Archive for Uncategorized

ProMat 2019 – Large Investments on Display

The ProMat show hall had an elephant in the room – Toyota Industries and its companies were front and center, as a display of its recent strategic acquisitions into the warehouse automation world. Piece picking robots, shuttle system enhancements, collaborative robots, and the software that makes these systems “intelligent” were the highlights of my attendance at ProMat 2019. The following exhibits were the most infomative to me.

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The Elements of a Successful Transportation Management Competency Center

Too many larger transportation projects fail to deliver value over time or end up being scrapped because there was inadequate investment in a long-term post-go-live support and growth strategy. The most successful enterprise-wide transportation management programs don’t stop with the successful rollout of the system. Instead, they go on indefinitely, delivering more business value over time. To sustain and grow their transportation management success, companies need to implement a competency center. This post summarizes the […]

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The High Cost of The One Percent Inventory Accuracy in Your Supply Chain

If your company is experiencing inventory accuracy problems, the problem extends across your entire logistics network—and right to your end customer. Here’s how digital inventory technologies are helping companies solve those challenges. The supply chain industry is going through a transformation because customers’ expectations are changing and labor is hard to find and retain. If you add to that the national warehouse vacancy rate hovering at record lows and warehouses bloated with inventory pulled in […]

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Is 2019 the Year of Robotic Piece Picking?

The overall structure and content of the MHI Promat and Modex events evolves very slowly from year to year. However, a prevalent theme seems to arise each year that differentiates one event from years prior. I’m told that robotic piece picking was the stand-out theme at LogiMAT last month and that theme will surely cross the pond to ProMat next month. I plan to spend a large portion of my time in Chicago at the […]

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Autonomous Trucks Today

Last summer, I wrote an article about the future of electric trucks. Notably, I outlined that the industry was ready to transition to zero-emission trucks and that a number of major manufacturers including Tesla, Daimler, Thor, and Toyota had unveiled electric class-8 trucks while UPS, FedEx and DHL had unveiled electric class-6 parcel trucks. But now the big question is whether the industry is ready for autonomous trucks. The jury is clearly still out on […]

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How Supply Chain is (Still) Underappreciated

Supply chain advancements are credited with efficiency improvements within organizations but are often overlooked for their beneficial economic side-effects. For example, supply chain software may contribute more to productivity than traditional measures such as GDP suggest. One example is the Great Moderation. Another is the inability of economic models to capture the rapid improvement of software over time. This inaccurate measurement leads to underreporting of quality improvements. This underreporting is supported by the deflationary nature of software products.

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The (New) Future of Fulfillment: How Warehouses are Transforming Operations

It was three years ago that Logistics Viewpoints and DC Velocity launched a survey of logistics practitioners to evaluate the future direction fulfillment facilities, technologies, and practices. The survey’s format evaluated past, present state, and expectations for three years into the future. The findings, published on Logistics Viewpoints and on DCVelocity.com, were well received. Last week Logistics Viewpoints (ARC Advisory Group) launched a new survey (The Future of Warehousing and Fulfillment) that will serve as a […]

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Supply Chain Planning Systems Become Increasingly Intelligent

While Machine learning is hot and customers  want to know how these technologies will be used in future SCP solutions, the truth is that machine learning is just one form of intelligence that can be embedded in supply chain planning applications. SCP solutions are smart.

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Delivery Robots Show Promise in Supply Chain Management and Logistics

With competition for more efficient and effective warehouse management and supply chain management solutions on the rise, the topic of autonomous delivery robots is increasingly being seen as a potentially disruptive force for retail deliveries. Innovation by robotics and drone companies continues at a torrid pace.   At the same time, some delivery companies and logistics firms are conducting tests, or unveiling early production models, to identify areas where robots can best be used to assist […]

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This Week in Logistics News (December 8 – 14)

This is the end of the line. And by the end of the line, I mean this is our last news round-up for the year. And what a year it is has been. In my article earlier this week, I highlighted the top articles of the year, which included our takes on Amazon and Tesla’s supply chains, warehouse automation,crowdsourcing for last mile deliveries, blockchain, and more. On top of that, I have also learned a […]

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