Harnessing the Power of Lean

In November, Industry Week published an excellent article by Josh Cable, highlighting an interview with lean practitioner Jim Byrne, author of The Lean Turnaround: How Business Leaders Use Lean Principles to Create Value and Transform Their Company. The gist of the article is that while adopting lean principles can have a positive impact on any organization, manufacturing or otherwise, very…

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Inefficient Workflows Go Unchecked by Management

In the current economy every dollar counts. As a result, the quest to do things better, faster and more efficiently is never-ending. In fact, as a recent article in Material Handling & Logistics states, “Recent research by Intermec reveals that in the last six months alone, nearly eight out of ten (79%) warehouse managers have been tasked with finding an…

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Considering Company Culture

As much as we would hope that all organizations put honesty, integrity and the best interests of their client at the forefront of their business-doings, the unfortunate fact is that for some, that is just not true. When you think about it, if it were true, much (if not all) of the financial crisis would have been avoided. So how…

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Will the Trend Towards High End DC Automation Drive More Companies to 3PL Options?

In today’s highly competitive market, sophisticated DC automation can provide companies with an edge. If they can afford it. The problem is, not all companies can. Fortunately, there is a solution. Outsourcing. Cliff Holste’s, Supply Chain Digest blog, “Will the Trend Towards High End DC Automation Drive More Companies to 3PL Options?” discusses how the high costs associated with sophisticated…

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Inventory… What a Waste

Inventory is a necessity – but at what levels? How much of a backlog is necessary to keep production moving at a steady rate? In his Inbound Logistics blog post, Inventory…What a Waste, Paul A. Myerson makes a strong case for reducing excess inventory, pointing out that “excess inventory is a symptom of underlying problems in a process.” “In lean…

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Good News for U.S. Logistics Providers

In his Logistics Management blog post, Good news for U.S. logistics providers, editor Patrick Burnson wrote that the ever-shrinking total landed cost gap may be the tipping point that results in an acceleration of reshoring. Many large companies, he indicated, have already made public plans to reshore portions of their manufacturing to the U.S. -- including Caterpillar, Nissan, NCR, Yamaha,…

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The End of Cheap China: World Must Adjust to New Reality

“China's evaporating cheap labor pool will disrupt supply chains and consumption habits around the world. Executives and policymakers need to prepare ahead of the curve, to evolve and take advantage of the changes — or else face extinction." In The End of Cheap China: World must adjust to new reality, Alexander Heffner, discusses assertions made by Shaun Rein, managing director…

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Rising Labor Costs in China and Their Impact on the Supply Chain

“Do we move out of the Asia sphere, or is this actually where a supply chain needs to be positioned—close to an emerging market? Why would you disregard a market of this size and continue to view this portion of the globe as an export-driven manufacturing base to support western consumerism?” In, Rising Labor Costs in China and Their Impact…

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Applying Lean Principles in Process Industries

Interested in some outside perspective on applying Lean and Six Sigma process improvements in a Process Manufacturing environment? In, Applying Lean Principles in Process Industries, posted recently by Reliable Plant, the author puts forth the argument that although Lean and Six Sigma were pioneered by discrete manufacturers, the principles can be applied in a Process Manufacturing environment as well, stating,…

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