Amazon.com Inc. has plans to build a 800,000-square-foot fulfillment center adjacent to BNSF Railway Co.‘s Logistics Park Kansas City intermodal facility in Edgerton, Kan., the online retailer and state officials announced last week.
The fulfillment center, which is expected to employ 1,000 full-time workers, will pick, pack and ship large retail items to customers, according to a press release issued by Amazon.com.
The project is a joint effort of BNSF, the Kansas Department of Commerce, Kansas Department of Transportation, NorthPoint Development, KCP&L, city of Edgerton and Southwest Johnson County Economic Development Corp.
“The quality of the Kansas workforce and our central location in the heart of the nation contributed to [Amazon’s] decision to locate in Logistics Park Kansas City,” said Gov. Sam Brownback.
APICS and Michigan State University have recently partnered to research top concerns among leaders of supply chain management. This week, both organizations released their latest joint research report:Supply Chain Issues: What’s Keeping Supply Chain Managers Awake at Night? (Report also available for complimentary downloading)
This research represents Michigan State’s research efforts profiling challenges among more than 50 supply chain organizations. Supply chain management executives were asked to assess the challenges their organizations are currently facing along with new opportunities. The research effort was led by David J. Closs, Department Chair and John H. McConnell Chair in Business Administration and Patricia J. Daugherty, Bowersox-Thull Chair in Logistics and Supply Chain Management at Michigan State University.
The six most common issues that were cited by executives were:
Capacity /resource availability
Upon reviewing the report, Supply Chain Matters noted lots of common theme similarities that have been identified by other multi-industry focused executive surveys. An important difference in this latest APICS-Michigan State report, however, was how talent issues, namely recruitment, retention, or skills development, permeates all of the other five areas of executive concern. Much of this was summarized in the citing of one executive’s statement:
“It’s a different type of talent that we’re going to need if we’re going to keep up with the pace of change.”
A further common challenge identified by this Michigan State as well as other surveys, is the impact that B2C or B2B Omni-channel business is having on supply chain complexity, SKU proliferation, process and system complexity as well as costs. Similar themes were raised in the third annual PWC Viewpoint study involving 300 retail and consumer goods CEO’s that was administered in late 2015. That survey concluded that over 80 percent of executives were still attempting to breakdown the organizational silos that were hampering a singular Omni-channel customer fulfillment experience. That activity invariably impacts the supply chain in many different dimensions.
Our readers will likely find other common themes and concerns identified in each of the areas. In conjunction with its latest research series, APICS has announced a series of upcoming webinars addressing topics such as capabilities, costing, global talent development, purchasing, sustainability, Omni-channel and complexity.
Riders waiting for the L train on a packed subway platform at Union Square in Manhattan last month. Subway use, now at nearly 1.8 billion rides a year, has not been this high in New York City since 1948.Credit Sam Hodgson for The New York Times
For New Yorkers who rely on the 86th Street subway station on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, the morning commute is a humbling experience. An endless stream of people funnel onto the platforms. Trains arrive with a wall of humanity already blocking the doorways.
As No. 6 trains pull into the upper level of the station, riders scan for an opening and, if they can, squeeze in for a suffocating ride downtown.
“You can wait four or five subways to get on, and you’re just smushed,” Cynthia Hallenbeck, the chief financial officer at a nonprofit, said before boarding a train on a recent morning.
The Lexington Avenue line is the most crowded in the system, but subway riders across New York City are finding themselves on platforms and trains that are beyond crowded. L train stations in Brooklyn are routinely overwhelmed. In Queens, No. 7 train riders regularly endure packed conditions.
The crowded trains can make for tense commutes, contributing to an uptick in assaults among disgruntled passengers, the transit police say. With crowds lining the platform edge, some riders and train operators worry that someone could fall onto the tracks.
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