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Productivity vs. Efficiency – What to Measure

In ordinary day-to-day conversation for most people, the words ‘productivity’ and ‘efficiency’ are thrown around indiscriminately. They are, however, different and it’s important to know the difference and when to use them. PRODUCTIVITY V EFFICIENCY Productivity is the raw measure of how much product is made in a certain time, disregarding other metrics, like demand or wastage. For example, an employee of a company that makes 45 units an hour while the company only needs 30 is seen as very productive. [...]

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How Kanban is Re-Inventing VMI

A few decades ago, the idea of Vendor Managed Inventory was very popular. It was a new, innovative way of managing inventory where the supplier held the product until it was used. The customer benefited because they could maintain a constant inventory and were in a better position to negotiate. The supplier benefited too, since they were guaranteed business with the customer. It soon became apparent that VMI came with massive risks to both parties. From the customer’s perspective, [...]


Shipment Trackers vs. Data Loggers

In most trucking and logistics companies, a device called a data logger is used (pictured below). This records the latitude and longitude of the shipment along with other statistics like temperature, humidity, etc. While this is useful to get an idea of the conditions the shipment has been through, it’s not ideal for a variety of reasons INEFFICIENT REPORTING Like most wireless devices, data loggers are subject to battery levels and consumption problems. Using too much battery means a unit can [...]

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Why You Should Have a Vendor Portal to Manage Suppliers

In today’s rapid business world, immediate and efficient access to information is a must. Along with your customers, suppliers and purchasing agents need the same level of info just as fast. The fastest and most cost-effective way to implement this is with a supplier vendor portal. Here are some of its benefits: SUPPLIER SELF-SERVICE Portals allow the supplier to have a high degree of autonomy. Inquiries that would have taken days or even weeks through a lengthy process of calls and [...]


AI in the Supply Chain

Over the last few years, Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology has exploded, essentially going into every sector imaginable, from finance to film making. Supply chains are no different, with AI having expanded quickly already, and almost certainly going to expand more. These are the ways in which AI technologies are helping supply chains: SUPPLIER RISK MANAGEMENT: In any supply chain, your suppliers are not always reliable. Some shipments could be incorrect, delayed, or not even get sent. These kinds of problems are [...]


Inbound Shipment Visibility – Why It’s Important and How to Improve It

Of all the aspects of a supply chain, inbound visibility is one of the most important. Having an accurate view of when shipments will arrive can allow you to plan your inventory ahead of time and fulfill orders with the knowl edge of what level your inventory will be at. In addition, having visibility can allow you to confirm your supply with confidence. While these benefits are great, the problem is that perfect visibility is almost nowhere to be found. [...]