Analysts believe the food shortage at Whole Foods locations is due to a surge in shopper traffic after the company's acquisition by Amazon, but employees blame order-to-shelf, an inventory management system that uses a minimalistic approach. The system works to reduce unnecessary inventory with a goal of freeing up employee time and reducing waste, but its strict procedures are causing stocking issues.
The Delaware attorney general has filed a lawsuit against drugmakers Purdue Pharma and Endo International, wholesale drug distributors McKesson, AmerisourceBergen and Cardinal Health, and retailers Walgreens Boots Alliance and CVS Health. The lawsuit claims the companies failed to react to signals in prescriptions of opioids and concealing the risks of opioid abuse.
Fortune's annual World's Most Admired Companies list included distributors atop industry-specific rankings. Top-ranked distributors were W.W. Grainger in diversified wholesalers, Arrow Electronics in electronics and office equipment wholesalers and McKesson in health wholesalers.
Electrical distributors should strive to engage employees with a long-term career path, says Timothy Young of Interstate Electric Supply. With many applicants unqualified and the best candidates employed elsewhere, compete by offering more attractive opportunities and work environments, suggests Ira Wolfe of Success Performance Solutions.
Relying on shipper-provided management systems robs distributors of the ability to make data-driven operational decisions that could reduce costs, writes Bob Malley of Pierbridge. Using a parcel transportation management system with an enterprise approach provides more visibility and autonomy, he notes.
Applying lean principles without understanding what creates value for the customer results in wasted effort, Jamie Flinchbaugh writes. Defining value improves focus and leads to more accurate investment decisions, he writes.
Upgrades are less expensive than modernization, but they aren't always the right choice in industrial settings, Carlos Gonzalez writes. Modernization might be justified when such factors as long-term goals and the ability to serve customers are considered.
Autonomous guided vehicles and similar machines come in many forms and lack standardization, making task-based risk assessments an important component, Josh Bond writes. "A natural outcome of AGVs becoming a bigger part of our workforce is building awareness for the people working around it," says Jeff Leuwerke of Banner Engineering.
Smaller manufacturers can't forget about cyberliability coverage because they possess sensitive internal and customer data, writes Ross Moore of Pennsylvania Lumbermens Mutual Insurance. Teach employees the signs of phishing and other hacker strategies and consider hiring an IT security adviser, he recommends.
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