Saturday 25th Nov 2017 - Logistics & Supply Chain

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Solving the global labour famine

The supply chain is experiencing a rather severe labour deficit – and it doesn’t look like it’s about to recover any time soon. In fact, according to The World Bank, the global problem is going either to remain the same, or in the worst-case scenario, deteriorate even further over the next five years.

Malory Davies FCILT, Editor.

Carrot spaghetti: supply chain hero?

It’s estimated that almost two million tonnes of food is wasted in the grocery supply chain every year. A study last year by WRAP, the food waste charity, calculated that action to increase prevention of waste could save businesses £300 million a year.

Ready to bet on the urban delivery market?

Countless millions of pounds, dollars and euros are being invested in innovative (and sometimes not so innovative) urban delivery systems. The risks in these ventures can be high – but then so can the rewards.

Time to contribute to the debate on supply chain slavery

Supply chains in the fashion, construction and cleaning sectors are being targeted by the UK’s director of labour market enforcement, Sir David Metcalf, who has warned that he will be consulting on how to make full use of powers to jail the worst offenders.

First step: admit you have a problem

Progress in raising ethical standards in global supply chains has stalled in many places, a new study by the Economist Intelligence Unit has revealed.

Who will rule the final mile?

It has come to light that retail giant Amazon has patented what it calls “multi-level fulfilment centres” for drones in urban areas. These beehive shaped buildings would see drones zipping across the sky in densely populated areas.

Petya threatens global supply chains

When the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply released its Risk Index for the for the first quarter of this year, it highlighted the conflict between Ukraine and separatist rebels in the east of the country which was hindering both physical and digital supply chains.

Procurement: more value to be added

What’s the point of procurement? Is it to get the lowest price, build strong business partnerships with suppliers, or a mixture of the two?

Time to press industry’s case on Brexit

Neutral observers must be thinking that British prime ministers have some kind of death wish. First we had David Cameron calling a referendum that he never needed to, losing, and then having to resign.

The 350 year old retail challenge

I must confess that I had never heard of William Lucas until today. But it turns out that Lucas is the person we must thank for the home shopping revolution. And the ramifications of his innovation are creating challenges for retail supply chains today.

The risk to your supply chain might not be what you think

2017 is likely to see further threats of cargo theft and drug smuggling in the Americas and Europe, protests over wage and other labour issues across Asia, and persistent risks of terrorism, including terrorist targeting of the supply chain.

Flight of fantasy?

Can’t say I am a regular reader of the “Nikkei Asian Review”, but when it headlined a story “Toyota decides flying cars aren’t so crazy after all”, I couldn’t resist having a look.

Happy days…

All the talk about Brexit might be expected to have shaken business confidence but all the evidence so far is that demand for supply chain professionals is actually increasing.

The boss is not happy

Back from the Easter break and looking forward to settling back into work nice and gently?

Are you ‘multi-local’ yet?

Apparently, the concept of “global” has had it’s day – what we need to talk about now is “multi-local”. At least that is what my marketing guru tells me. The theory is that all customers are local and need to be treated as such.

Challenging times on the high seas

Last week saw the start of operations by the three new container shipping alliances (2M-HMM/HS, Ocean and THE Alliance).

The Oscars need a bit of logistics expertise

Millions of times every day logistics operators get the right package to the right place at the right time. Occasionally things go wrong, but rarely so catastrophically as they did for one of the world’s biggest accountancy and consultancy partnerships, PwC.

Why governments want to tax logistics robots

The first inkling I had that robots were more than simply science fiction came in 1979 – it was a TV commercial (see below) for the Fiat Strada which ran for two full minutes and showed the car being assembled by these amazing machines.

How risk-averse are you?

The rise of economic nationalism has driven global supply chain risk to a 24-year peak, according to the CIPS Risk Index, powered by Dun & Bradstreet.

Supply chain slavery is happening here

Last week Erwin and Krystian Markowski were each sentenced to six years in jail at Nottingham Crown Court after being convicted on charges related to trafficking people for labour exploitation.

Big wins on the New Silk Road

The World Economic Forum got underway in Davos this week in a political environment that appears to have turned away from the WEF vision of expanding globalisation based on public-private cooperation.

Are you ready for the challenge of the New Year?

Just before Christmas the news emerged that Amazon has applied for a patent on an airborne fulfilment system that uses an airship floating at 45,000 feet to hold stock and a fleet of drones to handle the actual deliveries.

Are you ready for a diesel ban?

Earlier this month the mayors of four of the world’s biggest cities, Paris, Mexico City, Madrid and Athens committed themselves to banning all diesel vehicles by 2025.

Occam’s razor is not enough

The complexity of supply chains has increased over recent years alongside market globalisation and the resulting extended supply chains.

Time for a chat?

How are you getting along with Siri? Or Cortana? Or Alexa? Voice controlled digital assistants seem to be all the rage…

Supply chain faces new challenges

The Supply Chain Excellence Awards celebrated their 20th anniversary last night – and the celebration in London highlighted the way in which supply chain professionals have driven excellence in the face of a changing market – notably with globalisation.

Supply chain just got a bit riskier

The impact of the UK’s Brexit vote has made itself felt in global supply chains as global supply chain risk hits a three year high in the third quarter of 2016.

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