Author Archive for Steve Banker – Page 2

Pfizer Embraces the Digital Supply Chain

A new head of supply chain at Pfizer asked a simple question, “If Amazon can provide end to end shipment status of my orders, why can’t Pfizer.” That was the impetus for a supply chain visibility project. “The company had to change their mindset and embrace a global orchestrated supply network.

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Digital Twins Support Supply Chain Optimization

Digital twin is the phrase used to describe a computerized (or digital) version of a physical asset or process. The digital twin contains a sensor or sensors that collects data to feed the asset model. These concepts have implications for complex production scheduling.

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What is Integrated Supply Chain Planning?

Mike Reibsamen – the Director of Integrated Supply Chain – at Berry Global, spoke about Berry Global’s supply chain transformation at the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) annual conference in early October. Mr. Reibsamen’s primary point was that companies will get much better payback from their supply chain projects if they don’t do them in an ad hoc manner. A company should have a comprehensive end-to-end vision of what they want to accomplish, […]

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A Trucking Firm Installs Cameras To Promote Safety And The Drivers Embrace The Technology? Preposterous!

Drivers have choices. So, it came as a great surprise to me when an executive at Netradyne said that his company’s camera and AI-based analytics system, used to improve driver safety, that is appreciated by truck drivers! In my experience, drivers don’t like Big Brother. I was skeptical. But the story checks out.

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Abercrombie & Fitch Embraces Supply Chain and Omnichannel

Abercrombie & Fitch has struggled. Investments in supply chain agility and omnichannel are a key part of their turnaround strategy. Investing in supply chain speed and efficiency includes improving forecasting in the hard to forecast fashion industry. But they also seek to improve efficiency by “leveraging data analytics to offer the right product at the right time and the right price.”

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Robots With “Hands” that Pick and Pack Delicate Products at Incredible Speeds

Robots with hands that can pick delicate objects would potentially be transformative in distribution if these arms could be attached to mobile robots. But first we have to understand the capabilities of robots with “hands” better. I visited Micron Products to hear about their installation of a robot, really two integrated robots, to automate the process of picking and placing small plastic fasteners into shipping crates. I was interested in learning more about robotic gripper […]

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The Worst and Best in Sustainability: Amazon vs. Dassault Systèmes

The world’s most sustainable company is a supply chain software company – Dassault Systemes. The world’s least? Amazon. Amazon is an incredibly innovative company that has devoted virtually no innovation to improving the sustainability of their supply chain.

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One of the World’s Best Supply Chains

BASF does not get credit for having one of the world’s most intelligently constructed supply chains. They should. Core to their design is what they call the “Verbund” concept. This allows the byproducts from one product to be efficiently used as raw materials in the next.

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Laser Guided Vehicles, a Robotic Solution that Navigates with Precision

Laser guided vehicles (LGVs) area a flexible automated guided vehicle (AGV) solution. LGVs are a more flexible solution than older forms of AGVs that follows markers or wires in the floor or where navigation is based on following a magnet crumb trail. LGVs can move through a facility on multiple paths and the paths can change as needed. This article explains how a “typical” LGV implementation would take and the steps involved.

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NextShift Robotics, An Autonomous Mobile Robot that Optimizes the Picking Process

313 million dollars has been invested by venture capital companies in developing autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) solutions in the last several years. ARC’s recent global market study on this market shows it to be a very rapidly growing market. An autonomous mobile robot is a vehicle that requires no change to a facilities infrastructure to implement and operate. Often, these vehicles are led around a facility and then create a map of the facility that […]

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