Year-over-year import cargo volume at the nation's major retail container ports is expected to continue to rise during most of the first half of 2015 despite significant congestion still impacting West Coast ports, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.
News Observer -- federal mediator is getting involved in stalled contract talks between West Coast dockworkers and their employers.

Political and financial pressure has been building as each side blamed the other for the slow movement of billions of dollars of cargo across the docks at 29 seaports that are a vital trade link with Asia.
Logistics Viewpoints -- Let us look at a few critical projects many supply chain leaders would like to initiate to save money and improve service, but can’t, because they can’t muster the necessary corporate support.
Supply Chain Digital -- The Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system sits squarely at the heart of business operations. With an ERP system in place, a company can manage and integrate all the disparate elements of its business to operate more effectively.
An ERP system requires significant upfront and ongoing investment; a far cry from today’s world of cloud computing. Working alongside the ERP system are three key functional areas of Sales, Human Resources and Procurement; all of which can be significantly improved by implementing cloud-based applications, closely integrated with on-premise ERP systems.
Supply Chain Digital -- In the first part, I gave some background to spend management. In Part Two I’m going to look at how you put this into practice. Integrating cloud-based spend management with on-premise ERP systems can make the most significant impact on the bottom line.

The first step is to understand the processes that are currently in place and how they are being used within the organisation. This will help to identify how much control over spend there is right now, and will provide further opportunities to improve efficiency and spend management further.
Western Pacific Storage Systems
Logistics Viewpoints -- Many potential customers want to make sure that a 3PL has a robust continuous improvement culture in place. But it is likely that many 3PLs will claim to have a robust Lean culture. How can a company that wants to outsource their warehousing operations pick a 3PL that really does have strong capabilities here? Bob points out that you can’t learn this about a 3PL by sitting in a conference room. You have to go to a site, look at the warehouse, and talk to workers on the shop floor.
MIT Sloan Management Review -- To prosper in the face of turbulent change, organizations need to improve how they deal with unexpected disruptions to complex supply chains. Companies can cultivate such resilience by understanding their vulnerabilities — and developing specific capabilities to compensate for those vulnerabilities.
EBN -- The information highway that will take the electronics industry to supply chain transparency is littered with technology roadblocks. Data is obscured in silos scattered across OEMs and distributors, preventing supply chain participants from getting anything approaching a comprehensive picture.

Removing these roadblocks is a complicated problem that can be simplified if we divide them into two basic categories.
Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute
Modern Materials Handling -- IBM’s latest study on consumer behavior highlights the importance of best-in-class processes in the DC in the age of e-commerce.
Supply Chain Brain -- What does it take to develop an omnichannel road map? Joe Dunlap, senior director of supply-chain services with Fortna, lays out the steps that companies need to take. And he explains why the omnichannel is not for everyone.

The omnichannel, despite all of the attention being paid to that capability today, isn’t for everyone, says Dunlap. Retailers don’t necessarily have to embrace it in order to survive. Some may have low price points and engage in deep discounting, with already thin margins that would erode further if the seller were to attempt to compete with omnichannel entities.
Engineering Innovation


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